So after hours of searching for cheap transport from country to country I have come up with a rough plan for the first few months of my trip. I'm here to ask if you think it sounds logical or whether there is an easier/cheaper route.
London-Mongolia-Beijing-Hanoi-Luang Prabang-Vientiane-Bangkok-Siem Reap-Phnom Penh-Ho Chi Minh City.
That's as far as I've got so far. And I'm currently looking at flying to Australia from HCMC or making my way down to Kuala Lumpur and flying to Aus from there.
Now I would like to visit Nepal but I'm not sure it would make sense or be worth the money to include it. Could anyone tell me otherwise? One final question is to get from Aus/New Zealand to South America. Is the easiest way just to bite the bullet and pay for the flight or is there a cheaper way? For example, flying to somewhere and then onto SA.
Any feedback would be great.
Plan looks good, and all very possible. The only thing is that you might find cheaper flights from Bangkok to Aus rather than HCMC. I guess I've never really looked into it too much, but Bangkok is a major hub, so there are generally more flights available. If you find that's the case, it might make more sense to go overland from Hanoi to HCMC stopping at the many highlights of Vietnam along the way, then cross over to Cambodia, and either up into Laos, or into Thailand and up to Laos, before seeing Northern Thailand and back to Bangkok.
Another thing is that I hope that when you mention these cities that you are just picking out your major stops along the way to give us an idea of your route. The highlights of these countries are in between these cities, such as Guilin, Hong Kong, Yunnan, Sapa, Halong, Hoi An, Nha Trang, Vang Vieng, Chiang Mai etc...
I only say this because I've met many travelers over the years who think they just want to hit the major famous cities, without realizing the wonderful things they are missing in between.
Thanks for the reply.
Looking at Air Asia flights from HCMC-Aus start around £170. Bangkok-Aus is a little cheaper but KL-Aus starts at around £117 so I think thats the way forward for me.
Regarding going overland and then back up, I never looked at that route to be honest. I lived in Hong Kong when I was a child so i would like to go back there but with the route I'm planning on doing it's just too expensive to go there. Unless anyone knows of chepa transport? I know there is a sleeper train. Has anyone experienced this?
Thanks for giving me a headache Degolasse :P
Hey, that's not too bad for a flight from Vietnam. Gotta love the budget airlines that are popping up in Asia. There was a time, even only 10 years ago, when a flight from Vietnam meant you probably had to go via Bangkok anyway, and prices were high.
Flying from KL is definitely a good option. After a few months in South East Asia, you'll probably want to hit the beaches in Southern Thailand, and Malaysia itself has lots of great things to see.
As for going overland around China, I'm not sure the cheapest way. I saw most of Southern China by taking the train around Yunnan and Guangxi province. It was cheap, comfortable, and actually a very enjoyable way of getting around. I'm sure coming down the coast from Beijing and seeing a few smaller towns along the way would be a good option if you have the time. I'm a firm believer in seeing countries slowly overland rather than just flying from point to point. One place that I would highly recommend is Yanghsuo, near Guilin. I'm sure you can fly from Beijing to Guilin fairly cheaply. After 12 years of roaming around Asia and seeing most countries in the region, Yangshuo is still probably my very favourite place to visit. It's magical, and I don't think any trip to China is complete without seeing it. From there you can start heading over land by train. Kunming in Yunnan is a long but fun train trip away, and from there you can visit Dali, Lijiang, Tiger Leaping Gorge etc.. From Kunming you can also start heading south to Yuanyang, probably my second favourite place in China, and from there you are very close to the Vietnam border and Sapa, a must see in Vietnam. A stopover in HK between Guilin and Kunming is doable too, if you have the time.
Going overland in Vietnam is very easy - you have the option of trains, public buses, tourist buses...all very cheap and easy.
Again, thanks for the reply.
So do you think that this is a better route?
Mongolia-Beijing-Hanoi. Then through Vietnam to HCMC. Through Cambodia, heading up to Laos. And then from Laos to Bangkok then heading overland from Bangkok to KL?
Planning on booking my flight to Mongolia this week. £310 doesn't sound too bad to me. Although I'm having to book a night in Turkey because of the changeover!
[ Edit: Edited on 14-Oct-2012, at 13:27 by luke225 ]
So with a change in the personal life it looks like I can only do the 3 months. So I won't be including Australia/NZ in my plans anymore. Is the planned route still ok for 3 months?