In one of my previous blogposts, I introduced you to My Son sanctuary, which is an ideal destination for a weekend trip from Hoi An, where the Development Studies 1 program is based. This time, I am recommending another cool place which you can visit for a refreshing get-away from academic stuff. It’s the Bach Ma national park.

While My Son is situated to the South of Hoi An, Bach Ma is actually located to the North, some 100 kilometers from our study place. To get there, you can hire a bus. The short journey to the park in itself is something for you to enjoy: The bus would ride along the sea, mountains and meadows, treating you to some of the most magnificent landscapes in Vietnam. So remember to keep your eyes open for that!

The national park is quite big, covering an area of over 200 square kilometers. It is recommended that you come here in the morning, go trekking and then come back out in the afternoon. Note also that according to the park’s regulations, motorbikes are not allowed to go in due to safety concerns, so buses and cars are the only means you can use to get to the area of the park where you can start your exploration.

Expectably enough, you would see lots of trees here, no matter what direction you look.


In Vietnamese, “Bach Ma” means “white horse”. The national park so named because of a certain local legend. Nowadays, it is a well known destination for trekkers and nature lovers. Probably due to the high level of human presence, you won’t encounter many wild animals in the park. Last time I was there, I was lucky enough (or not so much?!) to see some butterflies.

But you will see a bunch of other interesting stuff. Like a Buddhist temple…

or ruins of some construction said to be holiday villas for French officials from the colonial era.

You will also see several waterfalls, big and small…

And several lakes as well. The water is blue and crystal clear. (Imagine the thrill of jumping into that water after a long and sweaty trek!)

After you finish exploring the national park, you can either go back to Hoi An, or go a little further North and arrive in Hue, the imperial capital of feudal Vietnam, another worth-visiting destination.