hi, we are husband & wife from Indonesia and we're obsessed to round the globe,this 2nd half of the year (around november) our destinations would be Cambodia-Vietnam-Laos-Myanmar, we plan the route as: Jakarta-Kuala Lumpur(transit) - Siem Reap - PnomPenh - Ho Chi Minh - Hanoi - Halong Bay - Luang Prabang - Vientiane - Bangkok (transit) - Yangon. Actually we are not really sure about Yangon, considering the last political situation. So far we have planed the transportations, low cost airfare from jakarta to KL,then to SR, boat from SR to PP,bus to HCMC,train to HAN,Jung boat travel to Halong Bay,bus or train to Luang Prabang,domestic flight to Viantiane (i read that it's not safe enough to travel by bus from LP to Vientiane, is it true?), low cost airfare again to bangkok - yangon - bangkok and go home to Jakarta.
So guys i really need advices from you all...how is my route plan?suggestion for the sightseeing, travel condition especially the safety informatio...anything..please and thanks...
reza & tya
You can go to Vientiane from Luang Prabang by bus instead of flight. Actually, it will take you much more time and your energy. However, the road is not really good so I think taking a cheap flight is better for your health.
Over the last two years I have undertaken research for a future trip to VN and Laos. I intend to take a VIP minibus Luang Prahbang-Vang Vieng-Ventiane. I have not read any advice suggesting any element of danger (other than your bus driver LOL) between these places. If your not prepared to take a bus from LP-Ventiane then I would not recommend taking a bus from Hanoi to LP as I have read that it is a very long trip (up to 24 hrs) all reviews in the negative. One review suggested it was easier to take a bus from Hanoi to Ventiane then another bus up to LP. Still too long a trip for my liking. As for a train I can't say that I've read that that is possible. Anyway, I have earmarked my transport by plane between Hanoi and LP (Vietnam or Laos Airlines). Well worth the cost/time saving IMHO.
Bus PP to HCMC I recommend Mekong Express. Travelled Mekong last year from SP to PP and PP to Sihanoukville, no problems. I'm hoping to travel PP to HCMC with Mekong next year. Safe travels.
Your route plan like that is quite good. I just say something about sightseeing in Vietnam. I highly recommend that you should add Danang-Hoian-Hue into your great route plane. These sites shouldn't be skipped.
Have a great trip and good luck!
I have travelled backpacking through the countries you have mentioned quite extensively over the years, and perhaps I could offer you the benefit of my experiences here. I will keep it brief, though. You plans right up to Vietnam seems ok...
I see you have opted for the boat ride from SR to PP..Well, why not try to bus from SR to PP...you will see a better part of Cambodia's countryside, stopping by Kg Thom?. The road is good, and it takes not more than 5 hours. And then from PP you could try the boat ride via Chau Doc to Vietnam's Mekong Delta region...This way you will get to see Vietnam's south.. such as Can Tho,etc. You can then take a bus to HCMC, and proceed up north..
To cross into Laos from Vietnam, you could take bus...perfectly safe, depending which border crossing you plan to take. The adventurous lot may want to try a little tested entry point at na meo/nam xoi border crossing which will take you to sam neua, and from here you can take bus to Luang Prabang, which could be bone-jarring at times, and long. Alternatively you can cross over to Laos from Vinh in Vietnam, the most frequently used route
From LP, you can take the bus to Vientiane through mountain pass, rolling landscape, etc....It is safe, I assure you!.
Well, from Vientiane, i see you have opted for flight.. it is ok...maybe to save time, perhaps.?
Frankly, Myanmar is beautiful place to see, politics aside.. It is safe!. I m not sure if you are going up north as far as Namshan, or just up to Mandalay/Bagan...But.. it will be sad if you miss out on Inle, Kalaw, and even Hsipaw.
Do let me know if you want further details.
Looks like a great trip. A couple of suggestions: I really enjoyed Sapa in NW Vietnam.
If you enjoy boat travel you might think about traveling by boat into Laos from Thailand or from southern Laos into Cambodia. I really enjoyed the volcanic lakes of Ban Lung in a less-touristed part of Cambodia.
I would second the suggestion not to miss Myanmar. It is by far my favorite place in the region and very safe for foreigners.