I depart on the 6 February for my 3 month adventure. Spending 2 months in SE Asia, then a month in Oz/NZ. Anyone else doing roughly the same route? Looking for some advice to get my started when i arrive, as I have no formal plans. I land in Singapore and planning to work my way through Thailand and then so Cambodia/Loas/Vietnam. Couple of questions -
- How long would you spend in Singapore? I was only planning a few days and then head to more rural places, or beaches ;-)
- What is the best way to travel from Singapore into Thailand?
- When is the Full Moon Party?
- If you had 8 weeks in SE Asia, how long would you spend in each place? (flying out of Bangkok after 2 months)
Grateful for any pointers!
Singapore is interesting but limited and expensive so I wouldn't spend too much time there as there are a lot of places which are more budget friendly with a lot to offer. Personally I'd fly if you can get a cheap airfare on either Tiger or Air Asia. You can often get some really cheap fares from Singapore to Koh Samui or Bangkok. However going overland is definitely doable and cheap, but it will cost you some time as you'll have to deal with two extra border crossings, delays, etc. Still you'd have the opportunity to stop and see KL.
personally I think 2 months is a rush job through that many countries as I'd easily spend 3-5 weeks in Vietnam, almost twice that in Thailand, and 7-10 days in Cambodia, and maybe 10 days in Laos.
But if you are just going for the highlights and not going to try to see too much it's definitely doable.
Spend a week up near Hanoi/Halong/sapa, head to hue/datong/Hoi An for about the same amount of time then 3 days for HCMC and a couple of days in the Mekong Delta.
3 days for Phnom Penh, 3 days Siem Reap/Angkor, maybe the boat trip from Batambang to Siem Reap if you want to spend a day seeing river life in Camboda.
2 days Ventienne and surrounds, 2 days Vang Viene, 3-4 days in Luang Prabang (but easy to spend more time at any of these places.
3 days Bangkok minimum, 7 days in the north (Chaing Mai, maybe Chaing Rai, maybe Pai), 7 days visiting some islands and beaches in the south,
I wouldn't skip places like Sukkathai or Nong Kai if you can get it in.
Honestly that would be my bare bones approach and you'll lose a ton of time in travel if you don't fly or do overnight trains/buses.
Hope it helps.
Thanks very much - that's really helpful and gives me a starting point. I think I'm being a bit ambitious - but I'll hopefully see the highlights.
How long did you spend there?
I would stay at least 3 days in Singapore .. if you can over a weekend (local markets). I disagree with docny that is it expensive. Coming from the US it is much cheaper ... even more coming from OZ/NZ or Europe (assuming your on the euro). It is the most expensive country in SEA for sure .. but if you budget you'll be fine.. I stayed at one the hostels for 15SD a night and well it stank (literally) so I went to a 5* hotel for a night with the rest of my budget for the trip (I was leaving the next day anyway) That was maybe $150US. It's really wonderful, but different than the other countries.
Also .. I would double your estimated time if you plan on visiting the Thai islands. The Andaman coast is pretty easy to travel at your on whim (during dry season by boat, wet season by land). The gulf side .. ferries are quite often but maybe only 2 or 3 a day to get where you need too, unless you go for FMP. < On that note, most places on KP want you to stay at least 5 days. I say if you haven't been .. do it. I have been, and I would rather book on Samui, and travel over for the party. Basically .. I would bet 7 days on the gulf and 7 days on the Andaman.
I'd also say 8 weeks is pushing it. I am spending 3 weeks in Vietnam this go round, and 7 in Cambodia (most of that being spent in Siem Reap).. and the rest of my time in Thailand .. just bc I love it and my flight is out of BKK .. otherwise I would head to Malaysia.
FMP is on a full moon... you can google this and find the schedule easily. Note that if you are going in April and FMP is around Songkran .. the dates maybe different.