With jungles, coastlines, rivers and mountains ranges, Vietnam has an abundance of lush landscape and wildlife. Vietnam has several UNESCO World Heritage Sites and over 30 national parks to house its animals. Over the years, poaching and habitat loss have been an issue, however, the government has prioritised animal conservation which can be seen all over the country. While visiting Vietnam, here are eight animals you need to see.
Getting to Vietnam
Vietnam is easily reached by air from one of its three international airports. Once in the country, public transport is readily available making travel throughout the country easy to pick up and very cheap. Before landing down in Vietnam, make sure you have checked your visa requirements and everything is in order prior to travel. Depending on your length and reason for travel, you may need a particular visa. For a quick and easy solution, head to Evisa-Vietnam.com for all your Vietnam visa needs. Concentrate on planning your adventure and let someone else handle your visa for you.
1. Snub-Nosed Monkey
To get a glimpse of the snub-nosed monkey you’ll need to head up into the mountains of northern Vietnam, near the Chinese border. They can live in groups of up to 600 members in the wild and are known to be very territorial. These exotic primates get their names from their rounded faces with a short stump nose.
2. Pygmy Slow Loris
This cute, big-eyed creature crawls along at a snail’s pace finding insects, fruits and nectar to eat. They use their sharp teeth to burrow holes into trees and get the sap. When frightened, the pygmy slow loris will freeze which is adorable to see but obviously makes them easy targets for both hunters and poachers. You can find this species throughout most of Vietnam except for the Mekong Delta.
3. Indian Elephant
Indian elephants can be found throughout Southeast Asia and as an endangered species, they should definitely be on your bucket list to see. Smaller than the African elephant and with lighter dark-grey skin. Mostly found in grasslands, they can be quite hard to find but your best chances are in central Vietnam, particularly the Dak Lak province.
4. Honey Bear
The honey bear also known as the sun bear are a vulnerable species but not yet endangered. The bears are usually jet black, short and lean in stature. Given the name, these bears love honey and have an extremely long tongue that allows them to reach the honey from beehives with ease. You can find these bears mostly in central and northern Vietnam, especially Tam Dao National Park in Vinh Phuc province.
5. Chapa Bug-Eyed Frog
This slimy amphibian’s status is critical in the wild and classified as endangered in the wild. It likes to stay in subtropical or tropical forests and is most likely to be found in the Quang Tri province and further north. This one might be trickier to spot but is an opportunity not to be missed as they might become extinct sooner rather than later.
6. Red-Shanked Douc
Known for their colourful and bright faces, red-shanked doucs can be found in central Vietnam. With their massive eyes and yellow-orange skin, the primates can tell each other apart by the colour of their thighs. The best places to find the red-shanked doc is Da Nang, Quang Nam, Binh Dinh, Kon Tum and Gia Lai provinces.
7. Leopard Gecko
With nearly 300 known species of lizard native to Vietnam, you can see geckos mostly everywhere throughout the country. While you can see a lot of lizards day to day, the leopard gecko prefers a rocky landscape. They can be dark grey, light grey or orange and feature black spots around the face and body. You can find leopard geckos in the Cao Bang province in Vietnam.
8. Asian Water Monitor
You can catch the monitor throughout South and Southeast Asia and they can grow up to two metres in length. They’ve even been seen in Ho Chi Minh City, lurking in canals while searching for some easy prey. These creatures are fascinating to watch and their strong tails make them excellent swimmers.