After 4 days in Siem Reap (early Feb), we want to head to Phu Quoc for 4-5 days.
I've read up on the travel options to Phu Quoc:
1) travel (fly/bus) to Saigon, then Fly to Pho Quoc.
2) bus to Rach Gia from Chau Doc, then fly or ferry to Phu Quoc.
My questions are:
-will option (2) give us a "taste" of a Mekong Delta tour?
-If so, is this something I can book from Siem Reap (or beforehand)?
-what does the trip entail? Boat to Chau Doc from Phnom Penh, then bus to Rach Gia?
-If time is an issue (we are on a tight schedule - 4 countries in 6 weeks) - should I just fly return to Phu Quoc from HCMC, then arrange a short Mekong Delta tour from HCMC after our Phu Quoc stay?
(we don't want travel too "rough", but some adventure is fine)
#1 zmerchant has been a member since 15/4/2006. Posts: 5
We're on a whistle stop tour too in February and you're looking to do similar things to us so I thought it might be useful to tell you our rough itinerary:
* Fly into Ho Chi Minh City from a holiday in Hong Kong
* 2 nights in Ho Chi Minh City vising the sites etc
* Then we go on a 3 day Mekong Delta tour which takes us round to Phnom Penh by boat via Chau Doc. (we're prob booking this with Delta Adventures following advise from various people on this site!!)
* We spend 2 nights in Phnom Penh then fly to Siem Reap
* We spend 3 nights in Siem Reap then fly back to Ho Chi Minh City
* Then we fly direct from HCMC to Phu Quoc Island for 5 nights of R+R!
* Then flight from Phu Quoc back to HCMC and home!
Hope that helps your planning a wee bit!
Good luck and enjoy!
#2 lucyhudson has been a member since 25/11/2006. Posts: 38
To answer your questions:
"will option (2) give us a "taste" of a Mekong Delta tour?"
Yes, but only in that you'll be passing through the Delta towns -- if you can afford the time, I'd recommend an overnight stop in Chau Doc and in Can Tho -- the former to do a paddle boat trip to the floating villages (try super early say 6am -- the light is brilliant), and the latter to do a trip out to the floating market. You can get from Chau Doc to Can Tho by local bus.
"If so, is this something I can book from Siem Reap (or beforehand)?"
Not from Siem Reap, but there's no need to book anything really. If you wanted to book beforehand, you may be able to organise something from Delta Adventures (entioned by Lucy adove)
"what does the trip entail? Boat to Chau Doc from Phnom Penh, then bus to Rach Gia?"
I'm not sure if there is a bus conection direct from Chau Doc to Rach Gia -- as suggested above I'd suggest bus to Can Tho then to Rach Gia.
"If time is an issue (we are on a tight schedule - 4 countries in 6 weeks) - should I just fly return to Phu Quoc from HCMC, then arrange a short Mekong Delta tour from HCMC after our Phu Quoc stay?"
If time is tight, then flights win hands down, but bear in mind that if you're overlanding between Chau Doc and Saigon you'll be passing through many of the towns the delta trip will take you to anyway -- and in each of these towns you can organise solo pretty much anything the tours will do for you. Of course if you take the bus from Phnom Penh to Saigon, you cross at a different crossing and skip the Delta all together.
Hope that helps
Thank you lucyhudson and somtam2000 - the information helps.
So how does this look?:
-Bus from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh on Feb 04, stay overnight (will we have *any* chance to see a site or two in PP?)
-Leave Feb 05 for Chau Doc (shall do bus or boat?) - overnight in CD
-Leave Feb 06 (bus) for Can Tho - overnight in CT
-Bus to Rach Gia on Feb 07 (looks like we wouldn't make the morning flight to Phu Quoc though, right? - do ferries take folks to Phu Quoc all day?)
I'd appreciate comments!
#4 zmerchant has been a member since 15/4/2006. Posts: 5
If you get an early departure from Siem Reap you'll be in Phnom Penh by early afternoon which will allow you to visit Tuol Sleng and perhaps one other sight -- I'd recommend either the Palace or the National Museum. and then finish off the day with evening drinks by the river.
I'd suggest the speedboat from Phnom Penh to Chau Doc -- the bus uses a different crossing and the slow boat is, well, slow!
In Can Tho, the boat trips to the floating markets tend to leave around 5-6am and you're finished and back in Can Tho between 10am and midday (depending on which floating markets you visit). The bus to Rach Gia takes at least 2 hours, so you'll miss the morning flight and also the ferry, so an overnight stay in Rach Gia it is -- that's not all bad though -- Rach Gia isn't too bad a place. Then the following morning either the morning flight or the morning ferry. If you're planning on taking the flight, bear in mind it fills up fast, so book your ticket as soon as you get to town.
Hope that helps.
Super! - thanks again somtam2000!
#6 zmerchant has been a member since 15/4/2006. Posts: 5
We did this trip. When we arrived in HCMC ( on new years eve) we booked a flight to Phu Quoc! We had to wait three days. ( Everything was full due to the holydays). So we made the three day tour on Mekong (Delta) The highligt of this tour was the Guide!
Well back in HCMC we embarked the plan to PQU ( one way 34$ Yes we took a one way ticket! Our plan was to take the boat back to Rach Gia when we have had enough of the island!
Big problems! "The aftermath" of a storm kept all the boats in the harbor!
We mannaged to get a plan back to HCMC thanks to "Stand by ticket" provided from the Vietnam airline office at the Hotel "Saigon Phu Quc Resort". So keep in mind... The ferrys are not allways at see!
#7 begrip has been a member since 13/12/2006. Posts: 3
From next month Vietnam airlines is launching direct flights between Siem Reap and Phu Quoc, so that will make it much easier to get to the island. Personally I have mixed feelings - great for Cambodian holidaymakers but I think the face of the island could change in the future - at the moment it is like a hidden paradise. I have written a little blog about it here: http://luxurytravelinasia.com/flights-phu-quoc-cambodia-launched/
#8 deliajane has been a member since 6/10/2014. Posts: 2