I am planning a 7 month jaunt around SE Asia before heading off to Oz for 5 months.
I would like to know what is the best route around SE Asia? I am flying from the UK. I was thinking to start in Bangkok and head clockwise Thailand > Laos > Vietnam > Cambodia then down onto the islands to Indonesia and the Phillipines before flying out to Oz.
But I've read that it's rainy season in some of Thailand around June/July so should I start south and head north? How bad is it?
Also how many internal flights would I be looking at? I know I can take trains and buses but to be comfortable how many flights should I be thinking of?
I would really appreciate any advice!
I think you have a good plan. I would see the North of Thailand, into Laos, visa on arrival, $35. Buy your VN visa while in Vientiane. Overland into VN, then either bus or train south to HCMC. You might want to do a delta tour and enter Cambodia via boat. Or bus from HCMC. My blog covers my experience taking the bus to Phnom Penh. Visa on arrival, $25. Perhaps some beach time in Sihanoukville, bus up to Siem Reap after PP. 3-4 days touring Angkor, then one long day overland back to BKK. You will get a free 15 day visa waiver when you re-enter Tland. If you need more time, you can buy a visa in PP while you are there. Or fly back to BKK and you will get another free 30 day visa waiver.
Now I would make use of the overnight bus or train down to the south islands. You have enough time to hit both Samui side and Krabi side. You can fly to either Samui on BKK Air or use Air Asia to fly to Krabi. Fly or overnight bus/train, your choice.
You can take the bus or train into Malaysia, free visa on arrival. I will let the Malay experts help you there. Singapore for 4-7 days. Now you need to fly to Indonesia. 30 day visa on arrival, $25.
Many airlines to choose from, Tiger Airways has many flights. Good luck with your planning.
[ Edit: Edited on 22-Feb-2013, at 17:54 by vegasmike6 ]
That's the sort of answer I was looking for! So informative! Really really helpful
I think what you've written here is what I was looking to. Head up from Thailand, across to Laos, snake down Laos, back up to the the top of Vietnam then head south and cross over to Cambodia and back to Bangkok? I was then planning to head down the island then onto either the phillipines or indonesia. Do you know which of these is best to fly out to Oz as that's what I'll be doing in the end.
I'll map out the journey you've set here and take a look but above is my initial plan.
I am concerned about the season though. I am heading off next year june/July and I've read that this may be rainy season in some parts and that this time of year it's better to be south. But I really want to start my journey in BK. What do you think?
I'll check out your blog.
[ Edit: Sorry, no promos please. ]
Both Air Asia and Tiger Air fly to Australia from the Philippines or Indonesia. Good luck.