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Address: 1km off the N2 Highway between Plettenberg Bay and Knysna, Knysna 6570, South Africa
Phone Number:
+27 44 532 7732
Website
Today
09:00 - 16:00
Open now
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Hours:
Sun - Sat 09:00 - 16:00
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Description:

Founded in 1994, The Knysna Elephant Park was the first facility in South...

Founded in 1994, The Knysna Elephant Park was the first facility in South Africa to house and care for orphaned African elephants. The first orphaned calves (from a culling operation in the Kruger National Park) named Harry and Sally, after the famous movie of the time, remain part of the KEP family today: Harry as the dominant bull and Sally as the matriarch of the herd.

Since 1994, we have cared for and raised more than thirty elephants. These animals include relocated animals, orphaned calves, elephants rescued from culls and ex-circus animals. Some have become part of the KEP herd, others have moved onto other reserves and facilities in the Western and Eastern Cape, taking in to cognizance their personalities, bonds with other animals and welfare needs. The present KEP herd numbers nine - the largest domesticated matriarchal herd in the country.

Your elephant encounter begins starts in our Interpretation Centre where you are introduced to our elephants, through beautiful photographic and informative displays. Here you can also book an elephant-back ride, a sunrise walk with the elephants or special exclusive sundowner tour. A short video presentation gives you further insight into the Park and its elephant-orientated missions and goals, before you enter the Park to meet the elephants.

Our facilities are world class and our style of management ensures that our elephants interact with guests on their own terms. Within this habitat, we call a "controlled, free-range" environment, our daily tours offer guests the opportunity to get up close and personal with our elephants; but still gives the elephants to some freedom and choice.

Guests may remain with the elephants as long as they wish, before being transported back to the Restaurant and Curio Shop. A Photography Department is also available for guests to purchase personalized photos and DVD's of their Extraordinary Elephant Encounter - making your memories last a lifetime!

Our newly refurbished night quarters consist of a large covered elephant boma, which leads into an outdoor fenced camp. For an animal that can eat for up to 18 hours a day, this arrangement allows our elephants to exhibit a large variety of behaviours during the night. They are able to choose where they want to sleep - indoors or outdoors; who they want to interact with, as well as where and what they want to eat. This again contributes to one of the highest quality captive elephant management styles in South Africa. Our elephant boma and night camp are viewed from above by our Elephant Lodge guests, another first for South Africa...nowhere else in the country can you 'sleep' with elephants

The need for research was recognized by The Knysna Elephant Park who then created the African Elephant Research Unit (AERU, est. 2009), aimed at improving the management and welfare of captive elephants throughout South Africa.

Visitors to the park are privileged to have a close-up and personal encounter with these gentle giants, and leave having gained a healthy respect for these wonderful animals, as well as a better understanding of the African elephant and their plight across the continent.

EXTRAORDINARY ENCOUNTERS - BE TOUCHED BY AN ELEPHANT

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What an Amazing Experience

Stayed here for one night on our trip along the Garden Route and so glad we did.Our room overlooked the Boma where the elephants slept in the evening which was lovely to see them... read more

5 of 5 bubblesReviewed 13 March 2016
JackieH49

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1,858 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 1,507: English reviews
Level Contributor
62 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 13 March 2016

Stayed here for one night on our trip along the Garden Route and so glad we did.Our room overlooked the Boma where the elephants slept in the evening which was lovely to see them interacting with each other and doing their own thing!. When we arrived we went out to feed the elephants with our buckets of fruit. The elephants... More 

Helpful?
Thank JackieH49
Level Contributor
8 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 13 March 2016 via mobile

Lovely morning out. Arrived early and were lucky enough to get a personal tour as no other guests had arrived yet. Great introductory video, and a walk through the facility where the ellie sleep. Then onto the tractor to the ellies. With just the two of us it was great we could feed each ellie in the herd and the... More 

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Thank Kim W
Leamington Spa, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 13 March 2016

We booked a last minute elephant ride at KEP before our trip to South Africa, which I must thank Reza for as the tours get booked up very quickly normally. The Elephant Park is fantastic, and there can be no concerns of any animal cruelty...all staff working there were fantastic, and care for the elephants in a passionate way, and... More 

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Thank Adam S
Fleet, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
34 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 13 March 2016

We were so glad that we pulled in here to see what was on offer. Five of us went to feed the elephants and were then able to walk around with them, stroke them and really get to know these amazing animals. The guide was so knowledgeable (Welcome was his name!) and any questions we asked he could give us... More 

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Thank Jenny1866
Southend-on-Sea, England, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
73 reviews
21 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 March 2016 via mobile

On a drizzling wet morning we went to the Elephant park and it was really good to see the elephants enjoying the mud and pools. We also fed them fruit and got some great photos. We thought the handlers were very safety conscious and careful that we realised that these are animals to be treated with the respect. They have... More 

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Thank SF15_13
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
14 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 March 2016 via mobile

Wonderful day and experience - feeding the elephants. Would advise booking to ride the elephants - that was my only disappointment - my fault not theirs.

Helpful?
Thank TheMadders
Amanzimtoti, South Africa
2 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 March 2016

What a wonderful experience. Well organized, informative and an experience I will never forget. It was incredible to be able to get so close to these huge creatures. The elephant guides were very informative and passionate about all the elephants. This is a definite thing to do for anyone visiting the Knysna area. We chose to walk with the elephants... More 

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Thank michellet0ti
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 March 2016

It was an incredible experience to get this close to the elephants! It was also nice to do it at a park that takes great care in treating the animals well.

Helpful?
Thank Alexander M
Johannesburg, South Africa
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 March 2016 via mobile

My favorite part of our holiday to Knysna. These gentle creatures are breathtaking and the staff are all wonderful and extremely knowledgeable. For a South African local, the experience of riding the elephants was indescribable. I recommend anyone who visits Knysna or the surrounding areas to support this initiative. Amazing!!!

Helpful?
Thank CandiceWardle
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 March 2016

So nice to go behind the great elephant. To learn about the animals and touch them. Nice to see a place where the primary thing is to help the animals. The tourists is a second thing. I will highly recomanded this place

Helpful?
Thank Marianne C

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