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Itinerary advice - 2.5 weeks

Brisbane, Australia
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239 posts
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Itinerary advice - 2.5 weeks

Hi all, I'm a solo female traveller (31) heading to Laos for my Christmas break. I'm into just exploring towns, small walks, day tours etc - happy to have part laid back and part adventure. I Don't drive motorbikes or scooters so its public transport between places.

Would love feedback on this itinerary. If I do the flights I need to book now as it will be peak season. If there's a way to avoid the costly flights (due to peak season!) by cutting something out please let me know.

Note my flights are already booked to fly in and out of Phnom Penh - would like to spend New Year's Eve in PP and the days I've planned to fly are the cheapest (so probably wouldn't stay in Laos til the 30th as its a cpl hundred more).

Travel itinerary-

Fri Dec 13 Arrive Phnom Penh 2pm

Sat 14 Phnom penh to don det

Sun 15 don det

Mon 16 don Det to pakse

Tues 17 pakse to long Lo cave

Wed 18 long Lo cave to Vientiane

Thurs 19 Vientiane

Fri 20 fly Vientiane to Luang Prabang

Sat 21 Luang Prabang

Sun 22 Luang Prabang

Mon 23 Luang Prabang

Tues 24 Luang Prabang - Nong kiaw

Wed 25 Non kiaw

Thurs 26 Nong kiaw

Fri 27 Nong kiaw to Luang Prabang

Sat 28 fly Luang Prabang morning to Phnom Penh then bus to Battambang or kep

Sun 29 Battambang or kep

Mon 30 Battambang or kep

Tue 31 Battambamg or Kep to Phnom Penh

Wed 1 Phnom Penh

Thurs 2 leave for home

Many thanks for your input!

sydney
Destination Expert
for Cambodia
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1. Re: Itinerary advice - 2.5 weeks

you have missed putting Siem Reap and the wonderful world herritage listed Temples of Angkor on your list - have you seen them already? If not they are a MUST. Kep is fantastic but not at the expense of SR

Ho Chi Minh City...
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for Cologne, Laos
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2. Re: Itinerary advice - 2.5 weeks

I think you try too much in a very limited time, as you will spend so much time in a bus, and you won't be able to enjoy the places fully. For example the trip from Pake to Thakhek is around 7 hours by bus, and the cave is not directly next to Thakhek, so you should have at least a full day in Thakhek.

And as thmoore mention your itinerary is missing the highlight of Cambodia, missing out Siem Reap and Angkor Wat would be an absolute shame.

I would suggest maybe to focus on north or south Laos in addition to Cambodia. For example heading from PP to SR, then fly to either Vientiane or LP, spend time in LP and NK as suggested in your itinerary, then take the bus to PP via Vang Vieng (another great place to enjoy the stunning scenery in Laos), and fly from Vientiane to PP.

I spend 3 1/2 weeks just in North Laos last year and enjoyed the slow pace. I will spend three weeks later this year to enjoy the southern part, and I think you would miss out on so many great places if you rush through Laos

Brisbane, Australia
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3. Re: Itinerary advice - 2.5 weeks

Thanks so much for your input - I have already visited siem Reap and angkor so no need to include this. Would you suggest I miss 4000 Islands to spend more time north?

Ho Chi Minh City...
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4. Re: Itinerary advice - 2.5 weeks

Ok, it makes sense to exclude SR from the itinerary :)

Persoanlly I would focus either on the north, or south of Laos because of the above reasons. I absolute loved the north, especially LP, NK and Muang Ngoi, but really looking forward to the southern part. If you only want to spend a dayor so at the 4000 Island and at Thakhek, I would then suggest focusing on the north.

Vientiane
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5. Re: Itinerary advice - 2.5 weeks

Too much time on the bus. Not enough time in Vientiane - this is worth at least another day.

Brisbane, Australia
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239 posts
109 reviews
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6. Re: Itinerary advice - 2.5 weeks

Thanks everyone :-) How's this looking in your opinions? Would Muang Ngoi be a good place to spend Christmas as a solo traveller?

Fri Dec 13 Arrive Phnom Penh 2pm

Sat 14 2:45pm Phnom Penh to Vientiane

Sun 15 Vientiane

Mon 16 Vientiane

Tues 17 Vientiane to Vang Vien

Wed 18 Vang Vieng to Luang Prabang

Thurs 19 Luang Prabang

Fri 20 Luang Prabang

Sat 21 Luang Prabang - Nong khiaw

Sun 22 Nong khiaw

Mon 23 Nong khiaw

Tues 24 Nong khiaw – Muang Ngoi

Wed 25 Muang Ngoi

Thurs 26 Muang Ngoi to Nong Kiaw

Fri 27 Nong kiaw to Luang Prabang

Sat 28 fly Luang Prabang morning to Phnom Penh then bus to Battambang or kep

Sun 29 Battambang or kep

Mon 30 Battambang or kep

Tue 31 Battambamg or Kep to Phnom Penh

Wed 1 Phnom Penh

Thurs 2 leave for home

Brisbane, Australia
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7. Re: Itinerary advice - 2.5 weeks

I think on the 26th I can get to LP in same day to give me another full day in LP on 27th?

Ho Chi Minh City...
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for Cologne, Laos
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8. Re: Itinerary advice - 2.5 weeks

This looks better in my view. And to the risk to upset some people here, I would probably say leave Vientiane on the 16th, if possible in the afternoon. This would still give you around 1 1/2 days in Vientiane, but you could spend then a full day in VV on the 17th. For the scenery it is a great place to spend a full day.

And you should be able to get from Muang Ngoi to LP at the same day (took the boat from MN to NK at 9am, and then the boat to LP at 11am, and was in LP around 4pm). If you take the boat to LP, you could take the minibus to NK, and maybe leave later that day to spend the morning and lunch in LP.

Vientiane, Laos
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9. Re: Itinerary advice - 2.5 weeks

The second version looks better but your main focus looks to be Nong Khiaw& Ngoi - great if you just want to lie in a hammock and read a book and do some walks, but I would reduce this to 2 days in Nong Khiaw & 2 days in Ngoi, then add a day or two to LP and add a day to VV.

I would pick Battambang over Kep too - Kep is great place to relax in a bungalow resort & eat crabs but Battambang more interesting.

Brisbane, Australia
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239 posts
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10. Re: Itinerary advice - 2.5 weeks

Really appreciate the advice, thank you. Ill book the flights to secure those, and use this as a guide, will try to take how long I stay in each place as it comes as I'm usually a strict planner and trying not to be this time around :) But sounds like more time in LP is on the cards - thanks everyone!