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Old 12-20-2010, 07:07 AM   #1
abc12
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Back-Packing through SE Asia



Currently planning a trip through SE Asia sometime in-between the 1st 6 months of 2011. Has anyone done this type of excursion before, being that SE Asia is a popular place among tourist/back packers. My plan is to back pack instead of a tour, since this is something i've always wanted to do. There is no set plan/schedule, just do things as i go is my outlook. Mainly thailand is the place I plan to stay 1st and maybe the longest, then onto other contries there. This will be a solo trip from the looks of it.

i've been doing my research using the "travelfish.org" site, and plan on purchasing "Lonely Planet" books on countries I plan to visit. Any of you guys know/recommend of other sites that will be of great benefits to feed from.

Also anyone have knowlegde of a reliable/durable back pack. The main places i plan to purchase from is either, mountain equipment co-op, europe bound, atmosphere. I currently have a MEC back pack from 10- 15 years ago used for school, am surprised how well it's still holding up now, so figuring if mec is the choice. I've also read reviews about "osprey" which are a thumbs up as well. But guessing doesn't matter which product, there all above par.?

thanks
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Old 12-23-2010, 10:35 AM   #2
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I'm doing it right now, currently in Laos, and going to Vietnam tomorrow. Super easy and it's cheap here. Just do it. On another note I like Laos more than Thailand, aside from the beaches.
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Old 12-23-2010, 06:51 PM   #3
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wow guys sounds like fun.

don't have anything to add, other than: sounds awesome.
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Old 12-23-2010, 09:25 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marek View Post
I'm doing it right now, currently in Laos, and going to Vietnam tomorrow. Super easy and it's cheap here. Just do it. On another note I like Laos more than Thailand, aside from the beaches.
wow, your actually back-packing right now as we speak, surprised your on here posting, you must live and bleed "maxbimmer". but good to someone's actually out there right now....

when did you start back-packing, and for how long roughly? guess you'll be celebrating xmas and new years where-ever you are. Are you back packing solo? or with family/friends?

my plan is to go solo, as it is hard and i can't find someone who would be willing to take an excursion such as this. Something everyone should at least experience...

are you currently doing a blog of your trip right now?
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Old 12-24-2010, 01:41 AM   #5
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I was backpacking in Vietnam a year ago. It's definitely fun. Personally, I would rate budget travelling in a foreign land as one those things one should do if one gets the chance. Sucks that your friends don't or can't join you but you'll manage going solo and ironically, might enjoy it a lot more than you are thinking you will.

If you stay in hostels, you'll meet all sorts of interesting folks. There are Brits and Aussie aplenty although I ran into some Yanks and Canucks as well.

Do keep your wits about you as things are not always what they seem. Safeguard your passport and your money at all times.

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Old 12-24-2010, 07:35 PM   #6
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A high school friend of mine is doing this right now on a set budget. She just finished up India recently and had a total blast. Check out her story and experiences here:

www.hopscotchtheglobe.com
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Old 12-25-2010, 06:54 AM   #7
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I'm now in Hanoi, don't really care for shopping with my wife so I go on here when she is browsing with her friend . We are travelling in a group of 4. We bought two motorcycles tonight and will go from Hanoi to Ho Chi Min (Saigon) starting tomorrow morning. Should be fun

Going alone is just as much fun, you meet lots of cool people and your itinerary can change at any time.

Do it.

Last edited by marek; 12-25-2010 at 10:09 AM.
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Old 12-25-2010, 12:26 PM   #8
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i'm a rider myself actually, though hear there are ups and downs riding a motor-bike there, but more on the dangerous side. such as no-one wears protective gear, have to watch your bike or it'll get stolen with-in seconds...

i assume you bought used motor-bikes, if so, how much?

ride safe.
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Old 12-26-2010, 05:36 AM   #9
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awww, if you are on budget, just stay away from going to korea or japan. Their living standard is way too expensive esp japan.
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Old 12-26-2010, 01:12 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mpower1226 View Post
awww, if you are on budget, just stay away from going to korea or japan. Their living standard is way too expensive esp japan.
A decent SLR + air will come to about 3k. Let alone food... If you step in a place where they encourage strong organic food, and you eat fake stuff in Canada, get ready for a washroom run. haha
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Old 12-27-2010, 07:41 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by abc12 View Post
i'm a rider myself actually, though hear there are ups and downs riding a motor-bike there, but more on the dangerous side. such as no-one wears protective gear, have to watch your bike or it'll get stolen with-in seconds...

i assume you bought used motor-bikes, if so, how much?

ride safe.
I don't ride in Canada, I don't even have an motorcycle licence, but here it's not a problem. We bought two used 125cc Taiwanese Bonus bikes, put our wives and two big backpacks on each bike and so far did about 350km of riding in 2 days. I've never seen such chaos in my life, you cannot go faster than 50km/h as there is every imaginable thing on the road here always getting in your way. I will post some videos once we get back as we are in some little town in Vietnam with one internet cafe and no wifi.

The bikes were $650US for two with helmets, some spare parts, saddle bags and a road atlas of Vietnam. Bought the from a Belgian couple who rode them from Ho Chi Minh City to Saigon, having never ridden bikes in their life. We will sell them when we get to Ho Chi Minh city to some other tourists with similar ideas. If not then we'll sell them to a local or just give them away, we don't really care as this is an adventure that I will likely not get to do again.
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Old 12-27-2010, 01:30 PM   #12
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I've never seen such chaos in my life, you cannot go faster than 50km/h as there is every imaginable thing on the road here always getting in your way. I will post some videos once we get back as we are in some little town in Vietnam with one internet cafe and no wifi.
I'll give you a rundown on the traffic differences between Hanoi and HCMC.

Hanoi: (as I've been told since I've never been)
- less traffic lights
- more dangerous as everything comes from every direction
- less total number of vehicles
- danger scale is higher than HCMC

HCMC:
- traffic lights at every major intersection
- less dangerous there is more "order"
- more dangerous as there are a ridiculous amount of vehicles on the road
- danger scale is less than Hanoi


Here's an example of gridlock in HCMC I saw last December. All the scooters were lined up and trying to get up or off a sidewalk.

This was unusual volume but it gives you an example of how packed it could be. I've seen bad traffic in Rome and Paris, but nothing like this.





Jealous of your coastal trip. That's what I wanted to do but did not have time to devote to it. On your way down, Nha Trang is worth a stop over to recharge. Some nice restaurants in there to keep the missus happy.
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Old 12-27-2010, 01:36 PM   #13
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I really don't see the desire to go to a place like this^
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Old 12-27-2010, 05:36 PM   #14
abc12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marek View Post
I don't ride in Canada, I don't even have an motorcycle licence, but here it's not a problem. We bought two used 125cc Taiwanese Bonus bikes, put our wives and two big backpacks on each bike and so far did about 350km of riding in 2 days. I've never seen such chaos in my life, you cannot go faster than 50km/h as there is every imaginable thing on the road here always getting in your way. I will post some videos once we get back as we are in some little town in Vietnam with one internet cafe and no wifi.

The bikes were $650US for two with helmets, some spare parts, saddle bags and a road atlas of Vietnam. Bought the from a Belgian couple who rode them from Ho Chi Minh City to Saigon, having never ridden bikes in their life. We will sell them when we get to Ho Chi Minh city to some other tourists with similar ideas. If not then we'll sell them to a local or just give them away, we don't really care as this is an adventure that I will likely not get to do again.
after riding here in ontario, i was really surprised of some of the roads we have here outside the GTA, unbelievable, those who know/ride will know what i'm talking about. I have a passion for 2 wheels now, more so than cars.

these bikes, guess there scooters, are they like run down bikes, or are they in fairly good condition, from what i've seen, there usually a fixer-upper, hence you have spare parts for them included.

are the group of you guys enjoying the bike riding from a to b so far, as you mentioned something you'd not likely not do again.

how long are you they for in viet with the scooters, i was interested in going there as well, but most likely you'll probably be back home before i head out there..
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Old 12-27-2010, 05:39 PM   #15
abc12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mudmojo View Post
I'll give you a rundown on the traffic differences between Hanoi and HCMC.

Hanoi: (as I've been told since I've never been)
- less traffic lights
- more dangerous as everything comes from every direction
- less total number of vehicles
- danger scale is higher than HCMC

HCMC:
- traffic lights at every major intersection
- less dangerous there is more "order"
- more dangerous as there are a ridiculous amount of vehicles on the road
- danger scale is less than Hanoi


Here's an example of gridlock in HCMC I saw last December. All the scooters were lined up and trying to get up or off a sidewalk.

This was unusual volume but it gives you an example of how packed it could be. I've seen bad traffic in Rome and Paris, but nothing like this.





Jealous of your coastal trip. That's what I wanted to do but did not have time to devote to it. On your way down, Nha Trang is worth a stop over to recharge. Some nice restaurants in there to keep the missus happy.
wow, i don't know what to say after watching that, i was laughing to myself and wondering what the fu*k is going on there...

that's just crazyness... everything coming from every direction...

think i saw some eye candy as well in that vid....
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