Planning 3 Weeks in SE Asia: Hong Kong, Vietnam, Laos, Bangkok, Thailand

Vietnam Hong Kong Laos Bangkok Planning Stories Travel Maps | 5 mins read |

Planning 3 Weeks in SE Asia: Hong Kong, Vietnam, Laos, Bangkok, Thailand
We're leaving for another 3-week trip to SE Asia after Christmas. We plan to see Hong Kong, Vietnam, Laos and Bangkok. Here are our planning notes about things we want to see and planned experiences.

We don’t plan everything in detail but try to leave plenty of time for unplanned experiences. However, when traveling in a short timeframe to many destinations, we try to plan in high detail as much as possible. We don’t want to miss the things that are high on our bucket list, and we want to be sure we have enough time to do them. We plan to travel to South East Asia for three weeks at the end of this year. We’ll stay in Hong Kong, then Vietnam, Laos, and at the end for three days in Bangkok.

Hong Kong 🇭🇰

Hong Kong Travel Map
Hong Kong Travel Map

Day 1

We arrive at 5PM in the afternoon. We’ll take the train/taxi from the airport to the hotel where we’ll stay for the next 5 nights. I expect to be jet lagged, so we’ll just check in at the hotel and try to get some sleep to sync with the local time.

Day 2

  • Mong Kok markets: best reached by the Hong Kong MTR subway system, stations Yau Ma Tei, Mong Kok, and Prince Edward on the Tsuen Wan (red) line. The markets are open every day, starting around noon and closing in the late evening (times vary).
  • Tsim Sha Tsui Promenade: There are shops, restaurants, and, at night, a large outdoor market serving traditional Cantonese food alongside knockoffs and souvenirs. We could go either in the morning or in the evening.
  • The Star Ferry: Cross to Hong Kong Island and have a fantastic view of the city skyline for only 5 HKD. Riding the ferry is a fun thing to do even if you aren’t using it for transportation! Link to ferry.

Day 3 - Victoria peak

We can take tram or trails, either Lung Fu Shan or Old Peak Road.

  • Lung Fu Shan: hike up and do the circular walk - only circular 3.5km: All Trails
  • Check out a few other viewing points, in total around 6km with 480 elevation gain: AllTrails hike link. There is a loop with many views - if we start to the left on Harlech Road, there is more vegetation, less views. On the other side there are more skyline views.
  • TIP: go in the second part of the day for golden hour, and night fall for night view of the city.
  • Take the tram down
  • Take a Night Bus Tour in Hong Kong island

Day 4

Day trip to Macau with public transportation.

Day 5 (Optional)

  • Dragon’s Back a.k.a. Tai Long Wan: hike dragon’s back from Shek O to Big Wave Bay or the other way AllTrails, NatGeo Map
  • New Territories:
    • Ping Shan Heritage Trail
    • Lung Yeuk Tau Heritage Trail
    • Hong Kong Heritage Museum
    • Che Kung Temple
  • Check tours on GetYourGuide: book a tour and explore areas of Hong Kong that are not so easy to reach or book a travel experience. Some interesting tours are food tour and boat tours.

Vietnam 🇻🇳

Vietnam Travel Map
Vietnam Travel Map

Day 1

Arrival in Hoi An & exploring the city by foot. We’ll stay in Hoi An for 2 nights.

Day 2

  • Hoi An: explore the city by bike

Day 3

  • Hoi An to Hue: we already booked a tour on GetYourGuide to take us from Hoi An to Hue. On the way, we will go via Hai Van Pass, The Marble Mountains, The Golden Bridge, Lang Co beach and Lap An. The total day trip takes 10 hours.
  • We’ll stay in Hue for 2 nights.

Day 4

  • Explore the temple, citadel, city in Hue.
  • Foods to try:
    • banh khoai (Hue savoury pancakes)
    • banh bot loc boc tom thit (thin rice paper filled with meat and shrimp)

Day 5

  • Flight from Hue to Hanoi at 10AM.
  • We’ll stay in Hanoi for 2 nights.

Day 6

  • Explore Hanoi

Day 7, Day 8, Day 9

  • Take a 3 days cruise from Hanoi to Ninh Binh - Ha Long Bay - Lan Ha Bay.
  • We already booked a tour on GetYourGuide on a cruise that will take us to all these places. It also includes kayaking - link to booked cruise on GetYourGuide.
  • Fly to Laos in the evening at 7PM

Laos 🇱🇦

Luang Prabang, Laos Travel Map
Luang Prabang, Laos Travel Map

Day 1

We arrive in the evening, so we’ll just check in at the hotel and go to sleep.

Day 2

  • Monk ceremony at 5AM
    • Morning markets in the center
    • Go for breakfast
    • Hike to the hill
    • Walk town & temples

Day 3

Day 4 (Optional)

We don’t know yet if we will have enough time becuase we have to fly to Bangkok. What would be awesome is to do a half day tour to Pak Ou Caves and Kuang Si Waterfall. I already checked and there are some great tours that we can book on GetYourGuide.

Bangkok 🇹🇭

We’ve already been in Bangkok, Thailand before but we missed a few things. We still have to do some planing on the things that we missed. We’ll stay in Bangkok for 2 nights, but we will have 3 days to explore it because we arrive early in the morning and our flight back home is at 11PM. Last time, we had some amazing experiences in Bangkok, especially the coconut farm tour. We should check on GetYourGuide for Bangkok if there are any new experiences that we can book.

We will stay near Lumphini park this time. It is a central location, but a bit farther away from the river, where we stayed last time. We’ll have to take the metro to get to the river, but it’s not a big deal.

Bangkok, Thailand Travel Map
Bangkok, Thailand Travel Map
Travelfoss People

Writing free, independent and personal travel content since 2021. If you appreciate what we do, then you can return the favor by using the affiliate links below with no cost for you.