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Dalat easy riders

My first experience with ONE PASSENGER was in 2002, on my first visit to Dalat. I was walking down the street when a guy driving an engine approached me. He asked if I was interested in touring the Dalat area. I asked what I would see and canceled the list of places that tourists would be interested in: Crazy House, Chicken Village (home of the local montanyard tribe), Datanle and Prenn Waterfalls, old colonial buildings from the French era, Dalat Market and Truc lam Monastery on Lake Tuyen Lam.

When tourists first started arriving in Dalat in the early 1990s, guides were not known as EASY TO FIND, they were merely guides who accompanied their motorcycles to clients around the area. These guides are former soldiers of the South Vietnamese military (and their families) who could not obtain legal employment because of their affiliation with the former government. Some worked family farms in the area. The EASY RIDER term was given to them a decade later by a tourist referring to the 1960 American film of the same name.

The original EASY RIDERS usually spoke English because of their former affiliation with the U.S. and Australian military. This ability provided them with employment resources after years of forced poverty. Most of the old officers retired and passed on their namesake to the younger generations.

My guide, You You (meaning "tiny" in Vietnamese) provided me with a great tour that day as I watched the landscape pass by from the back of his motorcycle. I looked You You upstairs on other visits to Dalat and take a tour around the old days. EASY PASSENGERS hang out at the Peace Hotel. If you are lucky, you will find the original ONE RIDER that can tell you about the old days as well as give you a great tour. Today's EASY RIDERS will not only show you places around Dalat, but will accompany you to almost anywhere in Vietnam. Travelers to Vietnam arriving in Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City) can catch a flight to Dalat if pressed for time. The "real" traveler will jump on an "open tour" bus from Pham Ngu Lao area in District 1 and spend the day enjoying the great uphill mountain scenery to Dalat. Most "open tour" buses will drop off at or near the Peace Hotel, and you can spend an hour or two negotiating with ONE RIDER for his services. Have a local coffee or tea and spend some time learning about what's happening in Dalat.

Check out Easy Riders of Dalat for travel video experiences. Enjoy your trip!