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Southeast Asia forum

first backpacking trip : 28 days itinerary -- help anyone?

Posted by bazooka on 16/7/2011 at 17:00

hi there!

im planning my first backpacking trip for's what i have so far..

day 1: Manila to HCMC
day 2-4: 3days in/around HCMC
day 5: HCMC - Can tho
day 6-7: 2days Can tho
day 8: Can Tho - Chau Doc
day 9-10: 2days Chau Doc
day 11: Chau Doc - Phnom pehn
day 12-15: 4 days in/around PP
day 16: PP - siem reap
day 17-21: 3days angkor + 2days in/around SR
day 22: SR - Kuala Lumpur
day 23-27: 5days in/around Kuala Lumpur
day 28: KL - manila (phils)

i would really appreciate feedback, suggestions and recommendations from anybody here in TF as im not sure if the time alloted for each place is enough to "experience" the local life, history & culture of these places (given my limited time and availability of seat sale :-) ). im hoping to save the northern/central part of vietnam for a later trip...i also prefer to give beaches and parties a miss (since i will be island-hopping /beach bumming in Palawan anyway for a week, before flying out to saigon) or shouldn't i????. im planning to go last week of november - mid december.

* is the time alloted for each place enough or will it be too rushed?
* given the time constraint, what are the sights/ activities that shouldn't be missed in HCMC, Mekong Delta, SR, PP, KL? (preferably: sceneries/ecotours, rivers/forests, foodtrips, museums/historical sites, temples, a chance to interact with locals (and maybe, ride an elephant???? :-)
* 2 days in chau doc -- too long? should i be better off saving the other day for another place?
* any weather concerns?

thank you all, and thank you TF for this great site!you are truly helpful and inspiring.


#1 bazooka has been a member since 12/7/2011. Posts: 2

Posted by MADMAC on 16/7/2011 at 17:34

My advice would be not to allocate time to any one place. Go, and when you don't want to be there anymore, go to the next place, and so on until you run out of time.

#2 MADMAC has been a member since 6/6/2009. Posts: 6,957
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Posted by busylizzy on 16/7/2011 at 19:22

Your schedule isn't too bad as a guide to work to. Possible two days in Chau Doc is unnecessary. Personally, I also think 5 days in KL is too long - but then I'm not fan of KL. Maybe considering spending 2-3 days in Melaka as it's not all that far from KL (maybe a 4 hr bus ride) and it's not a bad little town with lots to see and do. And you might find that it's quite easy to spend more time in Siem Reap as there are quite a few things to do, including day trips out of SR.

I think the key thing is to have your schedule as a guide, but don't book anything other than your start and end flights. This will give you maximum flexibility to change your mind as you go - and that WILL happen! Sometimes you land in a place, and you are ready to move on. Other times, you may find that you really take a liking to a town and want to spend a bit more time absorbing the vibe of the place.

#3 busylizzy has been a member since 31/12/2007. Location: New Zealand. Posts: 2,153
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Posted by bazooka on 17/7/2011 at 00:56

thanks so much madmac and busylizzy! i just realized now that ive been overplanning this trip.LOL. hmm, i like the idea of having a more flexible "schedule" (or maybe not having one) and just let the "feel" of the place guide me. boink!why didn't i think of this before? hahhahaa!

thanks guys you've been a great help! happy & safe travels to you both.

#4 bazooka has been a member since 12/7/2011. Posts: 2

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