Salam and hello to all. I am currrently not sure whether ppl are still reading my blog or not but i feel obligated to update the adventure my husband,my son Fateh and I went through during our 6 day-stay in Dalat,Phan Rang and Ho Chi Minh. The main reason is probably bcoz this may help those who are seeking for tips to travel to Dalat, Vietnam as there are not much info about it provided for Muslim travellers.
Here is our example of checklist for the trip. Bear in mind to check the temperature before u fly to Dalat as the weather could be very cold at night or cloudy due to rainy season.
BABY'S BASIC NEEDS
1. Baby clothes and sweaters ( Dalat's temperature around 24 degree during our visit)
2. Enough diapers/napkins
3. Wet tissues
4. Baby's essential creams
5. Thick n thin socks
6. Baby gloves/snow cap (just 2keep him warm)
9. Baby's fave toys to keep him entertained on flight or in the hotel room
10. Light snacks (biscuits,cereals,bread, milk)
PARENTS' BASIC NEEDS
4. Prayer mat
5. Mineral water (keep the bottle for future use especially at the restroom)
6. Canned food/ maggi (note that there are NO HALAL restaurants in Dalat except vegetarian restaurants)
7. Milo 3 in 1/ coffee
8. Thick n thin socks
A journey with a young toddler is not complete without some sort of crying dramas and tense situation. So, we will try our best to make sure Fateh has got his enough play,milk and sleep. Luckily, he is still fully breasfeeding and it is easier to manage him as i could just pull out my nursing cover and practically nursed him anytime and anywhre. He also enjoyed munching the cereals we brought for him on the plane and it relaxed him a little.
|Nursing Fateh at boarding hall|
We boarded our Airasia flight to HCM on Monday 12th Sept, before departing frm the domestic airport to Dalat by Vietnam Airlines (if plane ticket is ur corcern, u may choose to travel by bus from HCM-Dalat and this takes around 8-9hr journey). Unlike travelling by bus, flying to Dalat from HCM took about 50mins only. Upon arrival, we decided to take a taxi by Mailinh company which offers us a fixed price ticket around 160,000 Vnd. It is bettr not to go by metre as it's gonna cost u a lot more as the distance from airport to Dalat city is about 30km.
Our hotel is Tulip Hotel, and its location is at the heart of the Dalat city and it is quite near to the main tourist attractions. Actly, there are a lot of convenient and affordable hotels in the centre of Dalat or even at the countryside. If you prefer a more quite and peaceful area, you may look for a hotel near the golf club. There are classic French designed cottage,huts and motels everywhre to match the taste of your dream holiday. Some even look a little bit creepy but for those who are into old romantic films or Harry Potter movies, they wd be perfect choices to go!
|View from our hotel.|
It was always raining in the evening!
TRANSPORTATION/HOW TO TOUR AROUND DALAT CITY
You can either choose to travel by these following transports:
3) Rental Motorcycle
4) Rental car+ driver (hotel wd usually arrange it 4u. From the info i'v got, foreigners r not allowed to drive the car. So,every rental car has a driver)
Guess which transport we'd chosen? Of course the cheapest and the most exciting one. That is motorcycle! It only costs 120,000 Vnd per day (around rm20). But of course you need to be skillful while enjoying your ride. Since you aren't local, always be slow, cool and steady to avoid accidents.
Here are among the places we managed to visit:
1) Domaine De Marie
2) Crazy House
3) Summer Palace
4) Dalat Railway
5) Valley of Love
6) Dalat Flower Garden
|Fateh and i getting ready for a motorbike ride|
|Our masterpiece to tour around the city|
|Us with raincoat|
|Here we go!|
|Outside Domaine de Marie|
|The mini Eiffel tower seen from Domaine de Marie|
|Dalat Railway Station|
|The train schedule|
|Small garden outside cafe at the train station|
|Dinh Bao Dai (Summer Palace)|
|Outside Summer Palace|
|The beauty of the Crazy House|
|Outside the Honeymoon room at Crazy House|
|Quenching your thirst at Fruit juice Cafe inside|
Crazy House. Fateh is trying to escape from Mama.
Haha.. *evil laugh
|Fateh is attracted to something else|
|At Valley of Love|
|At Valley of Love|
|Love is in the air|
|Love is like the wind. You can't see |
it but you can feel it.
|Dalat Flower Garden|
|Family shot at lavender garden|
|At Flower garden. Loving the ground more|
than the flowers
|Fateh is getting excited|
|Subhanallah! So beautiful!!!|
Due to the limitation of time and rainy day, we lost the chance to visit any of the popular waterfalls. I am pretty sure that those who love nature will certainly dont wanna miss experiencing the beauty of Elephant Fall, Pongour Fall and Prenn waterfall. There are more than five waterfalls in Dalat and they are the trademarks of nature here.
Although i felt a bit unlucky to miss these places, i still enjoyed our motor ride. Fateh felt asleep most of the time on the ride,so, everytime we stopped at the main attractions, we grabbed this chance to snap a lot of photos.
Vietnamese language is widely spoken in Dalat. Majority of senior citizens speak very little English. However, if you are lucky..you can always meet those who speak English very well such as the hotel receiptionist, sales person or the young ones. Besides, tourists who use English are everywhre and you can always say hi or talk to them whnvr necessary.
Dalat is also famous with the agriculture products whrby fruit,flowers and vegetables are available at the street market or Night market. Always be positive when you are not able to communicate using the local language with the farmers or grocers at the shops. From our experience, they always offer help and be kind to you. Try to steal their heart by using some local expressions such as saying hello and thank you in the Vietnamese language.
Being a language teacher myself, i always believe that a language connects human being regardless of race,nationality n skin colour. Always be positive - don't be afraid of learning the local language. Polite gestures and simple smiles (non-verbal language) really help to ease your journey. Don't be bothered if they aren't fluent in English. We came not to judge the language level. We came to explore their world!
Always bring food and drinks along with you if you dont plan to come back to your hotel during your tour. As i hv mentioned earlier, there are NO HALaL food restaurants or mosques in Dalat but vegetarian restaurants are a few. So, u cn either choose to eat your own food or drop by any of the vegetarians'.
|Trying the local dairy products|
|Vegetable fried rice at a vegetarian restaurant.|
It takes about 10min walk from Tulip Hotel
Praying time may differ according to cities. As for Dalat during my visit, Fajr is at around 4.45am while Zuhur is at 11am ++. The sun shines early and this actually forces u to wake up early,so, u cn go out early too. Ha3.
We always performed our prayer at our own hotel room. It is easier and more convenient. Besides, Dalat is quite a small town and you can alwys go bck 2ur hotel anytime u want without any hustle or bustle.
On Wednesdy 14th sept at 10am, we continued our journey from Dalat to Phan Rang by bus (pls see the map to knw exctly whre Phan Rang is)
(To be continued)