Visitors who love the romantic yet breathtaking cliffs and waterfalls in the Central Highlands city of Dalat are usually advised to enjoy a little spirit of adventure through a tour of its Canyons.
Rappelling or abseiling off cliffs or waterfalls, scrambling up or down rocks, jumping into deep pools and sliding down natural rock slides are all part of the intriguing experiences that visitors can soak in at the Datanla River in Dalat, the only place that you can try it in Vietnam.
Canyoning is still a new sport in Vietnam but has quickly been growing in the Central Highlands recently. The sport was firstly introduced in Dalat in 2005 after a Vietnamese-French doctor, Tran Viet Tu, invited a French canyoning trainer to explore the cliffs and waterfalls in the area and train some local guides with the necessary skills.
A passionate guide, Ngo Anh Tuan, decided to follow his trainer Andre Gala to France to get more experience. He returned with a pack of equipment and a lot of energy to give it a go. That was at the end of 2005.
At present, Tuan is providing canyoning trips daily to most waterfalls and cliffs in the city such as Lien Khuong Falls and Pongour, Draysap but the most popular site he introduces on his tour is Datanla River. The river has three spectacular and challenging waterfalls where visitors can spend a full day with plenty of fun and a lovely experience.
“A combined abseiling and canyoning experience is the ideal introduction to this amazingly venturous pursuit,” said Ngo Anh Tuan, now director of Dalat Discovery Travel Company ,who is providing canyoning tours for many other tourism agents in the city.
According to Tuan, the first part of the tour is focused on learning abseiling skills and techniques; from the small practice abseils and then on up to the longer more exciting stuff. They will test new skills by abseiling 25m off a cliff to the lower floor of the Datanla River. After being verified, visitors have lunch and get everything ready for the most thrilling experience of the tour.
The journey is a combination of scrambling, wading, swimming and free water sliding. Participants finish the adventure by a spectacular 30 metre waterfall abseil, an 8 metre free jump into a deep pool and finally trekking uphill to the bus for returning to the city.