General Introduction

Pu Mat National Park is located in the middle of the Annamite Range. Pu Mat National Park is located in Anh Son, Con Cuong and Tuong Duong districts, Nghe An Province, about 130km from Vinh City.

The park, formerly known as Pu Mat National Reserve, covers an area of over 91,000ha and has 896 flora species, 241 mammal species, 137 bird species, 25 reptiles and 15 amphibians. Many scientists also see Pu Mat as Viet Nam’s great museum of animal gene pool.

Significantly, Pu Mat is one of Viet Nam’s rare forests such as Quang Nam, Danang, Ha Tinh and Thua Thien-Hue where sao la (long-horned bovid or scientific name Pseudoryx nghetinhensis) can be found. Sao la is one of the animals facing extinction, according to the World Conservation Union’s Red List of Endangered Species.

Together with many unique animals, the primitive forest also has many beautiful landscapes. Among the favourite destinations are the 150m Kem Waterfall, Giang River and ethnic minority villages in the forest such as Thai, Tho, Dan Lai and H’Mong.

The trekking tours, where travellers have an opportunity to explore the jungle and unique villages, are among the top choices for visitors of Pu Mat. These tours also allow visitors to speak to ethnic minorities and learn about their arts and culture, visit villages making brocades or tho cam and enjoy special food such as com lam (rice in bamboo cylinders). 

1. Geographical location
Pu Mat National Park is located on the northwest of Nghe An Province, about 160km by highway from Vinh city, the geographical co-ordinates of the Park:
18 46 – 19 12 ‘North Latitude.
104 24 ‘- 104 56’ East Longitude.
Boundaries of the Park: in South there is 61km of shares border with Laos.
Western border with Tam Hop, Tam Dinh, Tam Quang (Tuong Duong District).
Northern border with Lang Khe, Chau Khe, Luc Da, Mon Son communes (Con Cuong District).
Eastern borders with Phuc Son, Hoi Son (Anh Son District).
2. Area
Whole area of National Park in the administrative boundaries of three districts Anh Son, Con Cuong and Tuong Duong in Nghe An province including 94.275ha of core zone (after adjustment in 1999) and around 100.000ha of buffer zone located in 16 communes.
There are four communes in Tuong Duong District, they are Tam Hop, Tam Dinh, Tam Quang, Tam Hoa; seven communes in Con Cuong are Lang Khe, Chau Khe, Luc Da, Mon Son, Yen Khe, Bong Khe, Chi Khe and five communes in Anh Son including Phuc Son, Hoi Son, Tuong Son, Cam Son, Dinh Son.
3. Topography  and Geomorphology
Areas with complex topography, separating strongly. The top side has high slope, average elevation of 800  1000m with the dangerous terrain. Southwest of the National Park where the terrain is relatively equal and lower was habitat of some ethnic communities so far. There many activities of agricultural and forestry has been followed. Located in the area also has about 7.057ha rocky gravel and most of this area located in the buffer zone only about 150ha is situated in the core zone of the national park.
4. Land and soil
– Land
Pu Mat National Park is located on the northern of Truong Son range, the process of tectonic geology was formed through the century Palezoi, De von, Carbon, Pecmi, Tri at … to Mioxen and to today. During the development of the Truong Son range, the cycle of creation Hecxinin mountain, terrain always been a strong external force that makes four main geomorphological forms below:
+ Average high mountain: Located in the border between Laos and Vietnam with several peaks over 2000m high. (Phulaileng with 2711m, Rao Co with 2286m), the terrain is very dangerous, it is very extremely difficult for travel.
+ Low mountains and high hills: This model accounts for most of the domain area and altitude of 1000m or less, the structure is relatively complex, is composed by sedimentary, metamorphic, the terrain is soft and little steeper.
+ Valley tectonics, erosion: although this model accounts for a small area, but convenient for agricultural production, lower elevation including valleys, rivers and streams of Khe Thoi, Khe Choang, Khe Khang (Giang River) and on the right bank of Ca river.
+ Small blocks of limestone: scattered in block with bending folds, karst rather young and is distributed in right bank of the Ca river at an altitude of 200m – 300m. These are formed by distributed thick slabs, gray homogenous and pure.
– Soils
The soils in the region have identified:
+ Land on Mount is humus feralit average (PH), accounting for 17.7%, distributed from 800-1000m elevation along the border of Vietnamese and Laos.
+ Red and yellow feralit land in hills and low mountains region (F), accounting for 77.6%, distributed in the North and North East National Park.
+ Slop and alluvial land D, P accounting for 4.7%, is distributed alternatively at the right bank of Ca river.
+ Limestone (K2) accounting for  3.6% is distributed alternatively at the right bank of Ca river.
5. Climate and hydrography
Pu Mat National Park is located in the tropical monsoon, influenced by the Truong Son range to revert  the atmosphere to original that cause climate here is splited differently in the region.
– Temperature:
+ Average temperature 23 – 240C, the total thermal power from 8500 – 87000C.
+ Winter time from December to February of the subsequence year due to the influence of northeast monsoon so the average temperature during these months is less than 200C and the average temperature on the lowest below 180C (January).
+ On the contrary, in summer due to the influence of Western Wind the weather is very dry, which lasted up to three months (from April to July). Average summer temperatures above 250C, hottest in June and July, the average temperature is 290C. At high temperatures up to 420C in Con Cuong and in Tuong Duong is 42.70C in April and May, the humidity in these months less than 30% in certain days.
– Wet moisture rain:
Regional studies focus on little to moderate rainfall, 90% water concentration in the rainy season, rainfall is in September, October and usually accompanied by floods. Dry season from December to April of the subsequent year. Due to the influence of the northeast monsoon there present the spring rain in February, March and April. May, June, July are the hottest months and the amount of evaporation is highest.
+ Humidity in the air from 85 to 86%, the rainy season up to 90%. However the extremely low value of moisture is usually caused by prolonged hot periods.
– Hydrography:
In areas where the Ca river systems run from the Northwest to Southeast. The transmission at the right banks of Ca river such as Khe Thoi, Khe Choang, Khe Khang flow from southwest to northeast and pour into Ca river.
+ At all three rivers, we can use rafts to goes at certain places. In Khe Choang and Khe Khang, the use of motor-board is possible.
+ In general, the network of rivers and streams is quite dense, the rainfall is distributed unevenly between the seasons and areas causing floods and droughts regularly occur.

1. Ethnicity
There are three main ethnic groups in three districts of Pu Mat National Park area is Thai, Kho Mu and Kinh. There are also several other ethnic groups such as Ho Mong, Dan Lai, Poong, O Du, Tay but the numbers are not large. Thai ethnic accounting the largest population (66.89%) and a few O Du people (up 0.6%).
2. Population and labor (to April 2008)
Total population of 16 communes are 16,945 households with 93,235 persons. Most population distribution in seven communes in Con Cuong district (39,419 people, 7167 households) and 5 communes in Anh Son district (38,163 people, 6938 households), the remaining four communes in Tuong Duong district (15,753 people, 2849 households), average per household from 3-6 persons, the increasing population make a big pressure to the forest. Population in the area distributed unevenly among communes, some communes have less population such as Tam Hop in Tuong Duong district (7 persons/km2), Chau Khe commune in Con Cuong  district (13 person/km2). There also are some communes that have big population such as Dinh Son (495 person/km2), Cam Son (421 person/km2) in Anh Son district.
The uneven distribution of the population causing labor force distribution is uneven and concentrated mainly in the lowland communes in Anh Son district. Workforces locally are very potential, but the structure of the vocations in the region is very monotonous. Most of the activities are production of forestry, agriculture, animal husbandry, poultry and a few people working in other areas such as Health, Education, Services. The surplus of labor, poor living standard leading local people to exploit forest products  from the Pu Mat National Park.
Forestry production
Forestry programs are implemented such as program no 327 and 661. Presently, Anh Son district has allocated to households to carry out the regeneration, management and protection and planted 2.217ha of forests, Tuong Duong district is 8.305ha, Con Cuong district is 30.280ha.
Work also focuses on reforestation until the current time. Forest area has grown as 2.853ha  in Anh Son district, Con Cuong and Tuong Duong are 3.350ha and 206ha. Besides gathered plantation area, districts also planted millions of scattered trees.
There are three State Forest Enterprise (Con Cuong, Anh Son and Tuong Duong) located in the National Park area. The main functions of these State Forest Enterprise are forest protection, regeneration, forest enrichment and exploitation.
Besides the traditional forestry activities, the State Forest Enterprises are centers for technical services and seedlings for the local people.
Projects support economic development in the areas.
There were the largest program on the forestry in the buffer zone (supported by the Government) area project  No 327,  Project No 661 and Project 327. The project No 327 on the resettlement has been implemented in 3 villages including Co Phat, Khe Con, Ban Bung in Mon Son commune.
The aims of the projects are to stabilize population, planning farms, elimination of poppy plants. There are also other projects such as projects on forest land or entrepreneur, management and protection of forest resources, population stretch;  Ca river projects, Giang river projects funding by Denmark Government, protection and exploitation of paper fibers materials project; projects such as planting fruit trees (orange, labeled, some) projects watershed forest protection and support food; capital projects to support breeding, plant varieties ( rice, corn planting project …); industry (target) in Anh Son district;  the SFNC project in Nghe An province; feasible projects  for construction of Pu Mat National Park.
Activities affect the Pu Mat National Park:
For long ago, the ethnic lives in here based mainly on natural resources. Forest where food supply, food, raw materials, medicinal plants … for the people in the area. Since the Nature Reserve is established, the shifting cultivation activities are no longer exist but mining and forest products exploitation, hunting wild animals are still common. These activities affect forest resources and landscape, including:
– Shifting cultivation caused forest fires.
– Logging, firewood illegally.
– Fishing with mine, electricity, poison the rivers and streams destroyed the environment, destruction of animals aquatic systems.
– Excessive grazing cattle under foliage.
– The exploitation activities on the forestry products such as aloe wood, bamboo shoots, medicinal plants, honey, ornamental plants.

Pursuant to decision No 194/CT on August 9, 1986, the Chairman of the Council of Ministers has decided to establish two independent special use forests in the southwest province of Nghe An: Anh Son Nature Reserve in Anh Son district with an area of 1,500 ha and Nature Reserve in Thanh Thuy, Thanh Chuong districts with an area of 7000 ha. Two protected areas later combined to establish the area as a Pu Mat Nature Reserve in Anh Son, Con Cuong and Tuong Duong Districts (MARD, 1997).
In 1993, the Forest Investigation and Planning Institution (FIPI) has developed an investment project for Pu Mat Nature Reserve. The investment plan has been assessed by the Ministry of Forestry of 343/LN-KH on February 20, 1995 and was approved by Nghe An People’s Committee at Decision No. 3355/QD-UB on 28/12 / 1995.
On November 21, 1996, Decision No. 876/QD-TTg of the Prime Minister approving the project of social forestry and nature conservation areas Pu Mat, Nghe An province, funded by the EU.
On May 21, 1997, Nghe An People’s Committee issued Decision No. 2150/QD-UB on establishment of Pu Mat Nature Reserve under the management of Nghe An provincial FPD.
A new Investment plan for the Pu Mat Nature Reserve was developed by FIPI in 2000, proposed to change categories of special use forest management from the nature reserve to national park. The investment plan was approved by the People’s Committee of Nghe An province on June 20, 2000 by the  Decision No. 2113/QD-UB and then approved by MARD on June 26, 2000 via Decision No. 2495/QD/BNN-KH . On August 11, 2001, the Prime Minister has issued the Decision No. 174/2001/QD-TTg on the transfer the Pu Mat Nature Reserve in Nghe An province into National Park. According to this Decision, the total area of national park is 91,113 ha, where the distribution is strictly protected 89,517  hectares and subdivision ecological restoration is 1569 ha. Pu Mat National Park currently under management of the People’s Committee of Nghe An on the finance, while management plans are delivered to the provincial Forest Protection Department.
Pu Mat is in the record of special use forests of Vietnam in 2010 that was built by the Forestry Department – Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development with an area of 91,113 ha (FPD, 2003), the record hasn’t yet approved by the Government.


Con Cuong under King Ly Dynasty has reclaimed and expanded cultivation area, opened new villages concentrated along Lam River in Nam Kim – Khe Bo area; Vinh Hoa (Tuong Duong), Cu Don (Con Cuong).
In the 13th century, Con Cuong was called Mat Chau, also known as Kiem Chau. The 15th century was the most flourishing period of the Le Dynasty. In 1469, Le Thanh Tong synthesized Chau Hoan and Chau Dien Thanh to inherit Tuyen Nghe An, including 9 wards, 25 districts, and 2 Chau. Con Cuong is a part of Phu Tra Lan, including 4 districts: Ky Son, Tuong Duong, Vinh Khang, and Hoi Ninh.
After the August Revolution, a part of Vinh Hoa district named Con Cuong included 4 cantons and 10 communes, now Con Cuong has 12 communes and 1 town.
Through successive epochs following the historical line of exploiting and building villages, fields, and hamlets, that is the great merit of ethnic people from generation to generation. In the early days, the people here had to cope with harsh nature, foreign invaders, and long-standing customs. Con Cuong is a mountainous district in the southwest of Nghe An, with a long history dating back to the ancient Hoa Binh culture.
This strip of land has witnessed and has contributed human resources to the great armed struggle, making the ” Tra Lan region split with flying ash” Binh Ngo Dai Cao of Nguyen Trai also recorded.
Con Cuong is the homeland of ethnic minorities, with the first Party cell of ethnic minorities in the country since the climax of the Xo Viet Nghe Tinh. Rivers, streams, and rocky mountains, the remaining 8,446 ha is the soil area of ​​157,817 ha (in which the area of ​​the humus group in the mountains higher than 1,000m accounts for 38,019 ha, most of which is in the area of ​​Pu Mat primary forest). Con Cuong district has a length of 30 km, is the gateway district to the Southwest region of Nghe An. The back is leaning against the Truong Son Range, the Northeast borders Quy Hop District, the Southwest borders the Truong Son Range, the Southeast borders Anh Son District, the Northwest borders Tuong Duong District. Lam River is the largest river running through the district with a length of 30 km, dividing the district into 6 communes on the left, 6 communes on the right, and a town. The Lam River is valuable for transportation and is a major source of food. Route 7 running through Con Cuong district is 30 km long and is a National Highway of great importance. The French colonialists called this road “the key to Indochina”. A place that could open the door to their colonization on this important and rich peninsula.
Together to improve nature and create a life on this land, there are 4 ethnic groups: Thai, Dan Lai, (Tho) Kinh, and Hoa.
Thai people entered Con Cuong in the 14th century. They know how to do forestry, animal husbandry, brocade weaving, and wet rice cultivation. The majority of Thai people live in low mountains, often along rivers, streams, and valleys. Dan Lai (Tho – Ly Ha) The legend of “One hundred golden cork trees, the boat is rowed” says that they came from Thanh Chuong due to being exploited and confused, so they ran back up. Where do they live in the source of Khe Khang (Mon Son), Khe hot (Chau Khe), Khe Moi (Luc Da) they find the most secret place in the “Son and water end” of the country to live there. The characteristics of these people are hunter-gatherers and forest products.
The Kinh people also came here early to exchange and trade with the Thai and Tho ethnic groups. They live intertwined with the Thai ethnic group.
The Chinese make up a very small number, living in Con Cuong Town, mainly trading for their livelihood.

Local cuture

Coming here, you will be welcomed with sincere affection from relatives and enjoy the Thai ethnic culture through their dances, dances, and gongs and the pleasures of drinking can wine. The five dong dance has been imbued with national cultural identity for many generations… Ladies and gentlemen, we are now heading to Luc Da commune, where Yen Thanh village is located with a traditional brocade weaving village and Thai girls. very skillfully under her hands weaved very beautiful dresses, scarves, and bags. If you still have time when you come back, please visit and buy this product as a souvenir for your trip. Adjacent to Luc Da commune, you will come to the land of Mon Son where many historical monuments have been recorded during the Soviet-Violent Revolution of 1930-1931 and here the Western Party cell was born.
The folklore of the ethnic groups in Con Cuong is precious heritages, crystallized over many generations, showing the creativity of their ancestors. It reflects life in a pure and delicate way, folklore consists of two components: tangible culture and intangible culture, which honestly reflect the lives of the people in the region. this. The struggle to build the material culture, the spiritual culture of the people in the process of development. Each ethnic group has its own cultural capital with its own color. In the Thai ethnic group, there are rhythms of all kinds, it can be said that the folklore capital is very rich and diverse, not to mention folk tunes. . There are also all kinds of genres such as proverbs, folk songs, poetry stories… That culture truly reflects the working and fighting life of the people and the thoughts, feelings, and souls of the mountainous people, especially the fun when drinking alcohol.
The unique feature of the Thai people is that there are dances for men and women to confess their feelings to each other during festivals.
The Khanh petrol festival is also a talent competition day for young men and women, on those days, boys, girls and old people have fun with jars of can wine, drink can wine and dance together, ethnic dances are very featured. Besides, gasoline khan dance is often held for 3 days and 3 nights at the end of the year, earthly fun organized by Mr. Mo to play all kinds of ghosts. For the purpose of praying for favorable rain and wind, the villagers can do well.

1. Leadership: Director and 2-3 deputy directors.
The Director is the head of Pu Mat National Park; responsible to the Chairman of Provincial People’s Committee and be responsible to the law of all the activities of the Park. Deputy Director helps the Director to direct some work, responsible to the Director and the law on the tasks assigned. The appointment and dismissal of directors and deputy directors comply with the provisions of the state.
2. Departments:
a) Planning – Finance.
b) Personnel – Administration.
c) Scientific Research Department – Wildlife Rescue Center- International cooperation;
3. The Subsidiaries:
a) Ranger Department includes:
+ Department’s office.
+ Ranger mobile teams;
+ Forest management and protection Station in Khe Thoi;
+ Forest management and protection Station in Tam Dinh;
+ Forest management and protection Station in Khe Choang;
+ Forest management and protection Station in Khe Bu;
+ Forest management and protection Station in Khe Kem;
+ Forest management and protection Station in Co Phat;
+ Forest management and protection Station in Pha Lai;
+ Forest management and protection Station in Lang Yen;
+ Forest management and protection Station in Cao Veu;
+ Forest management and protection Station in Tam Hop;
+ Forest management and protection Station in Luc Da;
b) Center for Environmental Education – Eco-tourism and services;

Pu Mat National Park is the state enterprise unit directly under the management of Provincial People’s Committees.  Subject to the management of professional services of specialized agencies and the provincial authorities in accordance with the law.
Pu Mat National Park has full legal status, seal and bank accounts.
Conservation of natural resources, protect biodiversity and cultural values, history, landscape within the park. Scientific research and international cooperation, education, advocacy, raising awareness about nature conservation, protection of ecological environment for the community to maintain protective effects of forest within the boundaries of the Park.
Duties and Powers
1. Management, protection and conservation of natural ecosystems, species endemic; restore natural resources and natural landscapes in an area assigned to:
a) Protection, conservation of natural ecosystems.
– Protecting, preserving sustainable development of natural resources, biological, water and other natural factors.
– Fire, Forest Fire, pest prevention and exotic invasive organisms; prevent timely actions invasive forest and environmental landscape.
b) Restoration of natural forest ecosystems, species of plant and animal are at risk of extinction; conserve biological diversity.
c) Develop programs, projects and implement programs, projects and activities to attract community participation management, contribute to improve the living standard of local people targeted in buffer zone according to objectives of conservation and sustainable development.
d) Conservation and restoration of historic and cultural landscape in the Park.
2. Scientific research and international cooperation:
a) To organize scientific research on the protection, conservation, community development, forest plants, biodiversity, particularly for the species, rare plants, endemic and endangered.
b) To organize services for scientific research and study at the Park.
c) Develop programs, plans and scientific research projects then manage to launch after these programs are approved.
d) Collect, experimental breeding, and genetic conservation of the species and rare plants.
e) Develop programs and projects of international cooperation on the management, protection, conservation and development of natural resources and biodiversity; carry out the international cooperation activities under the approval of the PPC’s subsidiaries.
e) To study the model farm forestry, forestry extension model, agricultural, fishing in the buffer zone, the model village tourism, technology instructions transfer to the local people in the buffer zone.
3. Organization Environmental Services:
a) Develop and submit programs to competent authorities for approval the planning, develop and implement the development projects for environmental services, ecotourism at the National Park. Create revenues from tourism investment for management, protection, conservation and forest development of the National Park.
b) Organize joint venture, association, for rent forest environment for eco-tourism business under approved planning and regulations; guide, inspect and supervise the business activities of ecotourism organizations and individuals under contracts already signed.
c) To propagate and environmental education to raise awareness about nature conservation, the environment for tourists and community, carry out promotion and marketing to attract tourists.
4. Submit to PPC programs and investment projects. To be the owner of investment projects under the current regulations of the State and PPC.
5. Propagation and dissemination, education, guide and supervise the implementation of policies and legislation on the management of forest protection, conservation and buffer zones in the Park.
6. Develop, evaluate, monitor and implement of projects related to the management and protection of forest nature reserves, protecting biodiversity; plant garden; plants; model of agro-forestry; when the agency or the competent authority assigned.
7. Exercise their rights and obligations of forest owners as The Special-use forest management under Article 61 of the Law on Protection and Development of Forests in 2004.
8. Financial management, assets assigned; implementation of regulations on the regime of autonomy and self-responsibility for financial thrift and combat waste, fight against corruption; administrative reform in accordance with the State.
9. Management of the Organization; civil servants, she said wage regime; reward and discipline as assigned by the PPC and the regulations of the State.
10. Perform other duties prescribed by law.