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Thread: Any of you travel Southeast Asia?

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    Any of you travel Southeast Asia?

    I am in the early stages of planning my next trip to southeast asia and trying to decide between Vietnam/Cambodia (especially to see the Angkor Wat) or Chiang Mai/Laos or Kuala Lumpur/Sumatra (jungle trekking).

    Anybody done any of these trips?

    I recently did jungle trekking in Thailand and snorkeling / scuba in Philippines (Cebu area; Siquijor and Apo are must see).

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    Vietnam: She's worried about the situation.

    Cambodia: We've never really talked about it, although I think she might like Angor Wat.

    Chiang Mai: Loved it--but that was more than 40 years ago.

    Laos: Never even thought about it.

    Kuala Lumpur: Nice, but that was 35 years ago.

    Sumatra: A big primitive, but we liked it. The only time I've ever felt claustrophobic--and that was outside! The sky was so full of stars I felt like it was crushing me. We were on an island with no electricity, the only light source to the horizon was one bulb 6 miles away. Again, 35 years ago.

    Jungle trekking--no thanks. Too many bugs for me.

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    Where in Sumatra if not jungle trekking? I was thinking of Sumatra or Borneo specifically for orangutans.

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    Industrial Grade Linguist Copernicus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Loren Pechtel View Post
    Vietnam: She's worried about the situation.
    Why? I've been there once (on a cruise ship), and I would happily go back. I can certainly recommend Saigon, which has lots of historical sites going back to the war. The Presidential palace is fascinating. We also visited Hoi An outside of Da Nang and found it well worth seeing. Halong Bay (not far from Hanoi) is stunningly beautiful. The people are friendly and prices are low.

    Cambodia: We've never really talked about it, although I think she might like Angor Wat.
    We haven't been there yet, but Siem Reap is on our list. Did you visit Ayutthaya outside of Bangkok?

    Chiang Mai: Loved it--but that was more than 40 years ago.
    We took a train there from Bangkok and really enjoyed the town.

    Laos: Never even thought about it.
    Me neither. Logistics for getting around might be difficult.

    Kuala Lumpur: Nice, but that was 35 years ago.
    We were there briefly a couple of years ago. It seems to have become a very desirable tourist destination, and hotels are cheap.

    Sumatra: A big primitive, but we liked it. The only time I've ever felt claustrophobic--and that was outside! The sky was so full of stars I felt like it was crushing me. We were on an island with no electricity, the only light source to the horizon was one bulb 6 miles away. Again, 35 years ago.

    Jungle trekking--no thanks. Too many bugs for me.
    Have you been to Singapore? If not, it's well worth the visit. They have an outstanding Southeast Asia museum.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Copernicus View Post

    Why? I've been there once (on a cruise ship), and I would happily go back. I can certainly recommend Saigon, which has lots of historical sites going back to the war. The Presidential palace is fascinating. We also visited Hoi An outside of Da Nang and found it well worth seeing. Halong Bay (not far from Hanoi) is stunningly beautiful. The people are friendly and prices are low.
    She's Chinese. Some people have advised us that she wouldn't get the best reception there.

    We haven't been there yet, but Siem Reap is on our list. Did you visit Ayutthaya outside of Bangkok?
    I don't think we did, but it was so long ago I'm not sure.

    Have you been to Singapore? If not, it's well worth the visit. They have an outstanding Southeast Asia museum.
    Twice, the last was 35 years ago. I really loved the botanical garden they have.

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    Industrial Grade Linguist Copernicus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Loren Pechtel View Post

    She's Chinese. Some people have advised us that she wouldn't get the best reception there.
    Quite possibly, although we heard that there were Chinese companies doing projects there.

    On Ayutthaya:
    I don't think we did, but it was so long ago I'm not sure.
    It is supposed to be a little bit like Angkor Wat. Lots of ruins and historic buildings there. We plan to visit at some time.

    Quote Originally Posted by Loren Pechtel View Post
    Have you been to Singapore? If not, it's well worth the visit. They have an outstanding Southeast Asia museum.
    Twice, the last was 35 years ago. I really loved the botanical garden they have.
    They still have the botanical gardens, but there is so much more to do and see. Changi Airport, arguably the most beautiful airport in the world, is itself considered a tourist attraction. The architecture throughout the city is outstanding, and the subway system makes it easy to get around. That Southeast Asian museum is a real gem, but the Marina Bay Sands Hotel is a stunning addition to the skyline. (We are friends with the person who was the chief architect of the building project when it was being constructed.) The Marina Sands is right next to the botanical gardens.

    We have been there a few times, because it is a major embarkation/disembarkation port for Asian cruises.


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    I was at Ayutthaya a few months ago. It's cool but not as impressive as you may be thinking. Just some old ruins (most of it was destroyed by the Burmese when the Autthayan's fell; most of the remainder was looted since). The Buddha head the tree grew around is pretty cool. The gardens are pretty and you can sort of imagine yourslef back in time among the ruins.

    Singapore isn't on my list simply because from all I have heard it is just a big rich first world city and when in Asia I want to see animals primarily.

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    I have been thinking more and researching more about Laos. It isn't THAT hard to get around. They key is the river. The roads are indeed bad, but nothing a bike or utility vehicle can't easily handle. There are fewer tuktuk type transport touts around, but you will still not have much trouble finding them.

    From l I have read it looks just as beautiful as Chiang Mai area, but with almost no fellow tourists, so you get the authentic local experience. The people there do like foreigners but the biggest challenge is linguistic.

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    Fair dinkum thinkum bilby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jolly_Penguin View Post
    I have been thinking more and researching more about Laos. It isn't THAT hard to get around. They key is the river. The roads are indeed bad, but nothing a bike or utility vehicle can't easily handle. There are fewer tuktuk type transport touts around, but you will still not have much trouble finding them.

    From l I have read it looks just as beautiful as Chiang Mai area, but with almost no fellow tourists, so you get the authentic local experience. The people there do like foreigners but the biggest challenge is linguistic.
    I can see how that would be difficult, if your local language skills are laosy.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jolly_Penguin View Post
    From l I have read it looks...
    Strange | typo...
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