Help managing my time.

Feb 20th, 2014, 12:51 PM
  #1  
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Posts: 79
Help managing my time.

Hi everyone.
So I have 13 full days + 15 full days in SEA.
I will go to Burma in the middle of my journey and I have my flights from Portugal to BKK booked as my flights in and out of Myanmar to BKK.
When I bought my flights to Myanmar I was thinking I would go later in time, so now it's right in the middle of my trip (it really bugs me!!!) but I didn't want to lose those flights.

I wish I could spend time in the rest of my trip:
Laos: Luang Prabang, Nong Khiaw
Cambodia: Siem Reap, Phnom Phen
Thailand: BKK, Chiang Mai, Khao Sok NP, Koh Tao/ Krabi (depending of logistics)

So: 8 places, 3 countries.
With 28 days to fill ~3,5 days to each place not counting transports and know that I will have to be in Bangkok in the middle.
So I want to make the most of my time, taking advantage of night train/buses in Thailand and Cambodia. I wont be able to do that in Laos, I know, too dangerous.

Can some one help me decide a route for those days in this places?
marianacardoso is offline  
Feb 21st, 2014, 01:27 PM
  #2  
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Posts: 79
I guess this was a hard question.
so, what about this:

1 CM
2 CM
3 CM
4 CR
5 TO LP boat
6 TO LP boat
7 LP
8 LP
9 LP
10 LP
11 TO VNT
12 VNT
13 TO BKK

1 flight TO PP
2 PP
3 PP (night bus to SR)
4 SR
5 SR
6 SR
7 flight to krabi
8 krabi
9 krabi
10 bus? TO KHAO SOK
11 KHAO SOK
12 KHAO SOK (night bus to bkk)
13 BKK
14 BKK
15 BKK
marianacardoso is offline  
Feb 21st, 2014, 02:31 PM
  #3  
 
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Posts: 32,996
Are you aware that there is no flight to Krabi from Siem Reap? You will have to fly to Bangkok then fly to Krabi. There is a direct flight (one stop) from Siem Reap to Phuket.

Overall, this looks do-able. You are going to Myanmar in the middle, tell us about your plan for that part of your trip.
Kathie is offline  
Feb 21st, 2014, 03:27 PM
  #4  
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There's a direct flight from Airasia, with a stop in Bangkok. I think it's a new route.
I have 8 full days, arriving in the morning in Yangon (so counting the first day) and exiting in the morning from mandalay (not counting that day). So basically 9 more days added in the middle to that itinerary. I'll do Yangon-Bagan-Mandalay. Unfortunately I don't have time for Inle... Wish I had!

U like my chosen route overall? You think it's diverse and a good choice? I really like your trip reports.
marianacardoso is offline  
Feb 21st, 2014, 03:35 PM
  #5  
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The Chiang Mai - LP part it's a prevision. Since I don't have to book flights for that part if I want to leave Chiang Mai earlier I can always add those days to LP. The rest will be way more strict, don't really like that but the destinations I wish too see are way to far not to fly between places. Still undecided about the Krabi- KS NP part. I do want to experience some beach and jungle in Thailand but I'm afraid the rainy season will be to bad for that. I could go to Koh Tao for example instead but that would involve a lot more of traveling I think it's not worth. To tell the truth it's not the part I'm most looking forward to!
marianacardoso is offline  
Feb 21st, 2014, 03:36 PM
  #6  
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Still, I think it might be nice at the end to add some nature settings. Beach time + that lake tour in Khao Sok.
marianacardoso is offline  
Feb 21st, 2014, 03:44 PM
  #7  
 
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I'm sorry you won't have time to visit Inle. It's really an amazing experience.

With 9 days in Burma, I'd make time for Inle. One day in Yangon, 3 each in Bagan and Inle, then get out of Mandalay as soon as you can.
Kathie is offline  
Feb 21st, 2014, 11:05 PM
  #8  
 
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What time of year are you travelling as this will clearly have some bearing on suggestions, particularly for your beach time.

A few thoughts:

Whilst there is plenty to see in CM you may want to consider one night at Chiang Dao Nest a couple of hours away for some great trekking which I recall you were looking for in your previous post.

Given the time you have available for Laos, I would be inclined to spend it all in LP. And fly to BKK from there. That way you could maybe stay in one of the jungle lodges in the surrounding countryside for your jungle fix for a couple of nights.

I would avoid the night buses in Thailand if I were you. The trains were fine though.
crellston is offline  
Feb 24th, 2014, 09:44 AM
  #9  
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Thank you all for always being so helpful!

Kathie, I actually have 8 days, not 9, I'll leave in the last day in the morning. Have you done any trips by train?
marianacardoso is offline  
Feb 24th, 2014, 10:00 AM
  #10  
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Thank you all for always being so helpful!

Kathie, I actually have 8 days, not 9, I'll leave in the last day in the morning. Have you done any trips by train? I know they are in bad conditions and VERY bumpy but I heard it's an amazing experience for some. Would you agree? They are slow so I thought I could do an overnight journey to Bagan. But if going to Inle I don't know how to experience this. Another problem I have is that I wish I could see the Shwedagon Pagoda at night and if I leave the first day by train I won't be able to do that. Any thoughts?

Crellston, I'll be traveling July and August. I'm really considering changing my flight to give me more time to Laos. I wish I could go to Konglor cave. I'm so undecided on weather I should go north or south. I really wish Luang Prabang was easier to reach by land. I've looked into Chiang Dao nest and it looks nice, I will consider doing my trekking experience there. Is it better than, for example, Luang Namtha? I would skip the slowboat in this case.
I get so undecided about Laos since everything looks too good for me to let aside. Burma in the middle it's really messing with my planes.
marianacardoso is offline  
Feb 24th, 2014, 10:36 AM
  #11  
 
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We did not do any train trips in Burma. Everyone I know who has done a train trip could only talk about how uncomfortable and slow it was. Your time in Burma is too precious, in my opinion to waste it on a slow, uncomfortable train ride. The busses are better (more comfortable, not as slow) than the trains.

Unfortunately, you don't have much time in Burma, not enough to do the things you want to do.
Kathie is offline  
Feb 24th, 2014, 11:28 AM
  #12  
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Yes, Kathie, I understand that, that was why I was not thinking about doing Inle lake. Still working on my priorities here. Hard to choose. Do you know what it the best route between Yangon-> Inle-> Bagan-> Mandalay? Probably this one right?
marianacardoso is offline  
Feb 24th, 2014, 11:37 AM
  #13  
 
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That works, as does Yangon>Bagan>Inle>Mandalay. It will depend on which airline you are flying or which bus you take.
Kathie is offline  
Feb 24th, 2014, 12:00 PM
  #14  
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Ok, good.
So what would be better in your opinion between this two:

1 Yangon
2 Inle Lake
3 Inle Lake
4 Inle Lake
5 Bagan
6 Bagan
7 Bagan
8 Mandalay
9 Leave in the morning

or

1 Yangon
2 Yangon
3 Inle Lake
4 Inle Lake
5 Inle Lake
6 Bagan
7 Bagan
8 Bagan (with night bus to Mandalay)
9 Leave in the morning

Still not sure if I'll use night buses between places or fly. I count on having ~50usd per day for all the days of my trip (knowing burma will be more expensive than Laos for example and hoping some days will not be so expensive so I can put a little extra to those in Burma) and will be traveling with my boyfriend so 100 usd for both of us. I might try to get more money but, if not, I don't think I can take money from my daily budget to do frequent flights and the night bus sounds a good option for me and my budget. I don't count on spending money in luxuries and just want a clean bed to sleep, however, I don't wan't to compromise places/day trips/trekking because of the money.
marianacardoso is offline  
Feb 24th, 2014, 12:51 PM
  #15  
 
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How early is your flight out of Mandalay?

Either of those two itineraries work.

Note that there are some extra expenses to consider: at Inle, boat hire for the two of you will be $30-$35 a day. More like $50 if you go to Sankar (highly recommended). Don't try to economize by taking a boat with other people who just want the "tourist circuit."
In Bagan, I expect you'll want a horse cart for at least a day or two, typically under US$20 for the two of you each day.
Kathie is offline  
Feb 24th, 2014, 01:11 PM
  #16  
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It's at 12h45.

I heard about Sankar from you in other posts. the southern part right? Already thinking about going there!
About Inle, you hire a boat everyday or you normally explore the surrounding places? It's a good idea to try to get a place to sleep for a day in, for example, the southern part, when I go on a day trip to the lake?

What would be a good daily budget for both of us in Burma? As I said, I just want a clean bed in a convenient location but I don't want to compromise my activities. This might be a hard question. You can skip it if you don't want to guess.
marianacardoso is offline  
Feb 24th, 2014, 01:55 PM
  #17  
 
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At Inle, you normally hire a boat every day. You could just have a boat two days and go to Kakku on the third day (that would require a car and driver). There is no place to stay in Sankar so it is necessarily a day trip. You may want to stay at the town on the lake, as it will allow you more choices (and less expensive choices) for eating than staying at one of the hotels on the lake or lakeside.

Sorry, I can't help with the budget, but having availability of additional money if needed is always a good idea.
Kathie is offline  
Feb 24th, 2014, 02:40 PM
  #18  
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Thanks a lot for the tip on Kakku. Would it be a day trip for itself or could I add something else while going there?
Another question, the two days on the lake, should I go south for both of them?
marianacardoso is offline  
Feb 24th, 2014, 03:23 PM
  #19  
 
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For the two days on the lake, go to Sankar for one day, the main part of the lake for the other. See http://www.travelindependently.com/r...-for-inle-lake

Kakku is not a whole day, you could add somewhere else (not on the lake).
Kathie is offline  
Feb 24th, 2014, 11:16 PM
  #20  
 
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Trekking in Laos is less developed and commercialised than in northern Thailand but both have attractions. Chiang Dao has nice accommodation food etc. Whereas in Laos, whilst it is possible to find very nice places to stay in northern Laos to make the best of the trekking you really need to use homestays which are more basic but great fun.

Given the choice, I would opt for Laos but travelling at that time of year will usually involve a lot of mud if travelling off the main highways which could cause problems if you are on a tight timescale. Having said that my son has travelled that area at that time of year and had a great time.

As for the slow boat, if it were me, I would give that a miss and fly to LP ( assuming that is possible direct from CM). The boat rip was wonderfull years ago but the toast time we did it we we're quite shocked by the amount of deforestation that had happened along the riverbanks. You could do it by speedboat which takes a round seven hours but I tried that on the Nam Ou river further north and whilst it was exciting, it was uncomfortable and probably more than a little dangerous.
crellston is offline  

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