The Golden Buddha, wandering, and some thoughts on the final week…

North of my hotel, up a road I had not walked before is one of the most prominent of cultural and religious sites in Da Lat. You take a small road and walk up a short incline to the Golden Buddha. The site sits on a beautiful hill and one sees almost a 360 view of Da Lat stretching out. There are numerous figures, beautiful flowers, and the religious buildings themselves. This is an active site so you can hear prayers and watch those giving offerings in real time as you go. Like most sites I have been to in Vietnam there is no real problem with taking photographs so all people tend to take out cameras or smart phones and shoot away.

The site is like a hilly island in northern Da Lat and strolling and visiting the site can take an hour unless you sit and relax and just observe the site like I did. I had looked at google maps and found a new way to get back down to the road my hotel is on and then walked back another way. I changed the camera over to Acros Black and White for fun and shot some photographs of things I saw on the streets. Acros does really nicely on buildings that have contrasty looks and people! My approach today was to use very simple Aperture Priority settings and then set the ISO to 100 or 200. I shot almost at all times at F5.6. While at the temple, I switched to Auto ISO since there were so many different lighting scenarios. That way the camera decides which ISO to use since I was looking at the taking shots of all different locations.

As I got back down to the road where the hotel is, I decided to walk back another way and walked down a smaller road I had done before and then got on the series of surface roads that would take me back. Weather was not so good but not so bad either. It would rain lightly for awhile and then stop and mist again. Enough to get things wet but not not enough for a soaking. Temperatures were around 19 which made it nice for walking and seeing things.

Here’s the link to the Da Lat photo album with all of the photos thus far I have taken here. Fun times!

Last Week Thoughts…

This is my last week in Da Lat. I have been here about 3.5 weeks and have spent the days doing what I love which is seeing the city and visiting a variety of the places like markets, churches and pagoda and temples that have struck my fancy or I happened across as I walked. I walked country roads here and city streets.

Tomorrow I do a half-day tour to see two waterfalls and then Thursday another half-day tour to see some Pagodas. Then I am basically done and will do a little shopping at the Da Lat Market on Friday and perhaps splurge and have lunch downtown for a change. Saturday, I board another bus to Saigon and go back for 2 days and then fly from there to Da Nang. Da Nang is my last stop in Vietnam and I’ll be there for about 3 weeks seeing the city, going to the Hands of God or Golden Bridge and whatever else. Da Nang is a big city with lots of stuff to see so I think I will be busy there!

Preparing to Leave…

Each time I’ve left I have had to go through my stuff and try to lessen the footprint since I manage to acquire things. This time its a jacket that I will give to the hotel for another guest. I also have this nice North Face Duffel bag which I won’t be taking. I have some smaller toiletry items which I would never start carrying since they are so cheap here. I’ll just replace them when I get to Da Nang.

That’s about it for this Sunday!

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