Imagine that you are presented with the trip of a lifetime to visit the ancient cities of Cairo and Luxor in Egypt. What do you pack in your luggage to wear during your travels? One thing is certain. During any season — Egypt is definitely hot.
If you are considering packing skimpy clothing that you would comfortably wear in South Florida — pause for a second. Exposing legs, shoulders, or arms to the sun does not mean that an individual’s body will feel any cooler. In fact, modest clothing that covers these areas has the benefit of protecting the skin from the rays of the sun. Typically, inhabitants of countries in northern Africa wear conservative clothing that is made from natural materials like loose silk, cotton or linen.
When traveling to Egypt or anywhere outside of one’s own domain, it is both wise and respectful to maintain a certain level of awareness regarding the local culture in the country she is visiting. Check out our tips for women on how to dress with style and elegance during a trip to Egypt.
Cover up cleavage. Respect local customs, by not wearing apparel that is tight, transparent or revealing.
Leave the tank tops and shorts at home. Unless you plan on sleeping in them or using them to lounge around your hotel room, it is probably a good idea to leave all tank tops and shorts in the United States. An exception to this rule is if you plan on visiting a coastal resort town like Hurghada, where you may see some tourists wearing shorts. Generally speaking, when a woman is visiting Egypt, it is best to not wear sleeveless shirts and shorts – period.
Avoid wearing t-shirts with logos. Years ago, when traveling in Tulum, Mexico I saw a person wearing a random t-shirt that said “I See Dumb People.” Offensive in one’s own country? Yes — definitely not a suitable fashion statement to make in a foreign country. As a general rule of thumb in Egypt, women should opt for relaxed fitting smart casual attire like tunics, long skirts, dresses and trousers.
Wear comfortable shoes that do not expose the skin to debris. If you plan on touring the magnificent ancient sites in Egypt, the right footwear is essential to your comfort level. Pack sandals or high heels for cruises or to wear in a hotel, but avoid wearing them in town or during tours. Aside from coarse sand, a tourist will also encounter trash and dirt along the sidewalks in Cairo. The presence of these things is not a big deal — unless a visitor is wearing poorly chosen footwear.
Pack apparel that you can layer. Throughout the months of winter, the days are warm and the evenings may be cool so pack apparel that can be layered i.e. sweaters and wraps.
Bring a bathing suit. If you want to go swimming while on a Nile River cruise or during a visit to coastal resort destination, pack a swim suit and a lengthy cover-up. Many of the luxury hotels in Cairo and Luxor also have swimming pools, but remember that conservative attire needs to be worn over the suit in common areas.
Tip – As a female tourist, during the course of a trip, pashminas and wraps will come in handy in air conditioned areas like planes, trains, cruise ships and hotels. These accessories are also ideal for sprucing up the aesthetic appeal of an outfit, by giving it an entirely different look.