Cao Lanh - Bird sanctuaries
Since 1984 Cao Lanh is the capital of the province Dong Thap. The city itself is not very touristy, but is often used as a starting point for tours to the bird sanctuaries in the area or the Tram Chim National Park which is situated 45 km north-west of the town. In the north-east of the city you can find a war memorial with 3,000 Vietcong graves, including the grave of Ho Chi Minh’s father, Nguyen Sinh Sac.
In the Museum of the city, Dong Thap, you can find information about the moving history of the province and artifacts from Oc Eo, an archaeological site in the Mekong delta, which is believed to have belonged to the Kingdom of Funan.
In Dong Thap province you can also find the Plain of Reeds (Dong Thap Muoi). This is an endless vast area (about one million hectares) of mangrove forests and swamps. The Plain of Reeds extends up to the Cambodian border and served as a hiding place for resistance fighters during the French colonization, as well as during the war against the Americans. This area is regularly hit by floods. Very often during the rainy season the only means of transportation is by boat.
Tram Chim National Park - a paradise for ornithologists and cranes
The Tram Chim National Park is home to numerous bird species, including the large sarus-crane, which was thought to be extinct after the war. However some of these birds were recovered later on. The sarus-cranes grow up to 1.50 m, their plumage is gray, head and neck are bright red. During the rainy season from June to October/November you can’t find them here, they flee to Cambodia. There are many different fish species, and grasses, lotus species and wild rice. The National Park is best to be explored by boat during dawn and dusk, when most of the animals are around and the atmosphere is very special with dimmed lighting.
The original Tam Rung forest and Xeo Quyt
The Tam Rung forest with its large majestic trees, overgrown lianas and swamps covered by plants, is one of the last remaining original forests in the Mekong delta. Here you can find the remains of the camp Xeo Quyt, a secret command center of the former liberation fighters with numerous hidden little reed huts and an endless system of underground tunnels. You can combine a trip to Quyt Xeo with a visit to the nearby stork reserve. The best way to visit is also by boat.