I am looking for any advice for travelling between Vientiane and Siem Reap.
Is it a good idea to take a couple days to do this while stoping at certain towns in north-eastern thailand?
Is it better to just get to Siem Reap as quick as possible?
Which is better, train or bus?.
Any advice helps.
#1 swerve has been a member since 13/3/2008. Posts: 1
If you've got some time, I'd say allow a couple of days in Nong Khai then continue south on train to Khorat. From there do a side trip to Phimai for an overnight stay. If you want more Khmer ruins bus it over to Nang Rong and visit Prasat Phanom Rung...
You can also cross south of Surin into Cambodia (enter cambodia near Anlong Veng ) from where you can continue south to Siem Reap -- thus avoiding the armpit of Poipet.
See the visa and borders FAQ for info on the border crossings.
I agree that Nong Khai is a kick and worth a few fun and relaxing days if you have the time. I also really like Phimai, and if I were doing this trip, would likely follow exactly the route Somtam suggests.
However, just to offer an alternative, you could also follow the Mekong River along the Thai/Lao border, stopping in the towns along the Thai side of the river (I suppose you could also do this on the Lao side depending on your personal preferences and visa situation) and then cross into Cambodia at Anlong Veng.
Another option is to fly from Vientiane to SR on Lao Airways. I think they fly that route a few times each week.
I can't say I'm any more fond of Poipet than Somtam either, but at least going that way is a fairly direct, affordable and easy-to-navigate overland route to SR. Regards.