• Experience Thailand's stunning Marine National Parks and Islands
  • Thai cultural learnings and village cooking class
  • Hike and sea kayak in the Ang Thong National Park
  • Artificial reef conservation program
  • Coral watch coral nursery program
  • Snorkelling with marine biologists
  • Micro plastic survey and beach clean up
  • Explore the cultural and historic highlights of Chiang Mai
  • Experience Thai village life
  • Complete "hands off" work propagating, planting and preparing food for Elephants from the local sanctuary
  • Recycle program at ElephantPooPaper Park!

Thailand is a major tourist destination, attracting thousands of visitors annually to enjoy everything from their stunning beaches in the south to rich green jungle and mountains in the north. If not managed properly, this high volume of tourists can have a detrimental impact on the local ecosystems. However, with innovative policies and a more participatory approach from visiting tourists, it is possible to have a healthy balance of economic growth while limiting its damage to the environment. Through working with local organizations, students will learn about regional and global environmental issues, marine conservation, coral reef ecosystems and local marine life in the South and then wildlife conservation and land management in the north. Students will contribute to local efforts by participating in multiple beach clean ups while constructing an artificial reef. The artificial reef is a project that can be added to on an annual basis. This can be a ‘TOORAK COLLEGE’ reef, built exclusively by your students and grown on an annual basis. There is an element of creative design in which the students can direct and add their own ideas as well as ways to improve/grow the reef! Also the growth and progress can be tracked by the students! We combine this with cultural explorations and an activity based visit to Ang Thong National Park where we explore hike and kayak. Students also have the opportunity to work with a genuine Elephant Sanctuary in a "hands off" methodology. Students will work alongside mahoots in our nursery to grow more food and crops for the elephants as well as plant banana and bamboo trees in the forest. Up in the northern region around Chiang Mai, the rise of elephant tourism has developed a need for real sanctuaries that try to give elephants as natural of a life as possible with limited human interaction and no violence. Rescued elephants often require a lot of help with medical treatment and many basics because of their life in captivity. Elephants need very large amounts of space to roam and consume massive amounts of food. 90% of their diet should be leafy plants like grasses, bamboo, and tree leaves. The strain of gathering enough food for elephants is often a strain and very expensive for sanctuaries.


Start and Finishing Point:





After all the planning and preparation the wait is finally over! We board our overnight flight to Koh Samui. On arrival in Koh Samui you will be met by your World Expeditions guide and welcomed to the island! It's a quick drive to our hotel where we check in, have a full safety and trip briefing as well as local language lesson and in-country orientation. We head to our welcome dinner where delicious Thai food awaits and discuss more about the project and plans for the week. Once our meal is finished, we can walk back to our hotel gaining an orientation of the village town before heading to our hotel for a good nights sleep!

Meals:  L,D

After breakfast, it’s off to the pier where we board a ferry and make our way to Koh Tao! We soak in the warm sun and enjoy the ocean breeze as we take in the stunning views. Once we arrive at Koh Tao, we get checked into our new hotel and enjoy a nice lunch complete with ocean views! After lunch, we meet our community partner for an afternoon session about marine conservation. We learn the basics about what is marine conservation, as well as local & global issues, efforts, and projects in place to help make an impact. The day concludes with a well deserved dinner before heading back to our hotel to rest up for another big day tomorrow!

Meals:  B,L,D

Today we work on constructing the artificial reef! This structure will be placed into the ocean and serve as a reef where ecosystems and marine life can build and thrive. We work together as a team to not only build, but also design the reef! The construction is guided by our local community partner as the reef starts to take shape. In the afternoon we head out to the beach for beach clean ups and micro-plastic surveys. We collect data that will be put into global databases that tracks the type and quantities of waste that is found around the island. The day ends with a delicious local Thai dinner to celebrate all our hard work. After dinner, we check out the local night markets for shopping and souvenirs before heading back to our hotel.

Meals:  B,L,D

Today we jump into the ocean to focus on the coral around the island and the affects of coral bleaching. We observe the changes in the coral with Coral Watch, a global database that is monitoring the health of reefs across the world. In the afternoon we will be building coral nursery's and bottle nurseries that will also be submerged in the ocean. Broken or dying coral can be transplanted to these nursery to be cared for and help give it a new place to regrow and flourish in the ocean. We celebrate with an amazing beach BBQ dinner right on the water!

Meals:  B,L,D

Today is an all day snorkeling tour! Joining us for this trip is our local community partner team of marine conservationists. Throughout the day, we get to see first hand the damage being done to the reef, in addition to examples of solutions that are working to restore it back to its natural beauty. It will be a fantastic day of enjoying the crystal blue waters and marine life, as well as gain a deeper understanding of our surroundings. The snorkelling trip takes us to various parts of the island. In the afternoon, we say our goodbyes to our partners and take the ferry back to Koh Samui. Here we check into our hotel and head out to dinner at a local restaurant.

Meals:  B,L,D

Today is the last full day on Koh Samui and we make the most of it by visiting AngThong National Park. This protected area of 42 small islands is paradise, located just a short ferry ride from Koh Samui! We have the day to enjoy all it has to offer! We hike up to the viewpoint to take in Koh Samui and all the surrounding islands, and snorkel, swim and go sea kayaking! After returning to Koh Samui, ! Our expert guides explain more in depth about Southern Thai culture, local Buddhist traditions and more about the livelihoods of the communities on the island. After that we head to a Thai cooking class where we learn how to make several Thai dishes including some of our favorite local dishes. As we chop, stir and dice our way through the afternoon our hard work pays off as we enjoy the spoils of our labor sampling the freshly cooked dishes we created for our dinner. In the evening we head back to the bustling night markets to test our bargaining skills as we search for the best deals! Once our shopping is complete it's back to our hotel for the evening.

Meals:  B,L,D

Today we leave the islands in the south, fly north to Chiang Mai and learn about its unique history! Once we arrive, we’ll head to Wat Chedi Luang, one of the most ancient temples in Thailand’s north. There we’ll talk about the historical Lanna Kingdom and spend some time chatting with monks living at the temple to learn about their way of life. In the evening, we enjoy a delicious welcome dinner of authentic Thai food and have free time for shopping and exploring the endless market! Afterwards, we head to our hotel to discuss the following day's itinerary and get some rest for the exciting work ahead.

Meals:  B,L,D

After breakfast at the hotel, we hop into our transportation and head out to Chang Chill Elephant Sanctuary, our home for the next few days. We’ll spend the morning following the elephants as they graze in the forest and prepare some food and medicine for them after lunch. As we observe the elephants, we’ll learn about their stories and the care the mahouts take to look after them. When we finish for the afternoon, we’ll check into our homestay in the local Karen community and head for a well deserved shower and dinner. In the evening, we meet for a bonfire under the stars to discuss the culture of the village, the plans for the week, and everyone’s thoughts about the trip so far.

Meals:  B,L,D

Our project days start bright and early with a morning activity followed by breakfast. Afterwards, we’ll walk to a local farm in the community, learn a bit more about our goals for the project, and jump into our work! Over the next 2 days we will be working on community land to plant or harvest fresh food for the elephants. There is a lot of work to be done so we’ll rotate between stations as we learn more about what it takes to grow enough food for a herd! We have a fruit break around 10am and clean up for a leisurely lunch break, resting in the hottest part of the day. The next day, we will spend time observing what plants the elephants graze on and collecting native seeds from the sanctuary to propagate in our nursery. Elephants eat around 150kg per day, so it's a big task to make sure they are always well fed! In the evening after dinner we meet for a cultural activity, play team building games, and swap stories around a bonfire.

Meals:  B,L,D

Today we leave the sanctuary! After breakfast we say our goodbyes to the community and our gracious hosts. We hop in our transport and take a short drive to the start of our waterfall hike which leads to a swimming area ideal for cooling off and relaxing after a couple days of work. We enjoy some lunch here before heading to Elephant PooPaper Park, a centre where elephant poo is recycled into eco-friendly paper products. We’ll see the whole process from poo to paper and have a chance to help make some for ourselves! We then head back to the hotel before hitting the night market for some souvenir shopping.

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning we rise for our last breakfast before we pack out bags and head to the airport for our outbound flight.

Meals:  B,L

Addressing the UN Sustainable Development Goals

Good Health And Well-being:  Ensuring healthy lives and promoting the well-being for all at all ages is essential to sustainable development.

Industry Innovation And Infrastructure:  Investments in infrastructure are crucial to achieving sustainable development.

Responsible Production and Consumption:  Responsible Production and Consumption

Sustainable Cities And Communities:  There needs to be a future in which cities provide opportunities for all, with access to basic services, energy, housing, transportation and more.

Climate Action:  Climate change is a global challenge that affects everyone, everywhere.

Life Below Water:  Careful management of this essential global resource is a key feature of a sustainable future.

Life On Land:  Sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, halt and reverse land degradation, halt biodiversity loss

Learning outcomes for students

World Expeditions Schools journeys are designed to encourage positive personal development and the learning of life skills, while leaving the communities and environments we travel to, in a better condition than when we arrived.
The programs are designed to:
• build strong friendships and bonds with their peers, their teachers, and the local people they meet.
• increase the confidence to engage with new people, and collaboratively make informed decisions.
• discover the benefits of working cooperatively together as a cohesive team, to achieve a common objective.
• Increase the ability to face, and cope with, mental and physical challenges and therefore increase resilience.
• give students a chance to appreciate and care for the natural world. The environments we travel through are beautiful and often pristine, invariably the students will gain a deeper appreciation and understanding about how their individual actions impact on the environment.
• Learn personal skills i.e., time management, personal hygiene, responsibility for personal gear, patience, tolerance, and public speaking.
We help encourage students to learn what it means to be a true global citizen.


  • International and domestic airfares EX Melbourne including departure taxes
  • Teachers from Toorak College accompanying the program
  • Expert bilingual guide
  • Comfortable hotel accommodation on a twin share basis
  • All meals as per itinerary
  • All exploration and entry fee costs
  • All transport listed in the itinerary
  • All service and regenerative travel programs

  • visa costs
  • Expenditure of a personal nature such as extra soft drinks, shopping and souvenirs



To get the most out of your adventure, you will need a good level of fitness and must be in good health. Be prepared for potential variable weather conditions.

Customise your program

We can fully customise a School Travel Program to suit your students' learning objectives and budget. Whether you require a Service Learning program, physical challenge, cultural immersion or certain curriculum targets - talk to one of our educational travel experts about the elements you need in your itinerary. We pride ourselves on developing unique itineraries to meet the learning requirements for schools.

World Expeditions Schools is a division of one of the world's leading adventure travel companies, World Expeditions. We can develop itineraries in any destination that is offered by World Expeditions, which is to every continent on earth.

Use our simple Expedition Design Form to contact us with your requirements and an educational travel expert will be in touch to assist.

Why travel with us

Why travel with us

Assisted over
14,000 Students Worldwide

Since the 1980's, we have helped students from around the globe to experience the world's most exciting destinations, allowing them to travel, give, grow.

400+ Service Learning

Together with students, we have completed over 400 Service Learning programs in developing countries. We will always continue to support causes including social justice, animal welfare, the environment and more.

Fully Customised
School Travel Programs

Want to include service learning, your school curriculum and a physical challenge, or any of the above? Contact us and we can design a program fully catered for your students and budget.

Safety and
Support - Our #1 Priority

Every school receives a detailed risk management plan that is guided by government advisories and the local partners we work with. We never compromise on the safety of your students to reduce the price of the program.



Thailand 'Hands Off' Elephant Program - World Expeditions Schools

Want to find out more?

Our educational travel experts are ready to help you tailor an itinerary or service learning project to suit your school’s needs and budget. Contact us today to receive a free consultation.

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