Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos

Sep 24th, 2003, 04:04 PM
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Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos

Spending 17 days in SE Asia and need to know if the following itinerary makes sense or if I left out any important destinations. Please advise and share your thoughts. Thanks.

1.) Laos:
Luang Prabang- 2 Nights
Vientiane- 1N

2.) Cambodia
Sien Reap/Angkor Wat- 2N
Phnom Penh-1N

3.) Vietnam
Saigon- 2N
Da Lat/Na Trang-1N
Hoi An/Hue-3N
Hay Long Bay-1N
Moonblatt is offline  
Sep 24th, 2003, 05:02 PM
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i think you might want to squeek out another nite at siem reap??? where are you using for a staging area?? many use bangkok or can you travel from one to the other.....
rhkkmk is offline  
Sep 24th, 2003, 05:05 PM
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Part of the charm of SE Asia is slowing down and experiencing it. Your itinerary takes you lots of places, but I think you'll be dissatisfied with the experience.

I'd recommend that you spend at least three nights in Luang Prabang, skip Vientiane; spend three nights in Siem Reap, skip Phnom Penh; choose either North or South VN.
Kathie is offline  
Sep 24th, 2003, 05:20 PM
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i second that...remember in at least 2 of those places it is very hot and you can't move around as fast as you might like....go once and get the will return...often
rhkkmk is offline  
Sep 24th, 2003, 05:46 PM
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Moonblatt, in the time available your Vietnam itinerary looks pretty good to me. You don't say how you're planning to get around, but you probably know not to expect to get anywhere fast by road. Chartered minibus is the best bet; don't even think about the public buses. All the cities you're going to are well worth a visit and you can do some great side tours from Ho Chi Minh City, Hue and Hanoi in particular - e.g. from HCMC the Cu Chi Tunnels and My Tho (Mekong Delta), from Hue the Royal Tombs, and a day trip to the hill tribe country west of Hanoi (I think we went into Hoa Binh province). Hoi An is an especially beguiling city, and Ha Long Bay is spectacular. Try to get a ticket to the Water Puppets while in Hanoi. Vietnam is a beautiful country, with a fascinating culture, friendly people, great food and good coffee to boot. 20 days wasn't enough for us.
Neil_Oz is offline  
Sep 24th, 2003, 08:59 PM
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Wow! Such great information so fast!

As for staging area, I was hoping to go from city to city without using a major city as a staging area or home base. Maybe this is naive? Was planning on doing all travel by air, however, I haven't priced it yet. Any recommnedations?

I agree about moving too fast. Just trying to crank it all in.

I'll kill Phonm Penn.

Feel free to send more thoughts.
Moonblatt is offline  
Sep 24th, 2003, 09:15 PM
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how are u getting from hcmc to dalat and nha trang? i'm guessing bus, since u say 1 nite. it's 6 hrs from hcmc to dalat alone, another 4?? (don't remember) from dalat to nha trang. u might want to choose one or the other.

dalat is a large mountain town w/ a small amt of french colonial architecture, a lake, a market, some picturesque temples. nha trang is a beach resort w/ a 10-km beach, good seafood (incl brought to u on the beach) and some fun all-day snorkel boat tours.

otherwise, cutting out phnom penh, i agree ur itinerary looks good.
mari808 is offline  
Sep 25th, 2003, 05:42 AM
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You really haven't budgeted for travel time. Where are you coming from? From either the US or Europe, you'll likely fly into Bangkok (though it's possible to fly into Hanoi or HCMC). You'll need to spend a night in your arrival city (at least) before flying on to LP, Laos. Last I checked, there were no non-stop flights from LP to Siem Reap. As noted, trains and buses in VN are slow travel. You've just got too much you're trying to do. Cut out half the places and you'll have a do-able trip.
Kathie is offline  
Sep 25th, 2003, 06:13 AM
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It occurs to me that you might be interested in the air pass that Bangkok Air has. It's a circular route that takes in the world heritage sites in SE Asia - Sukothai, Angkor, Luang Prabang, Hue. That might be the one way you could cover that much area in so little time. Check out the website at
Kathie is offline  
Sep 25th, 2003, 08:51 AM
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More great Information.

Was planning to fly between all cities. All of my cities but Hue/Hoi An have airports. The Bangkok Air Pass seems very viable. Will check it out.

Flying R/T in and out of B'Kok.

Going into Sien Reap out of B'Kok. Starting there going south and working North through to Laos and ending in Vientiane then onto B'kok and back to Washington, DC. Thoughts?

Your comments are warmly appreciated.

Anyone have a treavelagent that knows this region that they like? Or websites?
Moonblatt is offline  

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