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My suggested itinerary following reading lots

Kent, United Kingdom
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My suggested itinerary following reading lots

Following a lot of reading, Tripadvisor and other guide books, this is our suggested itinerary for April 2015. Although a long time and a lot can change, this is the latest.

London to HCMC for 5 days to explore the City and the Tunnels.

Mui Ne for 4 nights on the beach for a bit of relaxation time

Flight from HCMC to Siem Reap for final 4 nights

A couple of questions, anyone think that is too much, too little, too long in each place. We like to have a bit of relaxing but not too much, a couple of days on a beach is enough for us, but bearing in mind the distance from HCMC I thought 4 days, or just HCMC and Siem Reap to spend longer there and possibly pick a better hotel in HCMC with a pool, so we can spend half the day exploring and then have a bit of chill time in the afternoon.

Any advice greatly appreciated.

Nha Trang, Vietnam
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1. Re: My suggested itinerary following reading lots

You could cut a day from SR. Where do you go from SR? Back to HCMC? That would be wasteful as you'd need a multiple entry visa, and the flights are not cheap

Unless you wish to shop a lot, you could also cut a day from HCMC.

Nha Trang, Vietnam
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2. Re: My suggested itinerary following reading lots

Actually, if you cut 2 days from Sai Gon and and 1 from Siem Reap you could go explore the Mekong Delta for a bit.

Kent, United Kingdom
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3. Re: My suggested itinerary following reading lots

No really bothered about shopping. SR back to London (either via Singapore or CDG depending on best deal). Mekong Delta appeals do so if cutting a day from HCMC and SR then that could be doable. Tricky trying to get as much out of it as possible in just over two weeks.

Italy
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4. Re: My suggested itinerary following reading lots

I agree with Jim you don't really need that long for HCMC especially if you don't want to shop so a couple of days exploring the Mekong Delta on your way to Siem Reap is a good idea.

Kent, United Kingdom
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5. Re: My suggested itinerary following reading lots

Thank you both, I will check that out.

Los Angeles...
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6. Re: My suggested itinerary following reading lots

I would like to offer yet another suggestion. It’s not clear to me that you are a regular or frequent traveler to SEA. If this is a trip of a lifetime, I suppose seeing two SEA countries in a couple weeks, a day less here or a day more there is fine. Personally, I think Siem Reap is worth four nights as you suggested.

However, if you plan to come back to this area, why not consider a more concentrated stay in just one region. For a couple weeks, you could see either a lot of south Vietnam (and parts of central) or a lot of north Vietnam (and parts of central).

Alternatively, you could spend all two weeks in Cambodia, exploring places like Siem Reap, Tonle Sap, Battambang, Sihanouk ville, Phnom Penh, Kampot, Kep and others. Once bitten by the SEA bug, I’m am sure that you will scheduling your next trip soon. Good luck and Happy travels!



Richard

Edited: 03 January 2014, 16:50
Kent, United Kingdom
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7. Re: My suggested itinerary following reading lots

I am not a regular traveller to that part of the world, only having been to Hong Kong and Singapore for work for two weeks. I'm trying to get as much in as possible so that I get a taster but then maybe decide we'd like to come back and spend longer somewhere. Saying that we may never be able to do a trip like this again. Last year we visited Cuba, 3 nights in Havana and then 11 on the beach and wished we had longer in Havana, as got quite bored of the beach and not much else to do. It sounds like HCMC is doable in a day or two if you're not into shopping and that looking further I see hotels in Siem Reap have pools so we could combine that with the tail end of the trip. A bit more back to the drawing board for me I think but thank you for your advice.

leicester
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8. Re: My suggested itinerary following reading lots

You will save yourself a lot of hassle and money by staying in one country. From the many regulars on the forum I'm not sure that HCM and Mui Ne will get the thumbs up for the best choices for a first visit. Have you had a look at Hanoi, Halong Bay and maybe Hoi An? That might give you more of what you are looking for. Hanoi is full of character, Halong Bay has the stunning scenery and Hoi An has the pools and relaxing hotels plus the old town full of nice restaurants.

Vancouver, Canada
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9. Re: My suggested itinerary following reading lots

You could go from HCMC into the Mekong Delta to Can Tho where you could fly to Phu Quoc or continue through to Chau Doc and then on to Cambodia. If you search this forum you will find several suggested itineraries of that route, and there are many tour companies that travel that route, or you can do it privately. That gives you chaotic city, tranquil delta villages, beach, and then historic temples.

You say you want to get as much in as possible and get a taste, but then you suggest only 3 places for 2 weeks. You can do a whirlwind tour through Vietnam, and even Cambodia too, and get a taste of a lot of places. Again, there are a lot of typical itineraries that do this. Your suggestion sounds more like a leisurely view of a couple of places rather than a taste of as much as possible. Be clear on your objectives as these are 2 different things. How important to you is beach/relaxation versus sightseeing and cultural experience?

Personally, I think 2 weeks is barely enough for Vietnam alone. You can hit the main areas of Cambodia and Laos in a 2 week trip. You could also do Thailand for 2 weeks.

Hanoi 3, Hoi An 3, HCM 2, Mekong Delta 2, Siem Reap 3

If beach is important consider Thailand: Bangkok 3, Ko Phi Phi or Ko Samui (which one depends on month) 4, Pnom Penh 2, Siem Reap 4

If Vietnam, 5 days is way too much for HCMC (unless you add in a trip to Mekong Delta), but not for Hanoi (and area).

Kent, United Kingdom
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10. Re: My suggested itinerary following reading lots

Thanks, beach is not a necessity, it's more of a bit of a break in between. But Hoi An has been popping up. We may instead just do Vietnam and then hopefully another time will be able to come back and visit Cambodia. Looking again at flights it does seem more attactive to fly into Hanoi which is not directly but then back from HCMC so may go for that stretch, ending with a couple of days Mekong Delta and possibly save Cambodia for another time. Thanks though all for all your advice it is really really useful.