Ta Dung National Park Wildlife guide – update 2023

Ta Dung National Park is a protected area located in the Central Highlands of Vietnam, in Dak Nong Province. The park covers an area of over 22,000 hectares and is known for its diverse ecosystems and stunning landscapes.

The park is characterized by its vast forests, rolling hills, and pristine lakes, which are popular attractions for visitors. It is home to a variety of flora and fauna, including many rare and endangered species such as the Indochinese tiger, Asian elephant, and black-shanked douc langur.

In addition to its natural beauty and wildlife, Ta Dung National Park is also known for its rich cultural heritage. The park is home to several ethnic minority communities, including the M’Nong, who have lived in the area for generations and have developed unique cultural traditions and practices.

Visitors to Ta Dung National Park can enjoy a range of activities, including hiking, trekking, camping, birdwatching, and wildlife spotting. They can also explore the local villages and markets to learn more about the local culture and sample traditional food and handicrafts.

Overall, Ta Dung National Park offers a unique and memorable experience for visitors looking to explore Vietnam’s natural beauty and cultural heritage.

Find out about: Vietnam Birding Tours & National Park Tour

Fact: One interesting fact about Ta Dung National Park is that it is home to the Ta Dung Nature Reserve, which is one of the largest natural freshwater lakes in Vietnam. The lake covers an area of over 22 square kilometers and is surrounded by lush forests and rolling hills, making it a popular destination for visitors seeking outdoor activities and stunning views. The lake is also home to a variety of aquatic species, including many rare and endangered fish, making it an important area for conservation efforts.

Ta Dung is a must-visit for wildlife and nature enthusiasts. Here are 9 highlights to look forward to:

Here are 9 highlights of Ta Dung National Park:

  1. Ta Dung Lake: The park is home to the Ta Dung Nature Reserve, which is one of the largest natural freshwater lakes in Vietnam. Visitors can enjoy kayaking, fishing, and taking a boat tour to explore the stunning lake and surrounding landscapes.
  2. Biodiversity: Ta Dung National Park is home to a diverse range of flora and fauna, including many rare and endangered species such as the Indochinese tiger, Asian elephant, and black-shanked douc langur.
  3. Waterfalls: The park is home to several waterfalls, including Dray Nur and Dray Sap, which are popular attractions for visitors seeking to enjoy the park’s natural beauty and stunning landscapes.
  4. Trekking and hiking: Visitors can explore the park’s many hiking and trekking trails, which offer stunning views of the forests, hills, and lakes. The park also offers guided trekking tours for visitors who want to learn more about the park’s flora and fauna.
  5. Birdwatching: Ta Dung National Park is home to a variety of bird species, including many rare and endemic species such as the green peafowl, which is a popular birdwatching attraction for visitors.
  6. Ethnic minority communities: The park is home to several ethnic minority communities, including the M’Nong, who have lived in the area for generations and have developed unique cultural traditions and practices. Visitors can explore local villages and learn more about the local culture and customs.
  7. Camping: Visitors can enjoy camping in the park’s designated camping areas, which offer stunning views of the surrounding landscapes and lakes.
  8. Photography: The park’s stunning landscapes and diverse wildlife offer many opportunities for photography enthusiasts to capture unique and memorable images.
  9. Local cuisine: Visitors can sample traditional food and delicacies, including local specialties like grilled chicken and sticky rice cooked in bamboo, at local restaurants and markets in the nearby towns and villages
Ta Dung National Park – How to Explore wild & Nature in 2023
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Visit Ta Dung for wildlife.

Ta Dung National Park is a great destination for visitors who are interested in wildlife. The park is home to a diverse range of flora and fauna, including many rare and endangered species such as the Indochinese tiger, Asian elephant, and black-shanked douc langur.

Visitors can explore the park’s many hiking and trekking trails, which offer opportunities to see wildlife in their natural habitats. Guided trekking tours are available for visitors who want to learn more about the park’s flora and fauna.

Birdwatching is also a popular activity in Ta Dung National Park, as the park is home to a variety of bird species, including many rare and endemic species such as the green peafowl. Visitors can hire a local guide to take them to the best birdwatching spots in the park.

In addition, visitors can also visit the Ta Dung Nature Reserve, which is one of the largest natural freshwater lakes in Vietnam and is home to a variety of aquatic species, including many rare and endangered fish. Kayaking, fishing, and boat tours are popular activities for visitors to enjoy while observing the lake’s wildlife

Tips

Visit Ta Dung

Ta Dung National Park offers many other attractions besides wildlife for visitors to enjoy. Here are some activities you can do in the park:

  1. Explore Ta Dung Lake: The Ta Dung Nature Reserve is one of the largest natural freshwater lakes in Vietnam and offers stunning views of the surrounding landscapes. Visitors can enjoy kayaking, fishing, and taking a boat tour to explore the lake and its islands.
  2. Trekking and hiking: The park’s many hiking and trekking trails offer visitors the chance to explore the stunning forests, hills, and lakes. Guided tours are available for visitors who want to learn more about the park’s flora and fauna.
  3. Waterfalls: The park is home to several waterfalls, including Dray Nur and Dray Sap, which offer great opportunities for visitors to enjoy the park’s natural beauty and take stunning photos.
  4. Camping: Visitors can enjoy camping in the park’s designated camping areas, which offer stunning views of the surrounding landscapes and lakes.
  5. Ethnic minority communities: The park is home to several ethnic minority communities, including the M’Nong, who have developed unique cultural traditions and practices. Visitors can explore local villages and learn more about the local culture and customs.
  6. Photography: The park’s stunning landscapes and diverse wildlife offer many opportunities for photography enthusiasts to capture unique and memorable images.
  7. Local cuisine: Visitors can sample traditional food and delicacies, including local specialties like grilled chicken and sticky rice cooked in bamboo, at local restaurants and markets in the nearby towns and villages

There is no ATM here so its better that take cash with you

Go with local guide

We don’t tell you this to sell more tours, but simply because it’s the best way to see more wildlife.

And not to get lost…

The local guides know the park from the inside out and know where the animals often forage. More importantly, the guides have well-trained eyes that will help you to discover everything from the smallest to the largest wonders of Ta Dung national park. You will be surprised what you would have walked past without noticing had you been visiting on your own!

Visit on weekdays

Ta Dung national park is Vietnam’s most popular national park. 80% of the visitors in Ta Dung are Vietnamese. It is great to see that locals are enjoying their own nature parks, which will only make them more aware of what still survives there. And hopefully helps in the protection of these wonderful places. But you might be looking for a place to get away from your busy daily life.

Try to avoid weekends and national holidays. If your planning only allows a visit on the weekend, it is definitely still worth visiting. But you will have to share the roads and the main attractions like the trails with many locals.

Like in other parks around the world with high visitor numbers, wildlife has learned that people are not to be feared. That’s why the popular parks often offer better wildlife observation opportunities than nature reserves with very low visitor numbers and therefore often bigger problems with poaching. The good news is that generally speaking, Vietnamese do not really like walking. Even less when it is in a jungle. So, even on busy weekends, you might still have the forest to yourself.

Do NOT feed the animals

Most people understand you should not feed the wildlife. In Ta Dung, the wildlife is quite shy but if you find some young macaque or mammals “DON’T FEED THEM”

Feeding wild animals can significantly change their behavior. Feeding or leaving unattended food to large animals, such as bears, can lead them to aggressively seek out food from people, sometimes resulting in injury. Feeding can also alter animal behavior so that animals routinely travel in larger groups, which can make disease transmission between animals more likely.

Bring a Outdoor clothings

Most of the time in Ta Dung quite humid and hot, you should prepare suitable clothing and suncream

Bring a compass

This really only applies if you are visiting without a guide. Even though there has been some improvement on the more popular trails, still some trails in there are not well-marked. And besides that, there are no good trail maps available. Often (wildlife) trails branch off the original tourist trails and might cause confusion.

All people we have met who thought they had a good sense of direction, get totally disoriented in these jungles. It is easy when following e.g., a river. But once you get into the continuous forest it is really hard. Even the most basic map can help you if you bring a compass. Study the map before you start the trek.

If you do get lost, and know there is a road to the east that cuts through the entire park, a compass will help you find it. Without it, you are completely lost and will rely mostly on luck!

A compass and some basic study of the area/map would have solved this situation. Phone signal has improved a bit in recent years. But still, once you are deeper in the jungle, you won’t be able to call for help. With an analog compass, you do not rely on battery life.

The souvenir shop in the park at the visitor center might have cheap compasses in stock. But to be sure, better bring one from home or buy it before you enter the park, and test if it indeed points in the right direction…

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Park restaurants close early?

Where you eat will largely depend upon where you stay as you’re likely to eat most of your meals dinner at least at your hotel or guesthouse. If you are out and about in the national park, you can eat at one of the restaurants at HQ. The Restaurant is located next to the information center and is a better option than Dipterocarpus doesn’t ask in terms of food and surroundings.

The menu consists of reasonably priced Vietnamese rice, noodle, meat, and fish dishes – expect to pay around 150,000 VND for a dinner of stir-fried chicken, rice, and a vegetable side with a drink, less if you just want noodles or a stir-fried rice.

Buy leech socks and insect repellent

On our tours, we provide leech socks when necessary, but if you’re visiting the park on your own and plan on trekking in the jungle, especially in the months of Jun to October, buy a pair of leech socks and insect repellent in the souvenir shop in the park.

And wear long pants that you can tuck into these leech socks. You will probably regret wearing shorts.It sounds more scary than it is, leeches are small worm-like creatures of 1 to 3 cm long. They don’t transmit diseases. Though there have been some unusual cases of hookworm entering the bite site.

This is not scary either and definitely not common. But if you start to notice a strong itch a couple days after and see a red trail meandering just below your skin starting from the leech bite site, then it is wise to either take deworm medication or freeze it with nitrogen ice or the freeze spray used for sports injuries.

The leech bite does not hurt, usually, you don’t feel anything at all. The only ‘problem’ with leeches is that if they attach long enough, more than 30 seconds or so, they will inject anticoagulant. When you remove them afterward, they will keep bleeding for quite a while. So, getting blood stains on your clothing is the only real trouble.

For some people, just the idea of being ‘attacked’ by leeches is the biggest issue Lol.

Accommodations

Traveling to Ta Dung you will not have to worry about the accommodation to stay overnight. There are many options for you to choose from, from the homestay to the resort. Below are some options for accommodation in Ta Dung National Park you can choose to stay.

What is there to see?

Ta Dung National Park in Vietnam is a diverse and stunning destination that offers visitors many things to see and experience. Here are some of the top attractions to see in Ta Dung National Park:

  1. Ta Dung Lake: This is one of the largest natural freshwater lakes in Vietnam and is surrounded by beautiful hills, forests, and islands. Visitors can enjoy kayaking, fishing, and taking a boat tour to explore the lake and its islands.
  2. Waterfalls: The park is home to several waterfalls, including Dray Nur and Dray Sap, which offer stunning views and are great for taking photos.
  3. Forests and hills: The park is home to a diverse range of forest and hill landscapes, including pine forests, bamboo forests, and mountain ranges. Visitors can explore the park’s many hiking and trekking trails to experience these natural landscapes up close.
  4. Wildlife: The park is home to a variety of wildlife, including many rare and endangered species such as the Indochinese tiger, Asian elephant, and black-shanked douc langur. Visitors can explore the park’s many hiking and trekking trails to see wildlife in their natural habitats.
  5. Ethnic minority communities: The park is home to several ethnic minority communities, including the M’Nong, who have developed unique cultural traditions and practices. Visitors can explore local villages and learn more about the local culture and customs.
  6. Camping: Visitors can enjoy camping in the park’s designated camping areas, which offer stunning views of the surrounding landscapes and lakes.
  7. Local cuisine: Visitors can sample traditional food and delicacies, including local specialties like grilled chicken and sticky rice cooked in bamboo, at local restaurants and markets in the nearby towns and villages
Ta Dung National Park
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Other activities

Besides the top attractions I mentioned earlier, there are several other activities that visitors can do in Ta Dung National Park:

  1. Photography: The park’s stunning landscapes, waterfalls, and diverse wildlife offer many opportunities for photography enthusiasts to capture unique and memorable images.
  2. Cycling: Visitors can rent bicycles and explore the park’s many scenic roads and trails.
  3. Bird watching: The park is home to over 100 bird species, including several rare and endemic species. Bird watchers can explore the park’s many hiking and trekking trails to observe these beautiful creatures.
  4. Stargazing: The park’s clear skies and peaceful surroundings make it an ideal place for stargazing and observing the night sky.
  5. Cultural performances: Visitors can watch cultural performances by local ethnic minority communities, including traditional music, dance, and craft demonstrations.
  6. Relaxation: The park’s peaceful and natural surroundings offer visitors a chance to relax and unwind, away from the hustle and bustle of the city

How to get to Ta Dung?

Ta Dung National Park is located in Dak Nong Province, in the Central Highlands region of Vietnam. Here are some ways to get to Ta Dung National Park:

  1. By car: The most convenient way to get to Ta Dung National Park is by car. Visitors can rent a car or hire a driver to take them from Ho Chi Minh City or other nearby cities to the park. The journey takes about 5-6 hours.
  2. By bus: Visitors can take a bus from Ho Chi Minh City or other nearby cities to Dak Nong Province. From there, they can take a local bus or hire a taxi to Ta Dung National Park.
  3. By motorbike: Visitors can rent a motorbike in Ho Chi Minh City or other nearby cities and drive to the park. The journey takes about 6-7 hours.
  4. By train: Visitors can take a train from Ho Chi Minh City to Dak Nong Province, and from there take a local bus or hire a taxi to Ta Dung National Park.

Once visitors arrive at the park, they can hire a motorbike or join a guided tour to explore the park’s attractions and activities.

Weather & Climate in Ta Dung

Ta Dung National Park has a subtropical climate, characterized by two distinct seasons: a dry season and a rainy season. The dry season runs from November to April, while the rainy season runs from May to October. Here are some details about the weather and climate in Ta Dung National Park:

  1. Dry season: During the dry season, the weather is generally mild and dry, with temperatures ranging from 18 to 30 degrees Celsius. Humidity is lower during this time, and the skies are often clear, making it a great time to explore the park’s attractions.
  2. Rainy season: During the rainy season, the weather is generally humid and wet, with temperatures ranging from 20 to 32 degrees Celsius. Heavy rainfall can occur during this time, which may limit outdoor activities and make some roads and trails impassable.

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