Ahhh, Da Lat. The little mountain town known for magical waterfalls, the best coffee in Vietnam, and the most popular weekend destinations for locals. I spent a few days in Da Lat, and in this post, I’ll tell you what I did & what I wish I’d done. This is Da Lat, Vietnam : Where I Slept, Caffeinated, & Ate.
Da Lat, Vietnam
One of the most important things to note about Da Lat is that the weather is extremely unpredictable. If you are planning to make the most of it, I’d suggest at least 4-5 days to ensure you get at least a couple of days of good weather.
I was only in town for two full days (I don’t count the days that I arrive/leave), and the first full day I spent about half of it switching my accommodation. I still managed to find some hidden gems in this city and have a relaxing getaway.
Where I Stayed
I stayed in an airbnb (my favorite type of accommodation) and I got so lucky with this one. It is owned by the same person who owns the hostel next door, so I really got the best of both worlds.
A full time receptionist was at the hostel to answer questions for me, I got unlimited free drinking water (you can’t drink tap water in Vietnam so this was very helpful), and to top it all off, the hostel had a FREE family dinner every night at 6 PM. The most amazing thing about this was the the family dinner was completely vegan.
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Da Lat Best Coffee
I am a huge coffee snob. I love a good cold brew, americano, sometimes I’ll even slip into the iced coffee world. Finding good coffee shops is one of my top priorities while traveling. In Da Lat, I had coffee at the following shops:
The Married Beans Coffee
This was by far the best coffee in all of Da Lat. Definitely try the cold brew (it comes in a wine glass!) and stay a while. The ambiance is adorable and the coffee is out of this world.
This adorable Hoi An-inspired cafe is filled with lanterns and amazing coffee. I was drawn to this cafe due completely to how cute it was (and how much I loved Hoi An), but was so happy to find that the coffee was amazing as well!
Da Lat, Vietnam : Where to Find the Vegan Food
I found this hidden gem (it was truly hidden – I walked past it twice before finding the sign) on Happy Cow. It was recommended for Western-Vietnamese fusion, so I popped in for dinner the first day I was in Da Lat.
I absolutely loved it and came back the next day for breakfast and coffee. The iced americano and chia pudding was great, but I can highly recommend this place for lunch/dinner – try the gnocchi! (Also the green juice brought me back to life).
If you are looking for something a bit more local, head down the street to Dai Loc. I came here a couple times for some good, cheap eats. The first night I had tofu & tomato (a vietnamese dish that can turn out either amazing or not), and the second night I had the “beef” noodle soup. I’m not the biggest fan of faux meat, but Vietnamese vegans seem to be really into it, so I thought I’d give it a try. The soup was very good, and I was so happy to be eating with the locals!
Where to Relax in Da Lat
After a lot of walking and sight-seeing, I decided to spend one night out on the town. I was feeling pretty wild, so I went to a tea shop! As I was wandering down the street, this little shop caught my eye and I stopped in. I saw big pots of tea on the menu, along with three stories of comfy couches and magazines.
Once inside, I ordered a massive pot of jasmine tea and walked up to the second story to take in the ambiance. I highly recommend Trangs Cookery for a chill night out.
Da Lat, Vietnam : Popular Day Trips
There are a lot of things to do from Da Lat. Something I was really looking forward to was waterfall chasing (Elephant Falls is a popular one, often referred to as the Niagara Falls of Vietnam) and motorbike riding through the mountains.
Another popular day trip from Da Lat is visiting coffee farms and weasel coffee farms. If you plan to visit a coffee farm, PLEASE do your research. In many cases, weasels are held in small cages, forced to eat coffee beans. Once the coffee beans are digested and excreted, the beans are used to make “weasel coffee.” This is a Vietnamese specialty. Drinking/supporting weasel coffee is contributing to animal abuse – you are supporting these little weasels being held against their will and being force fed coffee beans to make coffee for tourists. I personally would never support these farms.
Now, a regular coffee tour – sign me up!
This is everything I did, ate, drank, and chilled in Da Lat, Vietnam.
Interested in Vietnam? Check out my other Vietnam posts here: