Hello everyone, my name is James, and in this post, I will explain to you about my trip to East- Asia with my girlfriend.
The nature of our trip was to see as much as possible and not to get too muddled, a classic couples trip.
I will not expand too much on places that have a lot of information here and I will try to get you started and give useful tips. So many of the places I will not even mention here. If you have questions about anything related to these countries I and Amit will be happy to answer you in detail or in the post – Enjoy!
Pai – a great place, recommend to come and look for a guesthouse that you will love for yourself, even cheaper and there is so much selection. We slept in Pai Country Hut and it was really nice, bungalows very close to the night market for NIS 75 a night for a couple. We were in the Pai for 7 nights and could stay much longer, if you are on a motorcycle (200 baht a day) there is plenty to see.
Recommendation: Rafting with Thai Adventure Rafting, the offices are in the center of the main street. Very nice to start with this trip. We go out to the Pye River in the morning at the border with Burma and do rafting in an amazing area until noon. We had luck there and we saw a gibbon monkey who got off the tree and played with us. Rafting really is not fast and fans of the Extreme will be disappointed so I recommend the attraction to those who want to start something calm.
Bangkok – There is a lot of information so I will not elaborate, highly recommend going to the weekend market (Chatuchak).
From Pai we took a van to Luang Namtha which includes a stop in the border town and sleeps in a hostel with breakfast (do not expect too much) and in the morning you cross the border and go up another van to Luang Namtha.
I do not have too much to tell about Luang Namtha, because of the weather there was nothing we could do there and after a night we had already gone to Luang Prabang. I mentioned Luang Namtha because without being there too much I can tell that this is one of the most beautiful areas I have seen. Nature there is amazing and you can see a lot of tribes on the way there (Luang County has more than 20 tribes). We sleep in Amandra Villa, 200 meters from the night market and the main street, a really clean and beautiful place for 23$ for a couple including breakfast.
Important tip – not recommended to get there at night, you will intend to arrive in the afternoon. The bus stop that comes to it is 15-20 minutes from the central area and not the most pleasant way to make the trip at night.
Luang Prabang – We arrived there with a local 12-hour Sleeper bus (supposed to take about two hours less), recommend you take a van without stopping if you succeed because the bus stops every second to transport goods.
Luang Prabang is located at Pangkham Lodge, 500 meters from the Night Market and costs 22$ per couple including breakfast. I will note that Luang Prabang is a relatively expensive city.
Recommendation – everyone goes to Kuang Si Falls which are famous waterfalls and probably the most beautiful in the world, of course, you go to them as well. I recommend going to the Tad Sae Falls, which are 20 minutes away from the city. These falls are far less familiar and not less beautiful in my opinion. When you get there you will continue to walk along the path until you reach huge and amazing waterfalls with empty pools, we were alone there and it was awesome.
Nong Qiao – an amazing place! We took a bus about 3-4 hours from Luang Prabang if I remember correctly. Nong Kiau is a quiet, isolated town nestled among mountains and the view from it is simply breathtaking. There is much to do in the village, but my recommendation is to visit the isolated villages nearby (some of the day trips offered there). We slept in Meexi, across the bridge from the second turn to the right and straight to the end, 80,000 kips per couple not including breakfast, great place. Food – highly recommend (!) To eat in Indian restaurants after the bridge, very cheap and excellent food.
Hanoi – a busy and overcrowded city, I was not the most connected to it mainly because of the people. Keep an eye on your equipment and watch people on the street trying to work on you in all kinds of ways. For example, they will point you to the shoe and say it is torn and straight will try to drop it to fix it. I trust you that they will not succeed in working on you, but I was a witness to the Europeans who pay a million Dong (NIS 150) just to take the shoe back. As for a travel agency, most of you have heard of Rose – we have made several trips and she was relatively fine but did not give me any special reason to recommend her.
Cat Ba – Island is a 3-4 hour drive from Hanoi, the main attraction of which is a tour of Long Bay and Long. Recommend the daily tour that I thought was absolutely enough and really fun. I heard bad things about the two-three-day cruise. As for accommodation, they will take you down the main street and simply pass through the places and close down on a place you will love. We were in Paul Moon Hotel and Sea View Hotel, we moved from Pool Moon because there were renovations next to it but both were great. Prices range from $ 7 to $ 12 per double room.
Ninh Binh – drive from Hanoi, a really small and quiet city. I do not remember where we slept, but there is no need to pre-order in my opinion that all the places are available. We took bikes with friends and we went for a walk and it was excellent, there are crazy landscapes and villages that are really fun to get in and see. The main attraction in the city is the Tam Coc caves. In advance, many people told me it was very touristy and not recommended and when we got there we saw that it really was so and we decided to give up. Instead, we went to the Trang An caves which were much cheaper, less touristy and there was very beautiful and exhaustive.
Hoi An – Following recommendations we went to sleep at the NIC in Coconut Garden, a relatively new homestay, bright and very beautiful rooms at $8 per person including breakfast. Nanny customarily prepares food for you in the evening when you get there. Overall, it was very nice, but I would not recommend it because of the distance to the city (one of the things that are more important to us.) A really fun city with a slightly different atmosphere (a little European).
Nha Trang – the city of the Russians who are not all visitors. Then a brief explanation of the Russian phenomenon that took over the city, Russia invests and develops this city and adopted it as a cheap resort town. Just as we fly to Greece, the Russians have a direct flight from a variety of destinations in Russia. We did not expect much but enjoyed it. It has excellent restaurants, perhaps the best we ate on the trip. Recommend Pita GR Restaurant and MIX restaurant, two cheap, high-quality Mediterranean restaurants. Cat Vang Guesthouse is an excellent base for a stay in Catang. Clean and good rooms. There is nothing to stay for more than two nights, her son Trang, one day to walk around the city and go to the beach and another day to the mighty (water) park on a nearby island. The park costs 600 thousand dongs and reaches it by the cable car that is included in the price, a delightful and recommended experience.
Dalat – despite hesitations we decided to go to Juan and did not regret for a moment, it was just amazing! For couples who do not want Durhams, you will know that Juan also has rooms for couples, he does not have much, so it is better to reserve, it’s enjoyable to be afraid of riding the motorcycle – its drivers are very responsible and do not exceed 40 kph, we also rappelled waterfalls ($ 28) and was In short, only Juan – $ 5 per person including breakfast and dinner.
Mũi Né – A coastal town south of Dalat, I would not recommend going if you do not have time. The beaches are not beautiful, and there is not too much to do. There is an excellent restaurant there – Sindbad.
The first thing that comes to mind when you hear about Singapore is that it’s expensive, so yes – it’s not as cheap as the rest of the eastern countries, but it’s not that expensive either. Accommodation is expensive, but the transportation saves a lot of money (an excellent subway that covers all tourist areas). We slept in the boss hotel which just opened, so the price was relatively low. The main area I recommend to go to is the marina, you can walk around there for a whole day and the sights there are amazing. I recommend doing the giant wheel or observation from the Marina Bay Sands (the famous hotel) at night, doing both of them, in my opinion, is unnecessary.
Transportation – As I mentioned, I highly recommend the subway, you can only travel with it without any problem, even when arriving from the airport to the city. They buy an airport ticket (NIS 15) and charge it as much as they need (very, very simple).
For those who wonder whether to go to Singapore as part of the trip to the East, I can say that we enjoyed this fantastic country, and I will add another extraordinary aspect of a different culture to the trip from other Eastern countries.
Manila: At the exit from the airport you have two options, a taxi at a pre-agreed price that will be wholly overpriced or a cab with a meter and stand in line for an hour. What to do? Take your feet and head toward the main road. Just go to the parking lot and walk toward the way for a few minutes, cross it and catch a taxi, saving you more than two-thirds of the price. Oh, and of course, take only white taxis! Much cheaper.
And one recommendation of a fantastic place that I see that many people do not visit, unfortunately – Kalanggaman Island. This is a lonely island with turquoise water that looks like it was taken out of a movie.
How to get there? His grandfather takes a bus from the northern station (90 pesos) towards Maya (Maya). After a 5-6 hour drive, you arrive at the dock and take a boat (100 pesos – do not pay more!) To Malapascua island. From Malapascua take a day trip to Kalanggaman Island (which includes lunch) and enjoy every moment.
El Nido – About 420 kilometers southwest of Manila is the tropical paradise El Nido. The acclaimed and acclaimed place of many travel magazines and publications from around the world, Al Nido in the province of Flavan is one of the most important tourist destinations in the country.
The island of Mattinolok – as its name implies, since the meaning of the word in the local dialect is ‘beautiful’. Metinlock is a long and narrow island with two great dive sites with snorkels: KALMUNG and KULASA. This narrow and amazing island also offers 4 dive sites at a depth of 38 meters where you can immerse yourself in an exceptionally rich underwater world. But perhaps the most wonderful treasure of the island of Metinlock is the hidden cost, which can only be reached by diving with snorkels or swimming through a narrow gorge that passes through the rock. At midday, the sun’s rays penetrate through this opening and create a spectacular view in front of the limestone walls. The secret beach is so magical that it is said to be a source of inspiration for Alex Garland’s “The Beach,” which was actually written while in El Nido, and then works for a film with the young Leonardo da Caprio.
The CUDUGNON Point and the ILLE Cave – a site of remains of prehistoric settlement 12,000 years ago. Archaeologists have found the remains of an animal and a human being, as well as jewelry and pottery from the Song Dynasty and proof of burial ceremonies that took place some 8,000 years ago. Anthropologists believe that the inhabitants of the cave were from the island of Borneo and arrived on foot by an ancient land bridge that connected Borneo with Palawan.
Island Lagen Basin – home to a large variety of bird species. Island Lagoon is one of the best places for bird watching. The LETA cave also served as an important burial site at the end of the Neolithic period, where various vessels were recovered and restored.
BULALACAO Falls – Located in BARANGAY PASADENA To reach them you have to travel by bike or tricycle 45-30 minutes to Base Camp and from there walk about an hour through the rainforest along a narrow path. The tour must be accompanied by a local guide.
I will not elaborate on the Philippines because there is a lot of information about where we were, if there are any questions, of course, I would be happy to answer. If you want me to add more information just ask for it about travel costs, travel time, flights, visas that I did not mention here.
Oh, and I almost forgot, for all the you who fly with GoPro alone, do not do it. The GoPro is excellent and everything to water and extreme activities. For all the rest, I highly recommend bringing with you a light and quality camera. We did not bring and regret it very much.