My wife and I are planning a holiday in Cambodia, Vietnam and possibly Thailand in February 2014. This is the third time we are planning a trip to SEA and HOPEFULLY, this time around we will actually manage to travel there!!! We already have a relatively good idea of where to go in Cambodia (4 nights) and Vietnam (9 nights), however since flights to Cambodia or Vietnam are twice as expensive than flying to Thailand, we have now decided to fly in and out of Bangkok, which will also give us an extra week in SEA. My dilemma at this stage is whether or not to spend the extra week in Thailand or to extend our time in Cambodia and Vietnam.
The general feeling that I get from reading the various posts is that 2 weeks is sufficient to see the main attractions in both Vietnam and Cambodia - though others may argue that 1 month in each country would not be sufficient!!
Another query I have is whether to use a travel agent or to book everything myself. My argument in favour of using an agent is that we could possibly make better use of the limited time we have available to see as much as possible. We also do not want to run the risk of being disappointed with our choices, especially regarding accommodation. On the other hand you obviously get to pay a premium for using the services of an agent.
I will post our planned itinerary for Cambodia and Vietnam once we decide on whether to include Thailand or not.
Our interests in order of preference are:
1) culture and heritage;
2) historical sites and scenary;
3) relaxation and downtime (which includes lounging on beaches, walks, good eating and maybe a night or 2 enjoying the night life);
4) I would also consider going on a dive (maybe Thailand would be the best place for this)
Looking forward to hearing your comments.
spend the extra time in either vietnam or cambodia. In 4 days you will see hardly anything of cambodia and 9 days is far too short for Vietnam. Best choose one country only although I can see the point of going to vietnam and taking in Angkor wat
Sorry, but that's much too much for 2 short weeks. Even using all air travel, you'd be a basket case at the end of those 2 weeks. It's difficult to even do Vietnam decently in 3 weeks. The first week of Feb in VN is Tet - not an easy time to travel (expensive too).
Thank you for your posts. Would you consider April to be a better time to travel to SEA? So considering we still fly in to / out from Bankgkok, do you suggest we should head straight to Vietnam and spend most of our 3 weeks there? I would like to however spend at least 5 nights in Cambodia to visit Siem Reap and Angor Wat, since I doubt we will have another opportunity to travel to SEA, before heading back to Bangkok for our outbound flight. Do you think that this could work?
Thank you once again for your posts.
Yes it would work as I suggested in my earlier reply. 3 full days is OK to see Angkor Wat and other temples.
By land it will take at least a full day to get from SR to Vietnam but you could fly direct to Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh. You might then want to prioritise and decide if you want to concentrate on either the North or South of Vietnam rather than try and cover the whole country. If you decide to concentrate on the South I would go February (personally December/ Jan would be my option) but if you are going to concentrate on the North then I would go later
There is much to recommend in both. The hills along the border with China and Laos are fantastic if you like that sort of thing +Halong Bay and hanoi v/s the mekong delta/HCMcity and perhaps up the coast and in to Dalat
Sorry but I can only suggest you have a brouse through a guidebook and reach your own decision