Ndalatando was named Salazar by the Portuguese colonial authorities in 1936, honoring the Portuguese dictator Salazar. This was later modified to Vila Salazar. On 28 May 1956, the town was elevated to the status of city (cidade in Portuguese). After gaining independence on 11 November 1975, the Angolan government gave it back the name Ndalatando, effective 18 July 1976. The history of the place is traced back to the 1840s.
The city is limited in the north by the river Luinha, and in the east, south and west by the Lucala River river.
It is served by a station on the northern railway of Luanda Railway. The national road No. 230 links N'dalatando to Luanda in the West and Malanje in the East.