Vietnam, Highlands, Dak Lak province, Elephant
René Mattes/age fotostock
The biggest nature reserve in the country, Yok Don spreads across 450 square miles next to the Cambodian border and west of the town of Buon Ma Thuot, an important center for Vietnam’s coffee industry. The park is largely a dry dipterocarp forest of towering deciduous trees that provides a habitat for an array of flora and fauna—including some leopards and tigers, though you shouldn’t anticipate spotting any. Much more visible are deer, buffalo, some semi-tame elephants (the highlight for many visitors), plenty of avian life, and crocodiles that inhabit the Srepok River, which slices through the park. Great hiking and the chance to visit a handful of ethnic-minority villages are guaranteed. Visitors are required to use the services of a park guide.