admin on August 6th, 2008
March 2006. Kanchanabury, Thailand

March 2006. Kanchanabury, Thailand

This Journey I took about 2 years ago, when I was in Thailand. I was working there about 3 months, stayed in Bangkok. Every weekend I tried to travel to many places. That time I was told by my friend Abang, he was in Canbera that time, He told me to find the place Tiger Temple, he saw in the TV about that, he said that place is famous because of the relationship between the monk and the tigers.

Base on that information, I tried to find more about this tiger temple, I talked to some office friend about this, but they didn’t know. So I tried to search more in Internet, I got the information about the place, it’s in Kanchanabury.

Kanchanabury is about 3 hours drive from Bangkok, so I decided to go early morning. I hope during the journey I also can see many interest thing, Even I don’t know much about this place and how to go, I charter a car with the driver, actually a taxi, it’s not expensive to go there, if you know how to bargain. And because of the limitation of my time, so I prefer use this taxi, actually he became my travel journey.

I printed the address from internet, and base on that address and asking some people during the way, we finally found out the place. There’s a small sign board about this temple. Then we need to go inside. My problem is I can not speak Thai, and people there quite difficult to understand English, so I base on the photos of temple and tiger to find this place.

The place is quite big and when I was there, still have another development was going on. They wanted to extend the places for more animals. After passing the gate, I saw some tiger in the cage then I saw one man try to move the Tiger, but the Tiger refused, then the monk came, asked the Tiger to walk from that place, amazing, the Tiger follow him. This is the moment I took that photograph that I named ‘Friendship’.

When we want to walk to the Tiger place, the monk said to us, that we better not walk face to face with the tiger and try to avoid to look at their eyes, because as animal, their instinct still sharp. But the interesting part is all this tigers is really close to the Monk, like they are friend or family.

There’s a place to take the photographs, the place is like if in the zoo has the hut with tiger or monkey. But this place is open space, and the tiger was not in the cage and without any chain. We need to queue one by one to have a chance to take the photos with tiger. And there’s some man there helping us to take the photos, usually they will not allow us to go inside and take the photo by our self. Because I want to take the photo by myself, I asked the monk with my body language, smile and asking permission and he allowed me to enter, and sit with him with the tigers, then he show me the tiger teeth, he opened the mouth, the tiger is like a dog or cat playing with him, so amazing. The monk asked me to touch the tiger mouth, I refused but he told me is okay, then I touched the tiger head slowly to the mouth.

It was amazing experience, can see this relationship between man and tiger. The history for this relationship is, last time there’s many people killed the adult tiger and then all the young tiger don’t have parent, then the Monk took care of them, from that moment, they friendship getting stronger. That tigers also can not easily be released to their natural habitat, because they instinct is different.

For me this place is really beautiful and peace, and there’s also 1 park that they put all the animals together but not the tiger. I saw some pig, horse and buffalo there, but they did not fight each other, I don’t know how is the concept to make that ‘firdaus’ garden.

I really recommended if you are in Thailand to take 1 day trip to go this tiger temple, and also in Kanchanabury you can see seven layer waterfall (Erawan waterfall) this place also really amazing.

This is the address of Tiger temple

“Wat Pa Luangta Bua Yannasampanno Forest Monastery”
(TIGER TEMPLE),
Saiyok District, Kanchanaburi Province, 71150;
THAILAND Tel: 034-531-557, Fax: 034-531-558

For more information, please visit this website www.tigertemple.org

Photo gallery: http://www.davidwirawan.com/galery.php?city=Kanchanaburi