An excellent journey which exceeded my expectations. As a newcomer to organised tours I was fearful of being herded around en masse but this seldom happened and there was plenty of free time for individual adventures. ( The night life in some of the cities is amazing).
- What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?
Inspirational? Probably the war museum in HCMC.
Enjoyable? Tubing down the river in Vang Vieng, stopping at bars for beer etc. The slow boat down the Mekong to Luang Prabang, wandering the streets looking for the evening's resteraunt, bargaining with the amazing Cambodian street kids...... and on and on.
- What did you think of your group leader?
Thailand -Kai was a little dizzy, good fun, ok spoken English.
Laos - Kam was serious and knowledgable about religion and places of worship - an ex monk and a good laugh. Well organised and helpful at the border crossing from Thailand. Very good English
Vietnam - Huey liked a laugh and joined in the fun. He was knowledgable and enthusiastic about the country.
cambodia - Dorn was great : very laid back , there if you needed him , otherwise unobtrusive.
- Do you have any advice for potential travellers?
Take US dollars in cash as your main funding source. Use ATM's as a back up but I found some issues in using these. In Cambodia and Thailand each transaction costs $5 in many machines in addition to whatever your own bank charges. In Laos and Vietnam the ATMs are free to use.
Consider taking the land only option and organising your own direct flights to and from Bangkok. The Exodus flight was via Kuala Lumpur and involved an 8 hour wait there on the return leg.
I'd advise paying the single room supplement if you can possibly afford it.
Don't worry too much about the long journeys. There were regular breaks and only gruelling section between Vang Vieng and Vientienne lasted just a couple of hours. Do expect some early starts though.
- Is there anything else you would like to add?
The standard of hotels was higher than I expected. The group cohered well and looked out for each other.
It was an excellent adventure. Highly recommended though only for those without any mobility problems.