Tra Su Bird Sanctuary

Top choice in Chau Doc

This immense 800,000-hectare forest is home to an astounding number of wading birds. Much of the wetland is off-limits to visitors so that the birds' breeding grounds are not disturbed, but visits include a short speedboat ride and a tranquil 20-minute paddle along narrow channels through the gnarled and green sunken forest. Even if you only spot a few birds, it's a beautiful, if short, green trip. The sanctuary is 23km west of Chau Doc.

The best time to visit is December to January, when the chicks hatch. Motorbike tours from Chau Doc cost around US$20 per person. Group tours organised by Mekong Tours cost US$12 per person, with pickup in comfortable small buses, admission and rides included. While the tour means a greater likelihood of sharing rowboats, with three passengers per boat it's hardly a problem.

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