Vietnam is a country with over 3000 km of coastline and has become a rival to Thailand with its luxury beach resorts. It is also known for its history and culture which is seen in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh, Hue and Hoi An. What is not so prominent about Vietnam is some of its amazing national parks and protected areas. Of course Halong Bay is well known and a must for anyone visiting Vietnam, but for those interested in flora and fauna there are some amazing options available for Vietnam holiday packages. Vietnam has around 30 national parks some many of them within a short distance of local airports here we focus on three interesting National parks Cuc Phuong and Nam Cat Tien National Park.
Cuc Phuong national park is just 130 km south of Hanoi. When you first enter you should stop at the primate rescue centre which saves primates from the wildlife trade. There is an excellent trail that takes about 2 hours into the forest from Bong Station. Follow a circular route viewing a variety of endangered bird species. The 6-km trail passes through a wood of giant trees, some of which are over 1000 years old.
The highlight is staying in the National Park Guesthouse. Although accommodation is basic your bungalow does include an en suite bathroom and hot water. Staying in the park you will be able to wake up and hear the birds calling. Leaving behind Cuc Phuong the package tour can also include Ba Vi National Park as it is just 65 Km west of Hanoi. The weather can be often be rather cold and misty but it is good place to look for wintering thrushes including Japanese, Black-breasted, Grey-backed and Dusky Thrush. Even though it is so close to Hanoi the park receives little tourism which makes it that much more enjoyable as you can feel at one with the nature here. The forest around the summit of the park is home to the secretive Rufous-cheeked Laughing thrush while Red-billed Blue Magpies are common in the gardens around the accommodation at the Park Headquarters. After a short visit to the park one can continue back to Hanoi or spend the night at the park.
An alternative option for those in the south of Vietnam is Nam Cat Tien National park which is about a 3 hour drive north from Ho Chi Minh. Since the park first opened up over 15 years ago there have been a number of eco-lodges which have opened near the park; the newest of which is Cat Tien Jungle Lodge. Others include Green Bamboo Lodge and Green Hope Lodge, but for those looking for the unique experience staying in the national park at the Forest Floor Lodge is well worth it. Certainly one night won’t be enough here. Wake up to the birds and Gibbons calling. Take a trek in the forest or follow the cycle path. There are lots of options for Vietnam holiday packages and it is well worth it to escape the hustle and bustle of Ho Chi Minh City.
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