Angkor Wat plus What?

Jul 14th, 2013, 10:34 AM
  #1  
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Angkor Wat plus What?

We will have 10-14 days for a side trip while visiting Malaysia this October. We would like to go to Siem Reap to visit Angkor Wat. We will spend about 4 days or so visiting temples. We would appreciate suggestions for other places to visit in or near Siem Reap, or side trips from Siem Reap.

An alternative will be a second side trip, using KL or Singapore as a base.

"We" are two young seniors. We are interested in local culture, art, and outdoors activities. No interest in spending our vacation on a hot humid beach.

Suggestions?
wendy236 is offline  
Jul 14th, 2013, 12:24 PM
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I'm sure you realise that Angkor Wat is just one of many temples in the Angkor complex, and you could easily spend 4 days visiting others.

A day trip to Tonle Sap Lake is worth considering.
LeighTravelClub is offline  
Jul 14th, 2013, 02:23 PM
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Four days for visiting temples is a nice amount of time in Siem Reap. You could consider a day trip to Tonele Sap. Also, there are certainly Khmer temples some distance form Siem Reap that would take a full-day trip. SO you may want even more time in Siem Reap. Do you have Dawn Rooney's book, Angkor: A Guide to Cambodia's Wondrous Temples? It's excellent preparation for your trip.

Tell us where you will be going in Malaysia so we can offer other suggestions.
Kathie is offline  
Jul 14th, 2013, 02:49 PM
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Thanks for the suggestions. I do realize that Angkor Wat is only one of the temples. I'm planning 4 days to visit temples, maybe another day or two for side trips.

We have about two weeks total for "side trips." Are there other sites near Siem Reap that we should consider? I'm also considering Luang Prabang or a separate side trip to Inle Lake, but the air fare from Siem Reap to Luang Prabang is rather high, so I wondered whether there were sites near Siem Reap we should consider instead.

I realize that we could spend the entire 2 weeks in Myanmar. But we haven't been to Angkor Wat. It sounds amazing - I would really like to include it during this trip.

The time in Malaysia will be spent visiting family. We're looking for ideas for our "side trip" time.
wendy236 is offline  
Jul 14th, 2013, 03:27 PM
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A side trip to Inle Lake really doesn't make much sense, as much as I loved the place. But you could opt to spend much of your time in Myanmar. Spend 4 days at Angkor, then fly Myanmar Airways International from Siem Reap to Yangon. This is one of two flights that allow you to get a real visa on arrival at Yangon. Otherwise, you must get a visa in advance.

IIf you choose to spend the rest of your time in Burma, here's how I'd design it:
day1 fly into Yangon, overnight there. Visit Shwedagon Pagoda in the late afternoon/evening.

The next morning, fly to Inle Lake. Plan to spend 3 or 4 nights there.

Fly to Bagan, spend three or four nights there.

Fly through Yangon to KL or Singapore to catch your flight home.

I have two trip reports here on Burma, from 2009 and 2011. Some things have changed since then, the money issues and the prices for accommodation, but my advice for what to see would be the same.

2009 covering Yangon, Inle Lake and Bagan.
www.fodors.com/community/asia/burma-at-last.cfm

2011 covering Mandalay, Bagan, Mrauk U and Yangon
http://www.fodors.com/community/asia...d-by-burma.cfm
Kathie is offline  
Jul 14th, 2013, 03:29 PM
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PS A combination of Angkor and Luang Prabang is an excellent choice. If you think the flight from Siem Reap to Luang Prabang is expensive, you'll be stunned by how high the prices are in Myanmar.
Kathie is offline  
Jul 15th, 2013, 07:25 AM
  #7  
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Kathie,
ITA Matrix shows airfare of about USD435 for Siem Reap to Luang Prabang RT for October. As KL-Siem Reap RT airfare is under USD200, USD400+ sounded pricey.

What should we expect for airfares in Myanmar? We would probably fly to Myanmar from KL, then would need a local flights within Myanmar. I was envisioning an itinerary similar to the one you outlined above.
wendy236 is offline  
Jul 15th, 2013, 08:48 AM
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ITA may not show airfares for Air Lao which flies this route. And you likely don't want to fly that route roundtrip to/from Siem Reap. Depending on exactly where you decide to go, a Bangkok Air pass may save you money.

If you do decide to go to Myanmar, it will likely save you time and money (and getting a visa in advance) if you fly from Siem Reap to Yangon. But once you have an itinerary we can help you with routing that makes sense.

The airfares in Myanmar aren't bad, around $100 a leg, but accommodation prices have skyrocketed due to a shortage. It may be better this year.
Kathie is offline  
Jul 15th, 2013, 09:18 AM
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How adventurous are you? After our weeklong trip to Siem Reap, we went on by river boat to Battambang (8 hours, cheap, basic benches, uncomfortable but an amazing, unforgettable trip!), spent 2 interesting days there, then bused to Phnom Penh (about 4-5 hours) for a couple of days and then took a private car to Kampot and Kep on the coast for a few days (not a beach trip). It was a fantastic journey and got us to places less visited by tourists. One of the highlights of our travel around the world.
aprillilacs is offline  
Jul 15th, 2013, 04:11 PM
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Thanks for confirming that the Myanmar airfares are around USD100 per leg. I'm sure we'll have more questions after we decide what to try to fit into our side trip.

ITA-Matrix did list a Lao Airlines flight but it is actually operated by Vietnam Airlines for the Siem Reap - Luang Prabang flights. There may be cheaper flights available that ITA doesn't list.

We're reasonably adventurous, but I'm pretty heat intolerant, so I doubt we'll tackle an 8 hour boat trip to Battambang. I would love to come up with an option for some place that is cooler for the second week of this side trip. Any suggestions?
wendy236 is offline  
Jul 15th, 2013, 05:39 PM
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LP will actually be somewhat cooler as it is in the hills. Inle Lake will also be somewhat cooler due to altitude. But none of these places will be cool - really just less hot.

Most people deal with the heat in SE Asia with air conditioning. You'll stay in hotels that are air-conditioned, maybe take a swim at your hotel after an afternoon of touring, etc.
Kathie is offline  
Jul 15th, 2013, 06:39 PM
  #12  
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Thanks for confirming that Luang Prabang and Lake Inle are both a bit cooler. After visiting family, anything a bit cooler and with some A/C will be much appreciated.
wendy236 is offline  
Jul 15th, 2013, 07:28 PM
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We flew Lao Air to Luang Prabang from Siem Reap. It was included in our Bangkok Air Pass which Vietnam Air doesn't participate in.
Marija is online now  
Jul 18th, 2013, 09:52 AM
  #14  
 
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Myanmar Air flies from Phnom Penh to Yangon with Visa on Arrival, which is handy. I checked the flights last week and it was $285 RT through a local agent for July dates. Price quoted for a flight from Yangon to Heho was $125 one way.

Note that the Myanmar Air flights direct from Siem Reap to Yangon have stopped, for now. Might resume in high season.
offwego is offline  
Aug 22nd, 2013, 07:05 PM
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We were in Cambodia and Laos in February/March 2013, and I have yet to finish my trip report. That said, here are a few options that we took out of Siem Reap.

Overnight trip on Tonle Sap with the Sam Veasna center. I believe they also have day trips, but we felt we saw and experienced more being able to spend the night in the floating village and starting the trek to Prek Toal bird sanctuary from there. It could be classified as "roughing it". We traveled as 2 couples - early 60's to late 60's.

Three hour taxi ride to Battambang for a 2 night stay at Battambang Resort. This was about mid-way through our trip and was a welcome respite. We stayed in the larger "lake rooms." The restaurant and pool were great, and the staff arranged some nice excursions for us. We were enthralled by the circus we were told was a must-see, had a most fabulous lunch in town at Nary Kitchen, and spent several hours on the river touring past all kinds of village life.

Not out of town, but we had lots of fun taking a cooking class. Ours was through le Tigre de Papier restaurant.
PJTravels is offline  
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