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Thailand and Angkor

Old Jun 4th, 2005, 06:39 PM
  #1  
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Thailand and Angkor

Hi

We (me, wife, brother, parents) plan to spend 7 days in these 2 places. We wanted spend 2 days in Cambodia (by taking one of those tour things from BKK) and 5 in Thailand.

What would be the best thing to do in Thailand? We would like to see Bangkok and some other place in the 5 days. Can someone recommend a good place to see. I am quite confused about north/ south/ central Thailand. I hear many names (CK?) being thrown around.

Also how should we get around Thailand. I read about the Julie tax service etc. Is that better or should we just take one of those tours of North thailand or something like that for 2 days?

Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks
alakshma
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Old Jun 4th, 2005, 08:56 PM
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If you can only devote 5 days to Thailand, I would spend it all in Bangkok. It is a great city with much to do. I would also stay in a hotel on the river to get the best experience. Watching the river traffic and taking boats are wonderful ways to get a feel for this amazing city.

If you're really intent on going somewhere else in Thailand, I would spend three nights in BKK and two somewhere else. Where depends on your interests. Beach? Countryside? More info is needed to answer your question. With such limited time, if you plan to go up north, you should fly and then hire a car and driver to take you around.

When you say 2 days in Cambodia, I assume you will be going to Siem Reap to see Angkor. I hope you mean 2 nights because if it's only one night, you won't have enough time to see much of anything and should skip it all together.
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Old Jun 5th, 2005, 02:50 AM
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2 days in Siem Reap will be very rushed. You will need to take the first morning flight Bkk-SR and will likely take an evening flight back SR-Bkk hence will be an early AM flight one day and a lateish evening the next. Given this I would say spend the other 5 days in Bkk. 5 days is not a lot for Bkk. If you really want to go somewhere else go to Hua Hin, a beach resort location just 3 hours drive from Bkk. this would make it 3 days Bkk, 2 SR, 2 Hua Hin. I always reco booking an a/c car and driver in Bkk. really improves the quality of your trip and is affordable. Julie is a good option.
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Old Jun 5th, 2005, 09:33 AM
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As others have said, 7 days is a very short trip. First I would advise you NOT to take "one of those tour things from BKK."

Begin by assessing how interested you are in the Temples of Angkor. Remember that there are literally dozens of temples there that are currently accessible to travelers (and of course, many more which are not). To see all of the so-called major temples takes three full days. If you are really interested in the temples and would like to visit some of the "minor" temples where you may be the only visitor you will need more days.

While it is perfectly possible to go overland from Bangkok to Siem Reap and return it is a long tiring trip, taking a full day each way. With so little time, it would be a pity to waste it that way. So I'd recommend that you fly. Bangkok Air has the only non-stops between Bangkok and Siem Reap. You can easily book your own hotel - I use www.asiahotels.com - and your hotel can arrange a car and driver (and guide, if you wish) for you. This will be a MUCH cheaper and much more flexible arrangement than taking a tour.

I'd recommend that you stay the rest of your 7 days in Bangkok. You can take a day trip outside the city, but there is so much to see and do in Bangkok, save other places in Thailand for your next trip. Otherwise, I fear you'll spend too much of your time traveling and not enough time absorbing the wonderful experiences of Thailand.
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Old Jun 5th, 2005, 09:49 AM
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Forget the tour thing. Check out this forum for Angkor guides. We've booked Ponheary for December. She's at [email protected]. She's very prompt in replying. You'll need a minivan to get around, but she can probably accomodate. I join the others in suggesting 5 days in BKK. You lose at least 1/2 day travelling. So back and forth would be an entire day lost. Thailand is magic, don't waste it in travel.
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Old Jun 5th, 2005, 09:54 AM
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Thank you for all your wonderful comments.

I did mean 2 nights in Agkor and that would effectively give me 2 days and a part of the third day. I was only expecting to see the major sites in Angkor since it is a very short visit.

But considering all your responses about how much there is to see in BKK, I am even wondering if I can push Angkor to the next visit. I am now tempted to do 4 days in BKK and 3 days in Chiang Mai. I read that it has some opportunites for wildlife watching and I am interested in that. I believe I can also take a flight from BKK->CM.

Also, thanks for your comments on the hiring taxi/ driver. I will contact Julie for the BKK taxi. Any recommendations for a CM taxi service? Or should I arrange for one at the hotel?

Thanks again for your help. This forum is wonderful.

alakshma
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Old Jun 5th, 2005, 10:08 AM
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As a follow up to this I would like to ask this other question. If I could do only one of the two, Chiang Mai/ Angkor which one would be better. I have an equal amount of interest in culture sightseeing and nature. I am probably a little biased towards culture than towards nature but not enough to make it an automatic tilt towards Angkor. If Chiang Mai is significantly more spectacluar as compared to Angkor I am willing to go there. I am not interested in beach resorts etc.

thanks
alakshma
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Old Jun 5th, 2005, 11:10 AM
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Angkor is stunning. Chaing Mai isn't even in the same category. Go to Angkor now. Chaing Mai can wait.
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Old Jun 5th, 2005, 11:12 AM
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I agree with Kathie, Angkor is magnificent. Skip Chiang Mai, it's okay but you can live without it.
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Old Jun 5th, 2005, 12:04 PM
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I did a tour of Thailand with a short pre-trip to Siem Reap. We flew from BKK one morning and had only two nights in Siem Reap. I would have liked more time there, but that was the only option with the tour co. we used. We toured Angkor wat temples on one day and did the boat cruise on the lake the other day. I did get to see the main temples which I loved! It was worthwhile for even that short a time. I agree with the others to skip Chaing Mai and do Angkor instead. You will not be disappointed. We were there in Dec. & it was very hot!
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Old Jun 6th, 2005, 02:31 AM
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Go to Angkor. Chiang Mai will not be different this time next year but Siem reap is developing very fast and there is a good chance the tourist overload will start killing some of the charm of the town and temples. It is possible to see a fair amount in a 2 night, 3 day trip - tho personally I would focus on the temples as I found the boat cruise ok, not unmissable. Pull up earlier threads re Angkor for ideas on how to structure your 2.5 days.
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Old Jun 6th, 2005, 04:46 AM
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I'd make it 2 days in Bangkok and 5 days to see Angkor !!

I spent 4 nights in Siem Reap recently before heading down to Phnom Penh for the Bon Om Tuk festival and wished that I could have stayed on in Angkor for another 4 nights.

Amazing place.

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Cambodia & Thailand Trip Report
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