Bach Ma National Park
Another favourite holiday spot during the French colonial era, Bach Ma National Park remains a landscape of uncompromised beauty despite having suffered the brunt of several wars. It is also host to several endangered species such as tigers, leopards and the local antelope (sao la). Park rangers are extremely helpful and well-versed in English.
Conservationists were further rewarded for their efforts to protect Bach Ma National Park with the discovery of two more species, the Truong Son muntjac deer and giant muntjac. The success the park is having protecting its flora and fauna has raised hopes that the wild Asian elephants will once again roam the Bach Ma forests. Currently the pachyderms restrict themselves to the Laotian side of the border.
The national park is set in the Annamite Mountains, whose highest peak, Bach Ma (1450m), gives its name to the park.
The visitor centre at the park entrance has a wealth of material on the ecology of the park. You can also book a variety of different tours there. With 333 species of birds living within the park, bird watching is one of the most popular Bach Ma tours. Bird watchers have to be out and about early though to catch sight of the elusive birds.
Another popular tour is to take a bouncing ride through the evergreen forest in one of the park’s Russian jeeps to the summit of Bach Ma Mountain. A slightly less bone jarring option is to book a 12-seater bus for the spectacular ride to the mountain-top..