I'd like to draw on all your experiences within SE Asia to create a memorable 4 week trip in November this year.
I've seen lots of posts on this forum about people trying to cram too much intoa short space of time - I understand this, but realistically this is going to be the last chance we might have in SE Asia so I need some inspiration on the best places to visit.
We fly into Bangkok at the start of November and expect to have a minimum of two days acclimatisation (We've been to Bangkok before so we don't want to stay much longer)
From Bangkok I was thinking about heading to;
Siem Reap / Angkor Wat > Phnom Penh > Sihanoukville / Koh Rong > Ha Tien / Phu Quoc > Ho Chi Minh City
I was thinking about taking an internal flight to Hanoi then making our way to Luang Prabang > Vientiane then back to Bangkok for our flight home.
This all seems a bit too much for the time we have so I need help from you all, I'd love to go to Hanoi, but I'm thinking the leg from HCMC > Hanoi > Laos is going to stretch our trip the most?
I was also concerned with the weather in November which made me stick to the beach locations in Cambodia/South West Vietnam. I've been told by my girlfriend that we definitley need some beach time :-)
Looking forward to hearing your thoughts.
#1 markstreet has been a member since 23/4/2014. Posts: 3
It depends what u like doing. I like picking 1 or 2 areas and seeing them well rather than jumping around and seeing little in each spot. Does it really matter if u skip a town? A lot of towns r same same. Its the activities u do that u remember.
Thanks for the reply Leonard. I suppose it's all down to preference....I suppose I just didn't want to go all that way and realise I missed an 'essential'....
#3 markstreet has been a member since 23/4/2014. Posts: 3
i spent 5 days in SR and i thought that was defintley enough, i got a 3 day pass but didn't spend all day there for 3days. Then i spent 5 days in PP but i think 2 is enough its not a brilliant city but defintley worth stopping as its the capital and the history there. Then i would skip sianoukville although you have to pass through, my opinion was that its abit of a hole. I loved Hanoi , its quiet similar to HCMC as its a city but i realy liked the old quarter. halong bay is worth a look if you go toHanoi. It all comes down to how long you want to spend on beaches realy but i would say SR, PP, KR, PQ, HCMC and Hanoi then fly back to Bangkok. :)
Thanks for that Miriam. Looking at the other comments on Sihanoukville at seems like we will just pass through....
It looks like I'll drop Laos off the list then...from what I've heard Vientiane and Luang Prabang are not particularly easy (long) to get to from Hanoi anyways....so alot of travel time might get swallowed up there :-(
#5 markstreet has been a member since 23/4/2014. Posts: 3
Two years ago I took a roughly 3 week trip from Siem Reap > Battambang > PP > Kampot > Mekong Delta > HCMC and it was just the right amount of time. I'd recommend you consider Ha Tien as a place to just roll through and instead break up the journey to HCMC with either a couple nights stopping in Kampot where you can rent motorbikes and have some wonderful exploring, and/or in Can Tho to get a feel for a delta city, check out the floating markets and just wander around the streets of a place that is one of my favorites in Vietnam, if not all of SE Asia - if only for the fact that there really isn't much to do but get to know the people around.
With four weeks you could slow your pace a little and plan to just end up in HCMC. Since you're including Phu Quoc you can easily get there from Kampot in a day, then onward to Can Tho for a couple nights after Phu Quoc, where your girlfriend might be happy to lounge an extra day or two on the beaches. A few days in either of these locations will be nice and it makes your trip more 'regional' -- 2.5 weeks in Cambodia, 1.5 weeks in Mekong Delta.