Planning South East Asia

It took us some time, but we’re finally ready with our high level planning of our approx. 2 month trip in China and SE Asia. We’ve been on the road in South America for over 5 weeks, heavily on the way and enjoying our adventures. Yet, one 23h bus ride (Bariloche to El Chalten, 8 November 2016) can be a wonderful time to catch up.
We had to make some considerations for our SE Asia trip:
  • Do we need to be back in China for Ms. Rice visa application for New Zealand?
  • if so, how much time do we spend in China and how much in SE Asia?
  • Do we plan to celebrate Spring Festival in China?
No, 50/50 split and yes.
Luckily, before we set off on our big adventure, we’ve received good news from the New Zealand immigration department: the tourism visa got approved. So we could easily travel within China and then go beyond the borders.
What about Spring Festival? It’s THE event in China, comparable to our Christmas. Times 10. No, 20. Celebrations usually last between 7 to 15 days, while half of the country is shut down (everyone is celebrating with the family) and the other half is traveling on the way (towards that same family). In 2017, Spring Festival/Chinese New year will be on January 27th, which surprisingly fits very well in our schedule: we will leave one week later for New Zealand. So that’s we decided to include one small stop for Spring Festival, celebrating with family and friends.

We need more fireworks!


And more food !

The focus of our trip in China is on Yunnan, the most south western province of China, with beautiful places to visit and many local minorities to meet. It is also the perfect entry point to SE Asia, as it borders to Myanmar, Thailand, Laos and Vietnam. The first 2.5-3 weeks will consist of:
  • Visiting spring city Kunming
  • traveling up north via cities Dali and Lijiang, stopping by Tengchong, Shang Lang and Lugu lake on the way
  • heading south to Xishuangbanna, trekking through the jungle
Once we reach the most southern part of Yunnan, we will cross the border with Laos, passing through the North for approx. 1 week:
  • Trekking through tribal villages and jungle of Luang Namtha
  • Enjoying some peaceful time in Luang Prabang
From here, we’ll fly towards Vietnam (required to fly for the Visa on Arrival), where we will (1,5 week):
  • do a speed date with bustling Hanoi (we’re dropping Halong Bay and Sapa mountains, due to winter period in North Vietnam in January)
  • visit mystical Hoi An
  • sailing through the Mekong delta south of Ho Chi Minh City
  • sip some cocktails on the white sand beaches of Phu Quoc
A one day ferry + bus journey will lead us to Cambodia (1 week):
  • doing some scuba diving at the shores of Sihanoukville
  • visiting pure nature on the island of Koh Rong
  • passing through the capital of Pnom Penh
  • enriching our inner selves at all the temple complex Angkor Wat
We will still have a few days left to go to Singapore:
  • counting skyscrapers at 35 degrees C
  • meeting up with some old friends
From then on, we travel back to China, where 100+ millions of people are on the way to their home towns.
We’re aware of the busy schedule, which will include several flights. However, we aim to match this effect on our budget because of cheaper accommodation and food throughout the entire time in Asia.
加油! Jia you!