Travel Advice for Vietnam and Cambodia

May 18th, 2009, 07:59 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 3
Travel Advice for Vietnam and Cambodia

Just found this site and will have some reading to do!

We have just booked flights to Hanoi and leave from Siem reap with Singapore air, for November.

We have 19 nights/20 days in which to travel and sightsee.

We intend to mainly spend our time up north and possibly venture to the Central beaches, saving the south for another time and also wish to heading to Cambodia. Most probably sightseeing around Hanoi and visiting Sa Pa (possibly do some trek) and Ha Long Bay. Fly to Danang, Hoi An, Saigon, Mekong Delta and possible fly to Phnom peen and Angkor Wat.

Could anybody suggest a possible itinerary i.e. how many nights in each place to enjoy and not be rushing all the time. Hanoi. then maybe Sa Pa? Back to Ha Long, Danang, Hoi An, Saigon and Mekong Delta? Then head to Cambodia a bit?

Can we manage this independently, or is it better to get tours organised before we get there?

Any and all info appreciated, as my tag suggests, I can't get enough!!!

joffrey36 is offline  
May 18th, 2009, 09:18 PM
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 4,466
I think you are trying to see too many places in one trip. (others will chime in i am sure)
let us know what sort of things you like doing and it will help us offer advice on your itinerary.
Have you also considered the weather? its sure to be monsoon season in central Vietnam in November (i am regrettably skipping Danang and Hoi an on my trip this coming Nov)

As i said let us know a bit about you and plenty here will help.
Smeagol is offline  
May 19th, 2009, 11:07 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 32,687
Ok, you have 19 nights for VN and Cambodia. I'm a little confused as you say you are going to mainly spend your time in the north, yet you name places in both central and south VN. By the way, you can easily do all of this on your own, no need for tours. You may want a guide for Angkor, but you won't need one elsewhere. If you find you want a guide somewhere, you can e asily arrange for one, and at a much lower price than the agencies will charge you when you book from home.

Smeagol is right about November being a bad time for central VN. Ther are heavy rains at that time, and they have extensive flooding two out of every three years during November. So you would be better off skipping Hoi An, Hue, and DaNang.

Asia lends itself best to slow travel. You need time in each place to really get a feel for it. And it take time to get from place to place. You'll find you spend a lot of time in transit. So three nights somewhere is only two full days.

In thinking about the time to allow, I'd start by thinking about Siem Reap and working backwards. It takes three full days to see just the major temples. If you are very interested in the temples or if you'd like to visit some of the more distant temples, you'll need more time. We spent a week there and I could have easily spent double the time. Do your research first - get a copy of Dawn Rooney's book, Angkor (2006 edition) to help you figure out how much time you need. You are also welcome to take a look at our Angkor photos at

Once you know how much time you'd like to spend in Siem Reap, you can see how many days you have for other destinations and can decide which places to visit and which to save for your next trip.
Kathie is offline  
May 20th, 2009, 02:22 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 3
Thanks Smeagol & Kathie!

After take lots of time read and search, we wish to go through as follow.

1) ~4 nights in Hanoi include overnight Halong bay

2) ~4 nights Sapa (mountain area 2 nights at hotel, 2night on train)

3) ~3 nights Danang, Hoi An or better to go to Nha Trang?

4) ~2 nights Saigon, Cu Chi Tunnels

5) ~1 night Mekong Delta (Cantho)

6) ~2 nights Phnom Penn (killing field, museum, palace)

7) ~3 nights Angkor Wat, fly to Singapore and connecting HOME.

I hope this provides enough information and I look forward to your ideas!

Does anyone have any good recommendations for the internal flight in Vietnam, Cambodia and hotels?

I'll look into your recommendations. Thanks for your help.
joffrey36 is offline  
May 20th, 2009, 05:34 AM
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 90
Your itinery looks good to me.

I would not got to Danang or Hoi An becuase of the rain, these places can be miserable, go further south.

Try jet Star we flew from Hanoi to Nha Trang for 80 usd per person return, really cheap and their fares change daily.

In Siem Reap get a tour guide for sure, but through Vietnam I agree that no guides are really needed.
SaraJane is offline  
Jun 1st, 2009, 09:55 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,100
The Sokha is certainly the best there but the restored (2007) Independence runs a close second. Myself I prefer this smaller boutique hotel which sits on a spectacular bluff overlooking the beach. Its rooms and facilities are great but service can be spotty at times.

Sihanoukville is a place that you either like or hate and gets mixed reviews. If you are not into nightlife then Kep/Kampot is a much more peaceful and quiet place away from the tourist crowds although it is getting more popular all the time. For a nice quite white sand beach, except on weekends, you can take a half hour boat ride offshore to Rabbit Island. The best seafood in Cambodia is served in these parts. And maybe by November the new road up Bokor Mountain will be opened. There are some very good places to stay in Kep

Even if you do stay in Sihanoukville, instead of taking the normal route 4 from Phom Penh take the alternates routes 2 and 3 through kep/Kampot and having a great seafood lunch in there. The scenery along this route is some of the best in the country
Scotters is offline  

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