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Thailand/Cambodia Trip-- is this a realistic itinerary?

Toronto
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Thailand/Cambodia Trip-- is this a realistic itinerary?

Hello Fellow Trip Advisors!

We are planning to take a trip to Thailand for a couple of weeks leaving Canada on the 27th of December and departing Bangkok back to Canada on January 11th. We would like to get a good feel for Thailand but would also love the chance to see Siam Riep, Cambodia as well. We were hoping that all of you could let us know if this itinerary is realistic or not, and hear some suggestions from all of you on any other places we should maybe consider. We love nature, beaches, hiking, tasty food, etc.

This is what we were roughly thinking:

1-2 days in Bangkok

2-3 days in Chiang Mai or Chiang Rai area (elephant sanctuary, mountains, market?)

2-3 days in Siam Riep, Cambodia (Angkor Wat, night market, ?)

7 days in Phuket area (not Phuket City itself, but the islands and beaches around the area)

Does this seem realistic? Is Northern Thailand more worthwhile to visit and spend more time in than split our time between there and Cambodia? We would love to hear your opinions! Thanks in advance!

lewes uk
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1. Re: Thailand/Cambodia Trip-- is this a realistic itinerary?

Hi,

Siem Reap in Cambodia has a lot to see especially if it's the temples you are interested and it's worth 3 days if that's what interests you. If you just want to see Angkor Wat and a couple of other temples then you could reduce the time but for the expense of flying there and visa costs etc. it seems a shame to short change yourselves.

Similarly Chiang Mai has so much to see and do that 2-3 days is a bare minimum. If you ditched the Cambodian part of the trip you could spend more time in the north and see both Chiang Mai and spend a couple of days in Chiang Rai - but it's a tough call if you don't plan to return to SEA.

Phuket doesn't have a city, it's Phuket town and the hotels are strung out along the western beaches, some beaches are pretty busy and overdeveloped so do your research carefully. With only 7 days I would think about just doing island day trips. Another option would be to look at Khao Lak as your southern base, there are some stunning island offshore - Surins and Similans and you have the Khao Sok national park on your doorstep. It's an hour or so north of Phuket airport so not hard to get to.

Cheers

Paphos, Cyprus
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2. Re: Thailand/Cambodia Trip-- is this a realistic itinerary?

I don't think you have time to do justice to both Thailand and Cambodia in such a short time. I suspect you will end your trip wishing you had had more time at every one of your stopping off points. IMHO, Bangkok, C.M., and S.R. all deserve more time than allocated on your suggested itinerary. I would spend this trip in Thailand and plan your next one in Cambodia. And then Laos.........And then Vietnam........And then.......

Trisha

Houston, Texas
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3. Re: Thailand/Cambodia Trip-- is this a realistic itinerary?

Greatest challenge of planning a trip like this, what to see and not see. It is realistic, however, while on vacation I hate being rushed. I think the question you need to ask is, how do you like spending your vacation time?

I did Singapore, Malaysia, and Thailand (Bangkok, Chaing Mai, Ao Nang) back in April in 3 weeks. Biggest lesson, I should have chosen fewer destinations. Too many airports, and not enough 'do nothing'/rest days.

My two cents, grab several days out of your Phuket stay and spread to the others. Or, Do Cambodia in another trip, maybe with Vietnam. You will be surprised at how willing you are to going back once you've been. I have to agree with paulosussex, the effort and cost of getting to Cambodia means it might be worth the extra time there. Use Google Maps, lots of photos, gives you an idea of the size and maybe specific destinations.

Bangkok was truly a suprise for me, much more modern than I thought and I thoroughly enjoyed walking around the city. I prefered using transit to taxis when possible.

Northern Thailand has more hiking and nature. Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai, look for recommended elephant sancturies on here somewhere, I didnt get to this.

Have fun!

Mike

Toronto
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4. Re: Thailand/Cambodia Trip-- is this a realistic itinerary?

Thanks for your feedback! Would it even be worthwhile to consider just going to Siem Reap followed by Thailand's southern islands? Is northern Thailand well worth the trek?

Vancouver, Canada
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5. Re: Thailand/Cambodia Trip-- is this a realistic itinerary?

Like others have said you really don't have enough time to do everything you want to do in two weeks. I would say it's either Chiang Mai or Siem Reap.

And it sounds like you really want to visit Siem Reap.....and I don't blame you. I have travelled all over the world and the temples of Angkor rank right up there. If you only have two weeks I would spend 5 days in Bangkok, 5 days in Siem Reap and 5 days on the Andaman Sea. Each of these 5 days would include travel time in and out of each place.

Make sure you pick hotels in Bangkok and Siem Reap with pools so that you can enjoy relaxing after a day of touring. Do not shortchange Bangkok. It has much to offer. Give it a chance. Most people who do are not disappointed.

Pick your island break in southern Thailand carefully. Unfortunately many of the famous beaches in Thailand are overdeveloped. Great if you are looking for a party but not if you are seeking tranquility. One suggestion for tranquility I can offer is Koh Jum which is easily reachable from Krabi (which has an airport).

Good luck with the decision making. I'm off for 9 weeks next Friday starting in Singapore and ending in Thailand for 5 weeks (with a side-trip to South India for three weeks after Singapore). Happy travels!

London
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6. Re: Thailand/Cambodia Trip-- is this a realistic itinerary?

Yes, 5 days in any location would be the minimum for me.

7. Re: Thailand/Cambodia Trip-- is this a realistic itinerary?

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