My friend and I are traveling to SE-Asia from the end of July to the beginning of September (5 weeks), and would like your advice on our itinerary. We would like to get a taste of everything Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, and Vietnam, but want to make sure we are not rushing or cramming.
We initially are planning on arriving in Bangkok, staying there for 3 days, then heading to Phuket and the islands for 5 days. We are then planning on flying to Chiang Mai for 4 days, and then crossing the Laos border to Louangphrabang through Chiang Kong and Pakbeng, total of 6 days.
From here we are unsure, because we would like to visit the south of Laos (Pahkse and Don Debt) and then go to Siemreab, Phnom Penh and Sihankouville, before finishing our trip with Vietnam: HCMC, Nha Trang, Hue, and Hanoi. However, this may be cramming a bit and as due to time constraints we could only realistically stay maximum 3 days average for city and this is where we would like your advice if possible. Is this realistic, or is there any way we could stay longer in certain places? Are there any places you would definitely recommend over others at this period of the year?
#1 itraveler has been a member since 17/6/2013. Posts: 2
You clearly state you don't want to rush, but that's exactly what you would be doing if you stick to this itinerary. 4 countries in 5 weeks is much too rushed, and you will return home very confused as to where you've just traveled. I recommend no more than 2 countries for a first timer. Why not consider just Thailand and Laos (don't omit Luang Prabang).
(5 weeks is also an ideal period of time to just see Vietnam)
#2 daawgon has been a member since 17/4/2007. Posts: 1,091
Thanks a lot for your much appreciated input. In Thailand we really "only" want to see BKK, Chang Mai, and a few islands. How much time would you recommend for these places?
#3 itraveler has been a member since 17/6/2013. Posts: 2