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New traveller To Vietnam

Derby, United...
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New traveller To Vietnam

We are planning a three week trip to Vietnam in April landing at Hanoi and going south visiting Halong Bay, Hoi Ann, Ho Chi Minh and then onto Cambodia to Angkor Wat before flying out of Siem Reap. We found travelling around Malaysia independently very easy last year but feel that Vietnam may be more challenging. Has anyone any advice for sorting out accommodation and travel around Vietnam when we are there. Some posts mention private cars and drivers can be hired. Also would it be best to travel light with backpacks rather than cases?

Appreciate any advice

Darwin, Australia
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1. Re: New traveller To Vietnam

We used a mix of private guides some days , none and then booked a few tours like cycling for three days in the Mekong.

In my opinion travelling in Vietnam would be a little more challenging than Malaysia, but there are any signs and they are used to travellers in those areas you are going to. You can easily book taxis, hotels, transport by yourself.

However, if you travel rural and outside of large towns , English becomes issue and the standard of accom decreases, and it does get harder to make yourself understood :)

Hanoi, Vietnam
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2. Re: New traveller To Vietnam

Do you mean 3 wks for the entire VN-Cambodia trip - if so, I'd say that's far too rushed

Travel in VN is very easy as long as you know the ropes. VN highways are somewhat dangerous, so air travel is advised + the occasional train for short trips. Yes, you can hire a car w/driver very easily, but as I say, those highways are to be avoided.

I think you need to do much more research about this country - it's totally different from a place like Malaysia - go to Travelfish.org and start your homework.

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3. Re: New traveller To Vietnam

It's easier than Malaysia, just do it all yourselves, book as you go but have a general idea beforehand.

sydney
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4. Re: New traveller To Vietnam

Same question as daawgon.... is this 3 weeks just in Vietnam and then additional days at Angkor Wat or 3 weeks all up?

you really need a minimum of 3-4 days in SR to do justice to the temples. if you have not seen it already, check out canbypublications.com/siemreap/srstarted.htm for info on the temples including sample itineraries. Don't underestimate the impact of the heat in April - Cambodia in April is bake-your-brain HOT .. and dry and dusty. Give yourself 4 days if possible so you can spread the temples through 3 days (get a 3 day pass $40 each) and have a day of down time in the middle. A hotel with a pool should also be high on your priority list.

you should also factor in Khmer New Year (around April 14-16) if that is when you plan to be in Cambodia - busses are chocka as people go back to visit their families - all hotesl etc will be open though some restaurants etc will hav reduced staffing levels.

we travel with a wheelie backpack - but no valuables in there when on buses - the luggage holds are not always secure

Edited: 09 January 2014, 09:12
Hanoi, Vietnam
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5. Re: New traveller To Vietnam

That is a good time to travel around Vietnam, for accommodation price is still being in high season period, so it's a little more. Any way Vietnam is completely is challenging country to travel around, as it famous for very friendly and hospitable local, don't be paranoid about it, just take it easy. Vietnam tourism have wide rang of accommodations cross wide the country, from low budget to luxury, even homestay. in Hue tigon hostel cost 6 usd/ night included buffet breakfast, in Hoian cost about 10 to 15 usd a night with nice and clean room, located very close to ancient town of Hoi An. in Hanoi and Saigon cost a little higher.

Regarding to Car hire, if you are backpacker and just need to move from place to place, yes should only use public tourist bus cost way cheaper, unless you travel would like customized off beaten track travel. style that need any realizable local travel agency to do that for you

Derby, United...
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6. Re: New traveller To Vietnam

In reply to timespan, we are planning a three week trip so from what I am hearing less destinations would be the way to go and perhaps miss out Cambodia on this trip this time. We may also look to use domestic flights to link some places. Thanks for the advice so far. I'll check out the websites that you have provided.

Vancouver, Canada
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7. Re: New traveller To Vietnam

Congratulations on your trip. With the help and encouragement of posters on this forum, and some assistance from a local tour agency ( Custom Vietnam Travel), I found it very easy to travel around Vietnam on my own. Usually a backpack is easier to deal with than suitcases, although I have seen some travel with suitcases. It depends a lot on what style of travel you want, and what type of transport you can afford. If you are sticking to the typical routes, flying and private transport mostly, then medium suitcases are fine. Backpacks are easier on trains, and buses. It is easy to travel light as weather is warm, and you can buy most of what you need if you are missing something. Like others, I think you will get more out of it if you can spend all 3 weeks in Vietnam. Enjoy your research. Here is what I did for my three weeks: tripadvisor.ca/ShowTopic-g293921-i8432-k7019…

Ho Chi Minh City...
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8. Re: New traveller To Vietnam

For3 weeks travel in Vietnam I recommend a combination of planes, trains and maybe private car but under no circumstances take a bus travelling on hwy1 unless you have a death wish it really is that bad and with12,000 dying on the roads each year you don't want to be one of them..

Derby, United...
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9. Re: New traveller To Vietnam

Read your great blog on your Vietnam visit Whirledgirl.T It really sounds just the place for us. Will definitely spend all our time in VN.

sydney
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10. Re: New traveller To Vietnam

good move sunseekers

then plan a future 3 week trip to Cambodia & Laos