What to Wear in Egypt Plus Printable Packing List
If you are planning a trip to Egypt, deciding on what to wear has certainly crossed your mind. If you didn’t already know, Egypt is predominantly a Muslim Country, which means dressing conservatively is a part of the local culture. To be respectful, while taking the hot weather into account, I did a ton of research on what to wear in Egypt.
After experiencing Egypt for myself and asking my local guides, I have put together everything you need to know about what to wear in Egypt!
I will share my Egypt outfits and ideas along with a full Egypt packing list, and a printable checklist towards the bottom!
Related: Egypt Travel Tips to know before you go!
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TABLE OF CONTENTS
- What to Wear in Egypt Plus Printable Packing List
- The Weather in Egypt
- What to Wear in Egypt for Women
- What Not to Wear in Egypt for Women
- What to Wear in Egypt for Men
- Egypt Packing List
- Day Bag
- What to Wear in Egypt Packing List Wrap-up
The Weather in Egypt
Before jumping right into what to wear in Egypt, I want to discuss the weather briefly, so the outfits below make sense. Located in Northern Africa in the Sahara Desert, you can imagine it gets quite hot in Egypt.
In fact, it is generally advised not to visit Egypt in the summer months as temperatures can reach over 100 degrees Fahrenheit.
Springtime often results in Sandstorms with temperatures in the high 90’s which leaves the fall and winter time. This is the high season in Egypt because the weather is more comfortable.
While it is still hot during the winter, it can be chilly in the mornings and afternoons. You can expect some places in Egypt to go down to 50 degrees Fahrenheit at night or in the early morning.
What to Wear in Egypt for Women
Starting off with what to wear in Egypt for women, since 9 times out of 10, it’s the women looking up these tips! So my fellow female travelers, wondering what to wear in Egypt that won’t get you unwanted stares?
Being that Egypt is a conservative country, covering your belly, shoulders, knees, and chest will reduce the number of unwanted stares.
These Egypt outfits will also be more respectful of the culture. Most local Egyptian women will be seen either wearing a hijab (cover hair and chest) or niqabs (face veil).
During my trip to Egypt, I saw tons of tourists wearing shorts, crop tops, and other revealing clothing. I asked our local Egyptian guide about it, and he said it is okay for tourists to wear what they’d like.
There is no pressure to dress like the local women of Egypt, however, it can lead to unwanted attention from men if you choose to wear very reviling clothing.
With that being said, here are my recommendations for what to pack in Egypt.
I found Maxi dresses to be one of the best things to wear in Egypt. They are lightweight, can be breezy for hot days, and can cover your knees, chest, and shoulders, all while still being cute. I know, that was a mouthful!
Since visiting Egypt is usually full of walking through temples, a maxi dress won’t stop you from doing any activities.
That is unless you plan on riding a camel, which I would recommend against. This is because camels and horses are generally not treated very well.
Midi Dresses or even long skirts also work well to wear in Egypt if they cover your knees. They may also be better for hotter days in Egypt.
Another great addition to your Egypt packing list will be loose-fitting pants. Think linen or paper bag trousers which are usually made of breathable fabrics.
This can be a very cute Egypt outfit option with a nice top. This style of pants will be ideal for not making you feel too hot in the Egyptian sun.
Even Safari-like pants or loose-fitting overalls can be a fun thing to wear in Egypt. I also wore a pair of very light-weight material skinny jeans on one of the cooler days we were in Egypt (low 70’s).
Light Shirts and Blouses
The next thing to add to your Egypt packing list is light T-shirts that cover your shoulders and belly. Because it gets hot in Egypt, think of light colors you won’t sweat through.
I would suggest avoiding dark colors like black that attract the sun. Light fabrics are always a good option in Egypt.
On the flip side, if you are visiting Egypt in the winter months, having a couple of long-sleeved shirts is also a good idea, since it can get chilly when the sun goes down. I went light on long-sleeved shirts and had to wear my fleece every morning and night.
While I would recommend against tank tops, you can wear them. If you go this route, I would just make sure to have a jacket or scarf with you for cover-up bare shoulders when needed.
Shawls and Scarfs
Packing a shawl or scarf will come in handy in Egypt, especially if you want to wear something that shows some of your back or shoulders.
If you plan on going inside any religious sites, I would highly recommend having your shoulders covered.
Having a light scarf can also come in handy if you hit a sandstorm and you want to cover your face.
Or the driver decides to drive with the windows open on what seems like the dustiest road you have ever been on—speaking from experience!
Additionally, I would also suggest leaving a little room in your bag if you want to bring back a famous desert checkered scarf.
Beach and Pool Clothing
Did you know Egypt is known for having beautiful beaches and beach resorts?
Some of the most popular beach destinations in Egypt are Sharm El Sheikh and Hurghada, which are located right on the Red Sea. And even if you are not hitting up the beach, many resorts in Egypt have pools.
Or even if you are going on a Nile River cruise, there is usually sun chairs or even a pool on the deck.
Therefore, bringing at least one bathing suit should be on your Egypt packing list, along with a cover-up.
Shoes to Wear in Egypt for Women
You will be doing a lot of walking during your Egypt vacation, so comfortable shoes are necessary. I wore my Birkenstock sandals almost our entire trip, which I can highly recommend.
When it was cold in the morning and night, I wore my converse. These were the only two pairs of shoes I needed.
Did I mention I packed 10 days’ worth of clothes in a carry-on and backpack? Hashtag team carry-on!
I would leave fancy shoes like high heels behind since Egypt is sandy and dusty with uneven ground. One pair of sturdy sandals and one pair of closed-toe shoes should do it.
If you are also heading to the beach, you may want to add a pair of flip-flops to your packing list as well.
Another great accessory to pack for Egypt is a sun hat, especially if you are heading toward the beach. Egypt also doesn’t have much shade so having a hat is a good idea.
Plus, it gives all the Egyptian vibes for your photos.
If you forget your hat, you will find tons of street vendors selling straw hats as well, so don’t worry. Just make sure you bargain for a good price.
Lastly, I would recommend packing a light jacket, fleece, or sweater if you are visiting during the cooler months.
In the mornings and at night, I wore my fleece, which kept me warm until it got hotter mid-day.
For reference, we visited Egypt at the end of November, which felt like the perfect time in terms of weather and crowds.
What Not to Wear in Egypt for Women
Just as a reminder, here is what I would not recommend wearing in Egypt – especially if you are a woman traveling solo, or without a guide.
The idea is not to show too much skin unless you are at the beach. Going topless at the beach is also discouraged.
I would NOT recommend:
- tank tops (the beach is ok)
- Belly shirts
- Low-cut tops that show a lot of cleavage
- Bodycon dresses (tight dresses)
- Backless shirts or dresses
- Expensive or flashy designer bags, accessories, or jewelry
What to Wear in Egypt for Men
Knowing what to wear in Egypt for men is much easier than for women. You will see many Egyptian men wearing thobes (looks like a shirt that goes down to your ankles) and head coverings.
In cities like Cairo, it is more likely to see men in western-style dress, however, as you go further into Upper Egypt, you will find men dressed in more traditional style Egyptian clothing.
Again, it is not expected for tourists to be dressed in traditional clothing.
You will notice, however, street vendors will really try to sell it to you, almost as a keep-sake.
So to sum it all up, men can dress how they normally would at home, with some exceptions.
Light-colored cotton shirts will be the best way to go for men when packing for Egypt. Thin linen shirts, casual short sleeve button-up shirts, and some long sleeve shirts will be a nice addition to your Egypt packing list.
My husband packed a handful of light-colored Polo tee shirts. Sleeveless shirts are not recommended. Here are some shirt options to add to your packing list.
Next, add a couple of long pants, especially if you are traveling during the winter. This can be jeans, but chinos may be better, given the heat.
Even during the summer, having long pants will help aid you from getting all bit up by bugs.
Here are some pants options to pack for Egypt here.
Oh, and don’t forget your belt!
When I say long shorts, this means shorts that will cover your knees, or be close to them. Think casual shorts you would normally wear for the summer.
If your style is more about being comfortable, my husband wore sweatpant shorts. They are his favorite. However, if you are more stylish, look into natural color linen shorts.
Shoes to Wear in Egypt
For men, you should pack at least one pair of sneakers and one pair of sandals. My husband wore his sneakers the whole trip except by the pool.
Bring sandals or slides if you plan on visiting any beach resorts, or hanging out by your hotel’s pool.
Speaking of the beach, don’t forget to pack a pair or two of swimming trunks with you! I wouldn’t go the speedo route here. Just regular-length swim trunks.
Sweater or Fleece
Lastly, I would recommend a warm fleece or a couple of sweaters during the winter months in Egypt. The temperatures can go down to 50 degrees Fahrenheit at night. My husband only brought one hoodie, and he wished he had brought more or a zip jacket.
Egypt Packing List
Now that we have covered what to wear in Egypt for both women and men, let’s cover the items you should also pack when visiting Egypt.
This includes items that both men and women should pack, along with electronics, etc.
Sunglasses are a must in Egypt! I left my sunglasses in the car at the Step Pyramid, and I could barely keep my eyes open because it was so bright. So don’t leave those sunnies behind!
Speaking of sunglasses, you will also want sunscreen! No matter what time of year you are planning on visiting Egypt, you will want sun protection.
I also use Bye Bye Foundation for sunscreen on my face that seconds as makeup, and I find it works as well as my normal sunscreen.
For the number of photos I know you will be taking, having a power bank phone charger will be a necessity if you don’t want your phone dying. We had to use it every single day!
From the Valley of the Kings to the Abu Simbel temple, trust me, you want a fully charged cellphone!
Travel Adaptor Converter
Another item you won’t want to forget to pack for Egypt is a travel converter. We noticed from hotel to hotel, they used different types of outlets.
Our Travel Adaptor can accommodate all outlet types, and we have had it for almost 5 years. In Egypt, the two outlet types we came across were types C and F. You will definitely want to make sure you bring one with you!
This is really a travel essential you should never go without!
I would also highly suggest bringing wet wipes for your trip to Egypt. Toilet paper is not customary.
They will give it to you when you pay to use the restroom, however, if you have your own wet wipes, you will be far better off.
It is also very dusty and sandy in Egypt, so having wet wipes for your hands, feet, or face will be nice to have.
I found a lot of the restrooms lacked soap, so I would also recommend bringing your own hand sanitizer with you, just in case.
Quick Dry Towel
I never travel without my quick-dry towels. I use them instead of the hotels, but they also really come in handy for beach destinations.
They don’t collect sand, are very lightweight, and act like a squeegee when you use them to dry off.
If you are NOT heading to any of the beach resorts, then you can maybe skip bringing a GoPro. However, if you ARE heading to the beach, I would highly recommend it. This is because Egypt is known to have some incredible coral and tropical fish.
Dry Bag and Waterproof Phone Case
If you are not going to the beach, you can skip this one. If you are, I always recommend bringing a dry bag to keep your valuables in.
Boat trips are very popular in Egypt to go Island hopping, and even snorkeling. Having a waterproof phone case is also a necessity in my eyes anytime I am near salt water.
Related: If you are heading to the beach in Egypt, check out my Beach Vacation Packing List.
Since we have a lot of camera gear, we always have a day bag. This holds our essentials, especially since I almost never have pockets.
Egypt Toiletries to Pack
Now that we have covered what to wear in Egypt and the main items to pack, let’s wrap it up with a list of toiletries to pack.
- Packing cubes – the set I have. They can be good for organizing clothing or separating dirty clothes.
- Small Crossbody Bag for women
- Liquid Travel Bottles – I always add electric tape around the cap and seal for extra leak protection.
- Airtags in case your luggage gets lost.
- Curling iron
- Hair ties
What to Wear in Egypt Packing List Wrap-up
This concludes everything you need to know about what to wear and pack while visiting Egypt!
I hope this Egypt packing guide helps you get a better idea on what to wear, and that you have an incredible vacation!
Egypt Guides: (More coming)
Have any questions about what to wear in Egypt or feel I missed something? Let me know in the comments below!