hi everydody!!! im traveling to cambodia, vietnam and laos next summer and i need some useful information about it:
- malaria: i have heard that the pills to prevent it could make me sick so i think i´m not gonna take them , what do you think about it?
- safety advices(if needed)because i´ll travel alone
-and any useful think i should know
- i´m going from thailand because i´ve herad that´s the cheapest way
thanks for all and see you around the world!!!!
My experience - I've taken Doxycycline in Cambodia, Vietnam, and Laos (as well as other places). Never had any sort of side effects except for a bad sunburn the first day I took it. Be careful with that. But other than that, I've never heard of side effects, it's only a mild anti-biotic. I just got home 5 mintues ago from my travel clinic and the doc said Doxy works as well as any other, provided you are very exact with the times you take it.
My Recommendation - I'm not a doctor, nor are most people who might answer this. Go talk to a travel clinic who can give you professional answers. I'm assuming you plan to get your Heps, and Typhoid and all those fun vaccinations, so while you are there, they will tell you about Malaria and explain the risks. If you already have everything else you need and don't want to go to a clinic, then maybe start by checking out the World Health Organization website for some more qualified info.
I'm under the impression that South East Asia isn't a particualry dangerous place, even if you are on your own. I'm not sure if you are a girl or a guy, but either way, if you take normal precautions, then the chances of anything happening to you in any of those area are pretty slim. I've never felt the least bit threatened in any of those countries, though usually I've been with some one. Chances are though, you will be with someone, because there are too many other travellers to ever be alone for long. But make sure you don't go walking down dark alleys at night, don't walk around flaunting an expensive camera, don't wander off roads (landmines), and just use your head. Safety isn't an issue if you use common sense.
I find it easiest to arrange visas in Bangkok. Kao San Road is pretty good for that. Just go to a travel agent and they will take care of everything. It usually takes about 5 days. You get a month visa for Vietnam, use it all if you can. It defiently takes a month to see just the highlights. Do not skip Hoi An, Sapa, Hanoi, or Halong Bay. Give yourself 3 days in Angkor to really soak it all up. That's all I can think of at the moment, but if you got any specific question, let me know.
I think 'degolasse' gave you good advice on malaria. I have been going to Thailand since '89, Cambodia since '95 and VN since 2000 and have never taken anything for malaria. I am not sure if I was lucky or malaria is not that prevalant in the tourist areas. Your call.
SEA is pretty safe, but I would take some basic precautions. Make sure you photocopy the main page in your passport plus the visa stamps as you acquire them. If your hotel has lockboxes, use them. If not, have a locking bag you can use in your room. Have an undergarmet pouch that you can carry your passport and serious money while traveling. Do not flash large amounts money in front of others. Do not leave your common sense at home.
I would use the free 30 day visa Thailand gives you on arrival, get your Cambodia visa on arrival at the border, your VN visa in Phnom Penh, one day, $30. The clock starts on your 30 day VN visa on the date you tell them, not when you hit the border. Laos gives you 15 days at the border, 30 days if you apply at an embassy. PM me if you want details on Cambodia or VN.
thanks everyone all your information. it´s been really useful to me.
if someone can write something esle about it would be great.
see you arond the world!!!cheers