Dalat

Trip Start Jan 06, 2007
1
41
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Trip End Jul 29, 2007


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Flag of Vietnam  ,
Tuesday, May 8, 2007

We arrived in Dalat by around 4:00pm and in true backpacker fashion, scoped out a few hotels before choosing one.  We decided to bunk with our German friend Jana who tagged along with us for a few days.  We spent the late afternoon cruising the city, getting ourselves acquainted with this mountainous place.  Dalat is surrounded, with lakes, evergreen forests and waterfalls and has a surprisingly healthy agricultural economy.  When we walked into the central market we almost felt a bit lost, we were surrounded by many fresh fruits and vegetable stalls. We had herd through the backpacker grapevine that Dalat dried strawberries are to die for, so picked up a package of these addictive berries and munched out while touring the rest of the city.
The next day was our only full day in Dalat so we arose not to early and prepared ourselves for a long day of walking around the city.  This city has sights very unique to Vietnam and we managed to check out a lot.  Our first stop was the 'Crazy House' that is notable for its Alice in Wonderland architecture, where we were able to view giant spider webs and even check out the many themed guesthouse rooms like the tiger room, gourd room, bear room, eagle room etc...  After getting a little crazy, we walked to the Bao Dai's Sumemr Palace which was constructed in 1933, but didn't look all that flash so we skipped out on paying the admission and enjoyed the French colonial houses along the road out of there.  We checked out one of the Pagoda's from the outside but found it was closed.  The same went for one of the Cathedrals we visited, but enjoyed them equally well from the outside.  After a long morning out and about, we had a lovely lunch at a local Vietnamese restaurant, and managed to muster enough energy to check out the Flower Gardens.  It was a good 20 minute walk there and once we got there it started to rain pretty heavily, so were a bit rushed but saw the major sights.  We took a motorbike taxi back the main city centre and wandered back to our humble abode.  It was a great day, but sightseeing is a tough job when you only have a day to cram it all into.  Tomorrow we head to Ho Chi Min City (Saigon), hopefully the sightseeing won't be as rushed!
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