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Southeast Asia

Southeast Asia forum

8 week itinerary advice - Thailand, Myanmar, Laos, Vietnam and Cambodia

Posted by vinny on 14/4/2016 at 12:13

Hello Guys, we are couple in our mid 20´s heading to SE Asia for our honey moon!

We are used to travel here in Brazil, mainly to beach locations. So it will also be a new experience for us to be going to non-beach places.

I know the concept of "less is more", but like I told you above, we usually travel to beach places, as we really like this. So I am a little bit affraid, we will get bored in some cities if I stay too long...

We are interested in:
- Local Culture, people and food
- Scenery
- Light trekking
- Cool places. We are not only interested in the party life, but it would be nice to hit some places with a nice night life
- SEA highlights


Itinerary:
9287527.jpg
*Ilha = Island
Some informations:
- First internacional trip
- First time travelling for 2 months
- We really don´t mind going to turistics areas.
- The itinerary is very flexible, as we can choose to stay more in one place than in another.
- Whenever we move from one place to another, I will count this day only for the displacement, even if it is a 1hr flight
- I´ve not allocated around 4 days, in case of change of plans, delays and other unexpected problems
- Temples and historic ruins are nice, but I feel I might get overwhelmed by them
- I need to be in Bkk in 13/07

Mainly doubts:
- Are we rushing in Burma? I´ve read that 2 full days in Bagan and 2 and Inle were fine
- Flight from Chiang Mai to Luang Prabang is kinda expensive. Is it worth to spend almost $400 and stay 4 full days in LP?
A similar situation is the flight from Mandalay to Chiang Mai, it is very expensive. Are there any cheaper alternatives I could try?

- From what I´ve read, it may rain in Vietnan and in some Thai islands, but that it would not be the kind of rain that ruins your vacations... Should I worry about the moonsons in any of these places?

- Any advices regarding to which thai islands I should visit?

- Am I missing anything or making any mistakes here? At first, I had not included Burma, but after finishing the first itinerary, I realized I would have around 1 week left, so why not use it there...

Thanks to you all!

#1 vinny has been a member since 13/4/2016. Posts: 3

Posted by Robprrtt on 14/4/2016 at 20:54

Hi,
I have some advice for you. First, i think you should spend more time in Inle Lake ( 1 more day) and from HCMC to Siem Reap, you should book flight because bus is slow and durty.
Happy travels!

#2 Robprrtt has been a member since 28/3/2016. Posts: 17

Posted by Miriamgr on 18/4/2016 at 11:02

A few thoughts:

I think you will need 3 days in BKK to get used to the city and enjoy the night markets with delicious food.

I think it's too bad to go to Cambodia and not go to Phnom Penh. There is incredible modern history there (S21 Prison and Killing Fields) which is very different than any other sites in SEA (in my experience so far). Plus there is good food, markets, a national museum and a riverside walking area.

If you want to go to Thai islands, I recommend Ko Lanta (leave from Krabi) and Ko Phayam (leave from Ranong).

I agree that seeing too many temples gets boring, which is why going to cities with modern history museums is good to mix things up (even just seeing one museum of modern history per city is great, and, in my opinion, teaches you more about the local people and culture than all the temples).

I highly recommend taking a cooking class.... You can do that almost anywhere. It's fun to do together as a couple and then you get to eat the food you made, and learn the secrets of the local cuisine!

Don't forget that a big part of the charm of SEA is the natural scenery. You might want to do a trek or something. You can do them with just one overnight, or two, or three or more, and can combine trekking, kayaking, biking, etc. It's nice to mix up the nature experiences with the urban experiences.

And finally, don't rush. Because you might get sick and need to stay someplace with a nice bathroom for a couple of days [img]smileys/smile.gif[/img] or you might be tired of sitting in dirty buses and want to just chill out for a few days and not have to think about the next "move" all the time.

That's all! Good luck!

#3 Miriamgr has been a member since 18/4/2016. Posts: 3

Posted by ediocastanhelfilho on 18/4/2016 at 20:09

Hi,

I´m from Brazil as well and doing a similar trip than you. Except than I´m changing Myanmar to China. It looks good to me.

From what I saw in your itinerary you are going 3 times into Thailand.

On my original plan I was going 5 times into Thailand but I was told that the maximum amount of times that I could go in is 2 times. I called the embassy in Brasilia and that is what they told me. I´m freaking out bc I already bought the flight tickets.

Have you (or anyone in the community) heard something similar?

If that makes life easier, I also have an Italian passport.

Safe travels.

#4 ediocastanhelfilho has been a member since 18/4/2016. Posts: 1

Posted by vinny on 20/4/2016 at 13:22

Hi guys, thanks for all the answers!

Robprrtt :
Isn´t 3 days too much in Inle? 2 days would not be enough?
Thanks for the tip! I will book a flight from HCMC to PP or to Siem Reap!


Miriamgr
You´re right! Initially, I was going to spend 3 days in BKK, but after including Myanmar I had to make a few changes.
The reason I´m spending just 1 full day in BKK is because I want to be in Chiang Mai by the weekend.
I´ve heard that the weekend markets in CM are better than in weekday.(correct me if I am wrong).
Anyway, I intend to spend 2 or 3 days in BKK after I come back from the beaches.

About Phnom Penh, I´ve read a lot of reviews saying it was not a nice city. But like I told you before, my itinerary can be very flexible. I will look for more information about PP and see if I can include it after I leave HCMC.

About the islands, I had little information about Ko Phayam, thanks for the recommendation. I see that both of them are located in the Andaman Sea... Should I worry about heave rains there(end june/begin july)?

Cooking classes are definitely going to be scheduled! I´ve read a lot about them!

Yeah, I know SEA has a lot fo natural scenery. I like stuff like kayaking and biking. Just like you told, I would like to mix nature experiences with urban experiences!

Finally, we really do not want to rush, that´s why I have posted my itinerary here so people could comment on it. I´m still thinking I´m rushing a little in Myamnar, maybe I should skip Inle and stay one more day in Bagan?

ediocastanhelfilho
I called the embassy today and there are some misunderstandings about the info you´ve posted.
Once we ( Brazilians ) are in Thailand, we are allowed to re-enter the country twice.

My itinerary goes like this:
Myanmar - Thailand ( 1° time re-entering Thailand)
Cambodia - Thailand ( 2° time re-entering Thailand )

So, I´m going back to Thailand the 2 times I´m allowed to...
In you case, you won´t be able to come back to Thailand 5 times like that...

Try calling the embassy and explaining them the situation. Maybe there´s a visa you can apply for.

#5 vinny has been a member since 13/4/2016. Posts: 3

Posted by Yesterday on 20/4/2016 at 23:45

I think your trip looks great!
As you mentioned both uncertainty about Laos and kayaking I thought I'd just chime in that I kayaked near Luang Prabang a few years ago and loved it!
I also enjoyed Pnom Penh, but I guess everyone is looking for something different in their trips.
For modern history as the person above posted I would recommend the Ethnology Museum and Women's Museum in Hanoi if you have time

#6 Yesterday has been a member since 9/8/2015. Posts: 33

Posted by vinny on 26/4/2016 at 10:51

Thanks, Yesterday!

I will definitely try kayaking in LP!

I´ve been looking at my itinerary everyday and I think I will leave Burma after I come back from Cambodia.

I was rushing a lot in Burma and I think I would be a little exhausted right in the beginning of my trip. Also, it is kinda expensive there ( hotels ).

Since I will be on my honeymoon, I will slow down in Thai, Laos, Vietnam and Cambodia and then I will see If I will have time and money to go to Burma.
=)

#7 vinny has been a member since 13/4/2016. Posts: 3


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