Question for travelers to Asia

#1
The bride and I are heading to Indonesia to visit my daughter and travel through SE Asia. We are looking for a base city to initiate the trip and then finish up there with a few days of spa time pampering before heading back to the States.

Thinking of:

1. Singapore
2. Seoul
3. Jakarta
4. ???

Criteria:
1. Inexpensive flights into city
2. Relatively inexpensive hotel/spas
3. Interesting location
Any thoughts??
 
#2
I would do Bangkok or Chiang Mai. Both will be great value for money.
Khao Phing Kan is also on my to do list
For flights, get them from local "country" website, they will be cheaper
I read an article on that a few weeks ago, may have been on flyer talk, you save at least 40%

We had friends do SE asia last year and they had a blast
Singapore and cheap do not go with each other [h=1][/h]
 

cyning

Senior Member
#3
Dazzor had some good points. Singapore will probably have the best and most connecting flights, but it's a fairly expensive place to visit. Bangkok is less expensive and is a very interesting city. If you choose Bangkok, try to tour the palace grounds while you're there and, if possible, get out of the city and see the countryside. Maybe the best way to do that is a one-day boat tour on the river. Jakarta is less interesting, at least to me, lots of bad traffic, pollution and some areas are risky for tourists. Haven't been to Seoul, so can't help there.

Hong Kong wasn't on your short list, but is also an interesting city, but it too can be expensive.
 
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#4
I travel to Philippines about 2 times per year. You can get a 30 day entry with your US passport. It is stupid cheap there, You can buy a new Honda Motorcycle for $1700 and travel around. Sell it for $1000 when you leave it will be money well spent. Hotels are around $20 per night, Full body massage for one hour is $5 and can be excellent. I travel around Davao City area, Manila is fun but too big city for me.
 
#5
We are planning on going to Chiang Mai and Bangkok from our base city during the week of Thailand.

We tend to like eco adventure type travel. 5-star hotels in Singapore were running about $150 per night. I guess the issue is if I go with a hub city as a base the costs for staying might be higher but air travel to Bangkok, Hanoi and Surabaya/Bali might be lower.

See the Dilemma??
 
#6
We are planning on going to Chiang Mai and Bangkok from our base city during the week of Thailand.

We tend to like eco adventure type travel. 5-star hotels in Singapore were running about $150 per night. I guess the issue is if I go with a hub city as a base the costs for staying might be higher but air travel to Bangkok, Hanoi and Surabaya/Bali might be lower.

See the Dilemma??
Thailand seems like a tourist trap to me. I haven't been there, but have done a lot of research on the Thailand. Just hard for me to get excited to check it out. Singapore seems very boring as well, my wife has visited it a couple times and her sister works there, but it also hard for me to get excited about Singapore. I would choose Thailand over Singapore in a heart beat if I was down to the two places. There are a lot of places to visit in the southern Asia. I would just pick a couple places and explore them.

When I go to Philippines I can catch a flight to another city for around $50 one way, So what I have done is just fly there, grab a taxi and go explore and look for a hotel. If I like the place I stay for a few day or a week and catch a flight to another city. This has worked out well for me and it adds to the adventure, I have found a lot of neat places this way.

 
#7
We will be going to Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam. I'm just looking for base city to connect all the points. I think at this point we might be using Bali as a luxury stop at the end before flying back.
 

Londoner

Platinum Member
#8
i disagree with sumtingwong... went to thailand in '09 and absolutely love it there... only regret was we wanted a couple more days in bangkok, as we spent much of our time in phuket
you will def find tourist traps, as you will most everywhere worth going to... but you can find a ton of stuff that isn't touristy

wherever you go, know what to expect weather-wise... monsoon season starts in june, but assuming you're going before that

haven't been to vietnam or cambodia yet, but those are on the radar... loved singapore, but yes it's expensive and doesn't have as much of the asian culture of the other places... recently went to hong kong and highly recommend it, though it can get expensive... one of our favorite spots as well



 
#9
i disagree with sumtingwong... went to thailand in '09 and absolutely love it there... only regret was we wanted a couple more days in bangkok, as we spent much of our time in phuket
you will def find tourist traps, as you will most everywhere worth going to... but you can find a ton of stuff that isn't touristy

wherever you go, know what to expect weather-wise... monsoon season starts in june, but assuming you're going before that

haven't been to vietnam or cambodia yet, but those are on the radar... loved singapore, but yes it's expensive and doesn't have as much of the asian culture of the other places... recently went to hong kong and highly recommend it, though it can get expensive... one of our favorite spots as well
Do you travel alone? I go solo. I find friends when I get there and try to be a International Playboy
 
#12
J.C.O donuts is based out of Indonesia and are scattered all over the areas you are going. They sell the best donuts I have ever tasted, and I am not that big of a donut fan. Give them a shot. If they ever make it to the America, they would be very popular.