How often have you had a baby elephant stretch out its trunk towards you with a sense of playful abandon? How often have you seen jumbo babies throw tantrums? How often have you seen these gentle giants of all sizes take a plunge into the waters, splash about and get naughty?
For those enamoured by elephants, a patch of wilderness awaits you in the outskirts of Trivandrum. Far away from the humdrum of city life, there exists a green paradise, where one gets to experience the wild like no other. It is the Elephant Rehabilitation Centre at Kottur in Trivandrum, which is a care centre for baby elephants rescued from the wild. The centre lies in the Agasthyavanam Biological Park Range.
Apart from being in the company of elephants, one also gets to engage in a host of activities here.
The serene waters of the Neyyar Dam inside the care centre offer the ideal spot to indulge in pedal boating or bamboo rafting. All one needs to do is just settle into these rafts, watch the vibrant varieties of birds flit by.One can also avail the trekking facilities here. The 3km trek into the wild through the lush, winding trail takes you to the top of Kizhakkumalappara, which presents a panoramic vista of strikingly beautiful peaks.
The Children’s Park here also offers a dedicated play area for kids. Nature camps are also conducted here for school and colleges. These one-day, two-day or three-day camps include free food and accommodation as well. Moreover, the entry is free to all during Wildlife Week which falls in October. Special celebrations are held on World Elephant Day when the jumbos are pampered with a plethora of dishes.
Visitors arriving at 08oo hours will get to watch the elephants being given a bath. The elephants reveling in the waters make for a magnificent sight that one shouldn’t give a miss. If you reach around 1000 hours, you get to watch the elephants being fed by their handlers. The elephants are also given training by veterinary doctors to turn them into kumki (elephants trained to interact with wild elephants).
So head over to Kottur and experience the charm of a world unbeknownst to you-the fascinating world of elephants.
Accommodation is available in the cottages at the centre itself. A canteen has also been set up on the premises. Those visiting Kottur can plan a visit to Neyyar Dam and the Lion Safari Park as well. Although the centre is closed on Mondays there is no restriction to watching the elephants. Other services will not be available on Mondays.
For more information, contact: 07025006757