Where and What to Eat in Dalat
Dalat has many options for fine and interesting dining. The best place to find a good variety of restaurants here is along Nguyen Chi Thanh Street in the city. If you’re around Ho Xuan Huong Lake, look out for the popular Bluewater Restaurant. If you want to experience the real deal, try out the many street food stores along the lake; they sell all sorts of local specialties.
Dalat cuisine is all about fresh produce and lots of it. Blessed with a cool central highland climate, just about anything can be grown there, not just tropical vegetables and fruits. Among locally grown foods are strawberries, asparagus, artichokes, grapes, tea and coffee. A must-try snack is baguette with strawberry jam, along with excellent Vietnamese-style coffee.
100 Roofs Café
100 Roofs is located in an unusual place for such a popular café and it also has quite an amazing design. Situated among small shop-houses and just about 100 metres from the town market, regulars usually go to the rooftop where they can appreciate the views and simply relax. 100 Roofs Café reminds many customers of Dalat’s famous Crazy House, partly because they share the same jungle theme: However this doesn’t mean that both places share the same atmosphere. Go and see for yourself.
- Opening Hours: Daily
- Location: 57 Phan Boi Chau, not far from the town market
- Tel: +84 (0) 63 383 7518
- Cuisine: Coffee shop
Art Café is a more upscale restaurant compared to its next door neighbour Peace Café. Diners will get to enjoy Vietnamese food served in a half -formal room with white linen tablecloths and surrounded by art objects (many by the owner who is an artist himself.). Food choices cover Vietnamese spring rolls to grilled meats and delicious vegetarian dishes.
- Opening Hours: Daily from 10:00 – 23:00
- Location: Near the Peace Café at the bottom of the hill of Truong Cong Dinh (otherwise known as Backpacker Street)
- Tel: +84 (0) 63 510089
- Cuisine: Vietnamese
Au Lac 1
Au Lac 1 is a vegetarian and vegan restaurant and is an inexpensive place. Customers can order from the menu (English-language menu is also available) or choose from more than 30 precooked items on the counter. If you happen to be near the main city market, there are a few stands serving vegetarian food there, too.
- Opening Hours: Open 06:00 – 21:00
- Location: 71 Phan Dinh Phung
- Tel: +84 (0) 63 822025
- Cuisine: Vegetarian and Vegan Vietnamese
Café de la Poste
Café de la Poste lies exactly across the road from Dalat’s main post office and is adjacent to (and owned by) the Sofitel. If you want to try out fairly expensive French cuisine without breaking the bank, this is the place to go. The building and its setup are very typical French, meaning it is charming and has a lovely ambience with a good selection of French wine. Café de la Poste is popular for its breakfast and lunch set menus. If you happen to be in Dalat on a Sunday, check out its famous Sunday brunch.
- Opening Hours: All year round
- Location: Across the street from the main post office
- Cuisine: French, Asian and some other western
Da Quy is a small gem featuring Vietnamese cuisine in a cool setup (with white linen tablecloths). Some of the most popular items are, for example, shrimp cooked with tamarind sauce and chilli, Vietnamese hotpot (with your choice of meat) and fresh spring rolls. Da Quy also serves local wine which goes well with the food.
- Opening Hours: Lunch and dinner
- Location: 49 Truong Cong Dinh
- Tel: +84 (0) 63 510883
- Cuisine: Vietnamese
Le Rabelais at the Dalat Palace Hotel
Le Rabelais is a delightful French restaurant located inside the historical Dalat Palace Hotel (originally built in1922.). The restaurant is regarded as one of the best fine-dining venues in the country. Reward yourself with not only an elegant dinner but to be surrounded by glamorous and rich interiors as well as complementary superb service.
Recommended dishes include steamed lobster in chili orange sauce and grilled shrimp with creamy fresh leek and vanilla sauce. Very expensive with a strict dress code.
- Opening Hours: 06:00-10:00 and 18:00-22:00
- Location: On the lobby floor of The Dalat Palace Hotel
- Tel: +84 (0) 63 3825444
- Cuisine: French
The famous Peace Café is known among travelers to Dalat mainly because of its convenient location adjoining the Peace Hotel and right next to a very popular restaurant called the Art Café. Peace itself might lack a fancy interior but it serves its purpose well with homemade Vietnamese food at reasonable prices. It is also a hang out of the local Easy Riders guys – the ones who offer motorcycle tours in the neighbouring countryside.
- Opening Hours: Daily from 06:00 – 22:00
- Location: Adjoining to the Peace Hotel on 66 Truong Cong Dinh
- Tel: +84 (0) 63 3822 787
- Cuisine: Vietnamese
Stop and Go Café
Stop and Go Cafe is more than just an eatery. It’s a combination of a café, antiques shop and art gallery. As for the food, it offers simple Vietnamese dishes, tasty pastries and variety of coffee and teas. Owned by Duy Viet, a distinguished Vietnamese poet and orchid gardener who was once a journalist, teacher and a political activist as well as mayor of Dalat, he’s one of the main attractions of this place and is easy to spot with his French beret and long greying goatee. Though the name of the café might not sound that appealing, it is the kind of place that many travelers long for. One can come here to chill and meet up with many like-minded locals too.
- Opening Hours: All year round
- Location: 2 Ly Tu Trong, City Centre (near the main market and the Trung Can Hotel)
- Tel: +84 (0) 63 828 458
- Cuisine: Vietnamese and pastries
Thanh Thuy (aka Bluewater Restaurant)
The Bluewater is a local favourite mainly because of its great food, ranging from Vietnamese to Chinese and Western dishes. People can enjoy their meals overlooking Xuan Huong Lake. Some dishes can be expensive but overall prices on the menu are sometimes reasonable.
- Opening Hours: Daily 06:00-23:00 (kitchen closed at 22:00)
- Location: 2 Nguyen Thai Hoc Street (Next to Ho Xuan Huong Lake)
- Tel: +84 (0) 63 3531 688
- Cuisine: Vietnamese, Chinese and Western
This popular all-day dining cafe is run by an American-Vietnamese couple. V Café offers homemade Vietnamese dishes and good choices of Western food such as steaks, pizza, burgers, roast pork, tacos, soups and lemon meringue. Vegetarian dishes are also available. V Café also has regular live music and features free WiFi as well as a pool table.
- Opening Hours: breakfast, lunch and dinner
- Location: About 200m from Xuan Huong Lake up Bui Thi Xuan Street (across the road from the Trung Can Hotel and Sinh Café Travel Company)
- Tel: +84 (0) 63 352 0215
- Cuisine: Vietnamese and Western
Xuan Huong Lake Street Food Vendors
Xuan Huong Lake is truly the heart of Dalat. Besides being the main recreational area for the residents, it also serves as the town’s night kitchen. Many street vendors set up their shops along the banks of the lake in the evening and stay open until about 22:00 or so. Certain streets around the lake are turned into pedestrian areas over the weekend which makes it so much easier to stroll around and enjoy the food and atmosphere.
Tourists can even do some shopping for inexpensive souvenirs at the same time too. Among the local favourites are beef rice noodles, BBQ squid, boiled shellfish, hot soya drinks – all cheap and delicious. A must-try is local coffee served in a stainless steel container that acts like a filter.
- Opening Hours: All year round usually from early evening till about 22:00
- Location: Along the banks of the Xuan Huong Lake
- Cuisine: Local street food