I never really shared to you my friends the actual route we took when we backpacked Southeast Asia summer of 2013 so I’d like to at least give you a rough idea in case you’re planning on going anytime within the next 3 years. So I’m based out of Portland, Oregon and you may want to obviously customize this based on your origin.
I loved this route and I would do it again except #6! While #6 created a lot of crazy memories for this trip and I truly relive #6 over and over again with the million of photos we took, we could have seriously saved some time had we done this part very differently.
I’ve contacted and consulted several travel bloggers about this route and after telling them I only have 25 days to make it happen I could tell their reluctance just by reading their e-mail. They all told me I couldn’t do it all in that short window but I’m one that loves proving people wrong and I sure did! The only thing I would probably do next time I repeat the route is have about 6 months to enjoy and delve into the local culture.
Here’s the route…
1. PDX>YVR>GuangZou,China>BKK by Plane
2. Bangkok, Thailand to Chiang Mai, Thailand on a 15-Hour sleeper bus ride (amazing experience I must say!)
3. Chiang Mai>Chiang Khong, Thailand>Cross the Mekong River to the Laos Side on quick boat ride
4. Houayxiay, Laos>Pakbeng Village, Laos>Luang Prabang, Laos on an epic 2-day slow boat ride (everyone doing this route should most def experience the 2-day slow boat ride! You haven’t done SEAsia unless you’ve done this!)
5. Luang Prabang>Vientiane, Laos (Sleeper bus ride – 8 Hours)
6. Vientiane>DaLat, Vietnam>Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam (on a 40-Hour Sleeper bus ride – I wouldn’t recommend this particular route. I would go head to Cambodia first then Vietnam). Our situation was different that we had to do this route to get to Vietnam.
7. Ho Chi Minh>Pnom Penh, Cambodia>Siem Reap, Cambodia (by 7 hour bus ride)
8. Siem Reap>Bangkok (by bus)
9. BKK>CEB, Philippines (by Plane)
11. Our flight wasn’t until the next day. We slept uncomfortably at the BKK airport. BKK>GuangZou,China>YVR>PDX (and we’re home!!!)
This journey was amazing! The food were especially great and the people/locals were super friendly!