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Indonesia forum

Indonesia or Thailand

Posted by helixusion on 10/9/2011 at 18:24

Just wondering how much money will a trip to Indonesia will cost me if I include Surabaya, Gunung Bromo, Lombok and Gilli islands in my itinerary. I had initially planned for a trip to Thailand, but the hordes of tourists, crowds and sleaze daunted me. Regardless, of a few negatives, Thailand is an awesome country to visit with a lot of stunning sights. But, I am looking for serene unspoilt seascapes and landscapes and I doubt that is feasible in Thailand. I asked a few backpacker friends of mine , who recently tripped to Thailand and Indonesia and they found Indonesia better and cheaper. Now, initially I decided on Southern Thailand for a period of 15 days. But, the crowds and seemingly exorbitant prices in places like Phi Phi deterred me. Now, I am in a great dilemma of choosing the right destination that my money and time can afford me. Please help me with your suggestions and opinions.

#1 helixusion has been a member since 24/7/2011. Posts: 26

Posted by swag on 10/9/2011 at 19:50

Such an ambiguous post. I mean what is your budget. What are your interests. What do you mean about sleaze in Thailand. Why do you think great seascapes and landscapes are unachieavble in Thailand. You could be sitting on the Mekong up in Nong Khai, sitting on a beach south of Prachuap Kiri Khan in the Gulf of Thailand. Not much sleaze there last time I looked. Hanging out on the islands off Trang I mean the possibilities are endless. Maybe you need to think outside the square a tad. Sorry to be a little strident but hey this sort of post just gets me!!!!!

#2 swag has been a member since 28/3/2007. Location: Australia. Posts: 330


Posted by swag on 10/9/2011 at 19:53

Such an ambiguous post. I mean what is your budget. What are your interests. What do you mean about sleaze in Thailand. Why do you think great seascapes and landscapes are unachieavble in Thailand. You could be sitting on the Mekong up in Nong Khai, sitting on a beach south of Prachuap Kiri Khan in the Gulf of Thailand. Not much sleaze there last time I looked. Hanging out on the islands off Trang I mean the possibilities are endless. Maybe you need to think outside the square a tad. Sorry to be a little strident but hey this sort of post just gets me!!!!!

#3 swag has been a member since 28/3/2007. Location: Australia. Posts: 330

Posted by helixusion on 10/9/2011 at 20:36

I am sorry, if i came to you as a Thailand basher. Have no misgivings my friend, according to me, Thailand is an awesome country with great diversity of natural wonders with picturesque sea and landscapes. But, unfortunately I am a sort of person who prefers my own solitude and shuns the crowds at any cost. I am aware of the islands off the Trang province like Koh Muk and Koh Kradan and my research revealed that they are absolutely splendid for me. However, deeper introspection revealed that I would get more value for my wanderlustful appetite ,if I would venture a bit further to Indonesia and visit places like the Gili Islands and Gunung Bromo. I am just asking for an opinion from people who has seen both lands, err... seas. And,no, I do not think that Thailand is a Red Light country but being a young solo backpacker, in touristy areas can be a bit of a problem. I apologize if that annoys you, but I am just trying to get the most out of my precious money and time. More than money, time is a greater constraint for me. However, my budget is around $1500 for around 15-20 days. Peace [img]smileys/smile.gif[/img])

#4 helixusion has been a member since 24/7/2011. Posts: 26

Posted by SBE on 10/9/2011 at 20:41

You said you were going at the beginning of the year in another post. That matters...it'll be monsoon season in Indonesia until the end of March (ish).

PS The Gilis are very like Thai islands, quite touristy, and they get pretty busy in high season (July and August)

#5 SBE has been a member since 14/4/2008. Location: Global Village. Posts: 2,002
 Where has SBE been? 

Posted by helixusion on 10/9/2011 at 21:30

I will travel in the month of April-May to SEA. So, do you think, Thailand will be just as good as Indonesia? Will places off the Trang coast like Koh Muk and Koh Kradan, be better than Gili and Togean Islands? My biggest problem is time more than anything else, my job wouldn't allow me a leave of more than 20 days at a stretch. So, the vacation this pretty important to me as I can go on a leave only once a year. First, I had Thailand in mind...but then a friend suggested Indonesia and after some naive research, it seems to me that its a tad better. I might be wrong. Thanks in advance for your suggestions.

#6 helixusion has been a member since 24/7/2011. Posts: 26

Posted by SBE on 11/9/2011 at 16:00

April/May is a very good time to travel to Indonesia. Weather should be good and it won't be too busy. But (and this is a very big but) getting to places like the Togeans is uncomfortable and time consuming. You'd waste days of your vacation just getting there and away. The transport options to the Togeans are very limited (eg there are just two overnight ferries a week from Gorontalo at the moment) If the ferry schedule doesn't fit perfectly with your dates you could waste days hanging around waiting for the ferry and then have to leave the Togeans earlier than you wanted and kick your heels some more but not enough time left to go anywhere else. Maybe southern Lombok would be an option (haven't been there) but the Gilis were way more touristy and developed than Ko Kraden was last time I looked. I haven't been to Kradan for several years but from what Lizzy says it still sounds pretty quiet and undeveloped there.

April is the hottest time of year in Thailand and it will be busy with locals travelling in the middle of the month because of the Songkran festival (which starts around April13th and lasts about 5 days). If you're going after about the 20th then everywhere should be relatively quiet because the bulk of the high season tourists will have gone by then.

April/May is the start of the rainy season on the Andaman Coast but the weather shouldn't be too bad. August and September are the wettest months and you'll probably just get a few heavy downpours in the evenings with plenty of sun during the day ... though I can't guarantee that of course!

If you had a month or two to play around with, I'd say go to the Togeans. With only 20 days in total I'd say go to the Trang islands because getting there and away is so much simpler, quicker and more comfortable too.

The Trang islands are pretty beautiful too and there won't be many tourists around at that time of year. $1500 is heaps for 20 days in Thailand, particularly in low season so don't worry about that aspect of things!

Unfortunately Ko Rok will be closed when you're there. It's a national park island (camping accommodation only) and well worth a visit too, but it's a bit too far away from the other islands for a longtail day trip, particularly if sea conditions aren't optimal. Visiting Ko Muk and Ko Ngai won't be a problem from Ko Kradan though because they're very close by.

#7 SBE has been a member since 14/4/2008. Location: Global Village. Posts: 2,002
 Where has SBE been? 

Posted by helixusion on 11/9/2011 at 19:31

Thank you so much for your suggestion!

#8 helixusion has been a member since 24/7/2011. Posts: 26

Posted by helixusion on 11/9/2011 at 19:31

Thank you so much for your suggestion!

#9 helixusion has been a member since 24/7/2011. Posts: 26

Posted by helixusion on 11/9/2011 at 19:31

Thank you so much for your suggestion!

#10 helixusion has been a member since 24/7/2011. Posts: 26


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