Laos: Sun Bear Sanctuary
Just about an hour south of Luang Prabang lies a small sanctuary for sun bears with about two dozen individual rescued from traps, poaching, and deforestation. Sun bear is one of the rarest near species and it is the smallest of all bears. They live in tropical rainforest throughout the Southeast Asia but the numbers have decreased significantly as population grows and China uses their parts for medicinal purposes. The bears are also known as honey bears, as they often go for bee nests using their oversized long tongues.