I am residing in the Philippines, and I would like to go to Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos by next year. So I have these questions to raise:
1. Is it possible to conquer these countries backpacker style?
2. Which among Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos would be the best to start my journey?
3. I would fly from Philippines to the starting point (e.g. Vietnam), can anyone provide me on how to get to the remaining countries via land? (CROSSING BORDERS 101, WHAT TO RIDE AND HOW TO GET THERE, and how to get visas, if applicable)
4. How much would I be spending throughout this journey?
5. How long will I be on the road?
Thank you so much!!!
1. Most travelers under 30 are doing the backpacker style of travel.
2. Check prices, but I think flying into BKK will be your best option.
3. You have the advantage of being an ASEAN passport holder. Several of these countries will let you enter for free. Most visitors to SEA do a loop. Basically you try not backtrack very much. After Tland, enter Laos via Friendship Bridge. Visa on arrival. After Laos, enter VN either via road or air. Check, but I think VN will let you in for 14 days for free with ASEAN passport. Travel from HAN down to HCMC. Enter Cambodia via road. Visa on arrival. My blog covers my bus trip from HCM to Phnom Penh. Tour Cambodia south to north, Siem Reap last. One long day via road back to BKK. Fly home. This website may help with Cambodia and the others as well.
4. These countries are about the same as the P.I. You can find cheap rooms & food in every city you visit. Figure about $1K a month, or about $35/day for your expenses.
5. As long as your money holds out! Good luck.
[ Edit: Edited on 24-Sep-2012, at 10:08 by vegasmike6 ]
1.) Off course, there are countless backpackers in all these countries. Thailand in particular is one of the most popular backpacker destinations on the planet.
2.) That's a question you can answer yourself... which country is the easiest and most economical to fly to from the Philippines?
3.) Way too many questions dealing with way too much information. Start by visiting the websites for Embassies/Consulates of each country to determine what are the specific procedures for your nationality to obtain a visa to visit as a tourist. Next, buy some guidebooks... SE Asia is not an exotic or difficult destination for backpackers, any of the major guidebooks cover the basics very well for a first time visitor.
4.) Like the Philippines you can spend as much - or as little - as your budget allows. Like the Philippines SE Asia is very inexpensive compared to western countries.
5.) Only you can answer that question.
Have fun with your research.