Volcanic red earth, aromatic green forests, shimmering, crystal-clear lakes–these all characterize one of Vietnam’s most lovely and intriguing regions – Central highlands Vietnam. The area hosts wild elephants, monkeys, bos gaurus, tigers, and the endangered rhinoceros. Natives of Ban Don Village, set 55 km (35 mi.) northwest of DakLak’ provincial capital of Buon Ma Thuot are renowned for their superlative elephant stalking skills. Indeed, they still trap and train elephants for use in agricultural tasks, for transport, and to race and for use in festivals. Most visitors never experience the Central Highland’s Vietnam wonders. Instead, they head up the coastal highway to places such as Nha Trang, Hue, and Hanoi.

We can introduce you to this seldom visited region. The Central Highlands Vietnam -a remote and relatively undiscovered area–contains some of Vietnam’s most unforgettable sights: pristine lakes and rivers, old-growth jungles and isolated tribal villages. We like to travel via DaLat to Lak Lake, Buon Ma Thuot, PleiKu, and KomTum. We offer the option of overnight in a “Rong,” the communal house of the Bahnar people, near the wonderful pastoral town of Kom Tum. We then drive along the Ho Chi Minh “trail’ (now a highway) to Hoi An on the coast. Alternatively, you might choose to do the reverse–heading from Hoi An to Kontum (where you will trek to tribal villages) before jouneying to Pleiku where you will catch a flight to Saigon (HCM City).