Scenery east of the town of Trai Mat near Da Lat, Vietnam.
Where are Kevin and Ruth now? Da Lat, Vietnam.

Where are Kevin and Ruth going next? Not sure yet!

Monday, September 4, 2023

Future travel plans

We are headed to SE Asia this coming winter. 

Although we have made absolutely zero firm plans, and done very little research on what we want to see or do, we want to visit Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, and Vietnam over a period of about six months. And knowing us, that won't be nearly enough time. 

However, we are going into it with a lot of flexibility, and if we don't make it to one or the other country during this visit, it will be because we are enjoying whatever we are doing too much!

Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam.

Six months total would give us a month and a half in each country. That should be enough time to get a feel for the distinctions between the various countries, and an idea of which ones we might like to return to.

And from the basic research I've done, there are a lot of distinctions between the countries.

Thailand is by far the most popular. However I've read that it's not the bargain it used to be, and many areas are over touristed. We plan to avoid those areas and seek out interior, northern locations that might be more authentic. 

Cambodia seems to be the most expensive of the four countries. Possibly because their currency is linked directly to the $USD. 

Laos is the most remote and rural of the four. 

And the general consensus is that Vietnam is the cheapest.

We're really looking forward to this part of the world that we've never been to! We were originally planning to go there the winter of 2020, but then of course Covid threw all that out the window.

But before we get there, we have to get through this fall. We fly back to Paris October 14th, but we don't know exactly what we're doing from there. We're still waiting to hear back on our Turkmenistan visa, although the most recent word is that we should know by the end of this week. 

If the Turkmenistan visa is approved, we'll also visit some other countries in that region over the following six weeks.

If we get turned down on the Turkmenistan visa, plan B is to head to Nepal and do the Everest basecamp hike. We have friends who have already signed up for it, and invited us to join them.

So... it's going to be an exciting eight months ahead! And we're looking forward to sharing it with you!

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Great deal on the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra Smartphone.

And in Canada...

15 comments:

  1. During my military tour of South Vietnam in 69-70 I found it to be a wonderfully beautiful country with some of the best beaches I have ever seen. It will be a great place to visit I feel.

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    1. That is good to hear! Actually we have only heard good things about Vietnam, somehow both Kevin and I think it is the country that we are going to like the best out of the four countries that we hope to visit in Southeast Asia this winter.

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  2. Commenting is being very difficult this morning, it keeps trying to make me post as anonymous!

    This is going to be so exciting to see this part of the world through your eyes. Looking forward to it

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    1. Yeah, Blogger doesn't seem to be making the commenting easy anymore, I think that is why most people comment on our Travel with Kevin and Ruth Facebook page now. https://www.facebook.com/TravelwithKevinAndRuth

      We are really excited to see this part of the world too. We have been to South Korea and to Singapore but both those countries are very different to the four that we want to visit. I think we are going to have some very interesting adventures this winter. :-)

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  3. Had an all expense paid year in Vietnam in '68. Even then we all commented on how beautiful it was. We did Thailand in 2007 and loved it.

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    1. Wow, that must have been something back in "68. I bet it has changed a lot since then. We are really looking forward to our visit to Southeast Asia but especially to Vietnam.

      From what we are hearing Thailand will have even changed since your visit in 2007 it will be interesting to see what we think of it.

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  4. An exciting adventure awaits you! We are heading that way in January for 2 or 3 months. We previously visited Thailand, Vietnam, Malasia, Cambodia, Philipines and are completely hooked. Are next trip will include Laos. Looking forward to your adventures. Who knows we may cross paths.

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    1. We are glad to hear that you have enjoyed your past visits so much that you are headed that way again. We also want to visit Malaysia, Philippines and Sri Lanka but those will be countries that we will visit on a different trip in the future.

      It would be nice to if our paths cross and that we could meet up. Just keep an eye on our blog and if you see that we are going to be close, just send us an email and hopefully between us we can figure out a plan. :-)

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    2. Sounds great! I will for sure follow your blog.

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  5. Vietnam a must! What do you think about the new regulations for travel to most European countries from countries that don't require a visa. Limits of stays 90 days in 180 days with penalties for over staying. I understand that 90 days is in all European countries can't stay in one for 90 days and move to the next for 90 days etc. Could put a real curve ball into some people's travel plans. Or am I not understanding it correctly.

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    1. Everything that we hear about Vietnam is good so we are really excited to explore this country, even more so than the other three.

      The soon to be "new" ETIAS travel authorization form/visa really isn't much different to what is in place right now, it just means having to pay a small fee and filling out a form. I think other than Romania and Bulgaria that are not part of the Schengen Zone right now but will be in the next year or so are really the only countries that will be different from what is in place right now. As it is most non European visitors can only stay in the Schengen Zone for 90 days out of every rolling 180 days (this means the Europe Union as a whole, not just one country). This is why for the past two years that we have traveled in Max that we have always had to count our days carefully and make sure that we are out of the "zone" for 90 days. This is why the first winter we visited Turkiye for three months, and then last winter we visited Morocco for almost three months before quickly going through Spain and then into Ireland, Wales and England for three months before going back into France and up to Germany. So really nothing has changed overall.

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    2. Thanks for the clarification. Enjoy being back in Canada!

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    3. No problem! They don't make it easy to understand the rules that are in place already and many people are still unaware of the Schengen Zone/Visa rules because the majority of people who visit Europe are only there on a short holiday, not staying months at a time.

      We will enjoy visiting our family and friends but I am sure by the end of our six week visit we will be happy to move on.

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  6. I knew someone who travelled through SE Asia and his favourite country was Laos - inexpensive, friendly people, lots to see and do.

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    1. Well that is good to hear because other than Vietnam, it is the one country that we are looking forward to visiting too. You don't hear of as many people visiting it and some of the ones that we have heard from haven't enjoyed it as much but maybe they don't like the off the beaten path as much as us.

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