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SE Aisa Itinerary? We'd Love Suggestions

SE Aisa Itinerary? We'd Love Suggestions

Old Dec 24th, 2006, 07:21 AM
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Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 39
SE Aisa Itinerary? We'd Love Suggestions

My husband and I would like to take a trip to SE Asia in Mid March -- we've never been and are not sure how much is possible to see in a span of 12 days or so. We would like to try to see Angkor Wat, Chiang Mai perhaps Hanoi or Saigon? Truth be told, we have no idea what's the best itinerary to take. Any suggestions would be much appreciated. What are the best or key places to see? We love seeing historical sites, and a good beach or pool as well. Thanks so much
lmarent is offline  
Old Dec 24th, 2006, 08:17 AM
Join Date: Jul 2003
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Well, like many of us, your first trip to SE Asia will probably not be your last! I have already been twice this year and many on this forum go every year for weeks at a time.

Do you actually have 12 days on the ground or does that include flying time? Are you flying from the USA?

It will definitely be very hot so your pace will be slower than if you were in most of Europe.

With only 12 days, you may want to limit your destinations to 3 and I would NOT visit three different countries. It takes time to get to and from the airports and then into whatever city you are visiting.

For many people, their first trip to SE Asia includes Thailand. Most likely you will fly into Bangkok. After travelling that far across so many time zones you will experience jet lag for the first day or two. I suggest staying at a nice hotel with a pool and exploring Bangkok at a leisurely pace. Visit the Grand Palace, The Reclining Buddha, the Temple of the Emerald Buddha, and Wat Arun.

Since you enjoy historic sites I suggest you fly to Siem reap and stay there for 3-4 nights. Get a guide and driver, or at least a driver. It makes it so much easier to get to all the incredible temples and they usually keep cold water in a cooler in the truk for you. A guide or driver will cost you $20-25 USD each per day.

If you want to see Chiang Mai you will need to fly there via Bangkok. Stay for 3-4 nights.

Stay your final night or two back in Bangkok.

Flying back and forth from Siem Reap is expensive. The Discovery Pass with Bangkok Air will be your least expensive flight option. You can use it to fly a minimum of 3 legs and up to 6. You purchase this through a travel agent in the USA.

The Baan Orapin in Chiang Mai is a wonderful place to stay. It is out of the hustle and bustle so nice and quiet but still walking distance to many things. It does not have a pool.

In Bangkok you may want to check out Centre Point Silom, The Marriott Resort, The Peninsula or the Oriental. These are all near the river. it is easy to get around via sky train or river taxi from these hotels.

We stayed at Auberge Mont Royal in Siem Reap and were very pleased with it. It has a pool as well.

Let us know if you havbe more questions.

eurotraveller is offline  
Old Dec 24th, 2006, 08:37 AM
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 6,664
With 12 days on the ground, I would break it up as follows BKK-2 days, SR-3 days (Angkor Wat is one of mnay temples around the city of Siem Riep), Phuket or Krabi-4 days, BKK-3 days. If this is your choice, fly into SR on an early flight from BKK and out on an afternoon flight. The Discovery Pass from Bangkok Air (the only BKK-SR carrier) will save a lot of money. You call the New York office of Bangkok Air and pay in advance. many have done this without any problem. You get actual paper tickets.

It will be hot in SEA in March, but it's always hot there. Wear loose clothes and drink lots of water.
Gpanda is offline  
Old Dec 24th, 2006, 11:23 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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You've gotten some good advice so far. You mention wanting to go to VN, but your connections will be easier if you go in and out of Bangkok. Thailand is also a very friendly introduction to SE Asia. It has much better traveler infrastructure than VN.

Angkor is stunning. It takes a full three days just to see the major temples, so your first decison should be how much time you want to spend there. We spent a week, and could have spent more time... we certainly didn't see all of the dozens of accessible temples. Do some research - if you want 5 or 6 days at Angkor, then choose just one other place. If you would be content with three full days, chose one or two other places to visit if you have 12 full days on the ground. If you have less than 12 full days in Asia, choose just two places to visit.

I invite you to look at some photos of Angkor on our website: Also, get a copy of Dawn Rooney's book, Angkor to help you decide your level of interest.
Kathie is offline  
Old Dec 26th, 2006, 06:37 PM
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Join Date: Oct 2006
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Thanks so much for all suggestions.
lmarent is offline  
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