The Tangkahan deluxe elephant day trip starts from Bukit Lawang in the morning, you will travel around 2.5 hours on unsurfaced roads. The other traffic is the occasional motorbike. We will pass through undeveloped villages and past large palm oil plantations, a distance of around 40km in total to reach Tangkahan. Our back route saves you a seven hour journey backtracking via Binjai (close to Medan).
Upon arrival we will visit the elephants, before going tubing down the Batang river, where we will exit at a stream which feeds the river. We walk up the stream for around five minutes until we reach a waterfall. Here we will eat lunch, play in the waterfall, and just relax.
After this we will cross the river to Salak beach, where our car will be waiting to bring us back to Tangkahan in time for the 3:30pm elephant bathing. This is a tactile experience where you can wash and touch the elephants as they share the cool flowing river water with you.
After the elephant bathing, we will drive back to Bukit Lawang, arriving back at dinner time (dinner not included!).
Times subject to variation for operational reasons.
8am - depart Bukit Lawang
10:30am - arrive Tangkahan, meet elephants in their enclosure
11am - 2pm Tubing trip with waterfall-side lunch
Return to Tangkahan, a little free time in which you can enjoy Tangkahan, swimming, going to the hot spring, or just sitting in one of the guesthouse restaurants.
3:30pm - bathing with the elephants in the river
5pm - drive back to Bukit Lawang
7:30pm - arrive in Bukit Lawang
What to bring
No elephants on Fridays - they are on jungle patrol.
You don't need to bring anything special for your day - just your camera, a swimsuit or change of clothes for the river. You might want to bring snacks or water for the car journey, there won't be too many opportunities to stop along the way.
Basic fitness/mobility required. Children permitted.
We can also arrange onward travel from Tangkahan to Medan or Berastagi (you can select either option when you book). Pickup from a Medan hotel/guesthouse is also an option (proceeding the same day to Bukit Lawang), but will require an earlier start.
Inclusive of: lunch, water, return off-road transport, elephant bathing, tubing trip.
Accommodation, breakfast, dinner