The Phuket Nature Reserve Elephant Habitat partners with Asian Captive Elephant Standards to provide the very highest standard of elephant care and best practices in Phuket & Thailand

On Monday February 10, the team from ACES (Asian Captive Elephant Standards) visited the Phuket Nature Reserve – Elephant Habitat to conduct a comprehensive and thorough audit of our elephant sanctuary, practices and operations.

Also in attendance was a film crew from France Télévisions, the French public national television broadcaster, joining to make a short documentary on the auditing process and highlighting our unique activities and sustainable practices for prime-time broadcasting in France.

The Phuket Nature Reserve – Elephant Habitat

The Phuket Nature Reserve – Elephant Habitat is a brand new elephant sanctuary located near the famous beaches on the west coast of Phuket Thailand and in close proximity to Blue Tree Phuket, Porto de Phuket, Boat Avenue, Laguna and less than 25 minutes from Phuket International Airport.

Under construction since April 2019, the management team at the Phuket Nature Reserve – Elephant Habitat have been carefully designing the layout, construction and elephant welfare programs based on their combined knowledge of best practices gained from over 50 years of collective experience working with elephants in Thailand.

Such initiatives include:

  • Massive oversized night-time elephant shelters measuring 20m x 10m to ensure plenty of room for the elephants to move around with access to food and water
  • No riding or swimming with the elephants where the elephants need to be heavily controlled and forced to participate with large crowds of visitors
  • The construction of our unique Elephant Dung Recycling Centre, the only one of its kind in Phuket, teaching visitors how to convert elephant dung into recycled paper and bio-gas
  • The Herbal treatment area, teaching visitors how to prepare and cook the nutritious herbal balls a favourite for the elephants!
  • The construction of a large hydrotherapy pool providing important exercise and rehabilitation for injured and older elephants
  • A beautiful 700m long nature jungle hiking trail up into the hills overlooking Phuket to enjoy walking with the elephants and providing exercise
  • The utilization of solar-powered lighting
  • The elimination of single-use plastic and giving all visitors a high-quality stainless steel water bottle with refill stations around the sanctuary
  • Strict rubbish recycling standards

With all the hard work designing and building the Phuket Nature Reserve – Elephant Habitat with eco-tourism, sustainability and elephant welfare practices at the forefront, we were eagerly awaiting our audit date to receive feedback from the experts in elephant welfare, the Asian Captive Elephant Standards (ACES).

Asian Captive Elephant Standards (ACES)

Asian Captive Elephant Standards (ACES) is an independent enterprise providing elephant camps with the methodology, guidance and on-site support to ensure all captive elephants are receiving the highest level of welfare possible. They work with camps, governments, communities and industry bodies to provide the best outcomes for elephants under human care.

Lead by Nicolas Dubrocard, with 13 plus years experience as an auditor and key founder of ACES, the ACES team completed a full-day detailed audit of the Phuket Nature Reserve – Elephant Habitat covering more than 190 mandatory criteria including both paperwork and detailed program operations:


  • Camp Management
  • Staff Management
  • Elephant Welfare
  • Elephant Interactions
  • Camp Quality
  • Visitor Safety & Experience
  • Community Relations & Biodiversity
  • Conservation

Why is Accreditation Important?

For the team at the Phuket Nature Reserve – Elephant Habitat there were a number of key reasons to join the accreditation process with ACES:

  • Receive formal accreditation
  • Provide visitors with the knowledge that they are visiting an ethical elephant sanctuary and supporting elephant conservation in Thailand
  • Receive a management framework for the solid amount of reporting and documentation required to operate a genuine elephant sanctuary
  • Becoming certified was a mandatory requirement for the management team at the Phuket Nature Reserve – Elephant Habitat as part of our mission statement & goals
  • It’s the right thing to do


Given the size of the audit and amount of documentation submitted, it takes around 4-6 weeks to process the audit findings. We very much look forward to sharing the results once available.

France Télévisions

There is strong interest in elephant welfare and sustainable practices in France and once we had our audit date confirmed the team from France Télévisions were very keen to video the audit process and our operations to share with the French public.

A short 3min documentary will be aired in the very near future to over 1,000,000 viewers in France and also on Youtube. Once the documentary is available we will share the link with you all.


Contact Us

To learn more about the Phuket Nature Reserve – Elephant Sanctuary please visit us at, visit us on Instagram, FacebookTwitter or Contact Us

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