Upon my arrival to Da Lat, I quickly was able to see why Da Lat is often referred to as a small version of Holland. The narrow streets are always filled with lush, colorful flowers. As the locals prepare for the festival, most of streets are decorated with “umbrella inflorescence's” made from umbrellas and dozens of l.e.d. lights. These Umbrella inflorescence would be hung next to each other at varying heights ranging from 24 to 30 feet. In the day time, these umbrella’s look like flowers and at night; they glow as splendid flower lanterns. Both sides of the street have small vendor booths with wine, coffee, tea and street art for tourist to enjoy. Every day, there is a street parade with thousands of decorated flowers on various items. On one vehicle, dancers were wearing floral dresses and threw petals to nearby passengers.
Photo: Uy Huynh
Leisurely walking down the street and enjoying all of the colors and smells that the thousands of flowers shared with me was my daily activity while I visited Da Lat. But if you were looking for something more exciting, there were also dozens of exhibitions and trade shows full of food, flowers and wine all available to explore and enjoy. I chose to visit the Flowers Market; Food by Flowers festival. Food made from flowers in Da Lat are not only unique in taste but also are presented in a magnificent way. I didn’t know that there were so many edible flowers that tasted so delicious. I was amazed that these talented chefs were still able to preserve the original scent and flavor of the flowers after cooking; every dish looked like a little masterpiece. Da Lat is also a perfect place for newlyweds on their honeymoon vacation. They can visit the flower village in Ha Dong, Thai Phien or Van Thanh where each village will bring them a different unique experience. Ha Dong flower villages still preserve the traditional method of gardening from seedlings with natural fertilizing and harvesting; while Thai Phien flower village looks like a small industrial zone with sparkling glass houses. While honeymooners vacation, they can also visit the House of Love, a special flower garden in Love Valley as well as touring the Immortal Flower Hill in Lament Lake or Gold Flower Hill in Golden Valley.
The weather in Da Lat is always around 68 degrees Fahrenheit and foggy. It’s subtle smell of thousands of flowers creates a beautiful atmosphere for honeymooners. Colorful paintings with hundreds of flowers throughout the area create a romantic look that is indescribable.
The Da Lat flower festival closing ceremony was situated next to Xuan Huong Lake. There were thousands of visitors that participated in an exciting street dance with over 3500 liters of wine while I was there. The Wine festival is a feast specially designed to say good-bye to guests traveling to Da Lat for the flower festival in this mountainous region of Vietnam. It was an experience I won’t soon forget.