Surrounded by mountains, pine forests, lakes, and farmland, Da Lat is perfect for those who love outdoor exploration.
The city is also an ideal place to live if you don’t like hot and tropical climates or are not a big fan of living in a big city.
In this guide, I share my experience and practical tips for newcomers. You’ll learn useful information to prepare for your new life in Da Lat, such as the cost of living in Da Lat, how to find apartments and jobs, and other practical tips
The cost of living in Da Lat
The cost of living in Da Lat is cheaper than in other cities in Vietnam. Two people can live comfortably in this beautiful city for under $1000 per month.
You can expect to pay around $1 ~ $2 per dish for street food and $5 ~ $10 per dish if you eat out in restaurants. Read my Da Lat food guide to find the best places to try here.
Here is a summary cost for two people person:
|Accommodation rental (one or two-bedroom, TV cable & internet):
|Gas & water:
|Prepaid cell phone plan:
|Transportation (motorbike rental and gasoline):
|Entertainment (eating out, drinking):
|Housekeeper (Cleaning 2 times a week):
How to find accommodation in Da Lat
We usually book our apartments on Airbnb and Booking.com if we only stay a month or so.
For longer stays, we’ll book a hotel room for a few days and check out apartment choices before moving in.
You can ask and search on Expat in Da Lat group for rooms. It’s also useful to contact hosts on Airbnb to see if they offer good deals for long-term rentals.
A 1-bedroom apartment in Da Lat costs 4.5 to 6.5 million VND a month, while a 2-bedroom studio can cost up to 10 million VND per month.
When finding an apartment in Da Lat, Vietnam, I recommend to
- Ask if your rent covers the electricity, water, internet, and room-cleaning.
- Take photos of facilities when you first move in.
- If possible, ask for a contract or a payment receipt.
- Ask the landlord/ hotel manager to register you properly with the local police.
Best areas to live in Da Lat
If you enjoy the convenience of walking around and getting to the center, Ward 1, Ward 2, and Ward 6 are good choices.
Also, the areas in wards 3 and 4 are pretty close to town, less crowded, and still convenient.
I also find the area in ward 9 near Da Lat train station is lovely and quiet, and you can do a morning run easily at the Xuan Huong Lake nearby.
Shopping in Da Lat: Where to buy food & necessaries
We usually shop at Go – the biggest supermarket in Da Lat.
It has everything you need at fair prices. You can find a large selection of meat, vegetables, kitchen equipment, food supplements, etc. You can also order using the GO! app or Zalo app and get free delivery if you live within 5km.
Bach Hoa Xanh and small convenience stores are also my to-go. Buying fresh vegetables and meat from a local market is another idea. We find the prices are not too different compared to the supermarket.
Best cafe to work in Da Lat
Where to find a quiet space to work in Da Lat? Da Lat is a tourist city, and some cafes are usually full of people taking photos and being quite loud.
I’ve spent a few months scouring Da Lat for the best laptop-friendly workspaces where freelancers, students, aspiring writers, and all hustlers can have a seat and get things done. Check my Da Lat coffee guide for more information.
Where to meet new people
We usually meet new people at bars, restaurants, or events in Da Lat. Heyla Cocktail Bar is our favorite spot to hang out, and we enjoy visiting the Organic Farmer’s Market on Sunday at Green Box Coffee (85 Xo Viet Nghe Tinh).
- Heyla Cocktail Bar: 10 Tan Da, ward 6
- Green Box Coffee: 85 Xo Viet Nghe Tinh, ward 7
Life in Da Lat
Cool and pleasant weather is what we love about Da Lat. The temperature in Da Lat fluctuates from 12 to 26 degrees, and the climate is divided into two seasons like in other Central Highlands provinces.
During the dry season, the climate in Da Lat is quite pleasant. The day is sunny, and the night will be a bit chilly. You can prepare yourself with summer clothes and a thin coat for the evening to go for a walk.
Meanwhile, the weather in Da Lat during the rainy season (mid-May to October) is the exact opposite. At this time in Dalat, the weather is very erratic, it can be sunny, and suddenly it’s pouring rain.
We rarely see traffic jams on weekdays, while the road can be a bit busier at the weekends. There are many big tourist buses and cars on the route from Friday to Sunday, so we generally avoid going to the center on these days.
Most jobs in Da Lat are related to tourism. The most common jobs in Da Lat:
- Waiter/ waitress
You can also try to find jobs in English centers as well.