Pu Luong Reserve, Vietnam
Pù Luông in Thái language is the word for mountain and Pù Luông is not only the highest mountain of this Nature Reserve, but of the entire province Thanh Hoa. This remote and beautiful area even witnessed the war with France, when the french armee build an airbase near Pù Luông mountain, to control the by then only road to Dien Bien Phu (where the final battle took place in 1954). This road, 15 C, cuts right through the nature reserve and there it is where the steep rice terraces and traditional villages of Thai and Muong minorities meet with the wild limestone range of Pu Luong – the most important lowland karst system in the north of Vietnam. This system stretches from Mai Chau to the Pacific and includes besides Pù Luông two other protected areas: Ngo Luong - Ngoc Son Nature reserve and Cuc Phuong National Park.
A place of outstanding beauty, blessed with rich forest, limestone panoramas, magnificent rice terraces and romantic villages nestled in the landscape. Experience the everyday life and the culture of Thai and Muong people and stay in their stilt houses in scenic villages.
Pu Luong Nature Reserve was established in 1999, after discovering that this unique limestone area is one of the last resorts to some very rare animals like the delacour langur, clouded leopard, muntiac, temmincki cat, Asian black bear and serow.
The area is also famous for its butterflies and orchads, there was even one new orchad variety discovered in a 2004 botanical survey.
Since its establishment the Forest Protection Department follows different strategies to improve protection of the area. One is to promote community based ecotourism, which gives direct income to the local people within the area.
So when travelers come to visit Pu Luong, please don’t expect high standard accommodation, but travelers certainly can expect the famous hospitality of Thai, Muong people and homestay in ethnic village.
Best time for a visit is October/November and February/March.
Some reference tours in Pu Luong Reserve:
- Biking Pu Luong Nature Reserve
- Trekking in Pu Luong Nature Reserve