I wasn't sure which part of the forum to write on but thought this would be a good place to start!
Myself and some friends are planning a round the world trip starting with SE Asia. We arrive in Bangkok in the morning of the 27th August. We leave Bangkok on the 10th October so that gives us 44 days to do Thailand, Laos, Vietnam and Cambodia. I have roughly allocated 2.5 weeks to do some of the thai islands and then up to Chiang Mai. Then 1 week for Laos (we are thinking main spots of Luang Prabang and Vang Vieng- maybe Vientiane?) then 12 days for Vietnam and 5 days for Cambodia.
Basically if anyone has any suggestions for places to skip (as we are obviously doing a bit of a hop, skip and a jump through asia!) or must-see places, that would be much appreciated!
also any advice on modes of travel once in asia would be great. where would be best to fly as we are prepared to buy internal flights to cut on time? also, where would you recommend getting a boat or train if we have the choice?
Any help would be great!
#1 alexr has been a member since 20/5/2008. Posts: 6
For background advice on getting around, take a look at the suggested itinerary section as that will give you an idea on how long it takes to get from A to B to C to D.
Assuming you're planning on flyng from Chiang Mai to Luang Prabang then with seven nights in Laos I'd suggest 3 nights in LP, 2 nights in Vang Vieng and 2 nights in Vientiane .
Five days in Cambodia, I'd suggest two or three nights in Siem Reap and the balance in Phnom Penh.
Twelve nights in Vietnam is the trickier one, and I'd lean towards either restricting yourself to one part of the country (north or south) or do a whistle-stop coastal tour taking in the highlights, but bear in mind Vietnam can be very time consuming to travel in if you are not flying. See the above-mentioned itineray section for more information in that regard.
Given your rough plan, I'd also look into the Discovery Airpass as it provides a pretty cost-effective means to get around the countries you're planning on visiting.
#2 somtam2000 has been a member since 21/1/2004. Location: Indonesia. Posts: 7,710
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Thanks so much for your speedy reply! very helpful thank you!
I hope you don't mind that I ask a few more questions related to your response.
Firstly, you said that you assumed we would be flying to Luang Prabang. I have heard that there is a two-day boat trip from Chiang Mai to Luang Prabang that shouldn't be missed...if this is the case would you suggest that we take a day off our itinaries in Chaing Mai and Laos in order to travel down by boat for the views?? If this is the case, since we are going in monsoon season, is it ok to travel by boat in this time?
Secondly, I have looked at your suggestions for routes in Vietnam and I think we would prefer to due a whistle stop tour along the coast than choose either north or south. Therefore, does this sound realistic to you:
Hanoi and Ha Long Bay- 3 nights
Hue- 2 nights
Hoi An- 2nights
Nha Trang- 1 night
Mui Ne- 2 nights
Saigon- 2 nights
Obviously that takes us to the 12 days we have and we would have to include the travel times in this itinary...does this seem realistic to you? is there anywhere you would suggest flying between if at all possible? or missing out?
Thanks for your advice, I will definately be spending a lot more time on this site- it's so useful!
#3 alexr has been a member since 20/5/2008. Posts: 6