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Vietnam and Cambodia Feb 2013
Post: #41
(01/08/2013, 06:17 PM)BGray Wrote: Hi Lynda, following on from Hils' post - I had some passport photos taken at my local photo shop and as such they might have been fractionally bigger than the ones you get from a booth. The Indian Embassy sent me a sheet with do's and don'ts on it and my photos matched the size guide, so I was fine. There is always the possibility that the Indian Embassy in Ireland may have slightly different regulations to the one in the UK?? Anyhow as Hils said, better to be safe than sorry. If JY are processing your visa, they will give you all the details and if you do it yourself the embassy will do likewise, so I'm sure all will be grand!

Enjoy the holidays!

Bob

Hi Bob,

Thanks very much again for your 2nd reply. As JY are processing my visa, hopefully they will advise the correct photo formats! I have to pay the balance for India by 26th Aug which is 2 days before I'm off to Prague/Vienna/Budapest. So I'm hoping to sort the photos out before then as my visa application will be on it's way to JY as soon as I get back, so it's all going to be a bit of a rush!

Best wishes

Lynda
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Post: #42
(05/03/2013, 11:49 AM)BGray Wrote: Hi I'm just back from this fantastic holiday which I enjoyed from start to finish! There were 33 on our tour, of whom 22 went on to Cambodia. I'm very glad I did the add-on as all of us who did really loved Cambodia. The tour of Vietnam was very comprehensive; the weather in Hanoi was unfortunately wet but this didn't stop either the city tour or cyclo ride, both of which were very interesting. Hanoi is a bit on the shabby side, with beautiful parks and some fine buildings. Halong Bay was of course a highlight and we all enjoyed the stay on the junk. Again, the weather wasn't great there - very overcast and hazy, which I gather is pretty normal for Halong unfortunately. Still we we able to admire the views and get some reasonable photos. The trip to one of the caves was worth doing. Word of warning - forget all the photos you've seen of the picturesque wooden junks: they have all been painted white so they can be more easily seen at night, which does take away from their appearance!

When we reached Hue the weather improved enormously and in Hoi An it was glorious; what a wonderful town with a great atmosphere, another holiday highlight. My Son and the Cu Chi tunnels outside Ho Chi Minh City were both worth seeing, as was the War Remnants museum. We spent a lot of time on the water on this tour, very enjoyable seeing the world go by on various rivers; however don't expect the boats to be luxurious, they are functional with a small space at the back for the sun-worshippers and photographers. The journey to Phnom Penh by boat was very enjoyable with lovely scenery. I loved PP, a very scenic city which I would have liked to seen more of. The temples at Siem Reap were great to see and the floating villages on Tonle Sap also very interesting.

The hotels in all were very good, with the one at Can Tho being outstanding. The only exception was the Angkor Paradise which didn't live up to its name! The food was very good throughout, with most meals being seven or nine course tasting menus shared between four people. You usually had a choice of using chopsticks or a fork and typically at each meal there might be one or two spicy dishes, the rest being delicately flavoured. We had excelllent seafood throughout and the food in Cambodia was fantastic; the only let down was the Foreign Correspondents' Club in Phnom Penh which was very poor. Most people had an upset stomach for a day or two, usually sorted out fairly quickly by a dose of immodium! One lady was more unfortunate and had a trip to a clinic, but she had recovered later in the day and was well enough to travel the next morning.

So all in all, an excellent holiday with lots of variety. The group were all friendly and mixed extremely well together. For the first time in five JY holidays I was the youngest (at 42!), but as everyone comments age is a state of mind and I've made some very good friends out of this tour and I would recommend it to anyone who is interested in seeing south-east Asia. The people we encountered were very friendly and welcoming and it was a very well structured and balanced tour - with not too many very early starts!

I hope this review encourages you to book this tour; I am sure everyone on it thoroughly enjoyed themselves.

All the best,

Bob

Hello Bob,

I am new to this website but have been following your reviews and feedback for this holiday which has been fantastic. I am very interested in booking this tour for next year and you may well have already answered my questions. I think my main concern is which airline did you travel with and was it bearable, I think it's the length of time in flight that concerns me ? Any feedback and assurances would be much appreciated as I so much want to book my holiday for early next year. Many thanks Carol
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Post: #43
Hi Carol,

We travelled with Malaysian Airlines, who were brilliant! Comfortable seats with decent legroom and probably the best airline food I've ever had! The stewards were very polite and attentive and regularly went around offering water. I was dreading the flight back, as we flew from Siem Reap in Cambodia to Kuala Lumpur - we then had an eight hour stopover in KL and then a 13 hour flight back to Heathrow, where we went our separate ways. I then had a five hour wait there before flying to Belfast and a three hour drive home - 36 hours travelling in total! On other tours I've been wrecked after much shorter journeys but amazingly I was fine after this marathon journey. The lengthy stopover at KL was grand - some of us booked into an exec lounge for 3 hours, very relaxing and then went for a leisurely meal. I honestly wouldn't let the length of the journey put you off - some of those who were much older than me were also looking fairly fresh in Heathrow as I said goodbye to them!

Any other questions, feel free to ask and I hope you do book and have a brilliant holiday like I did!

Cheers,

Bob
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Post: #44
(14/08/2013, 04:28 PM)BGray Wrote: Hi Carol,

We travelled with Malaysian Airlines, who were brilliant! Comfortable seats with decent legroom and probably the best airline food I've ever had! The stewards were very polite and attentive and regularly went around offering water. I was dreading the flight back, as we flew from Siem Reap in Cambodia to Kuala Lumpur - we then had an eight hour stopover in KL and then a 13 hour flight back to Heathrow, where we went our separate ways. I then had a five hour wait there before flying to Belfast and a three hour drive home - 36 hours travelling in total! On other tours I've been wrecked after much shorter journeys but amazingly I was fine after this marathon journey. The lengthy stopover at KL was grand - some of us booked into an exec lounge for 3 hours, very relaxing and then went for a leisurely meal. I honestly wouldn't let the length of the journey put you off - some of those who were much older than me were also looking fairly fresh in Heathrow as I said goodbye to them!

Any other questions, feel free to ask and I hope you do book and have a brilliant holiday like I did!

Cheers,

Bob

Hi Bob that's very helpful thank you and I think I will now go ahead with the trip. Carol
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Post: #45
Hi Carol, I hope you do - it was a wonderful experience and I hope you book Cambodia as well; the contrast between the two countries was great - Phnom Penh is a wonderful city and the temples at Siem Reap well worth visiting. But don't expect to get the picture postcard photo of Angkor Wat - we didn't get views like that and anyhow there is scaffolding over the front part of it!!

All the best,

Bob
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Post: #46
(20/08/2013, 10:27 AM)BGray Wrote: Hi Carol, I hope you do - it was a wonderful experience and I hope you book Cambodia as well; the contrast between the two countries was great - Phnom Penh is a wonderful city and the temples at Siem Reap well worth visiting. But don't expect to get the picture postcard photo of Angkor Wat - we didn't get views like that and anyhow there is scaffolding over the front part of it!!

All the best,

Bob


Hi Bob,
this trip sounds great, I'm interested. Do you get to see much of the remments of the Vietnam War, like the tunnels, captured tanks etc?
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Post: #47
Hi again PA, for me there was just the right amount of opportunities to learn about the war in Vietnam and the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia. In Ho Chi Minh City, there was an optional excursion to the Cu Chi Tunnels which I think everyone did. It was fascinating - the guide there took us around the complex and showed us various tunnels and traps set by the Viet Cong for the Americans during the war. You could go down some of the tunnels if you wished (they are a very tight fit!) and there were also a number of tanks, planes, bombs etc on view. We also went to the War Remnants museum in HCM City, which was well worth seeing: lots of tanks and planes outside (from the Vietnamese and US sides) and inside lots to look at including an exhibition of the horrific effects of Agent Orange on the Vietnamese. In Cambodia, we had a visit to Section 21 (the genocide museum), a former primary school which was used as a prison. This was a bit harrowing, but fascinating at the same time and we did not stay too long there, so it was sobering but didn't put everyone on a downer, if you get my meaning.

Hope this helps, I really recommend this tour as a very enjoyable and comprehensive introduction to the highlights of both these brilliant countries.

All the best,

Bob
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Post: #48
Hi there have been a few inquiries regarding this tour on the forum recently, so I thought I'd put up another reply to bring it back up near the top of the listing to help some people find out more about this brilliant tour!

Best wishes,

Bob
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Post: #49
(23/09/2014, 01:08 PM)BGray Wrote: Hi there have been a few inquiries regarding this tour on the forum recently, so I thought I'd put up another reply to bring it back up near the top of the listing to help some people find out more about this brilliant tour!

Best wishes,

Bob

Hello Bob
I'm going on this holiday over Chrisrmas and New Year and have paid the final balance today therefore beginning to feel excited.!!! Thank you for your review which was very informative. However I have one quiery - did you pre- book the excecutive lounge in Kuala Lumpar airport ? and if you did was it throuh JY? Friends who were on this trip in March also booked the lounge. Thank you RLJThumbs Up
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Post: #50
Hi I didn't pre-book the lounge - three of us just turned up and paid the entrance fee and that was that! I think it was around $20 for 3 hours - some lounges are by invitation only but this one was open to the public. All the lounges are beside each other so it was easy to find one that was not "private." JY might be able to pre-book it for you, might be worth asking!

Hope you have a great time,

Bob
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