The Truc Lam temple is a buddhist temple a little outside Da Lat that was build recently and it´s a center of Zen buddhism which is not that common in Vietnam, but the place has quite a few munks and gets Zen buddhist visitors from all over the world.
The temple has a really nice setting and is very well kept and anyone can visit the place and go for a stroll in the nice garden.
The last king of Vietnam, Bao Dai, had a summer palace in Da Lat where he spend most of his last years as a king when he had no power anyway and he spend most of his time there playing golf and trying to seduce women.
The palace is open for the public and a very nice excample of 1930´s architecture and the interior is very well kept and gives an insight to the last king of Vietnam who was in the end exciled to France where he lived until he died in the 1990´s.
Da Lat has a flowerpark where you have a broad variety of the flowers found in the region and the place is very popular with vietnamese tourists.
It´s quite colorful and worth a visit.
I have come there with tour groups a couple of times and my guests, who are mostly senior citizens have really enjoyed the visit.
The entry is less than a dollar, so it´s not the financial aspect that should keep you away from Visiting Da Lat Flowerpark.
It is nicknamed the 'Crazy House' by locals, this guesthouse, cafe and art gallery is about 1 km southwest of Xuan Huong Lake. The architecture is something straight out of Alice in Wonderland and cannot easily be described: there are caves, giant spider webs made of wire, concrete 'tree trunks', a nude female statue (a rarity in Vietnam), a concrete giraffe (with a tearoom built inside) and caged turkeys providing the surreal soundtrack. Yes, it's tacky and exceedingly commercialised but many are astounded to find such a counter-cultural construction in Dalat.
The gallery's designer, Mrs Dang Viet Nga, is from Hanoi and lived in Moscow for 14 years, where she earned a PhD in architectuere. She dresses in pure 1960s hippie garb, burns incense and has something of an air of mystery about her. Hang Nga, as she's known locally, has designed a number of other buildings, which dot the landscape around Dalat, including the Children's Cultural Palace and the Catholic church in Lien Khuong.
The Dalat People's Committee has not always appreciated such innovative designs. An earlier Dalat architectural masterpiece, the 'House with 100 Roofs', was torn down as a 'fire hazard' because the People's Committee thought it looked 'anti-socialist'. However, there is little chance that Hang Nga will have such trouble with the authorities (her father, Truong Chinh, was Ho Chi Minh's successor). He served as Vietnam's second president from 1981 until his death in 1988.
If you'd like to stay in one of the cavelike, quirky rooms, booking in advance is recommended.
Photographs will be uploaded shortly...
It is a lovely coloured building. The giant bell is on the right of the main building and a giant drum is on the right. The sign on the front gate reads 'Phat Giao Viet-Nam' (Vietnam Buddhist Association).
During your stay in Da lat you have chances to be asked by one of the Da lat Easy Riders to go with them on a motorbike tour.
They are professional guides and unlike other ´tour guides´ we experienced before in Vietnam they do speak good English and have a repartoire of ample knowledge.
If you are only interested to see Da lat and its surroundings they offer one day tours at $10 per person. We rode on most scenic roads and stopped several times where we got excellent explanations about the country and its people. Among many things we saw the most interesting was the visit to a silk farm where we got in direct contact to the farmers and workers at the factory.
But the Easy Riders also offer longer trips,
virtually everything is possible. Most common tours are 2-5 days from Da lat.
As we enjoyed the day trip so much we decided to get off the beaten path and go up to Hoi An with the guides. With our belongings nicely packed on the back of the bikes and us leaning against them we started our tour the morning after. The trip led us through the central highlands, places where hardly tourists go unless they are sitting on the back of a motorbike. We stopped at waterfalls, monuments, markets or just for having tea or coffee or sugarcane juice. We got in direct contact with the locals, had tea with silk farmers or visited children and their caretakers at an orphanage with our guides translating for us.
Parts of our ´life on the roads´ were incredibly scenic, like when we rode a piece of the Ho Chi Minh trail...
The evenings we spent cooking together or just having dinner, chatting and playing games with our guides. The country and its people being brought closer to you by a local person...what more could you ask for?
A truely genuine experience that I can hugely recommend to people with the same taste of travelling!
As there are unfortunately more and more people claiming to be ´Easy Riders´ (students mostly) and offer similar tours at a lower price, you´d need to be careful to pick a ´real´ Easy Rider.
The Dalat Cable Cars opened for business in 2003. The ride is beautiful, and almost a mile and a half (2.3 km) long.
It runs from 7 to 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 to 5 p.m.
50,000 Dong one way, or 70,000 round trip.
The Truc Lam Zen Buddhist Pagoda was built in 1993. Some parts of it, such as the living quarters, are off limits, but visitors can enjoy the beautiful gardens. There are unusual flowers such as the bright blue Dragon’s Claw hanging from a trellis, and hedges carved into dragons and lions.
It is on a mountain 7 km. from town. You can get there by road, or from the cable car.
i have been travel more than 35 countries, and this is the first time i have to write a negative review....
All the other who has written here has nice found the best in the attractions, im sorry but would say there is not much to come here to see... as my picture show even the beautifull lake is... gone... Dalanta waterfalls is the minimum to be called a waterfall, crazy house well, 5 min then thats done. In generel the resturants charge doubble or tribble when a european come in the door, when my asian GF (not vietnamise) order a cup of coffe when im not arround its 1/3 the price when i arrive 5 min later. After my 2 weeks i Vietnam i would never come back unless someone are paying me to do so. If you use 1-10 scale and Thailand is 8 then Vietnam is close to 1.
This is only a review from my eyes and other may have other experiences.......
This is a MUST place to visit, the XQ Su Quan, the Historical village of hand embroidery. This was a fantastic time to see and check out the ladies who work here on hand embroidery in traditional work way. Best place also to purchase some traditional handmade souvenirs.
Words are just too short to describe all what available here, check the travelogue for more photos.