Vietnams capital of romance
The French fell in love with Dalat during the colonial era, due to the tranquil surrondings and pleasent climate 1500 meters above sealevel. The colonial elite and the Vietnamese could get away from the heat in the lowlands, and Dalat became popular for recreation . Today it is know as the capital of romance, by the Vietnamese themselves, as it is a well know destination for honeymooners.
The city is also famous for its surronding farmland, providing fruit, vegetables and flowers to the whole country.
Pagodas and religion
Dalats inhabitants are mainly Buddhists, but several are Christians. This is reflected in the city in the form of religious monuments as pagodas, but also cathedrals. The most famous pagoda is the Linh Phuoc pagoda, also called the broken glass pagoda, with the remarkable 49 meters long dragon by the entrance, that is made by 12.000 broken glas bottles. Inside you will find jade, stone and wood sculptures and statues, with intricate patterns and magnificent details.
There are two well known cathedrals in the city. The biggest is Dalat Cathedral, also known as Rooster Church Dalat because of the rooster on top of the bell tower. The characteristic French classical architectural style allows you to have a break from the hectic city life, and immerse yourself in some peace and quiet. The second church is the Domain de Maria, surronded by a beautiful garden, and with its pink colour, it stands out from other arcitecture in Dalat.
Vietnams fruit and vegetable basket
Besides being a popular destination for both tourists and locals, Dalat is also famous for its fruits and vegetables. The vegetables from Dalat is known for being delicious and nutritious, and is distributed to the whole country, and is the base for many dishes in the Vietnamese kitchen. Carrots, cabbage, potatoes and cauliflower are among the vegetables being produced. Introduced by the French, coffeebeans are also grown in the region. The coffee industry suffered from the Vietnam war, and it took some time to recover, but today thousands of Vietnamese enjoys a cup of strong Vietnamese coffee every day, with beans grown in Dalat.
Strawberries, banans, persimon and peaches. Dalat is a fruit lovers paradise. The regions year-round temperate climate gives the farmers great conditions for all kinds of fruits, also the tropical ones. Flowers are also grown in Dalat, and if you take a tour to the local market, your eyes, tastebuds, and your sense of smell will have a party. Dalat Central Market is one of the largest in the country and is surrounded by cafes and shops.
Exploring the city and its surroundings
For an unique, but a bit bizarre experience, you can visit Crazy House on your trip to Dalat. Built in 1990, this special house is also a hotel, with architectural associations to Salvador Dali’s artwork, with organic non-rectangular shapes.
3 km south of the ciy you will find the cable car to the Truc Lam pagoda. The cable car ride extends over 2 km and offers beautiful views of villages and mountain forests.
The French has sat their mark on Dalat. Besides being called “Le petit Paris”, Dalat also has a mini-replica of the Eiffel Tower. Vallée d`Amour – or The valley of love – is a beautiful and serene valley, named by the French, and has been a romantic get away for locals and tourists since 1930`s. Situated approx. 6 km from the city center, it is a great way to escape the city and just spend time with your loved ones.