Datanla Waterfall in Dalat
A little over 10 minutes from the city center, Datanla Waterfall is a nature amusement park of sorts, offering several activities besides sightseeing. Due to the park’s proximity you can expects herds of tourists pouring in, including many Russian tour groups. Don’t let this turn you off. The falls are decent and the trek downward is quite scenic.
The area is hard to miss: a giant billboard by the entrance displays all the possible activities at the site. The middle-lower-class family kitsch is ubiquitous, from plastic deer to terrible toilets to buffet counter food practically rotting in the sun. Ignore all this, bring your own food (and preferably your own toilet paper) and embark on the downward journey.
Begin at the VND 10,000 entrance and continue down from there.
You can take a self-controlled rollercoaster car (VND 35,000 one way and VND 45,000 for a return trip) deeper into the waterfall area or walk down for free. The grounds are lush and the air is fresh, and despite the crowds the area is quite peaceful. The rollercoaster ride is fun granted you speed most of the way down for that bit of adrenaline rush.
At the base of the mountain you’re hit with some cheesy activities like an archery range (prizes include undrinkable Dalat wine), a restaurant with poorly ventilated fare and cheap ethnic minority props put up more for photo-ops than to celebrate minority culture. You can then take an old cable car a bit deeper down through a narrow opening to reach a relatively isolated pocket of wilderness.
Here you can see the biggest fall in action. While the waterfall is not so impressive, the bursting, expansive flora surrounding the area is worth the trip, with ubiquitous pines creating a sea of green surrounding you and stretching out into the distance.