Hi. My husband and I are interested in travelling to SE Asia for 2 months, Jan and Feb 2013. We are first timers to Asia and we are not sure of how many countries we can realisically visit in that time frame. We thought we would visit Thailand Cambodia Vietnam and Laos but after reading the messageboards we realise 2 months isnt really long enough to do all these countries, so my question is.. which 2 countries (or 3?!) would you recommend?
We are not backpackers, we are in our 40's, so we like B&B's, hotels etc. We like the Old Towns of cities, day trips to various attractions although not sporty trips more waliking and cultural or nature. We also like to have lots of choice of restaurants bars and opportunity to meet local people and other tourists so we dont really like quiet and secluded, we do like a beach now and again too! Any ideas on where to concentrate our 2 months on??
#1 auldreekier has been a member since 27/5/2012. Posts: 1
You're never too old to be a backpacker - :)
4 countries are doable in 2 months as long as you don't won't to see the whole country and stick to a region... i.e eastern thailand, laos, cambodia and southern vietnam is one example. The best way is to do research... what do you want to see in each country? Make a list. See https://www.travelfish.org/trip_planner/
If you want to be around other tourists (boring in my opinion) Thailand is the place for you :) What's wrong with quiet and secluded? - lol.
Since it's your first time I suggest staying a week in one place then moving to another instead of rushing around. If your budget is unlimited you can just fly around, but part of the experience is travelling like the locals on beaten up buses or third class trains.
"But part of the experience is travelling like the locals on beaten up buses or third class trains."
In my view it's the bad part of the experience...
The locals also drive drunk all the time, wear no helmuts on motorcycles, and drink Lao Cao which is so bad it gives white lightning a good name.
I do agree with altmtl in that if you stick to regions that are close together you could hit all four countries you have described, but I am not sure that meets your actual intent.
Since you are probably starting in Bangkok that should eat a week. The city is huge but most of the sights are located closer to the Chao Praya river. A little research here can steer you there. There are a lot of hotels of all ranges around the Sukhimvite area which is also loaded with all varieties of restaraunts and nightlife. Once you've had enough of Bangkok, a lot of people like to check out Ayudaya and Kanchanaburi. They are all relatively close to Bangkok. After that you will probably have to decide (if you don't want to backtrack) whether you want to go north to Chiang Mai and then on to Laos or south and hit the islands and beaches or East and head towards Cambodia and Angkor Wat. There are a number of interesting places you can stop along the way, so you just have to make up your mind how you want to handle that.
I think it's a good idea not to fix a timeline and simply move on when a place is no longer interesting for you. That makes it stress free and relaxing.