Yok Don National park was established in 1992. Yok Don is the second biggest national park and it is the only national park to conserve dry deciduous dipterocarp forests (DDF) in Vietnam. DDF are a unique forest ecosystem type harboring a vast variety of important and endemic species. They features characteristic open canopy and abundant low grassland. The trees here lose their leaves annually in dry season, which lasts from November to April. When wet season (May – October) comes with its heavy precipitation, everything revives quickly.Yok Don National Park is the only national park to conserve dry deciduous dipterocarp forests in Vietnam.
Yok Don National Park is home to a wealth of wildlife including 89 species of mammals, 305 species of birds, 16 species of amphibians, 48 species of reptiles and 858 species of plants, hundreds of species of freshwater fish and thousands of species of insects. Many of these species are listed in IUCN Redbook. Wild elephants, wild water buffalos and gaurs roam freely deep in the forest. Yok Don spreads across two provinces including Dak Lak and Dak Nong. Plus, it connects with a large part of protected forests in Cambodia. Therefore, wildlife also frequently move over the border.Yok Don National Park home to a wealth of wildlife including 89 species of mammals, 305 species of birds, 16 species of amphibians, 48 species of reptiles and 858 species of plants, hundreds of species of freshwater fish and thousands of species of insects.
Yok Don National Park is located 40 km away from Buon Ma Thuot city (Dak Lak province in Central Highlands of Vietnam) to the northwest. It covers 7 communes of 3 districts including Krong Na commune of Buon Don district, Ea Bung commune and Chu M’Lanh commune of Ea Sup district (Dak Lak province) and Ea Po commune of Cu Jut district (Dak Nong province).
Longitude (East): from 107°29′30″ to 107°48′30″
Latitude (North): from 12°45′ to 13°10′
Yok Don National Park has considerable biodiversity value for the Central Highlands individually and Vietnam generally. To recognize its importance, the Ministry of Forestry (currently the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development) decided to establish Yok Don as protected forests in 1986. In 1990, Yok Don was declared a Nature Reserve and in 1992, it was re-designated as Yok Don National Park in accordance with Decision 301/TCCB.
Behind the name
In M’Nong (an ethnic minority in Dak Lak province) language, Yok means mountain and Don means island. Yok Don is the name of a big mountain which is 482m in height. Here tropical evergreen forests are surrounded by dry deciduous dipterocarp forests (DDF).
Mission and responsibilities of the park
1. To conserve the scientific value of the typical fauna and flora of the Central Highlands, especially large mammals such as elephant, gaur, banteng, tiger, leopard and giant muntjac.
2. To develop infrastructure of the National Park to facilitate research and conservation of the typical fauna and flora of the region, and to strengthen domestic and international scientific research co-operation. Also to provide training courses and study tours according to Decision 08/2001/QD-TTg dated 22-01-2002 of the Prime Minister
3. To utilise the natural landscape to develop ecotourism, assist and help create jobs for local people, participate in tourism activities to improve living standards, contribute to the development of the local economy, and protect the ecological environment and the security of the national border.