‘The dreamland’, ‘The miniature of Paris’, or ‘The city of flowers’, it’s how people called Dalat city. This city is famous with its cool weather and the brilliant of the flowers there. I did travel to Dalat many many years ago, the things that I could remember were hills with a lot of flowers, night market with fresh fruits, and coffee shops that me and my family spent for night time. At this time coming back, Dalat surprises me with a lot beautiful scenes, mountain pass roads and delicious foods. Let’s me show you around this city!
Dalat was firstly discovered by French when they’ve been looking for a place to create a resort in highlands. Today, ‘The miniature of Paris’ is a well-known destination in South Vietnam by its cool weather and many beautiful scenes.
The city would be most beautiful in winter – in Nov and Dec. The weather is cool (or a bit cold) and all the flowers are blossom at that time. Those things make Dalat shining brighter than ever, and becoming the ‘hottest’ place for family time or the most romantic place for the lovers.
Before the Trip – Tips to Enjoy Dalat
Phuong Trang (futabus.vn) and Thanh Buoi (thanhbuoi.com.vn) are the most popular carriers. You can check their websites for the timetable and book tickets. There is a flight from Saigon to Dalat if you don’t want to cross the pass road by bus. Riding motorbike is also an option.
People travel to Dalat a lot, especially in Nov and Dec, when it has Flower Festival. Making sure to book a place to stay there before you go, or you will be struggling to find a sofa for resting. A place near Dalat market or Xuan Huong Lake would be ideal.
Dalat would be most beautiful in Nov and Dec, if you go at that time, the weather can be quite cold. Hence, bringing warm clothes is necessary. Locals sell sweaters and coats at Dalat night market, you can buy some if you forgot. Also, trousers are better than shorts in this case.
If you don’t ride a motorbike to Dalat, hiring one, around Dalat market, is a good idea to enjoy Dalat like a local. Motorbike is a flexible vehicle that help you fully enjoy the cool atmosphere of the hills, the beautiful scenes while crossing pass roads and easily get to the restaurants which are hidden in the alleys.
Dalat has many alleys, you can ask people there for directions, or better to have a map in your smartphone.
Places to go..
1. Xuan Huong Lake
Located at the central of the city, Xuan Huong Lake is well-known with the game driving duck boat. Around the Lake are coffee shops with lake and city views, and a lot of street foods at night. A great place to spend time relaxing!
2. Dalat Market
Also placed at the central of the city, near Xuan Huong Lake. Dalat Market is a destination that almost visitors come when go to Dalat. You can buy many fresh fruits, wines, sweaters, etc. here. There are many stores that sell drying fruits, and Dalat’s specialty at the market.
Furthermore, Dalat Market and the surrounding area are the top spots for a lot of street foods. If you love Vietnamese pizza, grilled sweet potato, grilled egg, BBQ, etc., you should put this place on top of your travel destinations in Dalat.
Langbiang mountain is about 12km from Dalat City. It’s also known as the rooftop of the area.
4. Tuyen Lam Lake
With 320ha area, Tuyen Lam is the biggest freshwater lake at Dalat. The Lake is located near Phung Hoang mountain, 7km from Dalat city. The lake is surrounded by a pine forest and has many oases.
5. Truc Lam Monastery
Truc Lam Monastery is located at Phung Hoang Mountain, above Tuyen Lam Lake, about 5km from the central of Dalat.
6. Clay Tunnel
Clay Tunnel is a new destination for tourist in the nearby time. Located in the area of Tuyen Lam Lake. If you interest in clay and want to find a place for photograph. Clay Tunnel could be the one.
7. Cau Dat Tea Hill
Located at Cau Dat town, which is far far from Dalat City, about 25km. Cau Dat Tea Hill currently is one of the hot destinations that people visit when they come to Dalat. For beautiful photoshoots, you should get to this destination at 10 – 12 a.m.
8. Strawberry farms
Strawberry is a famous and special fruit of Dalat. If you worry about the quality of strawberries sold at markets, you can find the good one at strawberry farms around the city.
9. Linh Phuoc Pagoda
Located at 120 Tu Phuoc, in Trai Mat’s area, about 8km from the central Dalat. Linh Phuoc Pagoda is well-known with a decorated dragon made by 12,000 empty bottles and the Pagoda is also made by terracottas.
10. Dalat Train Station
Dalat Train Station is a National Historic Site of the city. The Train Station is built from 1932 to 1938 by French. Today, it is an attractive destination especially for photography lovers.
11. Cu Lan Village
Cu Lan village is located at the foot of Lang Biang mountain, 20km away from Xuan Huong lake. The village is about 30ha and is home of K’ho people. At Cu Lan village, visitors can join a lot of activities such as flying the kite, rowing, fishing, etc. There are also many foods to enjoy and also, the village has areas for visitors to rent for staying or camping.
12. Golden Spring and Silver Spring
A very good place to enjoy nature at Dalat. From the central of Dalat city, visitors can follow Truc Lam direction then turn left and get straight 12km, the Golden Spring and Silver Spring will appear. At the destination, there is Ankroet dam, which is the first hydroelectric project of Vietnam built in 1943.
.. and Places to Eat
1. Bánh Căn (in Vietnamese)
Made by grilling rice flour with an egg. Bánh Căn is eaten with Vietnamese meatball sauce.
. 4 Tang Bac Ho.
. 7 Tang Bac Ho.
. 22 Tang Bac Ho.
. In front of 62 Phan Dinh Phung.
2. Vietnamese pizza – ‘Bánh Tráng Nướng’ in Vietnamese
One of the iconic street foods in Dalat, Vietnamese pizza (or grilled ricepaper) is sold a lot at Dalat Market or around Xuan Huong Lake. But you can find here some address that many visitors come:
. 61 Nguyen Van Troi.
. 112 Nguyen Van Troi.
. 53 Nguyen Van Troi.
. At the corner of Hoang Dieu – Tran Nhat Duat.
. 56 Thong Thien Hoc.
3. Nem Cuon, Nem Chua, Cha Lua (maybe it’s Fermented Pork Roll or Spring Roll in English)
Here are some address:
. 254 Phan Dinh Phung.
. 4 Bui Thi Xuan.
. 1 Chi Lang.
. 2/2 Tran Quy Cap, ward 9.
4. Banh Uot Ga
This is the ‘must-eat’ food when coming to Dalat city. Its taste is good and especially, it’s unique (at least I haven’t found anywhere else). The address is at: 15F Tang Bat Ho.
5. BBQ, Wild Meats
Cu Duc at 6A Nguyen Luong Bang, ward 2.
Nam Qua restaurant – the area of Tuyen Lam Lake, this place must be accessed by the boats.
You can find many streetfood stall around Xuan Huong Lake. I have spent a night gathering with my friends at a streetfood stall. One of my favorite places for night time at Dalat city.
There are many dessert restaurant at Dalat but the most special and perennial one is Thanh Thao at 76 Nguyen Van Troi. The well-known there is the avocado cream that everyone must try when come.
8. Coffee shop
Coffee shops are places that I really like to come when I’m at Dalat. There are some outstanding coffee shops that you must visit:
. Cafe Bich Cau – Bich Cau Oasis, in front of the city’s flower garden.
. Rose Villa Cafe – 4 Huynh Thuc Khang.
. Dalat Train Cafe – 1 Quang Trung.
. Dalat Night – 4 Dong Da area.
. Windmills Cafe – 113 Phan Dinh Phung 2 or 3/2, ward 1 or Le Dai Hanh, ward 1.
9. Other foods
There are also a lot of other Dalat foods that you can find around the city such as Pho, Noodle, Com Tam, Bun Bo Hue, Banh Cuon, etc.. You should choose the restaurants that have many visitors inside, people always come to good foods!
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