|DAK LAK PROVINCE
Coordinates: 12°40'N 108°3'E
Region Central Highlands
Capital Buon Ma Thuot
Area 13,125.4 km2
• Total 1,771,800
• Density 135/km2
• Ethnicities Kinh, E De, Nung
Calling code 0500
Dak Lak Province spreads out on an area of 13085 km2 (3.9% area of the whole country). A part of the southwest slope of the Annamite Range, Dak Lak has a mostly mountainous topography (35% of its area are highlands and mountains). The average height is from 1000 to 1200 m; the highest peaks are Chu Yang Sin (2442m), Chu H’mu (2051m), Chu De (1793m), and Chu Yang Pel (1600m). In the middle of Dak Lak, one can find a flat stretch of highland which covers 53% of the natural area, with an average height of 450m. The rest of province is lower areas.
The rich, flat red soil is a great advantage to develop long day - industrial trees like coffee, rubber, tea, and pepper to raise cattle and to grow forest. Alluvia soil is rice paddy and natural grass field. Dak Lak's forest has abundant wood reserve and various rare animal species as elephant, lion, tiger, beer, etc. There are many beautiful rivers, high waterfalls and lakes in this province.
The Dak Lak's climate is temperate with the annual average temperature is 24oC. There is a difference of only 5oC between the hottest month and the coldest one. The dry season lasts from November to April next year. It is quite cold, windy, and dry. The rainy season lasts from May to October with high rainy amount.
Dak Lak is one of the most potential provinces of Vietnam in term of tourism development, because it has so many historical and natural sites, not to mention its diverse yet deeply-rooted tradition and culture. The first example is Buon Don in Dak Lak, a village which has been put on the world tourism map for its tradition of hunting and taming elephant. There are beautiful and famous waterfalls such as: Thuy Tien, Trinh Nu, Krong Kmar, Bay Nhanh, among many big lakes such as Lak, Dak Mil. Coming to there, tourists are able to get in the primitive forests of the Chu Yang Sin, Yok Don National parks or make tour to Dak Lak's historical vestiges like Bao Dai Palace, Yang Prong Tower, Buon Ma Thuot Prison, Dak Tua Cave.
Coffee is planting in most districts of Dak Lak, but coffee planting in Buon Ma Thuot is highly-appreciated because of its typical flavor. This explains why the trade of Café Buon Ma Thuot is famous all over the world and Buon Ma Thuot can be regarded as “capital coffee”. In Buon Ma Thuot, coffee partially forms the unique culture of this region and local people.
The exhilarating culture of Dak Lak is reflected in many forms of arts: the epic of Dam San- Xinh Nha, the language of the Ede and H’Mong ethnic groups, the music instruments such as Lithophone, T’rung, K’long Put, etc. Dak Lak is also a part of The Space of Gong Culture in the Central Highlands of Vietnam, which was recognized by UNESCO as a Masterpiece of the Intangible Heritage of Humanity on November 25, 2005. Architecture is also another factor that Dak Lak people can totally be proud of: there are thousands traditional long stilt houses, inside which every piece of furniture is hand-made from the giant wild trees.
The Elephant Race Festival takes place in the spring in Buon Don or in sparse forest surrounding the Serepok River around 22nd to 26th March in even years. While Ede ethnic group has Celebration for Mature Man to mark te coming of age of Ede Boys.
Dak Lak is 183km from Nha Trang (by National Highway No. 26), 180km from Pleiku (by National Highway No. 14), 352km from Ho Chi Minh City (by National Highway No. 14), 200km from Dalat (by National Highway No. 27), and 1,390km from Hanoi.
Buon Ma Thuot Airport is 10km from the city centre. There are daily flights from Danang and Ho Chi Minh City.