Nov/Dec Asia Trip

Old Apr 28th, 2013, 06:03 PM
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Nov/Dec Asia Trip

Hello I’m planning a trip to Asia and would like some feedback. I have already booked my main flight. I will leave IAH on Wed Nov 27th @ 8pm (8hr layover in Istanbul) arrive in PEK Fri Nov 29th @ 4pm then my return flight is leave BKK @ 11am Saturday Dec 14th (20 hr layover in Istanbul) arrive IAH Sun 15th @ 6pm. I will have a total of 14 days to plan for. I know it will be winter in Beijing and really cold but I picked this time bc it gave me 2 extra days off work. I’m 25, female, and traveling alone. I like to hop around when I travel because it is rare that I actually get to go. I went to Europe and did 5 places in 2 weeks and was very happy with it. I know travel in Asia is different but this is what I’ve come up with so far. I’ll have 3 days in each place and on flight days an added half day depending on when I leave. It might seem like I’m crossing things off a list and I kind of am. I’ve thought about this trip and that’s what really sticks out to me so I want to make sure I get to do those things. I’m trying to do this on budget with hostels but am flying btw places to save time.
Nov 29th-Arrive in PEK, late so mainly hostel and dinner
Nov 30-Dec 2(3 Days) Main sites like Forbidden City and Temple of Heaven, day trip tour (with hostel) to the great wall, 3rd day anything I missed the other days and just wonder the city (souvenir shopping) would also like to see an opera or acrobatics show
Dec 3rd (Day trip to Xi’an)-Catch night train on 2nd to Xi’an to see the Terra Cotta warriors and spend the rest of the day around the city then night train or flight somewhere else. $50 Sleeper Train
Dec 4-6- (2 or 2.5 days somewhere else?) Shanghai, Kuala Lumpur??
Dec 6-Fly to Siem Reap. $300
Dec 7-9(3 Days) Siem Reap Angkor Wat around town, Aspera show one night
Dec 10-Fly to Bangkok $200
Dec 11-13(3 Days) Bangkok sites
Dec 14th-Go to airport
During my layovers in Istanbul I plan on seeing some sites, Blue Mosque and others and shopping. But I will post about that in the other forum.
Any thoughts? Should I not try to add another place after Xi’an? I thought Shanghai bc my flight would connect there anyway and if I took a night train I could spend days in the city then fly out for only $10-20 more( or cost of night at a hostel). Thanks for any advice or input!
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Old Apr 28th, 2013, 06:37 PM
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Since you are going to China and have purchased the expensive visa, it makes a lot more sense to go to Shanghai than it does to Kuala Lumpur. Are you flying from Shanghai to Siem Reap? If so, that would make sense. Given how fast you are moving, I wouldn't add another destination.
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Old Apr 28th, 2013, 07:21 PM
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Thanks for replying. I haven't booked any flights between cities. I thought Shanghai was a smart move because that is where my flight to Siem Reap would most likely be through. What I meant by adding another place was the 2.5 days (spent in Shanghai). So, if I put Shanghai at Dec 4-6 after the night train from Xi'an; do you think this is a good plan? Do the number of days in each place sound ok? I agree, it does make more sense to stay longer in China bc I'm having to pay for the visa. Which I haven't applied for yet bc I read that I have to wait until close to my flight bc its only valid 30 days from the date of issue.
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Old Apr 29th, 2013, 06:01 AM
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I would think of your China time as a block of days to be divided among the three destinations you have mentioned: Beijing, Xian and Shanghai. Do take a good look at air connections to Siem Reap, as that may be a limiting factor for you.

What kind of passport do you have? With a US passport, the China visa is valid for 90 days, I believe. I'd suggest you apply as soon as you can, as there are many stories of people's visas taking a very long time to process.

Also, I fear that your flight prices in and out of Siem Reap may be unrealistically low. Do some checking on your options.
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Old Apr 29th, 2013, 04:52 PM
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> Nov 30-Dec 2(3 Days) Main sites like Forbidden City and Temple of Heaven, day trip tour (with hostel) to the great wall, 3rd day anything I missed the other days and just wonder the city (souvenir shopping) would also like to see an opera or acrobatics show

I must admit that I think you are short-changing Beijing, which really deserves at least 6 full days IMHO. No need to take a tour to the Great Wall unless that's your preference -- it is easy to visit on one's own. If you haven't already seen them, you might look at some of the trip reports that solo female Fodorites have written - and there are several of us. You can find mine by clicking on my name. It's a long report, but it's searchable.

> Dec 3rd (Day trip to Xi’an)-Catch night train on 2nd to Xi’an to see the Terra Cotta warriors and spend the rest of the day around the city then night train or flight somewhere else.

I was glad to have 4 nights (more than 3 full days) in Xi'an.

> I like to hop around when I travel because it is rare that I actually get to go.

I can understand that sentiment, but do consider how much time you'll spend in transit for the time you have on the ground. And recognize that switching countries in Asia won't be like crossing borders in Europe: The languages and rules and norms and tourist infrastructure may be quite different, and you may lose a chunk of time to getting oriented in ways that you might not have to do in Europe.
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