Travel Health Advice for
Vietnam, Cambodia & Laos
These are poor countries, each with its own fascinating history, geography and culture. Common itineraries in Vietnam include Hanoi, Ha Long Bay on a junk boat, the ethnic minorities in the mountainous north around Sapa, the coastal towns of Hue, Hoi An, Da Neng and Nha Trang, Ho Chi Minh, the Mekong Delta floating markets and Cu Chi tunnels. The prime attraction in Cambodia is the ancient overgrown Angkor Temple complex near Siam Reab. Visitors to Laos head to the old Royal capital of Luang Prabang in the north, the spectacular limestone mountains of Vang Vieng , the Mekong river , and 4000 Islands near Pakse in the south.
We often see school groups travelling to these countries combining aid work with a remote trek or cultural experience.
The following information provides some broad and general guidelines about health risks and recommendations for travel to Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos. It should not be taken as a substitute for a personal consultation with one of our travel health doctors, whose advice will be specific for you and your trip and may include some things not mentioned here.
Most Common Health Issues
Observe food and water safety precautions and carry a kit for treatment.
Best avoided by taking precautions to avoid mosquito bites, particularly during the daytime in urban areas.
This mosquito borne parasite occurs deep in forested areas. The need for preventative medication should be discussed with one of our doctors.
Either abstain or pack condoms and use them. Avoid sex workers. See a doctor on return for testing if you have put yourself at risk, and abstain until you are given the all clear.
Be sensible. Avoid motorbikes, especially without a helmet. Don’t swim when intoxicated and take advice from locals and signs. Carry a first aid kit.
As well as being up to date for routine childhood vaccines such as tetanus, measles and hepatitis B, the following vaccines are often recommended – hepatitis A, typhoid, rabies, Japanese encephalitis, and influenza. Decisions regarding which are most appropriate depend on duration and nature of travel, itinerary, age and underlying medical conditions. These and other issues will be discussed during your consultation.