Pinnewala Elephant Orphanage
All things elly


Captive elephants and Pinnewala itself is no stranger to controversy but there is no escaping the sense of awe and delight at seeing quite so many of them at the nearby Pinnewala Elephant Orphanage.  


Pinnewala is no stranger to controversy itself, not least for its tendency to ‘donate’ an elephant to a temple where its welfare is sometimes less prized than its possession. 

Of the hundred or so resident elephants, few are actually orphans and many of the younger ones bred on site; and come in all sizes and ages.  Perhaps the best time to arrive is for the twice daily elephant bathing where the herd take to the river from 10am and again at 2pm.  


The surrounding village is awash with all things elephant, including paper made from dung, and teaming with restaurants, and cafes.  

A car ride to Pinnewala will take roughly an hour; a tuk tuk somewhat longer; and both can be arranged at the Reception Office of The Flame Tree Estate & Hotel.