Indonesia & Cambodia with Asia Connect

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My wife and I took a 3-week vacation in Indonesia and Cambodia, Jan. 11-Feb. 2, ’06. At a total price of $8,085 out of Birmingham, Alabama, all arrangements were made through Asia Connect Tours (10 Morning Watch Rd., Wayne, NJ 07470; 800/803-3656, www.asiaconnecttours.com).

Students at Prambanan on Java surround I.F. Harder and interview him about America.

The airlines used (Cathay Pacific, Singapore Airlines, Silk Air and Garuda Airlines) provided very good service. All their flights were on time, and none of our luggage was lost or damaged.

Upon our arrival in Hong Kong from Bangkok, we had only one hour to move from one gate to the next in that very large airport, but David Peng from Asia Connect had arranged for Cathay Pacific personnel to assist us and we made it, as did our luggage.

Prior to our booking the trip, David e-mailed us the U.S. government travel advisories on travel to Indonesia. We booked anyhow and did not regret it. Wherever we went we found security personnel, and persons entering each hotel were carefully checked. Even cars were checked, far outside the hotel area.

In Indonesia, our guides were provided through Pacto (www.pactoltd.com) and they were excellent — extremely well qualified.

Our arrangements included one sightseeing tour in Bali, and we purchased several more from Pacto while there. The additional tours were very reasonable, about $12 an hour, including a guide and driver with car. (We also booked an additional tour in Siem Reap, Cambodia, at about the same price.)

Our main interests on this trip were the temples of Bali, Java and Angkor Wat. All over Java, hundreds of schoolchildren were visiting the temples. Once the children found out we were Americans, we were swarmed over and teachers begged us to give interviews. All of the students were well disciplined and polite, asking questions about us and our country and wanting their pictures taken with us.

From Java we traveled to Singapore, the cleanest city in Asia. We visited the escellent new museum for Asian art and culture and the famous zoo, probably the best in the world.

Our final stop was Siem Reap to see the famous temples of Angkor Wat. We were there six years earlier and noticed very few international tourists; this time, the area was flooded with crowds from all over the world. New hotels are everywhere.

While traffic around the temple areas was unbelievable, with many bicycles, motorcycles, dogs and donkey carts, we found the people to be respectful to each other.

I.F. HARDER

Ashville, AL

Please login or subscribe to ITN to read the entire post.

My wife and I took a 3-week vacation in Indonesia and Cambodia, Jan. 11-Feb. 2, ’06. At a total price of $8,085 out of Birmingham, Alabama, all arrangements were made through Asia Connect Tours (10 Morning Watch Rd., Wayne, NJ 07470; 800/803-3656, www.asiaconnecttours.com).

Students at Prambanan on Java surround I.F. Harder and interview him about America.

The airlines used (Cathay Pacific, Singapore Airlines, Silk Air and Garuda Airlines) provided very good service. All their flights were on time, and none of our luggage was lost or damaged.

Upon our arrival in Hong Kong from Bangkok, we had only one hour to move from one gate to the next in that very large airport, but David Peng from Asia Connect had arranged for Cathay Pacific personnel to assist us and we made it, as did our luggage.

Prior to our booking the trip, David e-mailed us the U.S. government travel advisories on travel to Indonesia. We booked anyhow and did not regret it. Wherever we went we found security personnel, and persons entering each hotel were carefully checked. Even cars were checked, far outside the hotel area.

In Indonesia, our guides were provided through Pacto (www.pactoltd.com) and they were excellent — extremely well qualified.

Our arrangements included one sightseeing tour in Bali, and we purchased several more from Pacto while there. The additional tours were very reasonable, about $12 an hour, including a guide and driver with car. (We also booked an additional tour in Siem Reap, Cambodia, at about the same price.)

Our main interests on this trip were the temples of Bali, Java and Angkor Wat. All over Java, hundreds of schoolchildren were visiting the temples. Once the children found out we were Americans, we were swarmed over and teachers begged us to give interviews. All of the students were well disciplined and polite, asking questions about us and our country and wanting their pictures taken with us.

From Java we traveled to Singapore, the cleanest city in Asia. We visited the escellent new museum for Asian art and culture and the famous zoo, probably the best in the world.

Our final stop was Siem Reap to see the famous temples of Angkor Wat. We were there six years earlier and noticed very few international tourists; this time, the area was flooded with crowds from all over the world. New hotels are everywhere.

While traffic around the temple areas was unbelievable, with many bicycles, motorcycles, dogs and donkey carts, we found the people to be respectful to each other.

I.F. HARDER

Ashville, AL