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Southeast Asia forum

Advice for two weeks in either Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam

Posted by ponarv on 31/12/2009 at 01:42

sorry, this was initially posted in the Laos section by accident...
Hello, my wife and I have two weeks off and would like to travel in two of the following countries...Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia. I know each destination has different things to offer, but given our time constraints, I'm wondering which two would be the best. For example, I have heard it generally takes a longer time to get from point A to point B in Laos. We looking to combine some "on the go" sight seeing with a few days down time lounging at a resort/nice hotel at the end. Also, any opinions about the cuisine in these three destinations and how they compare to each other? I have heard Cambodia isn't as rich from a culinary standpoint as Laos and Vietnam? Any ideas, possible itineraries, or advice would be appreciated! Thanks!

#1 ponarv has been a member since 31/12/2009. Posts: 3

Posted by Armando696 on 1/1/2010 at 05:00

If you have two weeks only, you have to stick to very few places or book a group tour. I would not plan a trip to any of that countries for that short time. The minimum for me is 2 months.

#2 Armando696 has been a member since 15/4/2009. Location: Switzerland. Posts: 20
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Posted by fifchuck on 12/1/2010 at 07:27

I understand the idea of not trying to do too much in a little time window but the reality is that many of us only have a couple weeks. Telling people they need two months per country isn't productive as (unfortunately) that's just not feasible for many of us.

My wife and I are leaving this Saturday for a 16 day trip to Indochina. We've gone back and forth on how much we want to do. Neither of us have been to any of the four countries before and we've heard amazingly convincing arguments to spend our whole time in each place. Our solution? We've reserved a hotel in Saigon for our first two nights and we'll figure the rest out on the fly. I imagine we'll have to cut either Laos or Thailand due to time but we're just going to let price of flights/bus/train tickets determine that. Ideally, we'll see Saigon a couple days, Mekong Delta a day or two, Angkor Wat 2-3 days, and then head to Laos or Thailand for 5 days before getting to Phu Quoc Island for the last 3-4 days. That's how it works in my head anyway.

I'll try to remember to post my thoughts upon our return. Maybe I'll be one of those people telling you to just stay in one place your whole trip! :) Cheers!

#3 fifchuck has been a member since 20/12/2009. Posts: 3

Posted by ponarv on 12/1/2010 at 08:29

I agree completely fifchuck. Unfortunately, two weeks off at a time (or at all) is what many have to work with! I like your approach, and I hope to be more spontaneous in my travels. Looking forward to hearing how it all turns out! I've been to Thailand, and I do think it is fully worth saving it for a trip all by itself...most people thumb their noses at Bangkok, but I've spent a week exploring the city...lots to do and incredible food. Safe and happy travels! :)

#4 ponarv has been a member since 31/12/2009. Posts: 3

Posted by ibon on 12/1/2010 at 09:45

Two weeks is ample time to get a taste of two places in two countries, and as fifchuck said we don't all have two months. You have to work with the time you have. If you're looking for ón the go'sightseeing'then Angkor Wat or Luang Prabang would both fit the bill. Angkor Wat has been the highlight of our trip (just finishing up now), and we also took a day out to visit Kompong Kleang, a fishing village on Lake Tonle Sap. Luang Prabang itself is sleepy (although there's more than enough in town to occupy a few days of sighseeing), but there are loads of options for trekking, kayaking, cycling etc in the surrounding areas. The scenery around Luang Prabang is stunning. Have fun choosing. I'm sure you'll have a great time wherever you go.

#5 ibon has been a member since 19/5/2009. Posts: 12

Posted by grenny on 12/1/2010 at 10:42

managed to do this in 12 days last year, was a little rushed at times but nothing too stupid. of course you always need/want more time everywhere you go.

saigon -> can tho -> chau doc -> phnom penh -> siem reap

#6 grenny has been a member since 17/8/2009. Posts: 6

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