Into the wild - Tiger Temple

Kanchanaburi Travel Blog

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Looks like a big cat? :)

April 26 2008

It happened before going to see the Pandas in chiangmai and lucky us that most of tigers don't sleep when we're there. This temple just became the tiger temple since the famous abbot, Loung ta Mahabou, decided to help the tigers but now some people boycott this temple. They say the way the abbot does is the way he hurt the tigers.

The story is, at the beginning one tiger has lost the way back to the forest so the monks helped him. They fed him there then from one became two, three and now I think it’s ten to twenty. The temple becomes famous because of that. And even more after Animal Planet, documentary channel, visited there and made the documentary about it so it’s another way to promote this temple without any cost.

There's the canyon!
The news spread out about the monks have built the tiger’s area inside, about the other buildings they built for other animals, about volunteers that anyone can be to them feed the tigers without any condition. Some source said now this temple became another tourist place in Thailand which it whould be just the temple actually. 

The ticket to the temple is 300 THB per person. You have to be sure that you dress ok otherwise you pay more.

Don't bite me please :D
There are many conditions about how to dress. Better check first. Some travel agents don’t inform you about this so if you wear something wrong, you have to buy the tiger T-Shirt which is 300THB and wear it instead. I don't know that they have the conditions to get inside. I don't know they don't allow people who wear Red, Pink or Yellow. But I know that they don't allow people who wear short pants, short skirt or even the t-shirt without arms. Ok, in the temples you should wear nice and cover everything. But I forgot. So I wore t-shirt without arms. Ale wore the red t-shirt so we both weren't allow to get inside like that. We had to pay for the t-shirt that they have :( 

After buying a ticket you have to sign the document that you accept and understand that anything can happen there.

They're tired!
Every animal in the temple is the wild animal that has loosen the way back home so they’re dangerous as same as other wild animals in the forest. If something happened with you, you would never call the police or sue them.  You have to sign this document otherwise you can’t get in.

In an early of this year, the Islaelian tourist were hit by the buffalo. They said the guy was so excited when he saw the buffalo so he wanted to take a picture then he ran into him but the buffalo was panic, he didn't know that the guy would come to attack him or just to say hello so he hit him back, hard. That’s why you have to be careful. But normally those animals are not come to you unless you do it to them.   

It was really hot on that day! Really! I've never been here before.

With the baby!
The temple doesn't look like the temple but looks like the forest or the place for animal. We walked among the other animals such as deers, wild pigs, cow, peacock, buffalos, etc. Then there's the first point - the tigers are there at the canyon.

They tied up the tigers with the chain and the trees. There's about 10 tigers. I heard later that if you wanted to take the picture so close, pay more for 1500THB and you will have the picture that the tiger is on your laps. (Really? 1500THB?? WOW!) Many people were waiting in the line. I don't understand - they said  they don't allow the pink, red or yellow to go there because the tiger doesn't like these color. It's too bright. The tiger will hurt you if you wear it but the team who taks care of the place there wear the green - bright green but they're safe. Ok understand that green is the color of the tree but isn't too bright? Haha :)  

The tigers were in an open space in the middle of the canyon.

Cute!
They didn't sleep but very tired. They wake up in the morning everyday to play football with people who booked the match. Only 5-6 people per match - I don't remember. Now it's afternoon, they're tired but can't take a rest because people were waiting to take a picture with them. When you're there, you can't take a picture of yourself or let your friends did it for you but the person who takes care there will bring you one by one and hold your hand so tight (i don't know but to me he held so tight!!) and there's another one who'll take pictures for you. At first I wasn't scared but they made me scared by holding my hands and said please keep quiet. What!?

But I got good pictures :) I love them all. Me first, Ale later. I wanted to touch them because their hair is nice. I love cats so I love them too. But one of them turned to me when I was trying to touch him. I was scared when the tiger looked at me in the eyes - still. Hope he just wants to smile at me so I just smiled back .. hae hae..

After finish taking the pictures I walked inside. There are the cages of tigers and places for other animals. And not far is the place of the monks.

Indie the temple!
 This is also the tiger babies area. They're so lovelyyyyyyyyyy!!! :) We played with them for a half an hour. There's a monk who takes care of this part. The first baby tiger remembered him, I think. He ran to him directly and sat near him .. like a dog. I can't see how wild he is!

Now some of people would like to vote and boycott this temple. They are arguing about is this case right or wrong? Temple should be only temple as the other temples. Why do we have to pay to go inside the temple? No Buddhists pay to go to the temple but why here? They are doing it because they are taking care of the tigers that have lost their home or they are feeding them to earn money to the temple? I have no idea yet because I didn’t know the truth and I didn’t search or read the whole information yet. The boycott thing just happened after I visited there.

nice pose!
But I was thinking also that it looks like a tourist place as a zoo more than a temple. Some people has questioned about how the monks manage their time to do the monk’s treat and to take care of the temple? But some said they are explain everything in the website. I don't know, haven't read yet :D And also about the ticket that why do we have to pay? To feed the tigers is as same as they feed the dogs or cats in the temple but maybe because the tigers eat more than them that’s why  we have to pay for their food? 

One of the travel agents in Thailand started boycott this temple for last few months. Because of those reasons. Now they took this trip out of the tour. I don't know will be more or not. Some people discussed about this. The boycott gang wanted them to be closed. But if they don't feed the tigers so could the tigers live their lives in the forest again? Because now they're used to stay with people. I don't know. They're still talking about it.

:)

When we're inside, most of them doesn't have a go to see the pagoda, temple, the images of Buddha, etc.  but they just want to take a picture with the tiger. Some said that the foreigner veterinarians have visited and thought that the tiger was taken drug or something by the person who takes care of them. Because they’re tired and want to sleep every time they visited. They said they were taken drug because it would be easy for tourists to touch, to take pictures with them, to sit near them but the monk opposed that they didn’t do that. If they did, the tiger would be in a bad mood and upset and can break the chain to bite people. So they insist that they didn't do. But some people said they saw the volunteer dab the tiger’s mouth with the white powder if that tiger becomes nervous. And after did it, the tiger calm down. But they don’t know what kind of powder, could be milk powder or maybe something else?

I don't know.

The monk who takes care of the babies.
Anyway no matter what they said but I am Buddhist so I never desecrated the Buddhist, monk or this temple. I just share what I heard. No matter how the temple is - whether the temple or tourist place, I never mean to disparage at all.

 

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Looks like a big cat? :)
Looks like a big cat? :)
Theres the canyon!
There's the canyon!
Dont bite me please :D
Don't bite me please :D
Theyre tired!
They're tired!
With the baby!
With the baby!
Cute!
Cute!
Indie the temple!
Indie the temple!
nice pose!
nice pose!
:)
:)
The monk who takes care of the bab…
The monk who takes care of the ba…
Just started.
Just started.
Its really hot. Look at his face …
It's really hot. Look at his face…
Waiting waiting
Waiting waiting
The volunteers
The volunteers
I wanna hug him but dont dare do …
I wanna hug him but don't dare do…
They dont die yet, just tired.
They don't die yet, just tired.
:D
:D
Hehe
Hehe
Sleeping sleeping
Sleeping sleeping
Thank you for taking the pictures …
Thank you for taking the pictures…
Ale with the big guy
Ale with the big guy
:D
:D
Nice.
Nice.
The horse, I think.
The horse, I think.
:)
:)
ngum ngum
ngum ngum
With the babies and an australian …
With the babies and an australian…
Hola
Hola
He bit him later
He bit him later
Cute cute
Cute cute
He made a mess haha
He made a mess haha
:)
:)
Show off
Show off
Sawasdee krab
Sawasdee krab
:)
:)
Theyre playing
They're playing
Haha ... my turn!
Haha ... my turn!
Yes my turn!
Yes my turn!
Just a baby but big!
Just a baby but big!
Buffalo area.
Buffalo area.
Hola.
Hola.
Wild pig
Wild pig
;) peacock
;) peacock
:D
:D
Leave me alone, he said.
Leave me alone, he said.
be friends na na na... haha
be friends na na na... haha
hot!
hot!
Adorable!
Adorable!
Kanchanaburi
photo by: wbboy29