Kon Ka Kinh National Park is located in Kon Pne, Dakrong and Krong communes, K’Bang district, Ha Dong commune, Dak Doa district, and Ayun commune, Mang Yang district, Gia Lai province. The national park is situated on the Kon Tum plateau in the central Annamite mountains. To the north of the national park, elevations gradually increase towards Mount Ngoc Linh, the highest point in the central Annamites. To the south and west, the topography is flatter, and altitudes are below 500 m. Altitudes within the national park range from 570 m in the Ba river valley, to 1,748 m at the summit of Mount Kon Ka Kinh.
Kon Ka Kinh National Park Map
The national park straddles two catchments: streams originating in the east of the national park feed the Ba river, which flows east, into the South China Sea; whilst the west of the national park lies within the catchment of the Mekong River. Due to the steep topography, rivers and streams originating in the national park are often short, narrow and fast flowing, with many waterfalls.
Kon Ka Kinh National Park contains 33,565 ha of natural forest, equivalent to 80% of the total area of the national park. The national park supports a range of montane habitat types. Of particular importance are 2,000 ha of mixed coniferous and broadleaf forest containing Fokienia hodginsii.
The park forms part of a contiguous landscape of natural habitats in north-eastern Gia Lai province, and adjacent Binh Dinh and Kon Tum provinces, which supports some of the most intact faunal and floral communities in the central Annamites. Notably, the national park supports a number of globally threatened mammal species, including Grey-shanked Douc Pygathrix cinerea, Yellow-cheeked Crested Gibbon Hylobates gabriellae and Tiger Panthera tigris.
Kon Ka Kinh is situated within the Kon Tum Plateau Endemic Bird Area, and supports six restricted-range bird species. One of these species, the globally vulnerable Chestnut-eared Laughingthrush Garrulax konkakinhensis, which is endemic to the Kon Tum plateau, was discovered at Kon Ka Kinh in 1999. For these reasons, Kon Ka Kinh qualifies as an Important Bird Area.
Kon Ka Kinh National Park is also a globally important site for the conservation of amphibian diversity. Kon Ka Kinh supports a number of amphibian species endemic to the Annamite mountains, including four species assessed as globally threatened during the Global Amphibian Assessment: Leptobrachium banae, L. xanthospilum, Rana attigua and Rhacophorus baliogaster.
Kon Ka Kinh National Park has an important role in upstream watershed protection for several large rivers that provide water for irrigation and domestic use for a number of districts in Gia Lai and Kon Tum provinces. Additionally, the west of the national park forms part of the catchment of the Yaly hydroelectric power station.
The national park is of importance to local people as a source of natural resources, such as firewood honey and rattans. Also, the national park supports at least 110 plant species with known medicinal uses. Use of plants in traditional medicine is widespread amongst local people, although the commercial potential of these species remains largely unrealised.
The national park contains scenic landscapes and other natural features of interest to visitors.
Mount Kon Ka Kinh, at the altitude of 1,748 meters above the sea level, is the highest peak of Kon Ka Kinh National Park and was dubbed the “Roof of Gia Lai Province”. Conquering the summit of Kon Ka Kinh is always a dream of hikers and nature lovers.
When to visit?
The ideal time to climb Kon Ka Kinh Mountain is from January to June coinciding with the dry season in the Central Highlands of Vietnam.