Public Visits to The Sanctuary

The Elephant Sanctuary VIP ProgramThe Elephant Sanctuary is operated as a true sanctuary, and therefore is not open to the general public. Our elephants have lived their entire lives on exhibit, entertaining the public. Our goal is to create an environment where the elephants are not disturbed by human activity. The Elephant Sanctuary exists for two reasons: to provide a haven for old, sick or needy elephants in a setting of green pastures, old-growth forests, spring-fed ponds and a heated barn for cold winter nights; and to provide education about the crisis facing these social, complex, and exceedingly intelligent animals.

The Elephant Sanctuary does provide the public with a select number of ways to observe, learn and support The Elephant Sanctuary both on and off property without restricting the movements of our elephants or intruding on their sanctuary.

Internet access to The Elephant Sanctuary is available to everyone:

Our Elecam is a non-invasive, respectful way to view elephants living in their natural habitat at The Sanctuary. From your computer you can watch as the elephants go about their day, grazing, foraging, swimming, even napping. The Elecam is a free online feature available seven days a week, year round.

Our Distance Learning Programs allow classrooms and community groups educational to access hour long sessions with our Caregiver/Education Staff and live streaming video of our elephants for structured educational seminars designed for all age groups.

On Property Access to The Sanctuary requires a commitment to “service”:

One is our VIP Pledge Program. By pledging $2,000 or more each year for five consecutive years, you may enjoy a behind-the-scenes tour of the Sanctuary. This visit includes a tour of our elephant houses as well as the expansive habitat. Our goal for this personal visit is to instill a deeper understanding of the Sanctuary's mission and inspire an even greater love for these magnificent animals. Please visit our VIP Pledge Program page or call the Sanctuary office at 931.796.6500 x 105 for more information.

Our Volunteer Day Programs provide other ways for people to help. We currently offer outside volunteer days one day a month throughout the Spring, Summer and Fall. This is a wonderful opportunity to join other volunteers at The Sanctuary for a day of service. Please note volunteers will not have any direct contact with the elephants. Further information and scheduled dates are available on our Volunteer page, or you may call the office at 931.796.6500.

These are opportunities to be in the midst of elephant country and be in the middle of everything without disrupting the elephants' daily lives. In keeping with our mission, the elephants will not be put on exhibit. If you are fortunate enough to see elephants at a distance in the habitat, that will be an unscheduled added bonus.

Learn about the elephants at our Welcome Center located in Downtown Hohenwald:

Or, come visit our Welcome Center located at 27 East Main in Hohenwald, TN 38462. The Welcome Center is open every Thursday and Friday from 11 a.m. till 4 p.m., and every third Saturday of the month from 11 a.m. till 4 p.m. Other times are available by appointment. The Welcome Center is located approximately four miles from the elephant habitat.

At the Welcome Center, you’ll enjoy our photo exhibits, learn more about our resident elephants, and watch live streaming videos of the elephants in the habitat. Special educational programs presented by Sanctuary staff are offered the third Saturday of every month. Also, look for exciting new merchandise at the Welcome Center Gift Shop. You can find Sanctuary T-Shirts, cards, calendars, caps and coffee mugs featuring our Girls. You can also visit our website gift shop. All proceeds go to support the daily care of our elephants.

Thank you for your support of The Elephant Sanctuary!