This former colonial-era hill station, located at an altitude of 1600 meters, has retained a certain charm with its old colonial houses and the quaint atmosphere of a provincial town. Situated on the Lang Biang Plateau in the Central Highlands region, the “city of eternal spring” enjoys a pleasant climate and an exceptional natural setting, with its green mountains, pine forests, majestic lakes, meadows, flower-filled valleys, and spectacular waterfalls. A refreshing 2 or 3-day stopover that will appeal to nature and culture enthusiasts alike. Check out what to do in Dalat to make your trip memorable!
Visiting Dalat in 2 days
No matter where you come from in Vietnam, you will immediately appreciate the pleasant climate of Dalat. It’s no wonder that under the impetus of the Governor-General of Indochina, Paul Doumer, the Dalat hill station was created in the early 20th century. Just like the French colonists, you will appreciate the freshness and enchanting natural surroundings. Start your journey in Dalat by exploring its exceptional colonial architectural heritage on foot, by bike, or by car. Dalat is one of the cities in Vietnam that has best preserved its colonial heritage. While strolling through the city, you can admire old colonial villas that reflect architectural styles from Normandy or the Basque Country, among others. The Dalat Railway Station, a miniature replica of the Deauville station, is a perfect example. There are other colonial architectural treasures to discover, such as the Pasteur Institute, the Convent of the Birds, the former French Lyceum Yersin, the cathedral, and the villa of Emperor Bao Dai.
In the late afternoon, it is pleasant to stroll along the lake in the city centre, where the residents of Dalat like to come and relax after their workday. Take the opportunity to have a cup of coffee or tea, as the region is the largest producer of both coffee and tea in Vietnam.
For your second day in Dalat, start by visiting the central market, where the heart of the city beats. It is a lively and colourful market, with a wide variety of fruits, vegetables (strawberries, durians, dragon fruits, herbs of all kinds, avocados, zucchinis, artichokes, eggplants, etc.), and flowers covering the stalls. Dalat is considered the vegetable garden and flower garden of Vietnam. To see it for yourself, explore the surroundings of Dalat and visit the extensive vegetable and flower farming areas. Then, we invite you to discover the “Valley of Love,” a delightfully kitschy place at the foot of green fir hills, where flowers and a lake create a poetic landscape that young lovers particularly appreciate.
The Dalat region is also known for its spectacular waterfalls, with a total of 6 waterfalls. The most magnificent is undoubtedly the Pongour Waterfall. Located about 40 kilometres from Dalat, this natural site of rare beauty consists of waterfalls cascading over 7 levels. It is a breathtaking sight, especially after the rainy season when the falls are filled with water and the surrounding nature is lush green.
Sports enthusiasts can take advantage of this second day to explore the countryside of Dalat on foot or by bike, amidst fresh pine forests and flower-scented valleys. Those who love adrenaline can go rafting on the river, which guarantees thrills!
Visiting Dalat in 3 days
This third day can be dedicated to exploring the villages of ethnic minorities that populate the region, including the K’ho, Ma, and Churu. Visiting these villages will allow you to learn more about their complex cultures. It will also be an opportunity to visit coffee, tea, and rubber plantations along the way. Coffee was introduced to the region by the French colonists in the late 19th century. Today, Vietnam is the second largest producer of robusta coffee in the world. On your way, you can also visit the Linh Phuoc Pagoda, an atypical and exuberant place of worship, and the Truc Lam Monastery, whose architecture is reminiscent of Zen temples in Japan. End your day on a high note at Tuyen Lam Lake, located at an altitude of 1000 meters in a valley surrounded by lush forests. It is a romantic and poetic setting that never fails to captivate.
In the evening, return to the vicinity of the central market in Dalat. There are many food stalls where you can enjoy some local specialities to tantalize your taste buds before dinner. And for this final evening, why not indulge in the magnificent dining room of the Dalat Palace Heritage Hotel? Opened in 1922 under the name Lang Bian Palace Hotel, this Art Deco-style hotel is a privileged witness to the contemporary history of Dalat and Vietnam. The chef knows how to enhance the vegetables of Dalat like no other!
We hope you enjoyed our recommendations 🙂