Indigenous tribes: Access and Permits

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Central Highlands, Vietnam

Indigenous tribes: Access and Permits Central Highlands Reviews

JaitcH JaitcH
128 reviews
A little aforethought avoids hassles Nov 28, 2008
Todays VietNam has inherited problems with the indigenous tribal people, of which there are over 50, which are rooted in failed promises made by the French during their occupation and exacerbated by the actions of the government of South VietNam and, finally, the actions of the conquering Ha Noi army.

There are United Nations documents that vividly detail the tribal complaints and this can be read at <>. Readers are urged to refer to this document. The arguments seem to reflect tensions that exist both in Canada and the U.S.A. and their First Nations tribes.

As a consequence their remains great friction between the Ha Noi government together with the Viet(namese) population and these tribes.

Occasionally, and not infrequently, these tribes protest which protests take many forms from noisy gatherings to full scale civil unrest.

As a result Ha Noi is very sensitive to anything likely to cause any thing, or person, likely to ferment further problems.

Consequently the police, green uniforms with red epaulets, are charged with controlling access to these areas and they do so by the issuance of permits which can range from free and up to USD$20. Vietnamese Dong is also accepted!

Ignoring permit requirements can result in arrest, detention and even deportation. These are to be taken seriously.

Police policy is determined not only by the national government but also by the provincial government which only serves to confuse visitors.

In Dak Lak Province control is lax with the Viet population having ready access and very light controls on foreign visitors EXCEPT during periods of unrest.

Dak Nong Province, a very young province, has the highest count on indigenous people and generally follows the policies of Dak Lak from which it was formed a few years ago.

Gia Lai Province, on the other hand, has a strict policy of enforcement both with the Viet population as well as foreigners - the latter can obtain permits from the tourism bureau at 2 Le Loi Street in Plei Ku.

KonTum Province has a medium strict policy an permits are issued by the police in Plei Ku.

Permits are also required in other provinces further north, notably Ha Giang, which are issued by police.

Guides are available through government tourism bureaus and they substitute the need for permits. The guide costs are generally in the order of USD$15-20 per day.
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