Inside newly-recognized world biosphere reserve in Central Highlands

By Tran Hoa   September 21, 2021 | 08:05 pm GMT+7
Kon Ha Nung Plateau in Gia Lai, recently recognized as a global biosphere reserve by UNESCO, remains an attractive destination thanks to its lesser-known status.
Kon Ha Nung Plateau covers more than 413,500 hectares. Its core zone is Kon Ka Kinh National Park and Kon Chu Rang Nature Reserve.   The reserve has about 15,900 hectares of special-use forests, a transition ecosystem between the east and west of the Truong Son Mountain range. It is home to rare, rich and diverse flora and fauna.   On Sept. 15, UNESCO designated Nui Chua National Park in Ninh Thuan Province and Kon Ha Nung Plateau in Gia Lai as world biosphere reserves, raising the number of global biosphere reserves in Vietnam to 11.

Kon Ha Nung Plateau covers more than 413,500 hectares. Its core zone is Kon Ka Kinh National Park and Kon Chu Rang Nature Reserve. The reserve has about 15,900 hectares of special-use forests, a transition ecosystem between the east and west of the Truong Son Mountain range. It is home to rare, rich and diverse flora and fauna.
On Sept. 15, UNESCO designated Nui Chua National Park in Ninh Thuan Province and Kon Ha Nung Plateau in Gia Lai as world biosphere reserves, raising the number of global biosphere reserves in Vietnam to 11.

Kon Ha Nungs flora ecosystem mainly consists of lowland and medium mountain subtropical evergreen forest. A part of the area is semi-evergreen and dipterocarp forest.  The reserve is also home to over groups of 860 fauna, many of them listed in Vietnam’s Red Book.

Kon Ha Nung's flora ecosystem mainly consists of lowland and medium mountain subtropical evergreen forest. A part of the area is semi-evergreen and dipterocarp forest. The reserve is also home to over 860 groups of fauna, many of them listed in Vietnam’s Red Book.

The reserve has 380 species of wild animals, including 80 mammals, 228 birds and 38 reptiles.  Gray-shanked douc, black-crested gibbons, great hornbills, and masked finfoots are among its protected animals.

The reserve has 380 species of wild animals, including 80 mammals, 228 birds and 38 reptiles. Gray-shanked douc, black-crested gibbons, great hornbills, and masked finfoots are among its protected animals.

Inside Kon Chu Rang Nature Reserve, there are 12 waterfalls at a height of over 15 meters in the middle of primeval forests. Due to their seclusion, these waterfalls remain pristine and have yet to be overrun by tourist hordes.

Inside the reserve, there are 12 waterfalls at a height of over 15 meters in the middle of primeval forests. Due to their seclusion, these waterfalls remain pristine and have yet to be overrun by tourist hordes.

The journey to conquer Hang En Waterfall in Kbang District, Gia Lai Province is really a challenging task since the path is very dangerous for outsiders to navigate on their own. Exploring Hang En Waterfall means tackling many trails between the dense trees in the middle of the forest and wading through dangerous streams or up steep rocks. Along the way, snakes and leeches are a common sight.   But its views are really rewarding. The waterfall is 50 meters high. During the dry season, it has a width of about 20-30 meters.   Behind the waterfall surrounded by primeval forests lies a large cave, home to thousands of swifts.Visitors need to register with the management board of the reserve to visit Hang En, but this is a fairly quick procedure.

The journey to conquer Hang En Waterfall in K'bang District, Gia Lai Province is really a challenging task since the path is very dangerous for outsiders to navigate on their own.
Exploring Hang En Waterfall means tackling many trails between the dense trees in the middle of the forest and wading through dangerous streams or up steep rocks.
Along the way, snakes and leeches are a common sight. But its views are really rewarding. The waterfall is 50 meters high. During the dry season, it has a width of about 20-30 meters. Behind the waterfall surrounded by primeval forests lies a large cave, home to thousands of swifts.
Visitors need to register with the management board of the reserve to visit Hang En, but this is a fairly quick procedure.

A 50-meter-high ecological observatory located in the middle of Kon Chu Rang nature reserve.

A 50-meter-high ecological observatory in the middle of the nature reserve.

Cows raised by the Ba Na ethnic minority.    The buffer zone of the reserve is home to 17 families of the Ba Na ethnic minority whose livelihood mainly depends on livestock and forest resources.

Cows raised by members of the Ba Na ethnic minority. The buffer zone of the reserve is home to 17 families of the Ba Na ethnic minority whose livelihood mainly depends on livestock and forest resources.

The Vietnam - Russia Tropical Center, which works on protecting forest areas across the Kon Chu Rang nature reserve.

The Vietnam - Russia Tropical Center, which works on protecting forest areas across the reserve.

Photos by Tran Hoa, Phan Nguyen, Vietnam News Agency

 
 
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