Nov 172014

A creative way to help the Asian Elephants: Elephant Parade Exhibition 

India and Thailand share a lot in common right from ancient maritime trade to shared mythology in Ramayana.  Just like India, Thailand is also home to the last few thousand surviving wild Asian Elephants that are very distinct from their bigger cousins found in Africa. No wonder that Ganesha our Elephant headed god is worshiped in both the countries.

While staying at Anantara Riverside Resort in Bangkok, I noticed this beautiful golden elephant painted with Buddha all over it.


Suggested reading

Ganesha Worship in Thailand


Buddha painted on golden elephant parade

A golden elephant with Buddha on it caught my attention

I initially thought it to be just another decoration in the lobby of the hotel. But later I discovered many such elephants big and small sprinkled across the hotel. Some were painted like a tiger, other with flowers, some others with abstract designs and one complete with a dress like a little boy, while on the entry of the hotel duly parked was one made like a TUK-TUK ready to take you on a tour of Bangkok.

Elephant theme Tuk Tuk in Bangkok Thailand

A Tuk Tuk theme for Elephant Parade: Ready to explore Bangkok

But when I noticed this one below who stole my heart with his dreamy eyes that the 007 in me decided to investigate and find out what the pachyderms in their painted avatar are up to in the heart of Bangkok. I was guided to a small board that gave the beautiful story of these elephants.

Bangkok Theme Elephant Parade

An elephant painted in theme of ” I love Bangkok” for Elephant Parade 


Painted Elephant Parade Bangkok Thailand

I fell for the cute eyes of this Thailand theme baby Elephant

These awesome elephants were part of Elephant Parade, world’s largest art exhibition of decorated elephant statues. Created by artists and celebrities, each Elephant Parade statue is a unique art piece.  The life-sized baby elephant statues are exhibited in international cities. After each exhibition, a number of Elephant Parade statues are auctioned by a renowned auction house. Limited edition handcrafted replicas and a select range of products are created from the exhibition elephants. A part of the profit and proceeds are donated to Asian Elephant  Foundation.

Elephant Painted with polka dots for Elephant Parade

Elephant Parade Exhibition in Anantara Riverside Resort Bangkok

This awesome parade was started by father and son team of  Marc and Mike Spits in 2006.
Whilst on holiday In Thailand, Marc met a baby elephant named Mosha, who had lost her leg after stepping on a landmine. Mosha inspired Marc and Mike to create Elephant Parade, there idea was to start something sustainable that will stand on its own feet, be profitable so that the proceeds can be used to help conservation of Asian elephants as well as helping those injured in accidents like Mosha.


Abstract Theme Elephant Parade Thailand

An Abstract design painted Elephant

The Elephant parade did the first exhibition in 2007 in Rotterdam in the Netherlands and since then has spread across the globe. Artists, celebrities, and designers from across the world have come forward to support the idea. I am sure names like Bryan Adams, Goldie Hawn, Katy Perry, Richard Branson, Tommy Hilfiger, Elizabeth Hurley and many others will sure get your attention, who support the Elephant Parade.

Flowers painted Elephant Parade

An Elephant painted in floral designs


Elephant Parade

A baby elephant in cute dress

What I loved about the whole idea was that it is not a passive charity, Elephant Parade seeks your active participation in the whole process, you can actually paint your own elephant, come up with a design and participate in a competition and if you win you get to fly to Bangkok and participate in the 2015 exhibition there. Not just that you get to stay at Anantara Riverside Resort for 3 days and reveal your design in a celebrity party.

Tiger stripes painted on Elephant parade

An Elephant painted like a Tiger -Now that is some idea 🙂

I totally fell in love with the idea but due to the paucity of time as by the time I did my research I was on the last day of my trip, I hurriedly clicked some pictures from my cell phone.  Not to play favorites but I personally liked this one that depicts the experiences of Amazing Thailand.

Elephant parade

Cutest Elephants known to humanity: They can help the real elephants 


Do check the website of the Elephant Parade and Asian Elephant Foundation  you can participate in the contest by painting your own design and buy them for your home or office.

I am working on more posts about Amazing Thailand  on an invitation of TAT New Delhi.

All pictures in this post are clicked by Sony Xperia Z3 Compact cell phone


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  44 Responses to “Elephant Parade Thailand”

Comments (44)
  1. That’s a lot of creativity and super cool elephants.
    They are adorable!!
    Thank you so much for sharing these pics. So interesting!!

  2. What a lovely way to support the conservation of Asian elephants. The statues are really cute!

  3. These elephants look spectacular, the colors are so vivid, just like an awesome piece of art. I hope the ehxibition managed to achieve its goal.

  4. What a wonderful and creative display. It reminds me of the decorated cows we had in the USA a few years ago. They were auctioned off to raise money for schools.

  5. I just love all the beautiful elephants! What a great display. We have something similar in Canada, but done with gigantic moose! They are beautiful 😉

  6. The spotted one is so cute! We’ve had similar things in the UK with famous cartoon characters, cows and ducks (don’t ask!)

  7. I’ve seen this elephant designs before! This actually reminded me of the video of elephants being ill treated by humans just some time back. It makes me sad to see how human are doing so much to an animal which is so kind~

  8. That’s an awesome story about how the elephant parade and painted elephants came about! The painted elephants do look adorable.. would love one for my home!

  9. An year or so back it was in Luxembourg, countries are nominated for this charitable deed and this yr thailand is named for it…

  10. Loved the elephant tuk tuk! Thailand seems to love its elephants a lot 🙂

  11. It’s nice to know there are initiatives thinking about the welfare or survival of the Asian elephants. These artworks were creatively and were done very well. It shows from the details based on your photos.

  12. I love those pieces. I hope I can stay in that resort in one of my visits in Bangkok. They look very nice and beautiful.

  13. That’s a pretty lovely idea, painting an elephant! It’d be a great family activity – and imagine winning a stay at the Annatara bangkok for the whole family too!

  14. When I went there, I rode an actual elephant. The experience was great (personal want) but felt guilty that these elephants are being subject to labor? 🙁 These are great alternatives, and well the designs are interesting. My mom would love it too.

    • I too feel wild animals should not be in captivity, and they are best in the Jungle where they belong… But in Asian countries like India, Thailand etc. Elephants are part of culture and regularly participate in religious and cultural ceremonies.

  15. I like these painted elephants especially the abstract one. Well, I think, this elephant parade will be a tourist attraction.

  16. We were just in Bangkok last week of October but we did not see this. My daughter loves elephants and she would enjoy these exhibits. We did ride a real elephant in Ayuttayah though. – Fred

  17. We are planning to visit Thailand next year. And I gonna see to it that we can see an Elephant exhibition.

  18. Such a great parade! I would love to see this in person. Elephants are such beautiful creatures!

  19. These are cute elephant displays. I hope they also have smaller versions for souvenirs.

  20. These are really interesting! my favourite is the second!

  21. Those elephants look so delicately painted. I like the floral paints the most, even though the tiger-striped one is quite eye-catching and oxymoronic too. 🙂

  22. Didn’t know that Ganesha is also worshipped in Thailand. But certainly they are adored given that you found elephants in various forms.

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