One of the best places to begin backpacking, South East Asia is a dream for freedom travellers.
Travellers are welcomed with open arms, getting between places is cheap, and hospitality is bountiful. Throughout South East Asia customs and culture vary form place to place but and it’s important to make your travel experience the very best possible, by having everything you need for the journey.
Because each country is different, we’ve put together this list of what to pack for your South east Asia trip to ensure you have the most incredible holiday you dreamt of.
Under Water Camera
When thinking about what to pack for your South East Asia trip, packing a camera should be without question. But an under water camera would also get a lot of use! You don’t have to spend a fortune; underwater cameras can be cheap and cheerful. Throughout Thailand especially the ocean is Luke warm, crystal clear, and capturing your day’s activities needn’t be limited to what happens on shore.
Deet Mosquito Spray & Sun Block
Tropical pests can’t be avoided and throughout South East Asia quality mosquito repellant can be limited. When your putting together your list of what to pack for your South East Asia trip be sure to prevent becoming an itchy mess, by remember to buy some in your home country. Hunt down a high deet brand which is specifically for tropical insects; in South East Asia mosquito bites can seem more severe than other countries.
Swimmers, Sarong & Sun Hat
In Thailand the beach culture is very much about spending all day in your swimmers and throwing on a sarong for moving around. Sarongs can be purchased anywhere throughout South East Asia at dime a dozen, but swimmers are a different story. While Thailand islands are liberal, the same can’t be said for all parts of South East Asia and Vietnam especially has a zero tolerance for skimpy beach wear. Either select your beach wear carefully before leaving home or bring bikini plus a one piece to cover all countries policies. A sarong can be a useful double up as cover for shoulders when wandering temples or less touristy streets too.
Books & Cards
Although South East Asia is easy to travel around, it can involve large periods of time sitting in departure lounges or bus stations. A good book can be a savour and valuable commodity at book exchanges dotted around small tourist towns throughout the region.
Slim Line Money Pouch
Stupidly invites curiosity from less trustworthy locals and the way you present your level of wealth should be considered thoughtfully. Leave jewellery and handbags at home and instead bring a slim line money purse that can sit under clothing, close to your body. Kathmandu.co.nz have plenty of options, and with a few safety pins to fasten a pouch to your clothing you can avoid the age old scam of having your straps cut while moving through crowds.
Sturdy, Breathable Footwear
I’ve lost count of how many pairs of Havaianas I’ve de-plugged and leather sandals I’ve tapped together; the moral of the story is to be better prepared. Like many travellers I can’t quite get my head around buying a pair of Tevas like an old person, but practically they would tick every box. In South East Asia you want open footwear to cater for the heat, yet something comfortable enough for endless walking on de-conditioned roads and footpaths. Thongs, flip flops, or jandels are never the best option.