Here in West Malaysia, not many know that there are herds of wild elephants roaming by the skirts of the town in Terengganu. Therefore, it is unpreventable that human-elephant conflict will happen. Despite all that, there is a place to call home for these injured or orphaned creatures.
Opened in 2014, Kenyir Elephant Conservation Village (KECV) is a sanctuary built by state authorities and the government to protect and reduce human-elephant conflict in Terengganu. KECV is built in a community vision to educate the locals.
Wild elephants that are rescued from conflict will be treated and healed in the center before being released back into the forest whereas for abandoned baby elephants, KECV will rescue and adopt the orphaned elephants before they are ready for the wild.
There are currently 18 Asian elephants in the center, mostly rescued elephants from the wild and some born in conservation. The admission rates to enter KECV are proceeds channelled into the elephant’s conservation efforts.
What You Can Do at KECV
First thing first, you can interact with the elephants! You can feed them bamboo shoots snacks and take pictures with them. Pictured above are baby elephants no older than 5 years old, one born in conservation and two rescued orphaned elephants.
Later in the schedule, catch an educational show where the elephants perform with their trained caretakers, showcasing the creature’s level of intellect and playfulness. There is also a chance for the audiences to step onto the stage and receive a kiss from the elephants!
Last but not least, the elephant’s bathing time. If you’re lucky, you might even get into the water to help these elephants cool off for the day! The entire herd will be playing in the river and you can see how carefree these elephants are at KECV.
To know what else you can do on a trip to Kenyir Lake, see our full experience here.
Address: Jalan Pengkalan Gawi, Sungai Telemong, Tasik Kenyir, Terengganu
Operating hours: 9am-6pm everyday. (Ticket counters will be closed at 5.30pm and on every Friday, KECV will be closed from 12.30pm-2.30pm for Muslim prayers)
Contact: +609-858 5588
Text and photos by Jessy Wong