A Traveller’s List of Awesome Things to do in Da Lat – Vietnam

A Traveller’s List of Awesome Things to do in Da Lat – Vietnam

This stunning Vietnamese City of Dalat is waiting for exploration with a range of peaceful, quirky and fascinating things to do in Dalat, that will get any tourist travelling into the region mesmerised by its absolute beauty.

The captivating Dalat city in the Central Highlands of Southern Vietnam is perfect for any traveller who is seeking a versatile amount of activities for your getaway the famous Southeast Asian Country.

Whether you’re an outdoor enthusiast, a family travelling with young kids, or even on romantic escape into the highlands.

You’ll find the perfect activity for any occasion, and you can bet your bottom dollar that you’ll be returning to the vibrant city upon your return trip to Vietnam.

With a range of activities on hand for the tourists to the area, it’s only fair to run over a few of the things to do in Dalat, and even when you’re done jotting down the details on Fair Dinkum traveller’s list of activities, you’ll still find so much more things to do in this famous inland city of Vietnam.

 

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things to do in Dalat

Dive deep into this list of things to do in Dalat in Vietnam.

 

 

 

A List of Exciting Things to do in DaLat – Vietnam

Below is a list of things to do in Da Lat, when you’re visiting the picturesque highlands of Southern Vietnam.

 

Visit Dazzling Waterfalls such as Elephant and Prenn Waterfalls

There are many dazzling waterfalls to view when checking out what to do in Dalat.

There is no doubt on your visit to the region you’ll go out of your way to see a couple of thunderous falls while travelling in a gorgeous area, a day trip with a hired driver is usually the best way to get to the falls, along with other Dalat attractions.

The Elephant Waterfall is one of the most spectacular, and it got its name from a rock that resembles an elephant.

This beautiful waterfall, situated about 45-minutes from Dalat City, will make you melt upon first sight as you look at the flowing water from all different angles off the beaten track to get there.

Another significant fall is the Prenn Waterfall, which in itself is an attraction amongst many other attractions.

Inside the vast area of Prenn Waterfall, there is plenty of kid-friendly games and activities, beautiful little forest walks and canoe rides along the flowing water.

It makes for a family-friendly outing with the sounds of the crashing water heard in the background, which itself is a fantastic sight to see.

Many other waterfalls in the area are spread out far and wide, in that case, it can be quite challenging to get to them all during your stay in Dalat, but heck, you’ll see some beautiful scenery in your attempt to do so.

Popular falls to note in the region include the Pongour and Dantanla Waterfalls. You can find a list of other falls by clicking on the link.

 

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Dalat, Vietnam

Elephant falls Dalat.

Dalat, Vietnam

Prenn Waterfall.

 

Weasel Coffee Plantation is a must for coffee lovers

It is a must during your Dalat tour to have a mega coffee experience at the Weasel Coffee Plantation, it’s a must see attraction for any coffee lover, where you can sip freshly brewed coffee and view the beautiful Dalat Highlands in the background, which indeed look gorgeous in its rich green colour.

The story of how the Weasel coffee beans are made is fascinating, and you’ve quite possibly heard it before. The odd-looking animal, the Weasel, eats the coffee bean, it goes through their system undigested and with the acid from the stomach gives the coffee its distinct flavour.

So yes, the coffee beans come from the droppings of a weasel and the rest is processed from there. It may sound disgusting, but for coffee lovers, it’s a must-try when in Dalat.

 

Coffee time!!! Weasel Style.

 

Visiting a Cricket farm is one of the unique activities in Da Lat

Unless you are visiting this unique place as part of your Dalat tour, there isn’t much to see at the Cricket Farm unless you love seeing little cricket’s bounce around in a dark room, and no, it’s not that exciting and the time spent at this location will be short.

Perhaps your lure to the farm will be to taste a cricket, and if it is, good luck to you for being spontaneous.

My suggestion is that you stick to a delicious bowl of pho; it tastes much better.

 

Linh Phuoc Pagoda

Linh Phuoc Pagoda is a uniquely designed Buddhist temple made from broken glass and smashed up pottery a quite fascintating Dalat attraction.

The visually stunning and popular attraction of Dalat is a treat for all tourist, not only because it requires no entry fee to stumble into the grounds of the heritage building.

It truly is mesmerising to gaze your eyes on the temple from many vantage points available to you.

The most common thing to do inside the Linh Phuoc Pagoda is to go inside the main temple halls to partake in their prayer rituals and to spend time admiring the interior design inside the pagoda.

You may spend a few moments wondering if the portrait monks inside the halls are real or not. I can assure you; they’re not real.

 

Linh Phuoc Pagoda

The stunning Linh Phuoc Pagoda.

 

Indulge in Delicious Pastries at Lien Hoa Bakery

This little bakery in Dalat City is a real treat for everyone with a large selection of bread, savouries, pastries, sweets and magnificently designed cakes.

At all hours of the day, the Lien Hoa Bakery is crammed with tourists and locals alike who are keen to grab a large selection of baked goods at a ridiculously low price for a delicious treat. You will put this bakery on your Dalat city tour.

 

The crazy house is one of the most Quirky things to do in Dalat

The architecture around the Crazy House is fascinating, and it easily the most bizarre attraction you’ll visit in the city.

The Crazy House Dalat was designed by one lady, which in all her creativeness and wisdom took 14-years to create what can only be called a masterpiece.

Originally named Hang Nga Villa, the Crazy House is, in fact, a hotel, where the guest comes to stay, but during the day many visitors come to explore the house for a small admission fee.

Once inside, you can go climbing up a variety of steps to reach great heights and capture magnificent views of the quirky hotel and the city of Dalat.

It’s an attraction that is suitable for families, and kids will love the maze-like pathways throughout and go on a full-on exploration trip in the Crazy House.

 

Dalat, Vietnam

The Crazy House Dalat.

 

Take a Stroll around the Xuan Huong Lake

For romantic and fun things to do in Da Lat, check out the breathtaking scenic lakes make up a lot of Dalat and there is none better than the five-kilometre path of Xuan Huong Lake.

The lake is continuously busy with pedestrians taking a long stroll around the lake to view the delightful gardens on display, and if walking is not your style, you can take a horse carriage ride instead.

For a little on-water activity you can enjoy a ride on the pedal boats that are available for hire, and once your thighs get a solid workout, you can stop for by at the cafe for coffee with gorgeous views.

The Xuan Huong Lake is not the only lake in Dalat, there are many others in the area that are waiting to be discovered, and just as beautiful tucked away in the scenic highlands, which can be seen on your drive-by on a Dalat day tour.

The Popular lakes to take note of in Dalat include the Valley of Love and the Tuyen Lam Lake. You can find a list of other lakes by clicking on the link.

 

Xuan Huong Lake

Xuan Huong Lake.

 

Relax inside the Bich Cau Garden

The Bich Cau Garden deserves a separate mention, even though it’s attached to the previously Xuan Huong Lake.

Bich Cau Garden a picturesque garden island on the eastern end of the Lake and it’s a delight to gaze your eyes upon the delightful gardens and stay for a coffee or bite to eat at the garden cafe.

 

Enjoy the Colour at the Dalat Flower Park

The Dalat Flower Park is full of amazing colour that gets many tourists through the fancy gate to catch a glimpse of the blooming flowers, picturesque lake, decorative bonsai’s and the picturesque views from above.

It’s a walk-in nature at its very finest as you take in the colour and serenity of the Dalat Flower Park.

 

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Dalat Flower Park

Dalat Flower Park.

 

Dalat Cable Cars

Get the best views in the Highlands by going to great heights in a Cable car in Dalat, which is approximately around15-minutes from the city.

The journey in the cars covers the picturesque region, and you’ll get the opportunity to truly appreciate the beauty that makes a Dalat trip so accessible for all travellers who venture to the area.

 

Dalat Cathedral

You’ll be hard pressed in Vietnam to find a Cathedral that isn’t beautiful, or anywhere in the world for that matter.

The Cathedral in Dalat is no exception, and it’s only a stone throw from the City Centre, which makes it a relaxing walk through the streets of Dalat.

The light-coloured Dalat Cathedral stands out clearly amongst a city of less spectacular infrastructure, and excellent photos shots are promised to be taken of the unusual attraction. It also has splendid views of the surrounding area.

 

Dalat Cathedral

The Dalat Cathedral.

 

 

Big C Supermarket

A little modern day shopping is not forgotten in Dalat, with an underground boutique shopping mall that is known as the Big C Supermarket.

If you want to escape the outdoors for a while, come inside the boutique mall for a little grocery shopping, retail shopping and a feed in the food-court area of the mall. There are a few fun and games options inside the mal for the kids too.

 

Take your pick with Dining Options

Being Vietnam, obviously Dalat is not short for dining options as one would expect.

Choices are plenty where you can either wander around the City Centre and help yourself to a meal on the run by purchasing a feed on the cheap at many located food stalls that are readily available.

It’s a great chance to save some coin and stop by for an extremely cheap meal and sit down on a stool that is no higher than your shins as the traffic goes on by.

For those who wish to have a traditional sit-down meal in the comforts of a restaurant, there are many conveniently located restaurants in the city to pick and choose from in Dalat.

Don’t hesitate by worrying about the standard of the food, in Dalat; it’s all good, dine in style and enjoy a delicious Vietnamese meal with a refreshing ice-cold beer.

 

Grab a snack on the streets.

 

Dalat Night Market

Did anyone say shopping in Dalat Vietnam? Why not with a bargain bound to be found in the Dalat markets.

The Night markets are not too different from those in Saigon; they’re crowded with people looking for a bargain with heaps of cheap stuff to be found during your adventure in the jungle of the markets.

The Dalat Night Market comes with all the basics items associated with Southeast Asian markets with a large fruit and veg section, butchers section, food court and clothing apparel.

The atmosphere is always buzzing, and it is a great way to enjoy the nightlife in Dalat.

 

Dalat Night Market

The Dalat Night Market.

 

Take a walk through the City Centre

As with any destination world-wide you visit during your travels, strolling through the city in a slow and leisurely pace is compulsory.

You never know what hidden secrets you will discover when you explore on your own two feet with dark alleys and side streets always full of exciting surprises.

A Dalat City tour is compulsory viewing during your stay.

The city is unique with crowded streets, thousands of motorbikes are manic on the roads, but not as bad as Saigon, and bunched up buildings, seemingly built too close for comfort, is a fascinating sight to see as you walk the streets of Dalat city centre.

 

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Book a day tour away from Dalat

There is so much to do and see in and around Dalat that it is a must to venture out a day tour to fascinating places, some of those attractions are even on this list.

During a Dalat one day tour, you will have covered a sizeable expansive region of the area as you go far and wide to explore the fascinating region.

 

Dalat star

The Dalat Star s a stunning attraction that needs one two hours of your time. It’s a magical place where you can wander through a maze of sculptures and villages that is made entirely of clay.

The making of the Star is made of locally used red soil and mixed with stone powder and cement, with the result being a delightful attraction that the whole family will enjoy.

There you have, that is a list of awesome things to do in Dalat.

On top of this crazy list, you’ll find many more amazing things to do, such as adventures through the forest or a round of golf at the picturesque Dalat golf course.

The choices are many, and now all you need to do is head to Vietnam and go inland to Dalat.

 

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Dalat, Vietnam

Dalat Star

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Travel to Vietnam – Ho Chi Minh City – My Opinion of the Chaotic City

Travel to Vietnam – Ho Chi Minh City – My Opinion of the Chaotic City

I loved my travel to Vietnam and in particular Ho Chi Minh City where I spent most of my time, I really did, the people, the food, the old heritage buildings and to a lesser extent, the craziness on the streets.

There was so much to love about travelling to Vietnam, yet in another way, it was some kind of love hate relationship and I don’t mean that in a negative way by any stretch. Yet, as I leave your special land for now, let’s stay friends, because I will be back again and I’ll be eager to eat your pho and drink your Saigon Special beer once again.

Visiting Vietnam, especially Ho Chi Minh City was interesting to say the least, crazy road conditions, where traffic lights were rare and even when they were around, it seemed to be a choice by the locals if the rules were followed. It then made attempting to cross a road, near on impossible and with kids around even harder, but we did manage.

 

 

 

Traffic in Vietnam

Ready Set Go. The traffic get ready to converge.

 

The locals were great, sure some of them were pushy, even rude, and at first it seemed a little disturbing when in the hustle and bustle of the streets.

Yet at the end of the day, most of the locals were polite and eventually you got used to the hectic streets, because it is a chaotic city and people do what they have got to do to get around.

Life in downtown Saigon is a rat race and if you are too nice you get left behind. If you’re not aggressive, you get left stranded. Quite simply, if you don’t like a mad rush, then don’t visit Ho Chi Minh City. Personally I wasn’t overawed by the occasion but I certainly respected it.

What about the Vietnamese Food? Well there is lots and lots of that famous Vietnamese pho, you know, that rice noodle soup that is sold in just about every second house in the city.

While there is a lot of variety of Vietnamese food available, the popular choices were the soup or the bread rolls filled with meat and salads that was easily accessible on the streets, just like the soup. At least that is the way it is in the South of Vietnam.

 

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Pho (Soup) is the main choice of food in Vietnam.

 

 

Travel to Vietnam – Ho Chi Minh City – My Opinion of the Chaotic City

The good and the bad of Ho Chi Minh City? What did I like? Or not like? Let’s jump into it and who knows it may help you prepare for your visit to Vietnam in the future and you may share a similar love hate relationship in your Vietnam Travel experience.

The Not So Good Bits About Visiting Vietnam

  1. Chaotic Saigon: Bike, bikes everywhere. Down a small alley way, there will be bikes. On the footpath, you guessed it, more bikes. You can’t escape it, so embrace it because you simply cannot do anything about so you better to just get used to it.
  2. Crossing the road: The crazy streets leads to how to cross a road in Ho Chi Minh City. It’s quite dangerous to say the least. Unfortunately, the best answer I can give at this time is to proceed with caution and cross the road, the bikes will go around you. Hopefully. But whatever you do, don’t stop and continue to move forward at a slow walking pace.
  3. The air out there: The pollution in the big city is appalling and a lot of the locals do wear a mask. If you find the air is becoming a hassle, I suggest you buy a mask for yourself, even if it feels a little weird. You won’t look out of place, that I can assure you.
  4. Not an easy city to walk: Walking the streets of the city is not easy, and I am talking about when you are actually on the footpath. Not only are you avoiding motorbikes that are all over the place, but also food stalls that seem to set up wherever there is space. If you desire a power walk or a jog, there are plenty of riverside paths available or just head to district 7 where the atmosphere is a lot more upmarket and casual.
  5. The sad state of some of the Rivers: The rivers need a lot of work, rubbish is everywhere and it simply looks awful. I can only hope that in the future that can all get sorted, because at the moment, it is in a sad state.

 

 

Ho Chi Minh City

Picture says it all. 3rd world housing, dirty rivers and flash modern buildings in the background.

 

The good bits of when you Visit Vietnam

  1. It’s an affordable country to travel: Vietnam is cheap, a good buffet can cost you about $15AUD. A bottle of beer can cost as low as 70c. Uber/Grab is the best way to get around the city and you can’t get ripped off as the price is already determined before you get in the car. Quite simply, Vietnam is an affordable country to travel to and you can visit attractions, buy cheap stuff in markets and go on Vietnam tours at a very reasonable price that is not afforded in a lot of other countries.
  2. District 7: Ho Chi Minh City is a city that is fast developing and District 7 is the best proof of that scenario. Everything is modern, from its fantastic shopping malls to modern apartments and fine dining restaurants over the water. If you feel like you need a break from the mad rush, then head to District 7. It’s only a good half hour away from District 1 by Grab, depending on traffic of course.
  3. The temples: Temples will pop up all over the place and often when you least expect to run into one. If you do catch up to one on a whim, go inside and have a look at the unique buildings. Make sure you show respect when you enter inside the temples.
  4. How the city changes: To have a good walk or a drive in the car. It’s amazing how much a city changes from block to block during your travels in the city. You can go from an area of the city looking like a dump that has seen better days, to finding something new, modern and upmarket. Saigon is a city is full of surprises.
  5. The Locals: They won’t change, so just get used to them and if you give it time and after a while you will learn to like them. Remember this country and the older generation have gone through some savage and rough times with the Vietnam War. So never mind their forceful ways, they don’t intend to be rude, it’s just the way it is. The Vietnamese people really are quite an admirable bunch of good, hard working, family orientated and honest folk. Oh, and one for the male readers out there, the local women are simply beautiful.

 

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District 7 is the new district of the City.

 

The Verdict of Ho Chi Minh City

Vietnam was one unique destination that I have ever visited, and there was a lot I did like about the country and a few things I didn’t like, even if it was minimal. If someone were to ask me, would I go back to Vietnam? Well, my answer would be honest as usual. Yes, without hesitation. There is so much more of the country of gotta see, particularly the Northern part of the country.

Thanks Vietnam, you were great and I will be back again real soon.

 

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Vietnamese women

Beautiful Vietnamese women in traditional dress are seen throughout the city.

 

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Important Things to Know When Travelling into Vietnam

Important Things to Know When Travelling into Vietnam

Vietnam is a charming country to explore, and with a fifty percent return rate for foreign tourists, it sure must have some special attractions hidden up in its sleeve. The first-time visitors might wonder as to what lies in store for them and here we are going to cover a few important things to know when travelling into Vietnam.

There is one thing is for sure when travelling into Vietnam; you are going to come back with some great memories. You are going to fall in love with the hearty people and their hospitality. The amazing diversity of landscapes and the rich culture are going to take your heart away. Get ready for the most rewarding travel experiences as you explore Vietnam. However, are you aware of some of the essential things to know before you plan that trip to Vietnam?

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Culture of Vietnam

Culture is alive in Vietnam.

 

 

Important Things to Know When Travelling into Vietnam

 

The Dollars and the Dong

One will need both Vietnamese Dong and the US Dollars when they travel around Vietnam. While the US dollars are used for booking domestic transport, paying for a hotel or booking a tour, you can use Vietnamese Dong for at local shops and market stalls. Dong usually works out cheaper as compared to Dollars.

 

 Be sure to have your visa in place

While having a visa when traveling to another country seems like common sense, but you need to ensure that everything is in place. Even a minor error or incomplete information can make you turn away at the airport. Get the visa-on-arrival pre-approval paper printed and double check all the information.

The Vietnamese make it tough for one to enter their country and the visa process can be tedious if opium plans to stay more than 15 days here. Get some USD, pre-approval papers and photos before you fly.  Thankfully, several companies will prepare your visa for a small fee and you can Get pre-aproved for your Vietnam visa done conveniently for you.

 

Ving Trang Pagoda

Get pre-approved for your Vietnam Visa and visit great places such as Ving Trang Pagoda.

 

 

The weather and what to wear

Vietnam is in humid and hot but can change significantly across the country. Northern Vietnam can be hot in summers but can get quite cold during winters. Southern Vietnam boasts of a full tropical climate, while Central Vietnam: is hot and dry.

 

Wear comfortable clothes, and daily staples include shorts, skirts, and lightweight T-shirts. You need to wear comfortable and durable shoes or flip-flops. Dress conservatively when visiting mosques as a sign of respect.

 

Dam Sen waterpark

When the weather gets hot, hit the water parks.

 

Foodies will love Vietnam

Vietnamese food is simply delicious as it carries a delicate balance of sour, salty and hot and sweet. The flavours are perfect and unique Enjoy tamarind, chili peppers with loads of fresh greens and the delectable street food. Restaurants and cafes serve both vegetation and non-vegetarian. A couple of favourite Vietnamese dishes you must try are Bun Cha, Pho, Gỏi cuốn; Cha ca: and Nem Ran, which are a favourite with the locals and the tourists.

 

Ho Chi Minh and Hanoi

Experience both traditional and modern culture in the two great cities of Vietnam. Hanoi, the governmental capital, is traditional, and one can feel it immediately as they take a look at the ancient pagodas beside the willowy lakesides.

It is a must to explore the low-key and traditional capital city. Ho Chi Minh City or Saigon, with its neon lights, rooftop bars, and sophisticated cafes is famous for vibrancy and nightlife. Most foreign expats prefer to stay in Saigon and for a good reason.

 

Travelling into Vietnam

The old and the new of Ho Chi Minh City.

 

Moving around

There are taxis in all major cities, and they are very cheap and a useful mode of transpiration. However, avoid taxis parked near the tourist points as they can be expensive. Try the Sleeper buses which are just awesome, especially if you plan to travel long distances. These buses very clean and the seats are comfortable.

There is a lot more to Vietnam that makes for so many breath-taking and unforgettable experiences. Explore the fantastic country and create some unique memories.

 

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Important Things to Know When Travelling into Vietnam.

 

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Walking the Streets of Dalat – Vietnam

Walking the Streets of Dalat – Vietnam

Da Lat, a Vietnamese city that you will instantly fall in love with, a city that is boutique and very beautiful, that it needs to be seen to be believed and truly appreciated. It makes walking the streets of Dalat, simply incredible.

When you think of visiting Dalat, as every traveller should do once in their life, you need to think of creative gardens, colourful flowers, the beautiful outdoors and picturesque scenery. That is everything this neat little city, in the Central Highlands of Southern Vietnam is all about and it’s evident from the moment you land at the airport and make your way to the busy city centre.

On the streets of the Da Lat town centre, there is still very much chaos, I mean, it’s Vietnam for crying out loud and a little chaos can’t be escaped, but when you compare it to abustling city like Ho Chi Minh City, Dalat is a simple little country town.

 

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Da lat city

Walking the streets of Da Lat city in Vietnam

 

Walking the streets of Dalat city in Vietnam

 

The Unofficial Garden Capital of Vietnam        

 I love walking, in case you haven’t caught on to that yet, and walking the great outdoors of Dalat, surrounded by beautiful nature and parklands is a lovely stroll. The cooler temperatures is instantly welcomed, especially if you are coming from the south, it makes going outside your hotel room much easier.

Once you escape the busy town centre and head out towards the Ho Xuan Lake, which is on the door-step of the city, you are surrounded by so much green, colour and water that your camera is quickly out and a lot of snaps.

 

Da Lat Star

Get out and Enjoy Da lat.

 

 

Whether it is the stunning golf course, the colourful Dalat Flower Centre, or even the Café Bich Cau that has good coffee with views of the lake, you’ll be mesmerised by how breathtaking this region truly is.

To capture the true value of how gorgeous Dalat truly is, escape to some of the higher vantage points on the outskirts of the city by foot or by car and get a great glimpse of the city. You just know in that moment that you are standing in the garden capital of Vietnam while you stare down at the abundance of green houses in the city.

 

Da Lat

Climbs the stairs to great city views.

 

A very Unique Town Centre

The town centre is quite unique indeed. Many buildings are stacked side by side and crammed in neatly along the streets of Dalat, which is saturated with pedestrians, cars and many, many bikes.

The Da Lat city is much like a European style set-up, with the buildings having a unique appeal, but still very attractive. Along the streets is where the action happens, with many restaurants, markets and retails stalls that will occupy many hours of your visit to the city. Even head on up to the 100 Roof bar and enjoy a drink or two while admiring the views of the city and beyond.

 

Da Lat Bakery

Enjoy a few cakes.

 

The Da Lat bakery is a must pit stop if you are a lover of assorted breads and sweets, grab a tray at the entrance to the busy bakery and select a variety of pastries, cakes and donuts on your way to the cash register.

If you are fan of street foods, Dalat has you covered with many soups, noodles and other delicious Vietnamese foods that are at your mercy everywhere you go. You can also grab a miniature Kebab from the outlets on the streets and have a delicious snack while on the run.  

Streets of Da Lat

Streets of Da Lat.

 

A few attractions in close proximity of the city will certainly grab the traveller’s attention. The Dalat Cathedral is a beauty took look at with its wonderful white structure that gives the Cathedral it’s almighty presence.

The Da Lat Crazy House will send you in a spiral with its odd and crazy design. It’s rated one of the most unique hotels in the world, but you don’t need to stay here to catch a glimpse of this awesome attraction, and you’ll love exploring this crazy attraction full of narrow walkways and hidden passages.

Find affordable ways to get to Dalat while travelling in Vietnam.

 

 

 

Da Lat night markets

Visit the Night markets.

 

Da Lat Crazy House

Da Lat Crazy House.

 

Escape the city and see nature at its finest

 It’s a must to get outside the city of Dalat and really explore the regu. Hire a driver, that’s the best way, and enjoy an epic day out and about in the amazing outdoors.

Prenn Waterfall

Prenn Waterfall.

 

Waterfalls are located in many areas and while they can be a long drive, it’ll be worth the trip. Some of the most popular waterfalls in Dalat at are the Elephant and Prenn Waterfalls, but source some information when you get there, because any one of the waterfalls will delight you.

The attractions in Da Lat will excite you and with your hired driver you could visit a Coffee Plantations and try fresh coffee made from weasel droppings. Visit the incredible Dalat Star, which is a village made of clay, and even make a trip to the Linh Phuoc Pagoda and see a little culture in a Buddhist temple and have prayer for good health.

 

Weasel Coffee

Enjoy a Weasel Coffee.

 

Linh Phuoc Pagoda

Linh Phuoc Pagoda.

 

Walking the Streets of Da Lat

 It’s walking the streets of Dalat, and if you’re ever in Vietnam and wondering whether to head deep inside the country to this very special region, don’t question it, do it.

There will never be any regrets visiting a town like Dalat, it’s a Vietnamese experience full of tradition, culture a vibrant city, and of course the picturesque outdoors with many falls, lakes and beautiful gardens.

Walking the streets of Dalat, I dare you to give it a go. 

Check out GPSmyCity for further details on walking the streets of Dalat! 

 

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Walking the streets of Saigon – Ho Chi Minh City – Vietnam

Walking the streets of Saigon – Ho Chi Minh City – Vietnam

In this edition of the walking the streets series, I am taking you to crazy Saigon, dodging the traffic and I’m carefully walking the streets of Saigon – Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam.

If you blink in this city, you could miss it! Or otherwise be floored by the many rampaging motorbikes that are roaming about the roads, the walkways, alley-ways and even the marketplaces. Ho Chi Minh City is that congested with traffic and pedestrians that anywhere goes for the locals. 

 

Ho CHi Minh City

A little chaotic in Ho CHi Minh City.

 

It was obvious from the moment that we Left the departure gates at Tan Son Nhat International Airport and caught the Uber ride (now Grab) to the previously booked Airbnb Apartment in downtown Ho Chi Minh City. Chaos, lived in this city. Not that I wasn’t full warned leading into the trip.

Bumper to bumper, cars nudging bikes, bikes nudging cars and vehicles nudging into pedestrians, it seemed to be one big circle of life in the world of madness that is Saigon, a city like no other I have ever visited, but a city that was easy to be impressed with.

Crossing the road was an art in the ever-flowing maze of traffic, the old saying of slow and steady wins the race was the only way to negotiate the constant traffic and get to the other side of the road, often giving a little fist pump when you made a successful attempt.  Even more daunting with kids in hand. 

 

Vietnam

A laugh a minute in Vietnam.

 

Fear needed to be brushed aside when making every attempt to cross the manic streets of Saigon, but having the kids by my side made that ordeal a little more terrifying, but the good news is, we all lived to tell the story, with no real close encounters, elbeit, every time crossing the road in the big city was a close encounter.

Beyond the traffic that is unavoidable on your travels to the Southern city of Vietnam, this unique city needs to be explored to every inch with so many things going on. I like to think of it as a city that is divided in three, parts of it has a modern touch, a proud tradition of history and still a hint of third world zones in areas of Ho Chi Minh City. Now, let’s get into walking the busy streets of Saigon.

 

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Ho Chi Minh City

Saigon food anybody? Eating yummy donuts right off the plate of somebodies head.

 

 

 

Walking the streets of Saigon – Ho Chi Minh CIty – Vietnam

 

A modern touch

I say a modern touch, because this booming city is on the rise, literally, and is continuing to grow to great heights with skyscrapers all over the place. You only need to go to the viewing area of the Bitexco Financial Building to see how the city’s development is advancing. Either that or get the best view in the house of this incredible city, it is quite stunning to stare into the horizon.

 

Bitexco Financial Building

Bitexco Financial Building

 

Ho Chi Minh City has amazing modern shopping centres and often when walking the streets, you’ll stumble across some beauties. Saigon Centre is the best of the lot and is situate in the heart of District 1 where the action happens and the tourist flock to in large numbers, it is a mall that is a city with in a city, that has popular retail lines, café’s and unbelievable food courts. 

I can only marvel when I look upon this city at far it has come since that devastating war a half a century ago, and how much I am sure it will continue to surge going forward.

 

Saigon Centre

Ho Chi Minh Shopping! Inside the amazing Saigon Centre in District 1 Ho Chi Minh CIty.

 

A proud tradition of History 

Tradition is well and truly on full display, especially in the District 1 area of Saigon, thanks largely to its large French presence in the 19th Century.

It’s wonderful to walk the streets of Ho Chi Minh City and find some truly mesmerising French designed buildings and cathedrals. The Notre Dame Cathedral and The Old Post Office are a click frenzy zone with your camera as you get your great shot of these wonderful buildings. The festivities in the area is alive and well, making it easy to get caught up in the party atmosphere and see a few locals supporting their traditional Vietnamese dress.

 

Notre Dame Cathedral

Notre Dame Cathedral

 

The War Remnants Museum is a great history lesson of the Vietnam War, but keep in mind they call it American War in this Vietnam. The museum is real eye opener and I am so glad that I ventured through the gates and was able to spend a full morning reading up on details of the war.

Although the ache in the heart really kicked in when learning and witnessing the devastating photos and reading the disturbing stories of the Agent Orange chemical destroyed many lives. I will admit, some pictures can get quite traumatic, especially for the kids that are travelling with you. Nonetheless The War Remnants Museum is a must check out in Saigon.

 

War Remnants Museum

At the War Remnants Museum.

 

 

A hint of third world

I took a picture in Ho Chi Minh City, one that will feature below. I felt in someway that it summed up the city. With all the modern features on the rise and beautifully designed buildings that were built long ago, it surprised me to still see broken down housing over the river and even a hint of third world about the city.

thousand words

A picture tells a thousand words

 

It’s not uncommon for a city to have poverty throughout the world and Ho Chi Minh City is no different. In my opinion, it’s a city that has admirably come along way and in saying that I mean a “positive direction.” Although it will fascinate you that in one moment you could be looking at a flush modern building, then the next a broken-down pile of bricks that is unsafe for anyone to be living in. It’s crazy scenes. 

 

Ho Chi Minh City

A sad sight of some houses.

 

Walking the streets of Ho Chi Minh City

There were so many fascinating things I saw when walking the streets of this chaotic city, whether it was strolling into a temple, creating your own Ho Chi Minh Food Tour or getting lost in the crowd at the Ben Thanh Markets, or any markets in the city for that matter. Naturally, you would also be getting pestered by the store owner trying to make a buck, but that is common in Southeast Asia.

Ho CHi Minh City

Beautiful Temples in the city

 

It was only my first visit to Ho Chi Minh City and being with my kids I found it a challenge to navigate the streets, especially with the city’s lack of walkways, public transport, and even traffic lights to have a stress-free attempt at crossing the road. A few more foot bridges would have come in handy, I only saw one in my travels.

As I have constantly said however, this is a city on the rise, and I got no doubt that when I do revisit Saigon and its markets, the traffic, it’s historic building and flush shopping malls again in the future, I know Ho Chi Minh City will be entirely different city and hopefully, next time for this Fair Dinkum Traveller,  it may be a little easier to navigate the streets of Saigon.  

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Vietnam

The locals dressed up in dradtional dress.

 

Walking the Streets of Dalat – Vietnam

 

 

 

 

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Saigon

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