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please indulge for yet another monsoon question

please indulge for yet another monsoon question

Old Apr 18th, 2022, 10:03 AM
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please indulge for yet another monsoon question

Quick question for you all... I might go to SEA in August (only time I can make it happen). I am thinking of Cambodia, and I would really like to see PP, SR, and perhaps Tonle Sap and maybe Praeh Vihear Temple. I have done some poking around concerning the weather (and I saw a historic day by day chart of the weather in the summer for several years) and it seems like the common quote of it rains most days (but not all days) for 1-3 hours seems generally true. I did see some days with rain all day and some days with no rain. I just wanted to see from anyone's travel to SEA and especially Cambodia, whether this is indeed accurate.

Also, how does the weather impact travel to places like Tonle Sap, Preah Vihear Temple, and other places within Cambodia? The general impression I have is that it shouldn't impact things too much (pending something unusual). Is travel via bus usually OK in the rainy season?

I am also considering Bali (which I think is dry) but I think for me the deciding factor will be what is the best place to fly with my frequent flier miles. I just now want to be sure there is not a misunderstanding I am having about the monsoon, the ability to travel in it etc.. I am not planning any beach towns in Cambodia. I think the coastal areas get hit more with water.
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Old Apr 18th, 2022, 08:33 PM
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I've been in and outside of Siem Reap and going up north in September and October, which is the ending of the rainy season. The rain can come down for hours, but the problem is not the rain itself, but that the sewer systems are poor, the reservoirs and rivers overflow and parts of Siem Reap can be under a few feet of water for literally weeks, as well as having power outages. (They re-did a lot of the sewers while the city was locked down these last couple of years, so it might be better now). The other problem is that the roads outside the city can get really bad with the road bed coming apart and gigantic potholes forming. other roads so rutted and boggy that they get impassable as well. I once spent 8 hours transferring from bus to minibus to cars -and waiting by the road in the rain on the road from Battambang to Siem Reap, which is normally just 3 hours or so. The high water in the lakes can affect boat travel too. Boats can become lost (really!) or docks and landings submerged. But, for the most part, the buses still run and you might have delays, but unless you are planning to spend all your time on a tight schedule in the rural areas, you should be okay. Plus it's cooler, and so green that it is the prettiest time of year in my mind!
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Old Apr 21st, 2022, 12:01 AM
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The only thing I would add to Lucy’s comments is that, if anything, it is probably worse in August which is usually the wettest month of the year. We have visited at that time and whilst there are certain advantages - fewer tourists, cheaper accommodation, much more verdant landscapes etc. it is going to rain A LOT. if you did go you really need to check out all transport providers very carefully. There will be problems and these are best dealt with by a reliable operator.

For beach time you would be far better going to central Vietnam as it is the dry season there.

My choice for August would be Indonesia . A few years ago we flew into Jakarta took the train down through Java stopping at some fantastic places along the way (Borobodor is Indonesia’s much smaller answer to Angor Wat. we got the ferry across to Bali, spend some time there and then headed across to Sulawesi. Any, or all of those places would make a great trip in August. Some photos and more detail on our blog @ https://accidentalnomads.com/category/indonesia/

Assuming your ff miles will take you to anywhere in Asia there are lots of hubs where it would be relatively easy and cheap to get to Indonesia by Air Asia or other similar budget airlines.

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Old Apr 25th, 2022, 11:59 AM
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thanks. I am on the fence. I know I am traveling someplace in August, but I am tied into a very specific time and on frequent flier miles. Right now, Cambodia, Sri Lanka, and Egypt are up on my list. Cambodia seems (oddly enough) to offer the easiest times via flights and things of the sort for me. But, I am a bit put off by the weather. Sri Lanka sounds interesting as well, but the flight times are not ideal. Egypt has poor flight times with FF miles, and it is very hot in August. I also did a 12 hour layover in Cairo, so I had some exposure to Egypt. But, I went to Myanmar once and had a 12 hour layover in Bangkok, so I am familiar with SE Asia to a degree. Also been to India several times, but I heard Sri Lanka is nice.

So, decisions, decisions, decisions. It sounds nice seeing Angkor Wat without the crowds (and really good hotels are cheap in Aug) but I dont want to be rained out for several consecutive days or unable to get from point A to point B.

As an aside, do you know if birding is good in August in Cambodia around Tonle Sap?
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Old Apr 25th, 2022, 12:47 PM
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The probability of getting "rained out for several consecutive days or unable to get from point A to point B.” is quite high. Continuous rain can get very tedious very quickly. Sorry, but I have no idea re birding in Cambodia (or anywhere for that matter!)

I would definitely avoid Egypt - way to hot in August. Sril Lanka is amazing! We spent moth travelling around there and loved it. Great wether in August but there is a degree of civil unrest there at present (though it wouldn’t put me off)
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