Is this crazy? (My apologies in advance)
Replies: 11 - Last Post: Nov 26, 2012 8:48 PM Last Post By: inmydreams
Nov 25, 2012 3:31 AM
Is this crazy? (My apologies in advance)So this is what Ive conjured up. 4 countries in 72 days, with many days of travel included and with a big emphasis towards getting to koh phagnan in time from my loop around bangkok up into northern thailand-laos-vietnam-cambodia-back to bangkok.
I am utterly confused, and Im sure you guys will hate me for this mess of an itinerary but if there is someone out there who is bored and is awesome enough to tell me whether Im crazy and this will never work or if it is doable or not, please do so , Thank you!!
June: 3/5(plane) 6/7bkk + sleeper to chiang mai 8/9/10
11 bus from chiang mai to huxay xay 12/13 nagi of the mekong to luang prabang 14/15 luang praban 16 bus from LP to vv 17/18 VV 19 bus from VV to vientaine 20/21 vientaine 22/23 travel to hanoi 24/25 hanoi 26 travel to halong bay 27/28 halong cruise 29 halong to hoi an 30/1 hoi an 2 hoi an to nah trang 3/4 nah trang 5 nah trang to HCMC 6/7 HCMC 8 HCMC to phnom phen 9/10 phnom phen 11 phnom phen to siem reap 12/13 siem reap 14 siem reap to BKK 15 bkk to Surat thani 16 surat thani to koh phangan 17/18/19/20/21/22/23/24 25 koh phangan to koh samui 25/26/27/28/29/30/ koh samui 31 samui to surat thani 1 surat thani to phuket 2/3 phuket 4 phuket to phi phi 5/6/7/8/9/10/ 11 phi phi 12 phi phi to phuket 13 phuket to bkk
14 bkk (plane)
Sorry this just happened lol.
Nov 25, 2012 4:32 AM
1What you have in mind is probably the most common standard circuit for SE Asia which thousands of travellers do every month, so you will have companions to compare notes and swap stories with along the way. Your schedule looks very rushed up until the islands, and spending just 1 or 2 days in each place and being on the move so often can spoil the fun. What's the big rush to reach Ko Phangan? It's pretty much the same every day, with big parties on Had Rin most nights and plenty of action and/or quiet beaches if you prefer. A full week on KPG then a full week on Samui then another week on Phi Phi seems a little disproportionate with the rest of your trip, and after all a beach is a beach is a beach and even "paradise" gets a little boring eventually. Up to you, but I'd be taking it slower around the circuit and settle for less beach time at the end. I'd also skip Phuket and go to Phi Phi and back to BKK via Krabi.
Nov 25, 2012 7:13 AM
2You might want to reconsider the west coast of Thailand, as you'll be there July-ish, which is monsoon season on that side of the country, so maybe Phuket, Phi Phi and Krabi wont' be so nice.
I would recommend not setting such a specific itinerary at all... just have an idea of what places you want to go to, but leave a little more up to chance. You will meet interesting people along the way and maybe want to travel with them for a few days, off your selected route. Or you'll really like somewhere and decide to stay longer, or hear of a really cool place to visit you hadn't thought of. If you do have an itinerary, I recommend keeping it really flexible so you can make changes on the fly as you travel. That's what adventures are for! Have a great time :)
Nov 25, 2012 12:56 PM
3Hope you have your visas sorted, especially for the Viet Nam part of the trip.
Nov 25, 2012 1:04 PM
4You asked. That is crazy. Doable but crazy. Listen to 1 & 2 - the voices of experience - or you'll end your trip with a month of utter and total boredom having done a whistle-stop of the rest of SEAsia. My only other comment - if you KNOW that Siem Reap is Angkor rather than just the Red Piano bar, then a 2 day stop is silly - make it at least 4-5.
Nov 25, 2012 1:34 PM
Nov 25, 2012 5:21 PM
6We did pretty much what you want to do in 13 weeks, so thats 91 days. When we returned we agreed that anything less than 12 weeks would have been pushing it.
However, we spent a total of 10 nights in Bangkok (5 upon arrival, 5 before departure) so if you don't like Bangkok (yeah, right) then you could save some time here.
Also we spent 11 nights in Ko Phangan as we wanted to be in the same place for Christmas/New Years, so again you could save some time there.
Bangkok (5 days)
Chiang Mai (flew here as train track was flooded at the time - about 4 days) - Pai (2-3 days) - Chiang Mai
Slow Boat to Laos
Luang Prabang (4 days I think, could have been more)
Vang Vieng (tubing) - We said 3 days, stayed 7 I think!!
Then down to capital of Laos to fly out to Vietnam - We only spent a grand total of about 10 days in Vietnam, split between Ha Noi and then flew straight down to Ho Chi Minh. We did 1 night in Halong Bay in Ho Noi. Unfortunately we didn't have time to go up to Sapa. We flew straight to Ho Chi Minh as 1) We were on a time constraint and 2) The weather was terrible in central Vietnam at the time
HERE IS WHERE WE MESSED UP A LITTLE: We had XMas / New years booked in Ko Phangan. We wanted to do Cambodia straight after Vietnam as it made sense geographically. So we ended up flying into Bangkok from Ho Chi Minh, then bus down to Pattaya to fly to Samui from that Military airport down there. This may not have been the best idea looking back, but Pattaya was certainly an 'experience' and we knocked some fun out of it
Then we flew to Samui and got a taxi/boat straight out of there. We were warned that if on a time constraint, don't get hung up on Samui, it's just like any resort island. Then onto Ko Phangan for 11 nights of maddness
After that we got the bus to Krabi (once we got to the mainland). 1 night in Krabi town (its just a stop off) and on to Phi Phi for about 4 nights. It's after here we split with our 'group' as they wanted to go to Phuket. We chose to go to Khao Lanta for a few days (and enjoyed it). Chilled out island - think we were 3/4 days here
Then boat over to Phuket. We spent a night in Phuket town and hated it - just got a bad vibe from the place. Then over to Patong (on Phuket) - again just a typical resort with lots of, Ahem, boys entertainment - we got out of there after about 2 nights.
Got the bus up as far as Khao Lak - again 'just a resort' but we loved it there. We got a scooter and drove a few miles out of the town - it was like a non sleazy resort with nice empty beaches. Here we took a boat ride to the Similan islands - WOW, JUST WOW!! Total time in Khao Lak was about 4 nights I think
Then bus up to Bangkok - Flew into Cambodia (Phnom Penh) - 2 nights here - all we wanted to see was the killing fields and the S21 prison. Then bus up to Siam Riep - 3 nights here, we just wanted to see the temples. Didn't seem to be much more to Siam Riep, but don't quote me on that - I do wish we could have spent more time in Cambodia, but alas no luck.
Bus from Siam Riep back to Bangkok. Crossing the border over land was no problem for us (we already had Thai Visa)
Then about 5 more nights in Bangkok where we shopped til we dropped.
We'd do it all again in a heart beat!! Hope this helps
Nov 25, 2012 5:46 PM
7heck yes it helped ! thanks for writing all this.
I wish I could do a month in each country, or as you guys did you had more time so you kind of went at a good pace it seems, I hope I can force myself to slow down lol
yeah I think I may scratch off phuket and just do krabi, and as for samui, Ko Phagnan sounds fun, and I guess you guys enjoyed it too!
Nov 25, 2012 6:18 PM
8Phuket is a place i'd happily avoid altogether, but it may be 'on your way' anyhow so stop off for a night or two if you're passing by
Samui is a nice place i'm sure, you'll need to research this as we just skipped it
Ko Phangan should be visited just to see the crazyness of Rinn Beach
Krabi town - 1 night will do you here, there's not much going on. However I think I forgot to mention Railay - we spent 3 nights here and were glad we did, in a romantic kind of way! Definately spend 2 nights in Railay if you have the time. It's a nice chill-out place with a bit of luxury and cool scenery - but it comes at a price!
Nov 25, 2012 7:50 PM
Nov 26, 2012 3:33 PM
10When on Railay we stayed here: http://www.agoda.com/asia/thailand/krabi/railay_great_view_resort_and_spa.html
OK so it's the furthest hotel and it's on the EAST side (which isin't pretty), BUT, agoda.co.th had the dexule cottages with breakfast for 50euro per night at the time so we went for it. The place was total luxury!! We wandered through other hotels on the West side and 1) they weren't as nice 2) they were about 150 euro per night!
So for the sake of about an 8 minute walk from the West beach, it was totally worth it because over in the East is there the younger crowd hang out at night. Also, you don't have strangers just wandering through your resort/swimming pool etc.
Having said that, it's a very romantic resort and tranquil - perfect if you want to chill out with someone, not so great if you expect to socialise there
Nov 26, 2012 8:48 PM
(4 star Hotel)
From US$62.91 per night
(4 star Hotel)
From US$144.93 per night
(0 star Hotel)
From US$5.40 per night