Weekend Guide to Dalat
Dalat weekend guide has the best things to do in dalat. It's a great way to explore your weekend dalat guide with where to stay in dalat, best things to do in dalat like the dalat crazy house or datlana waterfall rollercoaster.
Dates Visited: March 2019
Some of the best things to do in Dalat can be found out in nature as it’s definitely an outdoor lover’s paradise. It's known for being the town of eternal spring which makes it great for a short getaway.
The weather here is not like the rest of southern Vietnam, which is typically scorching hot and humid. We ended up only having a few days to spend here but wish we stayed longer. It was so nice to be somewhere with clean air and manageable temperatures.
Our weekend guide to Dalat will go over some of the best things to do, quirky places to check out, and where to stay.
Ride the Datlana Waterfall Rollercoaster
Adult Cost: 150,000 VND/person($6.50 USD)
Child Cost: 80,000 VND/person ($3.50 USD)
The Datlana Waterfall is a popular tourist attraction in Dalat, but it is one of many waterfalls around the area. This one is unique because it features a single rider rollercoaster taking you through the forest with views of waterfalls. I’ll admit it’s a bit touristy, however, it was a pretty cool experience.
I was a bit hesitant to trust the engineering in Vietnam, but I was actually surprised with some of the safety features on the ride, which put me at ease. Each person has a hand brake so you can control your own speed, but the ride seemed to automatically slow me down if I was going too fast. It also prevented me from getting too close to the person in front of me.
Visit some Buddhist Temples
Though Vietnam was a majority Buddhist country up until the 1970's, it's a deeply engrained part of the country's history. There are conflicting theories, but it's said Buddhism made its way to Vietnam as early as the 1st century. There aren't quits as many Buddhist temples and pagodas here as Thailand. However, there are still plenty of temples open for the public to visit.
One of the great free things to do in Dalat is to go visit some of these temples, such as Chua Tam An Temple or Lin Son Pagoda. A group of us decided to walk to Linh Son and were really taken back by its beauty and tranquil environment. We had the place to ourselves and decided to do a meditation session, which was so peaceful and relaxing.
Check out the Dalat Crazy House
In our opinion, visiting the Dalat Crazy House is one of the top things to do in Dalat, and was certainly our favorite. Originally designed as a personal project by architect, Dang Viet Nga, it opened to the public in 1990. Since then it's been an ever evolving project inspired by the natural beauty around Dalat.
The official name of this place is Hằng Nga Guesthouse and has 10 themed guest rooms for overnight stays. However, if you just want to visit the Dalat Crazy House entrance cost is only 40,000 VND/person ($1.75 USD).
Walk around the Waterfront
Whether you fancy a hike or a walk around town, enjoying a stroll by the waterfront is definitely one of the more beautiful things to do in Dalat. The blue skies and green grass were absolutely beautiful, we loved enjoying a nice walk around Xuan Huong Lake and breathing in the fresh air. There are also plenty of swan shaped paddle boats if you want to go out on the lake for a bit.
Get lost in Maze Bar
Though it's not as cool as the Dalat Crazy House, the Maze Bar is another quirky place worth checking out. The drinks are a bit expensive for Vietnam; 40,000 VND ($1.75 USD) for a beer. However, we saw it as paying for the experience not necessarily the quality of the drinks.
The bar has multiple levels with winding staircases and corridors. If you make your way back far enough you'll find yourself outside where there are more levels of outdoor terraces and balconies. It's actually a really neat place, but we would recommend going to this place first and then Crazy House.
Explore the local markets
If you want to get a taste of real local authenticity then check out an open air market. We found several walking around where we stayed near Wolfpack Hostel. If you want to get a taste of some great local street food then check out the Dalat Night Market which is open every day from 5:00PM-12:00 Midnight.
How to get around Dalat
If you're wondering how to get around Dalat, it's actually quite easy. The city is definitely very walkable with plenty of sidewalks and isn't too spread out. However, there are lots of things to do in Dalat that are just outside of the 'downtown' area. Places like the Datlana Waterfall Rollercoaster are not walkable so you can either rent a motorbike or catch a Grab taxi.
Rent a Motorbike
Cost: 60,000 VND/day ($2.60 USD)
Depending on what you want to see in Dalat, renting a motorbike might make more sense. For instance, Datlana Waterfall is about a 20-25 minute drive outside the city. A return trip with grab taxi would probably cost about as much to rent a motorbike.
At that point, you might as well rent the bike for the day and see more stuff for the same price. In my opinion, riding a bike is pretty fun so that's always a plus.
Taking a Grab
If you're looking for a private ride, but cheaper than a taxi, then you might want to try Grab. This app is Asia's version of Uber which can be used with your credit card, however, in our experience most drivers prefer to be paid in cash.
Pro Tip: Use Grab prices to negotiate taxi or tuk tuk prices to see if they can match or beat the price. It's also a good tool to use to gauge how much a ride should really cost to make sure you're not getting ripped off by a driver.
Where to stay in Dalat
From our experience, we like to use Hostel World to check out potential hostels, then check other booking websites like Booking.com to make our reservations. Sometimes we also message hostels directly to get a better price. We also like to use Airbnb to book accommodations if its a better deal than hostels. Clicking on either of the icons will give you a deal with either of the sites, but are affiliate links so we earn a small commission.
Dorms: $3.40+ USD
Amenities: Free Wifi, Free Breakfast, Free Parking, Self Catering Facilities, Tours/Travel Desk, Luggage Storage, 24 Hr Security/Reception, Laundry Facilities, Bike Hire
Dorms: $3.37+ USD
Amenities: Free Wifi, Free Breakfast, Free Parking, Outdoor Terrace, 24 Hr Security, Luggage Storage, Laundry Facilities, Tours/Travel Desk, Cafe, Fridge/Freezer