Fodor's Expert Review Truc Lam Pagoda & Cable Car
This peaceful Zen Buddhist pagoda, about 5 km (3 miles) from central Dalat, sits on top of Phuong Hoang Hill, and the best way to get here is via the beautiful cable car ride, with views of farmlands, pine forests, mountains, and lakes (70,000d round-trip). The 24-hectare complex is relatively new, completed only in 1994, and includes a working monastery in a section that's closed to the public, as well as a meditation center. The public areas include a ceremonial hall, bell tower, and beautiful flower garden. The pagoda is next to Tuyen Lam Lake, and the 15-minute stroll down to shore is pleasant.
Day visits to the meditation center relatively easy to arrange, although are best done in person a day or two in advance, since every guest needs to be approved by the Grand Master. Longer stays are possible but require some complicated paperwork. The monks and nuns can explain the steps involved.