Top 11 things to pack for a Mekong river cruise

Top 11 Things to Pack for a Mekong River Cruise

If it’s your first time cruising through South East Asia, then there are a number of items you should remember to pack. With the weather in Vietnam and Cambodia generally hot and humid, this will influence the type of clothes you wish to bring.

Here are our top 11 recommendations on what to pack for your upcoming Mekong river cruise.

1. Sunscreen, hat and sunnies

As the weather can get hot and the sun is strong, it’s important to wear high factor sunscreen and a hat and good sunglasses to protect yourself and reduce direct sun exposure. 

2. Mosquito repellent

With hot and humid weather also comes mosquitoes and bugs, especially when in lush country areas or during evenings if you’re sat outside. Be sure to pack mosquito repellent with Deet to protect yourself from insect bites or wear long sleeved cotton shirts or blouses.

3. Comfortable walking shoes

As the ground can be uneven, comfortable walking shoes with good tread are a must, especially for walking tours, and getting on and off the ship. You should also consider bringing shoes that are easy to slip on and off, particularly when visiting temples.

4. Clothing

For a Mekong river cruise, it’s best to pack lightweight and loose fitting clothing. We recommend wearing natural fabrics such as cotton, silk and linen which will keep you cool and are easy to wash and quick drying. It is important to dress respectively when visiting temples and both men and women should wear clothing that covers the shoulders and knees. A light shawl will also come in handy for such occasions and will protect you from the sun. In the evenings, lightweight smart casual attire is suitable.

Due to the climate in South East Asia and the time of year you travel, there can be short, heavy rain showers, so a light raincoat or umbrella is always handy to carry.

Don’t forget to pack your swimwear to enjoy the luxurious pool on board Emerald Harmony after a day of exploration. You will also find guest self-service laundry facilities on board your ship so you can limit the amount of clothes you wish to bring, especially if you are on one of our longer Mekong tours.

5. Camera, spare battery, memory card

To capture those all-important photo moments, don’t forget to bring your camera, spare batteries and memory cards. After your cruise, you can also submit your photos to as we love sharing our guest’s favourite photos and memories.

6. Medication

If you are on any medication, be sure you see your doctor beforehand to ensure you have enough to cover your trip. You should also consult your doctor to see if any prescriptions or vaccinations are required for the areas you intend to visit.

7. Passport and visa plus copies

Don’t forget to bring your important travel documents with you including your passport, visa and travel insurance. We recommend you also bring photocopies which are kept separately. If you need any help with your visa, your local travel agent will be able to assist.

8. Universal adaptor

As the plug sockets are different in Vietnam and Cambodia, a universal adaptor plug will be required to charge your electronic devices including mobile devices. 

9. Local currency 

For souvenirs or any extras you may wish to buy during your Mekong river cruise, it’s always handy to carry some local currency and also US Dollars in pristine condition. In Vietnam, the local currency is Vietnamese Dong and Cambodia has Cambodian Riel.

10. Backpack 

When you book a Mekong River Cruise with Evergreen and Emerald Waterways, we will provide you with a complimentary backpack before departure which you can use as hand luggage and for your shore excursions. 

11. Sense of fun, humour and adventure

Most importantly, bring your sense of fun, adventure and humour. If this is your first time in Vietnam or Cambodia then we recommend opening yourself up and immersing yourself in the culture. Get to know the locals, sample the region’s food and try new things to get the most out of your Mekong river cruise.

Vietnam, Cambodia & Mekong River Cruising 2021/2022 Brochure