If you'd told me a few months ago that there's a place within driving distance of Cincinnati (roughly three hours away) where I could actually witness an elephant spa, I’d call you a liar — at least until I had a chance to Google it for myself. I’d also ask, “What the heck is an elephant spa?”
Don’t worry, I've since learned. And yes, it really is as cool as it sounds.
There’s this magical place called Wilstem Ranch, and it sits on 1,100 acres of land at the southwestern edge of Southern Indiana’s Hoosier National Forest. It’s rolling hills and scenic countryside make it the ultimate retreat if you just need to get away from it all and recharge your batteries, but there’s a lot more to do at Wilstem than just admire a beautiful sunset while hiking through trails.
Remember that elephant spa I was talking about? Wilstem Ranch is home to three beautiful elephants and guests have the opportunity to — you guessed it — bathe the elephants. After their spa treatment, there's an educational seminar where you learn about the elephants and take photos with them.
The ranch is also home to two handsome giraffes, and while you can’t bathe them, you can feed them carrots while getting up close and personal (which I found is a great way to get them to take a picture with you).
If that isn’t enough to book your reservation right now, Wilstem offers plenty of other activities to help you enjoy your stay: horseback riding, zip lines, ATV tours, a petting farm, and more. The property also has plenty of cabins and lodging so you can fit everything you want to do into your stay.
Adventure awaits at Wilstem and those elephants aren't gonna bathe themselves. What are you waiting for?
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Wilstem Ranch is located at 4237 W US Highway 150, Paoli, IN 47454.