My name is Ben. I'm half Spanish, half Dutch and this is my first post on this forum.
A friend of mine is marrying in Koh Samui on the first week of September and what better excuse than to convert his marriage into a 4 to 6 week trip to SEA.
I have been reading quite a bit but I am totally disorientated and frankly I don't know where or how to start (to plan) my trip.
My first (rough) idea is a sort of round trip that looks something like this:
+ Arrival: BKK
+ Koh Samui
+ Cross into Myanmar and travel northwards
+ Return to Thailand - Chiang Rai (?)
+ Phayao (?)
+ Chiang Mai
+ Fly to Siem Reap
+ Return to Thailand - BKK
+ Departure: BKK
What do you guys think?! Is this too excessive?! Should I leave Myanmar out? Any recommendations? Is it possible to cross over land to Myanmar from the south and cross again to Thailand from the north?
As for the amount of days for each place, I want to leave the dates as open as possible so as to go a bit with the flow. But it would be something like this: 3 weeks Thailand, 2 weeks in Myanmar and 1 week Cambodia.
Welcome to Travelfish Ben,
That's a lot of miles to cover in six weeks -- also bear in mind September is the tail end of the wet season in southwest Thailand and Burma -- so, particularly in Burma, the going could be slow.
Can you cross into Burma in the south?
Yes - via Ranong in Thailand.
Can you exit via the north back into Thailand?
Yes as two points -- roughly half way up, re-entering at Mae Sot and way north entering back into Thailand at Mai Sai -- but for the latter you have to take a domestic flight in Burma to get to the border crossing.
Can you go south to north in Burma in two weeks?
Yes but I wouldn't recommend it.
If you really want to go to Burma, I'd fly in and out from Bangkok to Yangon, spend ten days to two weeks there and visit Yangon, Bagan, Mandalay and Inle Lake. This is pretty much the top shelf items and all can be covered in two weeks without flying.
I'd then do the Burma bit at either the start or end of your trip. Other than that, arrive at Bangkok, down to Samui and back for the wedding (I'd skip Krabi due to weather), then north to Ayutthaya, Sukhothai, Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai and then either bus or fly back to Bangkok. That is three weeks easy. Then fly to Siem Reap for Angkor -- if you have a week, I'd be inclined to add in either Battambang or Phnom Penh.
Whatever you do you're covering a lot of miles, but something like the above is certainly doable. If you want to slow down, I'd consider dropping either Burma or Cambodia.
Hope that helps - more questions, ask away!
Thank you for your quick and valuable advice.
I think that I'll drop Burma from the list, I might be jamming too much into one trip and I'd rather take it easy. It's been a while since my last "proper" backpacker trip and I am anxiuous... to see, to discover, to learn.
PD.- Congratulations on travelfish!