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  • Bangkok to Siem Reap

    Bangkok to Siem Reap

    The trip from Bangkok to Siem Reap and Angkor Wat is one of the most talked about routes in the region: scam buses, visa rip-offs, over-priced taxis and a whole legion of shysters and con artists to boot. But in the end, it’s a straightforward trip that’s as easy as pie — if you know what to expect. Here’s a cheat sheet to get you there and back without having to lose your sanity.

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  • Buying a touring motorbike in Vietnam

    Buying a touring motorbike in Vietnam

    By far, the best way to experience Vietnam is by motorbike. As with elsewhere in southeast Asia, here, the motorbike is king. They are cheap to buy, easy to repair, and they can take you places the tour bus would never dare to go. What's more, there are no restrictions on foreigners buying motorbikes. All you need is a passport and valid visa, and you'll receive a title of ownership and a deed of transfer. Rentals will suffice for most, but if you plan on serious bike time, buying is more economical -- you can even sell the bike before you leave and recoup most of the expense.

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  • Bangkok to Ko Samui, Pha Ngan & Tao

    Bangkok to Ko Samui, Pha Ngan & Tao

    The Bangkok to Ko Samui, Ko Pha Ngan and Ko Tao route is one of the most common paths taken by travellers and tourists on their holidays in Thailand. Here's a blow by blow summary of the ins and outs of getting to and from Bangkok to the Gulf of Thailand islands.

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  • What is the best island in Thailand?

    What is the best island in Thailand?

    Thailand is famous for its tropical islands. From Phuket to Ko Lipe, Ko Samui to Ko Tao and from one Ko Chang to another, there's an island for every month, a beach for every week, and a new palm tree to lay under for every day. But the question begs, "What is the best island in Thailand?"

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  • The Gibbon Experience

    The Gibbon Experience

    Blame it on Alex Garland's The Beach, but when I first heard of a place deep in the jungle where people could fly through trees and stay in tree-top houses it sounded like an old wives' tale. I expected to be passed a map and to find myself lost, alone in the middle of the Golden Triangle. What I hadn't bargained for was The Gibbon Experience.

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  • Crossing the Cambodia Laos border

    Crossing the Cambodia Laos border

    Of all the border crossings in the region, the overland crossing between Cambodia and Laos has been one of the most changeable. In some ways, Dom Kralor has all the ingredients of a pain in the posterior crossing -- corrupt border officials, inconsistent travel advice and of course wildly varying traveller tales. Read on to find out the best way to cross this ever-changing border.

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  • Is Lao Airlines safe to fly?

    Is Lao Airlines safe to fly?

    Update: On 16 October 2013 a Lao Airlines flight from Vientiane to Pakse crashed. The following story is not about that crash, but we're following developments here. You're in Chiang Mai and want to fly to Luang Prabang. Or, you are in Vientiane and want to visit Angkor Wat, but don't have the time to go overland and can't afford flying via Bangkok. There's the rub. Sometimes a Lao Airlines flight is the only way to get where you want to go in the time you have. But given the airline's bad reputation for safety, what do you do? How bad is it really?

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  • Malaria:Cambodia,Laos,Thailand,Vietnam


    One of the most commonly asked questions by first-time travellers to Southeast Asia is "Should I take malarials?". It's a simple question, with a complicated answer, best summed up as "it depends". Here's ten pointers that we hope will help you make a more informed decision regarding malarials and travel to Southeast Asia.

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  • Being fed Fido: Eating dog in Vietnam

    Being fed Fido: Eating dog in Vietnam

    Being something of a culinary adventurer, I decided to try dog meat, and brought a Vietnamese guide along with me to share the experience. Afterall, eating dog is so much friendlier with two. Approaching the restaurant, I was in for a bit of a shock: a sign outside advertising Thit Cho, with a blown-up photo of a healthy-looking German shepherd prominently displayed. As if this were somehow appetizing. But then, when you think about it -- back in the US, a jolly cartoon pig on a sign outside a pork barbecue is not unheard-of. This was the same thing, right?

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  • A Litany of Scams: Thailand

    A Litany of Scams: Thailand

    To truly get inside the mind of an accomplished scammer you must first serve yourself up as a delectable juicy morsel. So thorough is my ability to get served, I now have a list of warnings and common scams operating in South East Asia to share with you. Please do not feel pity. My intentions were always noble and I have done a fine job in redistributing my wealth to others.

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  • Staying at a Thai monastery

    Staying at a Thai monastery

    Dawn breaks in Thailand. A wave of orange sweeps over the entire country as monks from all over leave their monasteries and depart for their daily alms round. This scene has attracted more and more Westerners towards a closer glimpse of the lifestyle of a Thai Buddhist monk. Spending time in a monastery during your visit to Thailand can allow such an experience, and in fact was for me one of the greatest times I had in the country. Walking into any monastery for the first time means leaving your old world behind in exchange for new, far different one. No cell phone... No laptop... No iPod. This is a good thing.

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  • Corruption in Thailand

    Corruption in Thailand

    It seems barely a week passes without some new ghastly story hitting the airwaves about corruption in Thailand. Be it beer mat nabbing mums in Phuket, tourists being extorted at the airport or the old tried and tested gem scam story it seems Thailand should be slapped with a "buyer beware" sticker. Over the last year, and far more seriously in Travelfish's humble opinion, we've seen ongoing political uncertainties, street protests in Bangkok, border clashes with Cambodia and the neverending shifting sands of visa regulations. More and more often I wake wondering: Does Thailand really want tourists to come at all?

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