Vietnam in Brief – A Quick Guide to Da Lat
A Quick Guide to Da Lat
Da Lat is a French built hill station town surrounded by pine forests and packed with vinyards, kitschy attractions and colonial architecture. It’s a surprising and endearing destination that wouldn’t be out of place in the French Alps. It’s wide range of activities and year round temperate climate are quickly making it our favourite Vietnam destination. Spend your time here relaxing in luxury, taking romantic strolls through the pine forests, bathing in hidden waterfalls, cycling down country lanes, admiring the remnants of French colonialism or teeing off in style. If you ever get bored there’s a range of kitschy attractions and family fun to be had.
What to do and see in Da Lat
Tee off from the French designed golf course
Take advantage of the cool mountain temperature for a round of golf on one of Vietnam’s leading courses, which features breath-taking views of Xuan Huong Lake.
Cable Car to Truc Lam Pagoda
To get the very best view of Da Lat, take a cable car ride across the top of the towering pine trees to the hilltop Truc Lam Pagoda where you can wander peacefully through the splendid gardens and marvel at the ancient bonsai trees.
Visit the waterfalls
Da Lat is surrounded by dozens of bellowing waterfalls. Pack your swimwear and rent a bicycle or book a car to explore them. At the Datania Falls you can whiz down to the falls on a thrilling roller-coaster
For something completely different, check out the truly bizarre and aptly named, Crazy House. Get lost in the maze of precarious tunnels, high walkways and steep ladders that lead you on a magical journey through a house that has been an artistic work in progress since 1990.
Stroll or cycle down country lanes
Da Lat’s winding countryside roads and fragrant pine forests are perfect for a stroll or cycle. If you get lost the friendly locals will help you back into town.
Check out the French influence
It’s hard to ignore. Da Lat was originally built by the French as a retreat from Saigon’s imposing summer heat and the city still has a distinctive French feel. Its city centre is built around a gothic church, French villas line the streets, artisans wander around wearing berets and vinyards line the hills.
Relax in luxury
Da Lat is Vietnam’s premier honeymoon destination. There are plenty of luxury hotels, resorts and restaurants where you can relax and pamper yourself.
How’s the food?
Fresh, delicious and varied. Dalat’s temperate climate make it perfect for growing western vegetables and producing fantastic charcuterie and cheeses. Unfortunately the town is packed with mediocre restaurants selling standard tourist fare. Hotels do some great fine dining but if you are yearning for local food you can’t go past the local market where fabulously fresh and tasty dishes are served on the second floor, giving you a photo worthy view to the stalls below. We recommend trying the banh trang, bun nem nuong, banh khoai and Da Lat salad. The coffee is also to die for.
Make the most of Da Lat’s temperate weather and indulge in a few outdoor activities. Especially if you are on a multi city tour. If you’re tempted to just sit by the pool put on your swimmers and head out to the waterfalls instead. You won’t regret it.
The best time to go to Da Lat
Da Lat’s beautiful all year round climate has earned it the nickname “City of Eternal Spring”. The average high is 29-30c and the average low is 15-19c. Strictly speaking there are two seasons. May- October is rainy season with light showers most days a month. September is exceptionally wet with heavy rain most days. November to April is dry season with little to no rain and normally excellent weather.
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