Hi everyone. I don't have a definitive question just felt like sharing my thoughts...
First of all let me say I'll be traveling to Bangkok in July- August with my boyfriend. I'll have 18 days before i go to Burma for 9 days plus 16 days after. Then I'll leave my boyfriend in Bangkok where he'll do an internship at the restaurant Nahm (he's learning to be a chef) for two weeks and will go to Java during that time to meet my parents that will be in Indonesia (also in Asia for the first time).
A little about me: I do like nature a lot. I haven't traveled a lot but my top picks would be probably a trek I did in Picos da Europa in Spain named the cares route, levadas in Madeira (my favorites beeing the route of "caldeirao verde" and "pico ruivo-pico areeiro") and Azores just for the landscapes. I go to Algarve every summer since I was little and currently live in Lisbon.
So, before I went deeper in this website my idea was: In my first 18 days I would go to chiang mai, cross to Laos do NK LP, VNT and Konglor cave with an overnight stay at the village at the end of the cave. Then I would go back to Bangkok to catch my flight to Burma.
The last 16 days I would go to Cambodia and stay in Bangkok.
In Bangkok I would like to take a trip to the Tha Kha floating market, (fell in love with the photographs of your post) see the mae khlong market and overnight at Amphawa near the river. Would also like to see Nonthaburi, Thonburi, Wat Arun and khlong bang luang artist village.(I've been loving the recently discovered wires section of this wesite) And last but not least EAT A LOT! Because my boyfriend beeing an aspiring chef will probably be over the moon with Bangkok's restaurants and street food.
I lost a bit more of time reading this website and recently discovered some places that look interesting. All the photos from towns with river setting look really appealing to me for some reason. Just found out about Sangklaburi and looks somewhere I would like but it gets "very damp during the rainy season". The Kanchanabury setting also looks very pretty and wouldn't mind doing the Hellfire Pass and Tham Krasae. I would like to go to Khao Sok NP also for some trekking and overnight on the beautiful lake where I could see some of the famous Thailand landscapes of the limestone karsts without having to go down to Krabi. But going to this places would mean I wouldn't visit Laos. Just not sure if they're worth it for that... I was very looking forward for some bits of Laos but at the other hand Laos travel time are enormous...
#1 marianaamc has been a member since 30/10/2013. Posts: 62
Hm maybe tips about those places. And if Kanchanaburi and Sangklaburi would be worth it instead of Laos. I'm looking for a nature setting that part of my trip so what would be more impressive? I might be a bit naive wanting to get really inspired and change my perspective of the world by this trip. A bit afraid I'll waste too much time trying to get around Laos in rainy season. I'm really attracted to Laos (and don't get me wrong now) I'm afraid people rave about Laos just because it's more unknown and not so mainstream as Thailand nowadays. But at the same time when i read about people experiences and see photographs it looks like it's really worth the rave... But then again maybe it's because I'm a bit naive...
#3 marianaamc has been a member since 30/10/2013. Posts: 62
As you suggest it will be pretty wet, but it's generally no big deal, at least for the areas you mention. Expect some rain most days, but in between you could have great sunshine & blue skies. I wouldn't change a plan like your on account of the weather.
If, by NK you mean Nong Kiaow - bear in mind there is no longer boat transport between there and Luang Prabang due to dam construction, so if you're going there for the boat trip, maybe reconsider, plus, I'm assuming you're planning on getting the boat from Huay Xai down to Luang Prabang, so there's your boat fix ;-)
Sangkhlaburi gets a lot of rain in wet season, but I wouldn't say that's not a reason to go -- it is all the more beautiful when wet and lush and the waters of the lake should be higher then.
If you're looking for more time in National Parks, like Khao Sok -- there's also Khao Yai National Park which would fit in well as you overland back from Konglor Cave, I think you'll get more of what you want in Thailand than Laos, but Laos is certainly worth seeing.
Glad you're enjoying the wires - thanks!
#5 somtam2000 has been a member since 21/1/2004. Location: Indonesia. Posts: 7,800
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Nahm!? Wow! David Thompson is one of my culinary heroes. Your boyfriend is going to get some serious schooling! Impressive!
Take the train from Wong Wian Yai Station to Mae Khlong when you go to Amphawa . If you're into food, the stop in Mahachai (Samut Sakhon) would be very worthwhile. It's where you have to switch trains and also happens to be Thailand's largest seafood port. Most days the fresh seafood markets are bursting! The area around the train station is pretty interesting. Plus, if you love to eat, there's an excellent seafood restaurant that overlooks the port area right beside the pedestrian ferry terminal. Have an early lunch there. You won't regret it. Then hop on the pedestrian ferry that will take you across the Tha Chin (either 2 or 3 baht) to the Ban Laem Railway Station where you'll get on the train that will take you to Mae Khlong Station. Each leg of the train trip takes about an hour and costs 10 baht. If you want the schedule feel free to PM me and I'll send it to you. It's also here ... http://www.seat61.com/Thailand.htm#Bangkok_to_Maha_Chai. I'd send the State Railway of Thailand link but it doesn't seem to work very well for me since they "improved" the site.
From Samut Songkhram, where Mae Khlong Station and the famous "railway market" is, you have to get onto an Amphawa-bound songthaew (15 baht when I took it) as Amphawa is about 5 or 6 km away. The market may not be on depending on when you go, and the place fills on weekends, so you may want to find out if it's on and maybe book one of the canal-side homestays if you are going on a weekend or holiday.
Try and extend your time in Burma.