Maw Laik township in Sagaing Region has become one of the top tourist destinations in Myanmar.
The reason why the tourists are coming to this administrative region in the northwest corner of Myanmar is not only because of the quaint colonial buildings, and historic golf course built during British era or the ancient caverns, caves and pagodas.
The big draw is a relatively recent addition — the Pyar Swe Elephant Camp in Maw Ku Forest Conservation nestled on the roadside of Maw Laik-Pyaung Bout, four miles away from Maw Laik Town.
The camp is attracting tourists as well as locals, officials said.
“The tourists are mostly visiting the Pyar Swe Elephant Camp for their recreation. During this year, local people living in the town also visit the camp for recreation after it officially opened. The number of tourists visiting the camp is more than last year,” said U Maung Naing, the In-Charge of the elephant keepers.
The camp’s In-charge said visitors enjoy observing elephants at work, elephant bathing, giving treats to the elephants, decorating the elephants and knowledge sharing about elephant life. The entrance fee is set Ks1,000 for locals and Ks20,000 for foreigners. A service charge for elephant riding is an additional Ks3,000 for locals and Ks20,000 for tourists.
“There were few people in town who visited the camp in the past. Most of the people who came were tourists. Now, many people from Maw Laik are visiting the camp after it officially opened because they want to see elephants bathing, elephants working. Then they ride elephants. They give food to elephants. They take photographs with elephants. They like so much for doing so. This is the pride of Maw Laik,” said U Saw Wah Wah, the In-Charge of the camp.
The Pyar Swe Elephant Camp currently has eight adult elephants and a six month old baby elephant. The camp is opens from 8 am to 12 noondaily and from 3 pm to 5 pm on weekends.
Visitors from near and far can visit the camp in any season of the year to support the vision of the preservation of the revered Myanmar elephants, said U Saw Wah Wah.
Maw Laik (IPRD)