Easy trips from Cambodia to...

Do you have a Cambodian trip report you want to share? Post it here, and feel free to link to your blog if it's a travel blog for Cambodia, South East Asia, or anywhere really. You can ask and answer questions about travel advice in Cambodia or just share your pictures and videos with us. Most people who live in or visit Cambodia have also checked out nearby countries like Vietnam, Thailand, Laos, Myanmar, Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines, and you can get to most of these countries by traveling overland, so put any travel plans, reviews or questions here. Discussions about dirt bike trails in here as well.
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Re: Easy trips from Cambodia to...

Post by OrangeDragon » Sat May 17, 2014 3:04 am

thePeck wrote:
OrangeDragon wrote:...(krispy kreme... dear god i forgot how wonderful they were!)...
You bastard! Didn't bring any for me?! Please god tell me they were fresh off the rack?! Is a 4 hour layover enough time to run out and grab some?

You know the sad part I'm dead serious lol
no they weren't... but it didn't matter.


and yes. just barely. get a taxi from the airport to the mall, 1 hour... eat, 1 hour, back 1 hour. just in time to check in for your next flight.
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Re: Easy trips from Cambodia to...

Post by StroppyChops » Sat May 17, 2014 12:45 pm

sigmoid wrote:If you do go to VN and have the time, you might consider going to Central Vietnam (Danang, Hue, Hoi An, etc).
Agreed. Just don't take the train from Hanoi to Danang unless you're ready for a third-class India experience, we were picking dried semen from the sleeper sheets. Don't trust the brochures that show Rocky Mountaineer-esque travel.
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Re: Easy trips from Cambodia to...

Post by doktor_d » Sat May 17, 2014 1:18 pm

An easy cheap out of country trip from Phnom Penh is Saigon. About 6 hours by bus. $14-19 one way. Decent room in guesthouses in Saigon can be had for $12-20 a night w/air-con, fridge, hot water, tv..

From Saigon, Vung Tau is only $8-10 per person / 1h 50m-2h 20m away with bus on the new express highway. Decent rooms can be had for a little as $7-12 a night. Beer is cheap. Food is cheap. There's a decent number of attractions in town. The beaches are ok.. Though in some areas you'll find just as much trash scattered around as on some Cambodian beaches. But the beach around Vung Tau surf club is pretty clean and decent looking.

Motos can be rented for $10 a day. If you drive regularly in Cambodia you'll have no problem driving there. No license needed but you have to wear a clownhat at all times or you will get stopped.

International drivers licenses are not valid in Vietnam, so driving a moto without a valid Vietnamese drivers license voids your insurance.

But hey, at least you have the choice of whether you want to take that risk or not. I'm all for the freedom of choice.
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Re: Easy trips from Cambodia to...

Post by SockPuppet » Sat May 17, 2014 2:44 pm

^ that does sound interesting - Vietnam is still quite an unexplored territory to me. Been to Nha Trang and the amount of Russians make it unattractive.
How is Vung Tau with the tourist scene?
I was interested in close enough trips from Saigon as I would like to spend a few days in HCM and then go somewhere nice and relaxing.
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Re: Easy trips from Cambodia to...

Post by doktor_d » Sat May 17, 2014 3:18 pm

SockPuppet wrote:^ that does sound interesting - Vietnam is still quite an unexplored territory to me. Been to Nha Trang and the amount of Russians make it unattractive.
How is Vung Tau with the tourist scene?
I was interested in close enough trips from Saigon as I would like to spend a few days in HCM and then go somewhere nice and relaxing.
From my experience, it's expat population consists mostly of older men in the 60-80 year range. Most of them from Australia, New Zealand and the US. I assume most of them are war veterans and have decided to retire in Vung Tau as it's where they were stationed or used to go for R&R.

I've found most of these to be of the friendly and social type. They hang out at some of the expat bars during the day like Matilda's Pub or Lucy's Sportsbar or one of the other expat bars.

There are a number of younger tourists there as well but they usually stay no more than a day or two it seems.. checking out the tourist attractions and then go back to Saigon.

It's a relatively big place and you could easily spend 3-4 days there without getting bored if you like hanging out at the beach.

It's certainly not flooded with tourists though and you won't see many unless you hang out at the expat bars and restaurants or of course when you visit the tourist attractions.

When I get time I'll do a proper trip report with more details, info and pics.
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Re: Easy trips from Cambodia to...

Post by sigmoid » Sun May 18, 2014 11:42 am

Good info from Herr Doktor re: Vung Tau.

Would also add:

You can get there by hydrofoil boat from SGN and arrive at the art nouveau terminal. There's an open-air restaurant there if you want to eat/drink on the water.

There are two small casinos and a dog-racing track that operates on Saturdays (weather permitting).

There three "mountains" you can go up for some nice views/fresh air. One has the Jesus statue which you can go into and climb the stairs up to the shoulders. The other has a road up to the lighthouse at the top. A third one has a military radar station but you can still go up the road to a scenic point below that.

The French governor's house and gardens (Maison Blanc?) is worth having a look at.
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Re: Easy trips from Cambodia to...

Post by JBTrain » Sun May 18, 2014 2:19 pm

Vung Tau has been my goto getaway for a few years. Quiet during the week, good food, reasonable accommodation and nice sea views (I prefer the point to the beaches). Best learn to speak Australian, the only American accents I've heard have been a couple missionaries. Western food generally frightful, eat local. Easily can do the hydrofoil and bus to or from PP in a day.

Danang a bit more $ to get to but not bad, regular economy flight from HCM for $80 return. Everything better and cheaper than Vung Tau including some very good non-local food. Beaches are splendid, clean. Weather sucks most of the year, March-April is perfect.
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Re: Easy trips from Cambodia to...

Post by doktor_d » Fri May 23, 2014 6:08 pm

JBTrain wrote:Vung Tau has been my goto getaway for a few years. Quiet during the week, good food, reasonable accommodation and nice sea views (I prefer the point to the beaches). Best learn to speak Australian, the only American accents I've heard have been a couple missionaries. Western food generally frightful, eat local. Easily can do the hydrofoil and bus to or from PP in a day.
When I was there very recently the hydrofoil boats weren't going. Temporarily shut down, from what I could understand, because of "all the accidents".. perhaps most of all because of one recent accident where several people died.

[Disclaimer : Only a rumour! I haven't looked into this to verify this, but I can confirm that it was not possible to buy tickets for the hydrofoil boats as recently as approximately 7-10 days ago]

Anywho.. that didn't bother me any, because the new "express highway" beats the hydrofoil boat any day of the week imo. Next time I'll ride a moto - if I can find someone in Saigon to rent me one to take to Vung Tau and back.

[Edited for spelling]
Last edited by doktor_d on Fri May 23, 2014 6:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Easy trips from Cambodia to...

Post by doktor_d » Fri May 23, 2014 6:13 pm

sigmoid wrote:You can get there by hydrofoil boat from SGN and arrive at the art nouveau terminal. There's an open-air restaurant there if you want to eat/drink on the water.

There are two small casinos and a dog-racing track that operates on Saturdays (weather permitting).

There three "mountains" you can go up for some nice views/fresh air. One has the Jesus statue which you can go into and climb the stairs up to the shoulders. The other has a road up to the lighthouse at the top. A third one has a military radar station but you can still go up the road to a scenic point below that.

The French governor's house and gardens (Maison Blanc?) is worth having a look at.
Good info.. I'm putting together a small Vung Tau guide atm and will be posting it here in 3-5 days time when I get back from the jungle. It contains most of what you've mentioned and I'll add lots of pics, a little history and a map or two as well.

I can't be arsed to do all that on my phone so it'll have to wait till I get back to Phnom Penh and can access my desktop computer.. :D
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Re: Easy trips from Cambodia to...

Post by sigmoid » Sun May 25, 2014 11:56 am

When I was there very recently the hydrofoil boats weren't going. Temporarily shut down, from what I could understand, because of "all the accidents".. perhaps most of all because of one recent accident where several people died.
Thanks for this correction, Herr Doktor. That's very Ãœbermensch of you.

I should have qualified my statement with "Last time I went to VT well over a year ago, you could get.."

We all know how quickly travel info can become obsolete, inaccurate, etc.

Looking forward to your guide. :thumb:
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