I am 26yr old girl, decided to take some leave for 6 weeks in feb 2012 to sort myself out, (quater life crisis im calling it). Decided on travelling to Thailand/Laos/Cambodia/Vietnam and maybe Bali. I aim to do 1 week volunteer week somewhere but can not find ones that do not rip you off.
I would like to end my journey at a yoga retreat.
I am going alone, and very scared, so keep putting off booking my flight.
Any suggestions would be GREATLY appreciated!!!!!
I'm not much help but I'm 23 and about to endure in the same travel as you! Although I don't leave till May, I would love if we could keep in touch and both share helpful information because I'm a little nervous as well!
1.) "... Decided on travelling to Thailand/Laos/Cambodia/Vietnam and maybe Bali. I aim to do 1 week volunteer week somewhere..."
First of all, with only 6 weeks time in total plus you want to take off a week for volunteering you're trying to fit in way too many countries. Since you're a nervous first time traveller why lock yourself into fast travel with all those border crossings, etc?
Cut waaaaay back on your itinerary so you have time to stop and smell the roses - and meet other travellers.
2.) "... I am going alone, and very scared, so keep putting off booking my flight..."
All the places you mention have a VERY well defined "Gringo Trail." Take Thailand for example... it is arguably the easiest/simplest "foreign" country on the entire Planet Earth for a solo western backpacker. If you're following the usual Guide Book highlights you're going to find it absolutely JAM-PACKED with countless other backpackers EXACTLY like you. It's the perfect destination for a first time traveller who needs to build a little confidence.
Tranquilo, and have a great trip.
Terry told exactly what I would have. Drop Bali, and either Laos, Cambodia or VN. Thailand (TL) needs 3 weeks. The others you could make do with 7-14 days. 3 countries should be max for your 6 weeks.
I assume you will fly into BKK. You should budget about 3 weeks for TL. BKK and day trips will burn up 4-7 days. Perhaps Ayutthaya if the flood waters have receded. Kanchanaburi is a worthwhile 1-2 day trip IMO. Then perhaps trekking up north in Chiang Mai. You can either fly to CM on Nok Air or use the overnight bus. The advantage of the overnight bus is that it saves one days accommodation and you arrive early am. Best time to find a room. You could check in at your GH and still trek with them that day. Tours leave around 9am. Fly or bus back to BKK.
This leaves you roughly 7-10 days for the beaches down south. I suggest you use Krabi as your base. Fly down or another overnight bus. You have many beach options from Krabi town. Day trip Railay Beach or Aonang or both. Koh Phi Phi is just a short ferry ride away. Another option is to choose Koh Samui. BKK Air has multiple flights/day.
Back to BKK and now I think you need to decide what 2 countries are next on your list. You should have roughly 3 weeks left. I would vote you fly: BKK-HAN on Air Asia. Use the visa on arrival system. Spend 14 days in VN. I suggest you use the open tour bus down to HCM. Then over to Cambodia. My blog covers my bus trip from HCMC to PP. Bus up to Siem Reap. 3 Days for Angkor Wat, either an expensive flight back to BKK or one long day overland. I would arrive 1 day before my flight home.
I have friends in Phnom Penh that help orphans and poor families with the basics. They can always use another pair of hands to help out, no fees involved. Send me a PM if interested. Mike
[ Edit: Edited on 13-Nov-2011, at 14:07 by vegasmike6 ]
HI There i m Thailand from Jan 25th to Feb 9th..if you guys are around.. would like to do things together? Cheers
Last year I've done something like you. Life was just too stressful for me and I needed a break. I spent 5 weeks to visit Da Lat and Saigon (VN), Phom Penh and Siem Reap (and Ankor) (Combodia) and ended with a visit to Bangkok and Chiang Mai (Thailand). That was an awesome trip and the best thing is, I got to know some new friends.
Shall you need some more help, just ask.
Wish you a nice trip.
I'm planning to go to Thailand during that period as well! (Some time between February and April - haven't booked tickets yet so fairly flexible on dates.)
I'm 28yr old female based on London.
Would be great to meet up and travel together. :-)