28. A wedding crasher in Dalat

19/01 – 23/01

After seeing the north of Vietnam, the central part, the south and an island I was now in another part of Vietnam – the central highlands. I always planned to visit the area, but the initial plan was just to head to Kon Tum after Christmas. After re-arranging the order of my journey I finally made it there – just it was Dalat and not Kon Tum.

Dalat airport is a rather small airport – you still get picked up with a bus and you arrive at the arrival hall to wait for your bag. Next to the luggage carousal you could find a desk selling tickets for the bus (40,000 Dong) or vouchers for a taxi (200,000 Dong). So need to haggle with the drivers and being potentially scammed.

Outside the terminal I got onto the waiting minibus and we were off to Dalat straight away. The airport is around 30 km away from the centre of town, and the ride took around 45 minutes. The scenery was great – some hills, trees on both sides of the road. One German couple on the bus compared it to some roads in the Black Forest in Germany.

The bus stopped at one of the bigger hotels south of the lake in Dalat – close to the underground shopping centre. There was a bit of confusion if this was the final stop – most tourist got off, and were immediately approached by taxi drivers. One of the locals on the bus was able to explain how it works, and that the bus will also stop in the centre. He also pointed out that there are more than enough hotels there to find a room. He should know – as he worked in the Mobifone office next to all the hotels. It is great if you meet locals who help without wanting anything.

So I stayed on the bus, and as advised we were in the centre near the market 5 minutes later. And yes, there are quite a few hotels in that area. Ignoring the luxurious hotel on the hill overlooking the lake and part of Dalat I checked the rooms of two hotels. The first one had single rooms without a window for 250,000 Dong, and the one next door had a room next to the balcony with a great view over Dalat – for 240,000 Dong.

Obviously I took the room at the Quynh Anh Hotel. For that price the room on the top floor was simple – two beds, normal Asian bathroom (so you get wet feet after a shower), A/C which wasn’t needed, and a TV. From my window I had an absolute beautiful view over the lake and over the area around the market. Being on the third floor of a building that stands on top of a hill has its advantages. In front of my window was the shared balcony of the whole floor – but the other guests on the floor were kind enough to have their smoking breaks on the balcony a floor below. Add the great central location the hotel was great value for money!!

After a small rest it was time to explore Dalat for a little while. It was definitely an advantage to be in the centre of town next to the lake – so everything was in walking distance. The setting of the town is very easy. In the centre of town is a rather big lake, with trees and benches surrounding it, welcoming people for a stroll. To the west of the lake is the market, and the majority of shops, restaurant and hotels. Overall it is very easy to navigate through the town
Dalat also had the advantage of a more comfortable temperature than in the Mekong Delta. It was warm but not hot, but still warm enough to walk around in shorts and shirt. The advantage of being in the mountainous area.

My first task was to find a place for lunch. Heading down quite a few stairs I was at a square next to the market, with a statue in the centre of it. I didn’t know then, but it was the place to be for street food in the evening.
For lunch I just sat down in one of the food places around the square, and had a lovely Pho soup (surprisingly it was my first after a week or two!!!). Slightly strengthened I did what I do best – walking aimlessly to see part of the town.

Starting with a nice wee park opposite of the lake I then realised the downside of Dalat – there were quite a few hills in town. I walked one up to reach a church (Chan Toa), but once again the church was close, so I could only admire it from the outside. Not being able to see anything more of it I just turned into the main road (Tran Phu), and for some unknown reason I decided to turn left into an alley. Really don’t know why, as there was no building or anything special there. Well – there was. Walking two minutes in this alley I ended up on a spot with a great view of a valley inside the town, houses in the valley and on the hill surrounding it. To top that there was an old colonial building on the corner, and a wooden stairwell led to a café on the first floor. As it was time for an ice coffee anyway, I walked in – and wow, talk about a hidden gem. It had a beautiful set up, it looked a bit more luxurious than your average café. But the view was great, they had WiFi and the coffee was good. So overall, a great place for a break. Not sure how easily tourists can find it, but the set up was more towards tourists. Still – I really liked that place (I wish I would have returned – but convenience of a nearby café nearly always beats a nice setting!!!)

After a longer stay I continued my walk, and at the next opportunity I turned right onto the next main street – back towards the lake. However, instead of walking to the main roundabout at the top of the lake, I walked into another smaller street, and turned into a little alley with some little market stalls. I don’t know why, but I so much more enjoy walking little alleys, with residential buildings on both sides, than following a main road. I think you get a better feeling about the atmosphere of a place. Going up some stairs I found myself back in front of my hotel – and I used it as an excuse to get a drink, and sit down on the balcony to enjoy the view, and taking a break. Life really could be worse.

For dinner I just walked towards the market, but instead of heading down the stairs I followed a road away from the market to the north. Quite a few tourist agencies, restaurants and souvenirs and art shops are located on that street – so every tourists will come here at some point I guess.

Ignoring all the bars and restaurants I followed the road until it reached another main road, and I just followed that one. I actually enjoyed the stroll in a nice cool evening. Obviously passing so many restaurants I have chosen the one least convenient. I saw quite a few locals and one large group of foreigners (it was a trip of a school group I think) – and assuming that they already had their food I took a seat. Well, I learned once again never assume, as you make an “ass” out of “u” & “me”. Having several tables waiting for food in front of you is never a good thing, though it was entertaining to watch some of the kids when someone served spiders and crickets.
The food itself was good, but nothing special (especially with the longer waiting time). For the only time during my stay I decided to have an early night – I was glad to be in my bed and get some sleep.

 

After great night sleep (finally feeling perfectly fine again) I decided to use the second day to see more of Dalat. Instead of walking away from the centre this time I walked along the street above the market. Like the rest of the town the streets are lined with beautiful colonial buildings, and lots of flowers (I haven’t seen any other places in Vietnam with so many flowers – on balconies and quite a few stalls selling flowers – I assume that this must be heaven for flower lovers!!!). Besides, it was interesting to see the busy market from above – not a view I have seen that often.

Once again I just decided for no specific reason to turn off the main street to walk along a little alley (well – the reason was to watch a motorbike struggling going up the steep road). Following that alley I suddenly stood in front of a rather strange house – actually, it was a very strange building. It looked like the creation of an artist, using clay and bricks for the walls, having some wooden bits using as window, and I even saw a bull head coming out of the wall. It was quite surreal – and strangely I haven’t read about this anywhere (there are no signs as well). So if you want to find it walk along Phan Boi Street, and when walking pass the Trang café to its roof (the café with balconies and lots of flowers) turn left (sharp corner into an uphill alley). In addition of the strange building there is also a nice view over Dalat. So who needs a map anywhere to see unusual bits!!!

After finding that little hidden gem I was back on the main road, and followed it all the way to the lake. If you are a bit lazy you can sit down at a café next to the lake, or get a rowing boat. Obviously this would be far too much work for me, so instead I headed back to the market as it was lunch time.
I always love visiting markets, and the one her was no different. Busy with little food stalls and their little red chairs, next to stalls selling flowers (lots of flowers), herbs or other day-to-day items. There is also an indoor market (if you walk up the stairs you end up at the main road above the market). In one of the corners, well hidden I saw a little food stall. Spotting me while checking out their sign the owner waved at me, so I walked over two wooden planks, and was literally sitting away from the busy market in a little place, getting their speciality. The other guests eyed me surprised (as if they are asking why a tourist would eat here), but a polite smile broke the ice, and everyone was laughing, smiling and waving at me. As usual I had no idea what it was. Well – I know it was delicious. I was told afterwards that it was deep fired vegetable & potatoes, with rice and vegetables. The small potion was only 15,000 Dong for a nice experience and good food.


My belly filled it was time for a break. So I just got an ice coffee, and sat down next to the lake, and enjoyed the view and the relaxed atmosphere. Dalat got me quite quickly – I really enjoyed it so far.

I finally found some energy and walked along the southern part of the lake, the trees providing some welcomed shade. Going that way it was possible to watch locals sitting on the shore fishing, sitting on a bench reading, and when I passed a group of youth they all jumped up, shouting and waving at me. And not one single person tried to sell anything! Exactly what you need to stretch your legs.


I also used the opportunity to walk through a little park south of the lake. it was another proof how important flowers are in Dalat (seeing the amount of flower plantations nearby a few days later just showed how big it is in this area) – they make sure that the parks are colourful, inviting people to enjoy a stroll there, or just to sit down. No need just to visit all the museums, seeing these things in Dalat was more worthwhile to get a feel of the this beautiful town.
Next to the park was construction ongoing for a shopping centre, though there were already several shops open underneath the building. I didn’t explore that part further.

Instead I followed my steps of the day before, passing the church, the café I visited, and made my way to one of the most famous, but also the strangest sightseeing spots of Dalat – the Crazy House.


And I must admit, if a building deserves to be called crazy – that’s the one! it is a range if surreal looking buildings, decorated with modern art. Some houses had kind of faces on, others looked like tree houses. Most of them connected through a mix of stairs and bridges, leading to the top of the building (which offers a great view), sometimes walking up and down tiny little stairs (difficult if anyone trues to walk the other direction. There were teeth shapes on doors, little weels that looked like mushrooms, a little garden with spider nets and big spiders. I really would like to know what the designer of this construct took!!! But it was fascinating to walk around, going up to the highest point to enjoy a perfect view over Dalat, laughing at the various items I saw walking around. I was not surprised when I read that this is one of the craziest building in the world. My only question was – which ones are even crazier.


Talking about crazy – this is actually a hotel – and the rooms I saw were as crazy as the outside. Not sure how relaxing it is to have people walking pass your room the whole time, but I was tempted to stay a night there just for the experience. I dropped the idea as I was too lazy moving away from my guesthouse!

After that rather impressive visit I slowly headed back to the guesthouse. Once again I took another route, walking more towards the west of the town to see a bit more of Dalat.  I walked pass so many beautiful colonial buildings, and then found a street full of hotels. It was the parallel street to the one of my guesthouse. I was rather smug about my place – as I had a great view. I then found a little bakery near the market. Add oh my god- the cakes looked absolute delicious. And they looked great – with various shapes of cars, bears dogs. It looked like cake heaven. Not being able to resist I bought one of the chocolate cakes. I thought it would be nice to sit on the balcony and enjoy the sweet pleasure. Obviously, you need something to drink – so I got a ice coffee from a little stall opposite the market, and a few minutes later I made myself comfortable on a chair outside my room, having cake, coffee and a great view. This was one of the moments where it felt like being in paradise!!!

For dinner I followed a recommendation I got on TA (thanks Mark!!!) and headed the V café to a restaurant east of the market. Apparently the food is good, and they have live music from time to time.
So of I went and surprisingly found the place easily (with a quick stop near the hotel to try some of the little gridle cakes sold – grilled on little portable barbeques – they were very tasty snacks). It has a cosy interior, and there was live music. A very talented guy was singing a few songs while I got my food. I really enjoyed the atmosphere, though the food was a bit bland. But the live music made up for it. The first singer, Reyman, was fantastic, and a bit later an American expat joined him. Oh, they were good. They finished playing just after 9pm, bit not leaving before telling everyone that there was more live music going on in the nearby Escape Bar (located in the basement of the Muang Than Hotel).

I love live music so with two Australian girls who were also in the restaurant I headed to the bar. And I am so glad I did – as I loved that bar. As it is based in a hotel the bar was more targeted towards tourists, but nonetheless it is a great place to visit. There is live music every night, and most of the time the singer I saw in the restaurant is playing. Reyman is one great singer – mainly covering well known songs. But he is a great guy as well. I spoke to him quite a bit, and you cannot help but like him.
Though it was not just him playing – anyone can join the stage, either playing an instrument or singing. I am not sure what is in the water there, but the locals, expats and even tourists going onstage were fantastic. Dealing with all the music part is the owner’s husband Curtis. He is quite a character, but you can see how much he loves music. I think I saw him on stage with 10 different instruments, but he knows how to play the harmonica.
His wife is not that un-talented either. The duet with the American expat was great – and it was nice to hear some Vietnamese songs.


I had a blast there during the evening, having a few drinks, enjoying the great music and company I had. Surprisingly once again I was one of the last to leave the bar. Before I left Curtis just asked what I was doing the following day. As I didn’t had any set plans I was suddenly asked to join them to a wedding of an Australian guy and a local Vietnamese. Well – now I had something planned for the next day.

 

Earlier than I really wanted I got up and was ready for my first Vietnamese wedding. Instead of the bar I was told to head to the hotel Curtis and his wife owns – the Dalat Train Villa. It is located not too far from the old train station, and I must say I was more than impressed when I saw the dining area – it was an old train carriage. Curtis is a big train fan, so he got this old carriage, renovated and made it the café and breakfast place for their accommodation. For this alone I would probably consider staying a night there.

So with Curtis, his wife, two kids and Reyman we were off to the wedding. I only was aware that weddings in Vietnam involves lots of alcohol and karaoke – so I was wondering what will happen.
The location was one of the wedding convention building, with a massive indoor hall. Before entering the happy couple welcomed everyone. I felt a bit like one of the person from the movie Wedding Crasher as I didn’t really had an invite. But the groom was welcoming me when he was told I am here with Curtis. No need to come up with any story that I am a long lost relative from Germany with Vietnamese heritage or any very unlikely story…

The inside of the hall was nicely decorated, with quite a few tables there (20-30 with 8-10 chairs each). Next to each table was a bucket with ice, and a first beer crate was brought to the table. No need to wait for drinks. Sitting down I was instantly introduced to a few locals and expats joining the table, and soon enough the first few bottles were opened between us all. The hall was filling, and soon enough the ceremony started. It was not the actual wedding ceremony, but the reception. The ceremony took place a few weeks earlier.
It started with a performance of some Vietnamese dancing, before the big entrance of the happy couple – including a flower shower. This was followed by speeches of the couple and their parents (the English one translated into Vietnamese). It was actually very nice.

After the speeches the food delivery started. And not just one or two dishes – no. I counted four massive plates brought to the table – a mix of hot pots and little barbeques – filled with meatballs, noodles, mini dumplings. It was a lot – and everything tasted great. Obviously the beer was flowing freely, and throughout the hall you could hear the familiar ‘Mot, Hai, Ba, Yo’ .
I was actually wondering if the karaoke was starting anytime soon – but instead we were all treated by very good music. Reyman raised the bar very early with a few songs (to no-one surprises). This was followed by another young singer, an older Vietnamese who sang some Vietnamese songs, and then by an Australian friend of the groom, and another expats. I might repeat myself, but the amount of very good singers I saw in Dalat was amazing. I really would like to know what is in the local water!!! Beats any karaoke – hands down.
After a couple of hours the hall got empty rather quickly, but our table stayed with a few more guests trying our best to finish the last few bottles left at our table, having a good laugh.
Around 3pm it was time to leave, and instead of taking a taxi I got a lift back into town from Reyman and on of his friends (singer as well) – and my first ever Vietnamese wedding was over. It was a great experience, there was lots of beer and great food, and everyone was very friendly (even to strangers like me).

To freshen up my head after all the beer I took a little walk near my guesthouse, and somehow found another tiny alleys where I was able to observe some locals working home fixing cloth, carpets etc. Some of the sewing machines were very old, and I am sure they would be a nice addition for some collectors.


After the little walk it was time to start planning the next part of my journey. The next place I wanted to go was Kon Tum, but instead of taking the bus I was rather interested going there by motorbike. So after checking some reviews I headed to the Hangout Bar to find out about the itinerary and prices for that trip with the Easy Riders Dalat. I met the owner Tuan in the bar, and he showed me the potential itinerary. I thought maybe doing the trip in three days, but showing me the various stops he advised that the tour should be taken over four days to have a chance to see more of the Central Highlands. For the price of $80 per day I thought I had to think about, and that I would return to confirm if I do the tour or not. I heard good reviews about them, and it sounded very interesting – so I thought the money would be worthwhile for the experience.
On my way back to buy another cake to enjoy the late afternoon on the balcony again I saw a German couple I met in Can Tho a week ago – they cycled from the Mekong Delta to Dalat. I was rather impressed, and it was good to hear some of their stories.

For dinner I went to one of the restaurants along the tourist street Truong Cong Dinh- Goc Ha Than. The setting was actually very nice, and the food was good – and I was able to try something new once again As a starter I had Banh Bot Loc, dumplings wrapped in banana leaves. It was similar to part of Bahn Cuon I had both in HCMC and Tra Vinh. This nice dish was followed by Mango chicken, which was a nice dish. While it is a more touristy bit, it was nice to eat in a restaurant for a change again. And 140,000 Dong wasn’t too bad for two dishes and two beer.

After dinner I headed back to the Escape bar, to listen more live music, and enjoying the company there. The regular band knew me now from the night before and from the wedding, and it was good to speak more to both Curtis and Reyman. The music was good as usual, and once again the expat I saw the night before just showed how great of an entertainer he was – at one point he asked around where everyone is from, and to the embarrassment of some Australians he started to sing a kangaroo song. Later one he also played a few Vietnamese songs with some Vietnamese guests. It was just great. Later that night the wedding party arrived, and the atmosphere of the whole evening was just awesome. Once again I was one of the last guests and left when the bar closed well after midnight. The Escape Bar quickly became one of my favourite bars in Vietnam!!!

 

For my last full day in Dalat I tried something I haven’t done before – and in theory shouldn’t have done. I hired a scooter from the hotel. I was keen to see a bit from the area, and walking wasn’t an option. So after waiting ten minutes they organised a nice looking scooter, and after signing my life away I was ready to head off.
Seeing Vietnam traffic before I drove rather careful, and as usual I headed to the petrol station. Obviously there was no gas left, and I actually didn’t know how much I will drive around. So I did the obvious (stupid) thing – I fully filled the bike!!! At least I knew the hotel would be glad about.
Getting a map and some advise I headed south to get to the cable car I read about. No surprise that I missed the turn, and was suddenly outside of Dalat on my way back to the airport. While the scenery was nice, I quickly turned when I saw the cable cars behind me, just to turn into the wrong street. I followed that and it seems I ended up in the more luxurious area of town – considering the houses and massive gates. They all had a great view for sure.


In the third attempt I finally managed to get to the cable car station, and I just go the last one before they stopped for lunch (well – I didn’t leave early in the morning) and was told that I had to stay on the other side for at least an hour.
The cable car goes from the southern part of Dalat above a hill to large lake further south. And the cable car is impressive. You get up high above the trees and hill – which offers a fantastic view of the surrounding area. Though it might not be great for someone with a fear of heights.

The cable car stops next to the Truc Lam Zen monastery, which is located just above the Tuyen Lam lake. The temple area is rather nice with some beautiful gardens, and little paths along the buildings. Walking through a forest you get some further views over the lake (with the pleasant addition of being in the shade).

Following the path I was soon enough on the shore of the lake, with several a few souvenir shops lined at the stairs towards the temple, a few eating places and some locals offering boat rides on the lake, or to do it yourself with a paddle boat.
While the lake looks nice, there was not a path along the shores, so you just have walk on the side of the road. You have also a little dam on the other side, with a nice view both over the lake and a little valley and some hills. It was the most popular place for pictures taken there.
At the food stalls you can get the usual nice noodle dishes. With the view offered it was not a bad place for lunch.
Heading back to the cable car station (their lunch break was surely over), and at the car park in front of the temple I saw multiple tourist buses arriving. I think getting there by cable car is a much nicer way to arrive.

Arriving back on the other side again I was off with my scooter, driving through Dalat (which was actually not too bad) and made my way north of town towards one of a popular park. After passing the lake I was suddenly on a very wide alley, with no hotels in sights but quite a few restaurants and cafes. I am sure getting here for dinner might be a nice option.
One of the reason I headed north was the XQ Art Shop Museum. After visiting their shops in Hanoi, Hoi An and HCMC I was keen to see the place where some of their silk embroideries are made, and where the artists are trained.

And I really enjoyed my time there. The complex is split between smaller areas where some stories of the history of the organisation is explained, how their artists are trained and where they work. Considering  that some of their work takes a few month (sometimes two people are needed) – so it was clear why some of their art is not cheap. The setting was perfect to walk around, thanks to the trees and the shades everywhere. It was rather peaceful (seeing rabbits around just added to the atmosphere). Some areas very a bit humorous – for example a sorcerer room with some rather menu suggestions (even I would have declined the food by the sound of it!!!).


In the end I arrived in the area I really came – their exhibition room. Thankfully my timing was perfect and the electricity was not working. As the exhibition room didn’t have any windows it was rather dark, so to look at some of their work I  got a candle. Clearly this isn’t a good way to look at pieces before buying one of the ladies working there carried three pieces to the area with enough daylight. And wow – the work on offer is mind blowing. The details of the silk embroidery are wonderful, from the shades of trees to the different colours of the water. Some of them looked like painted. Obviously they are not cheap, but I was really tempted to buy one of the rather larger paintings.  After some long consideration I decided to buy a smaller one, but which still shows has a theme that reminds me of the Vietnam I have seen so far. Together with a smaller one it was still not cheap – but I prefer paying for some good quality and not of the poor quality work I have seen in some of the tourists trap souvenir stores.
In addition of the paintings they sell various other silk items (shirts, scarfs etc.). Several tour buses arrived while I was there, but they were clearly only interested in the shops.

It was time to head back into town, and with a stop to enjoy a nice view from a little hill while the sun was going down, I just stopped at the Hangout Bar to confirm with Tuan the details of the 4 day ride to Kon Tum (well – it wasn’t cheap, but I thought going with these Easy Riders was a good choice – and seeing the traffic having a good biker is definitely worthwhile).

Arriving at my hotel in one piece (ok, I didn’t really drive a lot ), I took a break in one of the café in front of it, before heading out for some food and drinks for the last time in Dalat. That night I decided to try some street food, so I headed towards the market, having some of the lovely gridle cake again (wasn’t as good as the previous nights, and checked some of the barbequed meat sold at the bottom of the stairs. It was quite busy, and a very relaxed atmosphere. I settle down at a little noodle stall in front of the now closed market stores. I saw a variety of noodles on offer – and fancied some of the rather thick yellow noodles. Sitting down in one of the charming little red chairs, watching the locals it seems I didn’t order the right dish, as I got a soup with the normal rice noodles. Well – no biggie as it was still lovely. After visiting some restaurants with higher prices it just showed once again that this kind of street food cannot be beaten for value and taste.

 

After dinner I went obviously back to the Escape bar, and in addition of Reyman there was a local girl singing as well. She was very good as well, and it was nice to see even more different singers performing on stage once again. Two Vietnamese tourists joined the stage as well, and one showed that Curtis was not the only one who can play the harmonica very well.  It was again an amazing night, a good laugh with Reyman, the rest of the band and Curtis (it felt I knew them already longer than just a few days) and far later than expected I left the bar (we were literally kicked out by Curtis wife as it was well after 1am…). It was a bit sad knowing that I wouldn’t return to the bar anytime soon.
Enjoying the fresh air while walking back to the hotel I enjoyed the free streets of Dalat, with some people still sitting at some food stalls, just a peaceful place. It was a great end to a great stay in a lovely town. But after another good night (although too short) it was time to see another side of the Central Highlands….

What can I say about Dalat. I thought it would be a touristy place (mainly for locals), and was therefore not sure if I would like it. But I did. Big time!!! It is a beautiful town in a lovely setting with the mountains around it, the lake in the middle of the town, lots of flowers, and comfortable temperature. Add some good eating places, a variety of sights, friendly and welcoming people (some just wanted to chat to you while walking around without selling) and you have a place you might not want to leave. Being lucky to find the Escape bar and meet Reyman and Curtis made the stay even more special. Being able to “crash” a wedding was a great experience as well. So I can just say how great Dalat as a place to visit is. I cannot recommended it enough. It is just another place I definitely want to revisit.

Accommodation:
Quynh Anh Hotel is a good budget option. It is centrally located with a great view over the lake and the market. Everything is in walking distance, with shops, cafes and the local market less than 2 minutes away. The top floor next to the balcony is a good place. While others can sue the balcony as well, the locals on my floor were kind enough to have their cigarette breaks on the level below (I had the curtains closed when I was away), and sitting outside in the evening to enjoy the view is a brilliant. Room was clean, staff was very friendly. The door is locked after midnight, but someone is sleeping downstairs and is happy to unlock the door when you arrive later (which happened a few times to me). They offer laundry service, and you can rent bikes and motorbikes. So overall for 240,000 for the best room is great value for money.

Recommendation:
There are few places worthwhile to visit in Dalat. In addition of just walking around the lake in the centre and the various lovely places in town you could head to the Crazy House, taking the cable car to Tuyen Lam lake and the Truc Lam Zen monastery, and even to the XQ Embroidery. For food head to the market – both for lunch and dinner. There are quite a few stalls in the evening, either snacks or some barbeque. Some of the restaurants along Truong Cong Dinn have good reviews (and Goc Ha Thanh was  good), though their are a little bit pricier.
For drinks I would say visit the Escape bar at last once if you like good music. Reyman and his band usually play every day, and the slightly higher prices are absolute ok for the good entertainment offered. Curtis and his wife are very welcoming (as were everyone there).  I loved every single night there. A good place to meet other travellers and expats as well. There are some other bars with live music as well, but I haven’t been there, so cannot judge the quality there.

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