Elephants play a large role in many aspects of Indian life.
Religion – Most of the Hindu temples in Kerala, South India own elephants, the majority of which are donated by devotees. Almost all of the local festivals in Kerala include at least one richly decorated elephant. Elephants carry the deity during annual festival processions and ceremonial.
Mode of transportation – In North India, particularly in Jaipur we rode up to the Amber Fort by elephant. It was an amazing experience because you get lovely views of the town while riding the Elephant in line with many other tourists.
Tourist attraction – Asian elephants are more friendly than African ones. They can socialize with the tourists. A caretaker spends nearly a year training an elephant because the elephant must feel comfortable with him before using them on tourists. They have to get used to their voices, their sounds and their commands. They try to keep male elephants away from female ones because the two don’t respect each other’s space.
At the elephant junction in Thekkady, Periyar, South India. 2013