Even though it is the place where I lost my camera, Da Lat was one of my favorite cities in Vietnam. One of my favorite things was the weather, as the spring like temperatures provided a relief from the oppressive SE Asian heat that we had become accustomed to. Another aspect that contributed to my love of the city was the hostel we stayed in. Yall, Wolfpack is the most amazing little hostel. It is owned by the sweetest husband and wife and staffed by their family members. The mattresses were memory foam and we were provided with a thick comforter to snuggle up with. Each night, they cooked a meal that the guests ate family style downstairs and those dinners were the most amazing food I ate in while in Vietnam. Seriously so, so, good. And each night was a different menu! The food in town is also delicious–Da Lat is the place to really get your eat on!
The thing to do in Da Lat is to go canyoning, but that’s not really my thing. While my friends were off being badasses and rappelling down waterfalls, I opted to ride a roller coaster down a mountain. Located in whimsical Datalana Falls, the ride was thrilling, but probably not as much so as the canyoning. I had a ridiculously fun time doing this, and ended up doing three rides. I felt like a little kid again! There are several other activities there to do if you do not want to ride the roller coaster. If you do want to take the ride, though, I would recommend sitting in the first car. You control your own speed down the mountain with hand brakes, and you won’t be able to go very fast if you get stuck behind someone who wants to go slower.
While at Wolfpack, we met a group of 18-19 year old British boys who were making their way through SE Asia after having already backpacked India. One of them has a charity in Tanzania that he founded that provides several communities with fresh drinking water. At 18!!! Want to know what I was doing at 18? Trying to sneak alcohol into my freshman dorm. All I was focused on was boys, getting good grades, and getting wasted.I think this really speaks to the fact that the U.S. just does not put the same amount (or any amount) of emphasis on traveling or taking gap years.
What were you doing at 18? Which would you pick: canyoning or rollercoaster?