Posted by Purplehayes on 5/1/2017 at 08:30
Hi there, This is my first post but I have read a lot of others, i have been through the itineraries, done a lot of other research and i speak to customers at work where possible too haha. I am getting mixed opinions of the weather in may so here is my dilemma.
My work has approved me 3 months leave, I am leaving in march and return on the 6th of june. Ideally i would have liked to follow the general path from Bangkok through to Northern Thailand and so on and then ended up back at the beaches for the last part of the trip- however i have read a few weather reports etc. and now i'm not too sure what i should do.
My question is, am i going to be able to enjoy the beaches, do dives, relax etc at the end of may/Early June? Or am i better to reverse the trail and start off at the islands in march? Help!
Thanks in advance, Dana.
#1 Purplehayes has been a member since 8/5/2016. Location: Australia. Posts: 11
Posted by DLuek on 6/1/2017 at 00:26 TF writer
Weather in the south is usually a mixed bag in May -- you could get lucky and have mostly sunshine or unlucky and get stuck in a tropical depression for days. But if you want to be in the islands when there's a much lower chance of rain and rough seas, and when ferries are operating at full steam and all resorts, restaurants, tours, national park islands, etc., are 100% open for business, then you should go in March. This is a great time to hit the islands b/c you still have sunny weather but also thinner crowds and shoulder-season prices.
This is especially true for the islands on the Andaman Sea (west coast) side. If you do go in late May / early June, you'd be better off in the lower Gulf islands (Tao, Phangan, Samui), which will still be more or less operating at full tilt.
By the way, March/April is a bad time to hit North / Northeast / Central Thailand due to extreme heat, parched landscapes and, in the North, thick (sometimes dangerous) haze from farmers burning their fields. May/June, on the other hand, is good because the air has been cleared by early rains and the paddies are being sewn with young rice plants that blanket the landscape a beautiful shade of green. Some rain should be expected but it usually doesn't pour down all day long.
#2 DLuek has been a member since 19/6/2008. Location: Thailand. Posts: 1,346
Posted by Purplehayes on 6/1/2017 at 05:40
Oh I didn't even consider what the weather would be like in the North if I went there then. So much to factor in! Sounds to me like my best solution is to reverse the trail and start my trip in the islands in March!
On that note- I have been struggling to find any sample itineraries that do actually reverse the trail so if you have any links or recommendations I would appreciate it. I would like to visit Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam along with Thailand, I'm interested more in sightseeing, local culture, food and adventuring VS partying and drinking etc. I still would love to meet people along the way as it is my first solo trip :)
Thanks so much for your response- it has given me the clear answer that i had been looking for.
#3 Purplehayes has been a member since 8/5/2016. Location: Australia. Posts: 11
Posted by Purplehayes on 8/1/2017 at 14:33
Its quite early in the morning here so i cant come up with much yet. But i had a look at the rules and the about private messaging and found this-
The Travelfish.org forum includes a very basic private messaging facility. Through this you can privately exchange messages with other Travelfish.org members. Private messaging is disabled by default. To enable it, you need to login, go to the Member Centre, click on Member Profile, then Edit Profile and make your profile "public" and enable "private messaging". Note that the other member you wish to communicate with must also have it enabled.
So lets both do that for starters? ????
#4 Purplehayes has been a member since 8/5/2016. Location: Australia. Posts: 11
Posted by Viktor on 8/1/2017 at 14:36
Hi Dana, Hi TF!
I'm in a very similar situation. I'm going from mid-March to mid-May and initially planned to follow the notorious Banana Pancake Trail with a few changes here and there – but the heat and the field burning in April makes it a little more complicated than I thought.
At the moment I'm also trying to figure out a good way to reverse the trail. Very roughly, I plan to go to the islands in March, to Cambodia in early April (first half), then to Central and Northern Vietnam (second half). After that, I thought taking a flight from Hanoi to Vientiane and going to Northern Thailand for the last two weeks (1st half of May) from there, via Luang Prabang.
The problem remains that Cambodia seems to be not too pleasant in April (Vietnam is apparently much better, so maybe a shorter stay in Cambodia and longer in Vietnam?). Also, I thought it could be worth spending Songkran in Thailand. I'm also quite sure that this is too much for the time I have, with too many days in transit.
As for interests, they're exactly like yours, Dana, so maybe we could share some research? What are your plans at the moment? (I found the private message button only beneath DLuek's post – maybe only for premium members?)
#5 Viktor has been a member since 8/1/2017. Posts: 1
Posted by alarcher on 15/1/2017 at 23:41
Dana & Viktor, if this is your 1st trip then you need to understand how you like to travel. Some people are quick and want to move on to the next site or adventure others can't seem to get out of a hammock and most are somewhere in between.
I mention this because there is nothing worse than trying to stick to an itinerary that doesn't fit you. It's great to have months off and I'm sure you don't want to "waste" time but asia will still be there and it's easy to jump over for a few weeks to see something else.
My advice for what its worth is to keep things as flexible as possible. Dana if you are sticking with Thailand then you really don't need to arrange much other than your flights in & out of Oz. Depending on the flights you choose you could fly in in the south (Penang, Phuket) and fly out from Bangkok, internal flights are cheap and trains and buses give more of a feel for the country.
Remember if Thailand's not enough then Malaysia, Burma, Laos and Cambodia are right next door!
#6 alarcher has been a member since 7/3/2016. Posts: 10
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