Travelers Notes
South-East Asia

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more updated info for SE Asia
Request from ITIS Travelers(
Are you traveling in SE Asia or planning to travel there soon? If so we would really appreciate it and it would be useful for other travelers if you sent us information from your trip or were willing to join our 'On The Road' team - sending emails while on the road. Please email us if you can help.

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Dec 2000 Feb 2001 July 2001 Aug 2001 Nov 2001

M 2001.12 29: Henderson
missing person Kathy Brownlie.
We are a New Zealand family urgently seeking to get in contact with Kathy Brownlie. She is backpacker in Laos. We need to know where she is staying to let her know to phone family. If you could forward this message to any other likely places of accomodation we would very much appreciate it.



2001.12.21: Ong

I am a first time traveler in Thailand.
I really need more information & guide for this trip. As you konw, this is my first time travel alone. Pls advise whether is
that any danger and precaution to face ? I will be in Thailand for 9-10 days (23 Dec onwards). My destination is Chiang Rai-Chiang
Mai-Sukthothai-Bangkok. Which place that you think I should stay longer instead of other places just for one night? What is your opinion for Hill Tribe Trecking,is that tough journey? If possible pls tell me your experience.

Thailand is very safe country. Only thing you have to be careful is any business regarding gem. They say that today is the last day of the exhibition and you can get stones with very good price. You should stay away from it. Specially in Bangkok and Chaing Mai.

Another place you have to be careful is Hualamphog train station in Bangkok. All travel agents and so called volunteer staff are all trying to book expensive transport. Stay away from them.

Chaing Mai is famous for travelers. Many guide books mention this city but this town was good destination 10 years ago. Nowadays very noisy, polluted city. Unless you do trekking, I don't recommend to stay here for long time.
Chaing Rai, the other hand, is very quite local town. This town does not have any tourist interests but there are many places to visit from here. If you want to enjoy N. Thailand, you will stay here for long time. I love this town. See our Chaing Rai page for more details.
Sukhothai is offering the best ruins in Thailand. You will enjoy but you probably stay here for 2-3 days maximum.
Bangkok is also very noisy and polluted town. But there are many places to visit. You will probably stay here for the long time unless you avoid it. There is no town you stay only for 1 night. You will enjoy something in any town.

Trekking is very hard to advice you. For the prices, please see Chaing Mai page. There are 3 trekking areas in Thailand. Chaing Mai, Pei, Mae Hong Song and also possible to take from Chaing Rai. Chaing Mai is the biggest base. Many agents offering easy ones. But there is no real trekking which you can enjoy real rural area outside of the civilization. Just more than Disney land. I think our Chaing Mai page contains the photos of the trekking.



2001.12.18: Ollie <>
Train from Singapore to Bangkok
I have 5 weeks to spend between Singapore and Bangkok, feb/march.
I fancy the east coast train route. I'm not that keen on towns. Where do you suggest I stop off on the way?


The train between BKK and Singapore, there is no train running on the East coast of the Malay Peninsular. There are mainly 2 train routes in Malaysia, one on West coast and one from NE of Malaysia to Singapore. The latter one is running in the middle of Malay Peninsular and it is called "Jungle train". I have not taken the train so I cannot give you my personal experience. I have met somebody who took this one, but most of the travelers are taking night trains because it is very hard to take one running day time. You have to leave very early morning and have to arrive at your destination very late, etc, etc. The West coast line is the main line from BKK to Singapore. The view from the window is not so bad. You may stop over at Surathani from where you can visit some islands, such as Koh Samui, Koh Panghan, Krabi, Koh Phi Phi, etc. Also Penang(Butterworth) is another stop over which is a Chinese/Indian town.

I 2001.12.18: Chano
Cambodia at Aranyaprathet
I was rejected to pay US$20, they accept only with Bhats(1000B), And some Japanese forced to pay 1100 bhats, everyone should take care of it. Thank you. the police in Cambodia is sucks!!

? 2001.12.18: Betti Adams
Help me for Ayutthaya, Thailand
Can anyone help me? I have a daughter in Ayutthaya and I want to send her some clothing from a store in Thailand. I want to order online from a Thai company to ship to her by Christmas. I can't find a Thai clothing store to order from. Shipping from USA is too high. Thanks.



2001.12.17: Eileen Hilley
Vietnamese Customs
I need to get information about the customs Vietnam has at Christmas. I know that the present exchange happens at the Lunar New Year but how is the birth of Christ celebrated? Please e-1-mail me back with more information. Thank you! Eileen


We cannot guarantee you but I have never heard that the custom of any country closes on a public holiday in SE Asia. Christmas is not a public holiday in Vietnam.



2001.12.12: Kootap Chang
Boat from Vietnam to Cambodia
I saw somewhere on the Internet that you can enter Vietnam from Cambodia through Chau Duc on the Mekong River. Do you have the details?
We have some information from Phnom Penh, Cambodia to Chaodon, Vietnam you can travel by minivan and boat. This information may be misprinted. It could be Chau Doc with $15(Ask Narin GH). If so it is possible to travel on Mekong from near Phnom Penh to HCM city. From Chau Doc to HCM cost $28.
The boat schedule near HCM city will be updated early next year.

? 2001.12.01: alison wiseman
Xmas in Singapore?
hi to everyone travelling round the world. I'm wondering if any one knows what would be a cool thing to do in Thailand over Xmas and new year? also any info on cheap places to stay in Singapore would be v. cool. Thanks xx
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