Welcome to

the Elephant Freedom Project

Sri Lanka


Our small family run Elephant Freedom Project is a shelter for captive elephants. Surrounded by the many elephant riding places we make the difference.

We are the only place where there is no elephant riding - never. Just accompanying on walks. We are no mass tourist attraction and don't like elephant tricks. We aim to give elephants a good and safe home. At this moment two elephants are staying with us, their names are Kumari and Menike.

For many years they had to work in the harsh tourist riding industry, now they are safe.

You are very welcome to visit us and experience a special elephant encounter which is suitable for all. To keep a relaxed and peaceful atmosphere for the elephant and you, we limit the amount of visitors per day. For this reason you need to make a booking in advance. You can find us in Kegalle, between Kandy and Colombo and only 2 hours away from the airport.

We also provide good and affordable accommodation (see below). 



You can come for 1/2 day in the morning or afternoon or even volunteer for 1, 2 or 3 weeks.


1/2 day in the morning:

  • 09:00 Welcome and safety talk
  • 09:15 Prepare the elephant food
  • 09:30 Walk with the elephant
  • 11:30 Tea time
  • 12:00 Bath the elephant
  • 13:00 Tea table with traditional sweets and snacks (almost similar to lunch)
  • 13:30 End


Admission fee 39,50 USD p.p. (0-2 free of charge, under 18 = 50% discount)

Why this amount?


1/2 day in the afternoon:


  • 13:00 Tea table with traditional sweets and snacks (almost similar to lunch)
  • 13:30 Welcome and safety talk
  • 13:45 Prepare the elephant food
  • 14:00 Bath the elephant
  • 15:00 Walk with the elephant
  • 17:00 Tea
  • 17:15 End


Admission fee 39,50 USD p.p. (0-2 free of charge, under 18 = 50% discount)

Why this amount?



We also provide good and affordable accommodation (see below). 



You can reach the project by bus/train/tuktuk. From the airport or Negombo takes about 2-2.5 hours. From Kandy about 1.5 hours. If you like more comfort and less hassle we would love to arrange transport by AC car/van for you. We use a very well trusted 3rd party for this, click here to book.


Stay the night

The project offers great accommodation onsite at the family home for 15 USD per person per night, including dinner and breakfast (no discounts for children). Staying with the family gives you a great insight into the Sri Lankan culture. You can select to stay the night when making the booking for the activity. Check-in is anytime after 17:00.

Rooms have attached bathrooms with Western style toilets and refreshing typical Sri Lankan cold showers. Bed sheets, mosquito nets, fan, purified drinking water and toilet paper are provided. There is WIFI, a TV, a washing machine, a homely seating area and veranda.

About the project

The small, family run, Elephant Freedom Project offers refuge, freedom from work and hardship to the elephants. At the project they are free from working in the riding industry and the wood logging.

During the day the elephants can roam around freely inside the enclosure, go for a guided walk in the countryside and go to the river every day to be washed.

Elephants are not pets. For safety purposes the mahouts carry an ankus when the elephant is out of the enclosure. They will rarely use this and NEVER in an abusive way. Remember that elephants are very big and immensely strong animals.

In Sri Lanka it is impossible to buy elephants - no one is selling - , we are renting our elephants. This comes with some restrictions, but is the only way to ensure they don’t end up at a riding place or another bad environment.

One restriction is the elephant owners demanding that we chain their elephants at night. This is not out of ill intent but simply because they are afraid their elephants might get injured when walking in the enclosure during nighttime. The owners will only rent out their elephants on this condition, there is nothing we can do about this. If the Project doesn't rent them, they will go back to an elephant riding place, something we really don't want to happen. We hope for your understanding.

The Elephant Freedom Project aims to give captive elephants a good and safe home, which is made possible thanks to your visit.