Replies: 10 - Last Post: Sep 24, 2012 3:39 AM Last Post By: thaibeachlovers
Sep 21, 2012 10:24 PM
Itinerary HelpHi all,
I'm embarking on a solo journey to Southeast Asia in January. I'm Canadian, 24 years old, and I booked my flight to have 6 day stopover in Tokyo. So I arrive in Bangkok on Jan 16.
As of now, my return flight from Bangkok home is on April 9th.
I want to do and see as much as I possibly can in my allotted time, and plan on extending if necessary.
I have the Lonely Planet SE Asia on a shoestring, and there's lots of good information in it. I'm unsure if I need to have a set in stone plan before I arrive.
Any ideas? Do I need to have a guesthouse booked for when I get to Bangkok? Is doing Full Moon party a necessity? - I like to party, but I also like to chill out. I'm looking to meet like minded individuals and have a spiritual adventure. I would ideally like to do Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, Malaysia, Singapore, and Indonesia (mostly Bali). Is this possible in just under three months? Any suggestions would be great.
Sep 22, 2012 12:05 AM
1It's not necessary to pre-book a guesthouse in Bangkok, but it takes away a bit of stress if you have at least your first night booked. Whether you book more than that will depend on what sort of traveller you are (if you know yet!). Some people prefer a detailed itinerary with everything pre-booked, others prefer to fly totally by the seat of their pants, others are somewhere in the middle.
Will you fit in all those countries? Yes, but not each country in its entirety. Pick and choose which bits of each country you want to see rather than trying to see it all. Otherwise you'll spend your whole trip on buses and trains, and not so much enjoying the country. Aim for 2-3 weeks per country to see highlights only (longer for a more in-depth experience). Singapore and Bali could both be a week or less and you'd still have time to see a lot. Again, it depends how you travel, but I'd prefer to visit fewer countries and spend longer in each.
Personally, I wouldn't be going to the FMP. Admittedly I'm not longer 24 ;-) , but it wouldn't have interested me even then. Do you want to spend several days hanging around with other, mostly young, tourists, potentially drinking a lot? If yes, then FMP's possibly for you. If not, choose another island (or just go there away from the FMP dates).
Make sure you know exactly what you need for each country's visas before you leave home. Knowing how long you can easily spend in each country will help you decide how long you want to spend in each. For instance, you'll potentially need proof of onward movement from Thailand to get the 30 day visa-exemption on arrival. If you search, you'll find plenty of posts here with visa information.
Sep 22, 2012 12:59 AM
Sep 22, 2012 1:44 AM
3Do I need to have a guesthouse booked for when I get to Bangkok
No. Only if you arrive around new year.
Is doing Full Moon party a necessity?
Is this possible in just under three months?
Of course, but you won't see much in any of those places. There's always next time...........................
#2 If I was 24 again, it would have fitted nicely into my lifestyle of the times
If I was 24, the FMP wouldn't have existed, LOL.
Oh, life was simpler then, and much fewer choices. Didn't have to worry about whether the mobile would work, or if they had the right power supply for the lap top, etc. Just got on with seeing things.
Sep 22, 2012 1:59 AM
Sep 22, 2012 2:12 AM
Sep 22, 2012 2:24 AM
Sep 22, 2012 5:08 AM
No need to book a room for when you arrive.
You say you can extend your time. If you really wish to do all you indicate then do extend. If you do not then in my opinion, even if you fly everywhere, you will not have enough time do all properly. Your book remember is a "guide book" and nothing more! Useful I would agree, but do not use it as a bible. You talk of a plan set in stone, bad idea! Read your book, make a loose plan then adjust as necessary. Too many journeys are ruined because of inflexible plans.
The very fact that you possess a Shoestring leads me to believe that you will be travelling backpacker style. That means you will most likely use busses, trains boats etc, rather than planes. Use your travel as an enjoyable part of your journey rather than just a means of getting from A to B. So if you cannot extend then drop off a country or three. You are young enough to go back. Enjoy.
Sep 22, 2012 7:21 PM
8Thanks for all the input.
I'd say I'm somewhere in between the seat of my pants and set in stone traveler. That being said, I think I will book my first night in Bangkok, and have a LOOSE plan on how to fill the remainder of my time.
Also, I would like to spend enough time in each country to get a real feel, rather than just a taste. Of the ones I've listed, which are most skippable? I feel that doing Singapore and Malaysia should not be priorities. At first I didn't think I would be doing Indonesia, but I've heard from friends who have gone to the area that skipping Bali would be doing myself a disservice. Again, thanks for the input.
Sep 23, 2012 5:38 PM
9I am a 62 year old backpacker who does SE Asia every year for four months. I hang out with your set. Slower is better. I am attaching a poem i wrote in Bali. I am happy to answer any and all questions at email@example.com
On this lovely isle
My feeble words an echo of its beauty
Surrounded by nature,
sight, sound, fragrance
Frogs and flowers
Outside the town perhaps
The Garden of Eden,
before we cast ourselves out.
(ignore the heaps of discarded plastic.
When will they ever learn?)
Many travelers, all sizes and shapes and origin.
But mostly the young, singles and couples.
I hike and see my slim, brown and muscular limbs.
An easy grace, barefoot in the mud and wet paddy grass.
I can hike and climb the ass off of most of them.
They live frenetic lives, they flit.
Ubud two days.
On to the Gilli Islands
finding more of their own.
Then to Lombok.
They want to see it all right away.
Afraid their chance will be snatched away.
I can tell them.
You will never see it all.
Not even the tiniest fraction.
And the faster you go, the less you will see.
A girl wants some tips.
Doing Cambodia, Vietnam and Lao in 15 days.
Right! From the window of the bus.
The young women are drawn to my energy,
warm, open and friendly
easy and tranquil
a charisma - why deny it?
the consummate backpacker.
We share tales of the voyage
their excitements and confusions
Then they speak of their boyfriends.
Left behind eating their dust
in chilly Finland or Switzerland or Lake Tahoe.
They have been together forever
The German girl, 31, since she was nineteen.
24 year olds with one boy for six years.
It is safer and easier these days.
In my time there were no such boyfriends.
There was no need and no fear.
The lovely young maidens
(was i lovely and young too?)
Floating around, taking what they wanted.
Sometimes even me.
After we talk they go off on motorbikes.
Many arms in slings.
They climb the volcanoes on a tour.
I climbed too - but not that way.
They enjoy our chats.
I am the uncle they wish they had.
In my haven of a room.
As pretty and spacious and airy and light
as i have ever had.
Breakfast brought to my patio. All for pennies.
My vista the emerald paddy. The birds
black streaks in the clouds.
The volcanoes on the horizon
Sunning by the pool with the cicadas.
Alone, but not lonely.
I gaze at the mirror.
A weathered face.
Long gray hair.
Who is this old dude?
Sep 24, 2012 3:39 AM
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