Pu Luong Nature Reserve is located in the North of Thanh Hoa province, Central Vietnam, about 160km Southwest of Hanoi. The reserve, spanning over two district of Quan Hoa and Ba Thuoc, is bordered by Mai Chau, Tan Lac and Lac Son districts of Hoa Binh province. The name of Pu Luong meaning “the highest peak of the region” comes from the language of the Thai ethnic minority – the primary group inhabitants here.
Pu Luong which was established as a national reserve in 1999 is the largest low-lying limestone mountain forest area left in the North Vietnam with an area of 17,662 hectares. The reserve is located along two parallel mountain ridges, which run from north-west to south-east, and are divided by a central valley, which contains several human settlements and a large agricultural land area, therefore, is not included within the nature reserve. Pu Luong is endowed with great biodiversity, its flora and fauna is closely associated with the Cuc Phuong National Park.
The reserve is home to more than 1,109 plants including 42 endemic species of Vietnam and four listed in the IUCN Red List; nearly 600 species of animals, birds, and reptiles including many endangered kinds such as gaur, tiger and clouded leopard. Most notable among the endangered animals inhabiting Pu Luong is the (scientifically named Trachypithecus Delacouri) whose population is estimated at 31 -38 individuals.
The landscape of Pu Luong is characterized by hamlets of wooden houses amid picturesque paddy fields and meandering streams with bamboo bridges and water wheels. It provides travelers a perfect getaway off the beaten path with an extensive activities of trekking, cycling, motorbiking trails lead to deep into the dense jungle and many ethnic minority villages. For height conquerors, the 1,700 meter summit of Pu Luong, west of the reserve will be an unforgettable experience of climbing, hiking and camping overnight in the forest if the weather permits. The long trekking through steep paths will be rewarded with marvelous panoramic view of the Pu Luong valley.