The 6th graders (Christopher's grade) are going to Khao Yai National Park, located in the Sankambeng Mountain Range, just Northeast of Bangkok. Khao Yai is a bit smaller than Keang Krachen (about 2,000 square kilometers) and is Thailand's oldest park. The park is almost all jungle and contains a very diverse population of flora and fauna. More than 70 species of mammals, including elephants, tigers, gibbons, leopards and Malaysian sun bears, as well as more than 320 varieties of birds, all live in the park. Khoa Yai is also known for having magnificent waterfalls. The students will trek through the jungle, participate in educational activities and learn about environmental and resource conservation. In 1992, Khoa Yai was so heavily de-forested that the Government closed the park for recovery and re-forestation. Since it has re-opened, the Government has carefully planned the development of this area and limited on tourism and other activities that might damage the ecosystem of the park. However, poachers continue to enter the park and illegally cut valuable wood and hunt wildlife preventing a complete recovery. There are about 160 6th graders going and they will also travel by buses and will stay on campus at a boarding school, Saint Stephen's International School, located very close to the park. It will be interesting to see what Christopher thinks of living in a dormitory room with 7 other boys, sharing a VERY common bathroom/shower area and eating in a cafeteria.
A photo of Christopher and his friends from the "Sleep In A Box" event at ISB a couple of weeks ago. Photo is courtesy of isbms photostream.
Have a great Tuesday!