Dak Nong Geopark The direction of sustainable tourism development of Dak Nong province06/08/2019

Dak Nong Geopark is localted in Dak Nong province, in the southwest of the Central Highlands, at the end of Truong Son range with border stretching of 5 districts and 1 town including Krong No, Cu Jut, Dak Mil, Dak Song, Dak G’Long distrists and Gia Nghia town.

As part of the poetic and majestic M’Nong plateau, Dak Nong Geopark is a convergence of typical values of geoplogical, archaeological, cultural and biodiversity characteristics of the area.

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Volcano Nam Kar – Photo: Le Thanh Dat

Geologi and geomorphology values

The most special feature in the area of Dak Nong Geopark is the cave system in basalt rock which is distributed in the area of D’ray Wax – Chu R’Luh that was discovered in 2007. This volcanic cave system has been esrablished by the Japan Volcanic Cave Association in Southeast Asia for all scale, length and uniqueness. In the caves, there are also a lot of secrets about the mechanism of creation, mineral complexes, biodiversity and archaeological sites,…

In the Geopark area, there are also ancient geological heritage such as fossilized Chrysanthemun fossils, trees in basalt rock; there are high mountain ranges with topographical features, romantic natural lakes such as Ea Sno lake, Truc lake, Tay lake,… uinque and typical craters such as Nam Blang, Nam Kar, Bang Mo, … and the system of beautiful and majestic waterfalls such as Gia Long waterfall, Bang Rup waterfall, D’ray Wax waterfall,…

Moreover, Dak Nong Geopark is diversified and rich in mines and ore deposits of bauxie, antimony, nineral sand, puzzolite, precious stones and especially opal – chalcedon semi-precious stone in large size.

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Ta Dung National park – Photo: Pham Quan Hung

Archaeological values

The archaeological findings of prehistoric people living in the volcanic cave area of the Geopark have attracted a lot of attention of many domestic and foreign researchers and tourists. The result of the initial study together with the collection of archaeological relics with a dense density have noted that this is a cultural vestige of the Late Neolithic and Early Metal Age resident from 6,000 to 3,000 years ago. Archaeological vestiges discovered include stoneware, material stonem and stone tools om the shape of dishes, short axes, stripping tools, slabs, pebbles, millets, sharpening stone,…

In terms of ceramics, there are a wide range of diffierent types of thin, thick materials made from sandy clay. The patterns on the ceramic pieces are quite sharp and diverse such as dots of bricks, fabric bricks, rope,… Furthermore, there are animal bones, a lot of pieces of animals bones and even prehistoric bones.

Cultural values

In addition to the above features, Dak Nong Geopark is also an area of cultural and historical milestones with tangible and intangible cultural values such as: Cultural Space of Cong Chieng Tay Nguyen which was recognized by UNESCO in the list of intangible cultural heritage with are representative of humanity; Special national monuments Ho Chi Minh Pathway and 5 other national-level monuments such as Dak Mil Prison, Resistance Base B4 – Inter- provincial IV, N’Trang Guh Memorial Monument, Winning Place in Hill 722 – Dak Sak, Location to contact and expant Ho Chi Minh Pathway in the South of Central Highlands to the Southeast.

Dak Nong Geopark is also a place to help visitors experience the diverse and abundant spiritual life of the majority of ethnic groups in the province, which are clearly reflected through folk beliefs, rituals and ceremonies, folk language, performance art, folk games,… These cultural heritage need to be protected, preserved, and developed.

Biodiversity Values

Nam Nung Natural Reservation Area, Ta Dung National Park, special-use forests-the landscape of Dray Sap and a part in the South of Yok Don National Park (Ea Po Commune, Cu Jut district) are places to conserve biodiversity values of the Dak Nong Geopark area.

The flora and fauna system in this Geopark is very various with a lot of rare and precious varieties and species, named in the Vietnam Red Book and the world such as: Elephant, tiger, bison and a wide range of primates (White-cheeked Black Langur, Black-shanked Douc, reptile, Hong Hoang bird, Red-faced chicken)…; Soi Ba canh, Dinh tung, Sao , Trac, Giang Huong, Cam xe,… This is a great potential for Geopark to develop eco-tourism, exploration and biodiversity research models… which can attract many domestic and abroad scientists and tourist to visit and study.

With the above typical values, it can be seen that Dak Nong Geopark is a precious property, not only of the ethnic communities in Dak Nong province but also of Vietnam and of humanity. The sucessful construction of the UNESCO Global Geopark brand for the Krong No volcanic area is a right direction of the lovality to preserve and develop heritage values; at the same time, it will contribute to socio-economic development in a sustainable way.

Ton Thi Ngoc Hanh

(Provincial Commissioner, Vice Chairman of Provincial People’s Committee, Director of the Management Board of Dak Nong Geopark)