Asia wallows in beautiful national parks, each offering something quite unique.
In the Asian national parks, you can experience amazing scenery and wildlife not found elsewhere in the world.
Below is a guide to some of Asia’s best national parks.
The Komodo islands are a UNESCO-protected national park in Indonesia.
The islands were classified as national parks, due among other things to their unique wildlife. They are home to the giant Komodo dragons, the world’s largest living lizards, after which the islands are named.
Komodo dragons can grow up to three metres long and weigh up to 70 kg. Besides the Komodo dragons, you can also see buffalo, wild boar, macaques, parrots and many other exciting animals.
On the Komodo Islands, you will find a very varied landscape offering everything from tropical rainforest, savannah with trees and grass as well as beautiful white sandy beaches. The sea around the islands is crystal-clear, making it a perfect place to snorkel or dive between the coral and colourful fish.
Did you know that Komodo and the surrounding islands are the only place in the world where the Komodo dragon lives in the wild?
In northern Sumatra is Gunung Leuser National Park.
The national park has one of the most diverse ecosystems in the world with volcanoes, rivers and lakes. There are, in addition, more than 700 different animal species, ranging from the rare Sumatran tigers and elephants to birds with brightly-coloured plumage flying high in the jungle tree tops.
If you want to see wild orangutans, Gunung Leuser is one of the best places to do so. The park houses one of the last orangutan populations, namely the endangered Sumatran orangutan.
Did you know that the rafflesia flower, which can weigh up to 11 kg and has no root, grows in the jungle of Sumatra?
A train ride from the bustling urban life of Tokyo is Fuji-Hakone-Izu National Park.
The national park consists of four areas, but is perhaps most famous for its beautiful view of the Mount Fuji volcano, which is also located in the park.
Mount Fuji is Japan’s highest mountain (3,776 metres) and is surrounded by outstanding scenery with hot springs and beautiful lakes. Make a stop at Lake Kawaguchi-ko, one of the five Fuji Lakes, to get a great view of Mount Fuji, which is mirrored in one of the lakes in the park.
Despite not having erupted for more than 300 years, the volcano is still active.
Did you know that a few times a year you can experience “Diamond Fuji” – the exact time that the rising or setting sun aligns with the peak of Mount Fuji?
Khao Sok National Park is located in southern Thailand, making it an ideal place to visit in connection with a beach holiday in Khao Lak.
The national park consists of rainforest, waterfalls and majestic limestone cliffs, so you will discover an incredibly picturesque and beautiful landscape.
One of the highlights of the park is the emerald green lake, Cheow Lan, which is surrounded by limestone cliffs. Experience the lake from a traditional longtail boat.
The national park is also ideal for a hike in the Thai jungle, where you can get to know all the flora and fauna of the jungle. The park is home to some 50 different kinds of mammals and more than 300 different species of birds.
Did you know that Khao Sok National Park has one of the oldest evergreen rainforests in the world?
Mount Bromo National Park is one of the highlights of the Indonesian island of Java,
where you will find one of the most unique landscapes in Indonesia – a barren volcanic landscape.
The national park’s main attraction is Mount Bromo, an active volcano. Standing at a height of 2,329 metres, the volcano is not actually the highest on the island, but it is the most popular.
The area offers a magical experience of grand proportions! Get up early and experience the sun rising above Mount Bromo from the viewpoint of Mount Penanjakan, at an altitude of 2,770 metres.
Did you know that the landscape around Mount Bromo is covered in grey volcanic sand, contrasting beautifully with the green mountain?
A mere 160 kilometres from the vibrant Vietnamese city of Ho Chi Minh is Nam Cat Tien National Park, one of the largest nature reserves in Vietnam.
Hundreds of species live here, including the Asian elephant, tigers, leopards and water buffalo.
Go for a walk along one of the many trails in the park and experience the amazing forest at close range. And if you’re lucky, you might spot gibbons and colourful birds. What’s more, the forest has no fewer than 1,610 different plant species. You can also see some of the park’s nocturnal animals on a night safari.
Did you know that the oldest tree in Nam Cat Tien is 700 years old and its trunk is 4 metres in diameter?
Yala National Park is located in south-eastern Sri Lanka and is the oldest and most famous of Sri Lanka’s national parks.
It is also the best place to go on safari in Sri Lanka.
See herds of elephants drinking at water holes or perhaps the timid leopard hiding in the green bushes. Yala National Park is actually the best place in Sri Lanka to catch a glimpse of the leopard – if you’re very lucky! Wild boar, crocodiles, buffaloes, monkeys and deer also inhabit the park. In the area, which covers 979 km2, there are also 215 different bird species, six of which are only found in Sri Lanka.
Although Yala National Park is a conservation area today, it was previously used as a hunting ground for the British elite when Sri Lanka was a British colony.
Did you know that a popular destination in the park is the Sithulpawwa rock temple? The temple is said to have housed up to 12,000 monks over the years.
West Bali National Park (Bali Barat National Park) is the only national park in Bali.
Here, you will find forest, rainforest, savannah and a world-class coral reef in the beautiful blue sea, which is part of the national park.
One of the reasons for the area being designated a national park in 1941 was the extremely rare Bali myna bird, which lives in the park. In 2001, just six Bali myna birds were believed to still live in the wild. Today, work is being done to protect the natural habitats of the Bali myna birds, and the population is gradually increasing.
In addition to the Bali myna bird, the national park is also home to deer, butterflies, reptiles and long-tailed black monkeys. And on the island of Menjangan, which is also in the national park, you can snorkel at the spectacular reefs and discover the park’s vast marine biodiversity.
Did you know that there are more than 160 species of bird living in the park? Bali National Park is therefore a paradise for bird lovers.
If you are on a beach holiday in the Cambodian town of Kep, be sure not to miss the town’s national park.
Kep National Park is known for its hiking trails, which take you past some amazing views.
The main entrance is right behind Veranda Natural Resort, and the park’s trails are clearly marked by yellow signs.
An 8 km-long trail takes you around the park, with a number of detours along the way. Follow, for example, the popular “Stairway to Heaven” uphill, which takes you past a pagoda and a nunnery before reaching the summit at “Sunset Rock”, where you can enjoy a stunning panoramic view of the coast and the green jungle.
Did you know that you can encounter various animals in the park including butterflies and monkeys?
Asia’s numerous national parks offer a multitude of diverse and unique experiences: exciting nature and wonderful wildlife that are unique to Asia.
Dream of experiencing Asia? Then take a look at our destinations in south-east Asia and find inspiration for your next holiday.
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