1. Yellow Fever Vaccination Certification.
Although Yellow Fever immunization is only required for visitors coming from endemic zones, it’s recommended that all travelers to Vietnam receive the vaccine. Requirements for this vaccination often change, and can cause officials to deny entry to unprepared travelers.
2. Sarongs or Shawls.
Vietnamese dress is modest and conservative, and tourists to the country are encouraged to dress similarly. If you do decide to bring items that leave your shoulders exposed, remember to also bring a sarong or a shawl to cover them if you plan on visiting temples or pagodas.
3. Ear Plugs and Sleeping Mask.
Travel by train is quite common when exploring different regions of Vietnam, but can be loud and un-promoting of quality sleep. If late-night or overnight train travel is on your itinerary for Vietnam, be sure to pack ear plugs and a sleeping mask.
4. Durable Walking Shoes.
Whether you’re planning on climbing the Marble Mountains or exploring the caves of Ha Long Bay, you’ll want durable hiking or walking shoes in your suitcase. Even if neither of those things are on your current itinerary, a pair of durable shoes may just be the deciding factor between taking advantage of a last-minute day trip and having to sit this one out.
5. Layers, Layers, Layers.
Not only do long layers help protect from bug and mosquito bites, they’ll also keep you warm during the evenings in Vietnam when temperatures tend to dip. Make sure a rain jacket is included on your list of layers, as showers (and even monsoons during the winter season) are not uncommon.
6. An Appetite!
Vietnamese cuisine is known for its seasonal balance, fresh ingredients, and overall health promotion. Complement your time in Vietnam’s towns and villages with delicious meals that encompass the healthful essence of the surrounding culture.