Elephants are majestic animals with big heart . At Thailand are elephants big part of culture and they are used for celebrations or for work. At Thai language elephant is Chang. Every elephant have just one master (driver) for many years.
Many places at Thailand dont treat elephants well and use them just for elephant tricking. I dont like this places. If we want to go see elephants we go always about 170km from Phuket to Khao Sok National Nature Park.
Elephants at this place are much more happy, they dont do tracking, just bathing with tourist..:)
For 500Thb (17$) you can spend one hour with your elephant at river and you will have a lot of fun..:D