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A week of free time in SEA... Thailand, Cambodia or Burma?

Posted by showdown on 1/11/2010 at 00:24

Hello TravelFish Forum!

Having found more useful information here than anywhere else online I thought it the perfect place to pose my conundrum...

In late June 2011, shortly after my wedding my wife and I will depart for a trip to SEA.

We'll land in Delhi for a 1 day layover (just enough time for us to be convinced to return to India next year!) and then head off to Singapore for a few days before we meet up with a 15-day Intrepid tour through Malaysia and Thailand, ending in Bangkok for a few days. We will then have roughly a week to do with as we please before having to return to Bangkok for our flight back to Chicago.

Some of the options we've considered are:

-Head to Cambodia to see Angkor Wat and Phnom Penn and then back to Bangkok for our return home.

-Stay in Thailand and venture north and/or east and then return to Bangkok.

-Head into Burma and then return to Bangkok...

We're adventurous and excited to have some time to wander about by ourselves and aren't looking for luxurious hotels or pampered accommodations. That said, we're probably not harnessing up and rappelling or camping. We don't have any fixed timeline so we can spend a bit more time as needed though anything more than 10 days additional might be pushing it.

Of course this is an impossible question to answer and frankly I know we'll be delighted with whatever we do this being our first trip to SEA, I just wanted to see if anyone had any particularly strong feelings one way or another.

Thanks in advance!

#1 showdown has been a member since 1/11/2010. Posts: 2

Posted by exacto on 1/11/2010 at 07:07

hi julian,

congratulations on your forthcoming wedding. your honeymoon plans sound great.

given the choices you've mentioned, i think i'd either head over to siem reap for three or four days of touring angkor wat then on to PP, or head north to chiang mai and surrounds. i imagine it kind of depends on what sort of mood you are in - the amazing ancient temple complex of Angkor, or the seriously fun adventure of food, spas, and side trips to nature and waterfalls and such of northern Thailand.

the good news is that you can't lose either way and neither options requires much advance planning. you could even just wait until the time comes and decide which option you like best then. happy honeymoon. cheers.

p.s. if you enter Thailand by land, you may only get a 15-day visa exemption at the border. ask your tour company about this, so you won't be caught having to pay an overstay fine at the airport when you fly home.

#2 exacto has been a member since 12/2/2006. Location: United States. Posts: 2,759
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Posted by caseyprich on 1/11/2010 at 15:52

I love Chiang Mai and it'd be a good way to see more of Thailand - but the real highlight of a week in Chiang Mai is often the 2-3 day treks, which work out to be a lot like camping.

You may wish to see something different than Thailand on this visit (and especially if the visa situation is an issue) so you can do the Angkor and PP thing and that'd be a really different experience than Thailand.

Both options will be easier than Burma - it depends really if you want to get a little deeper into Thailand (plenty of nice ruins to see on the way up to Chiang Mai) or if you want to check out the famous Angkor Wat and see a society that is geographically very close but also very different than Thailand.

#3 caseyprich has been a member since 3/3/2010. Location: China. Posts: 1,281
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