Travel Tips

What Should Indian Men and Women Wear While Travelling in India?

What Should Indian Men and Women Wear While Travelling in India?
Last Updated: July 3, 2018

The tragedy is the rich old Indian culture that is still followed by most of the Indian families. Indian women are at times so particular about fashion, especially when it comes to events like a family gathering, birthday party, marriage and night out in any night club. Ah! When festivals like Ganesh Chaturthi, Durga Puja, Diwali, Holi, Rakshabandhan, Baisakhi and Teej knocks the door, you will see most of them are in traditional wears. But when it comes to travelling… I wonder where the travel ethic goes.


My point is when a woman can wear shorts or any western outfit in front of a crowd of hippies in a night club and the same woman wearing a traditional saree during any festival then why is she ashamed to be in a beach outfit when in Goa? The age old Indian culture now comes. ‘Oh! I’m an Indian, I can’t be in two piece at a beach in front of public’. Again I wonder… aren’t the international women travellers concerned about their culture? Well, either the Indian women are embarrassed? Or it is just because of India is a male dominating country and some crazy nuts can’t control their bubbles.


Guys! Don’t laugh. Now it’s your turn. How many of you follow to wear traditional outfits during any festive occasion? And how many of you are in a beach outfit when in Goa? But when time comes you won’t miss the fun to check out some hot legless chicks basking at the beach. You are then flooded with fantasies that pops out later in a gossip. I have seen Indian men in pajamas, lungis and dhotis when they are at the beach and staring at another Indian guy who is actually in his beach outfit. GAWD! Is that they are worried about some nonsense breaching the Indian culture OR is it that few Indian men are narrow minded?


This could be an endless debate as travel is not a culture but most of us bring our culture while travelling. On the other hand, it is also true that we should wear in what we are comfortable and can smartly carry in front of public. The attitude for a woman should be… “Who cares about the public when I’m comfortable in bikini at a beach resort”. For Indian men who are swelling with bubbles and at the same time talking about Indian culture… I would like to recommend then do not join the Baywatch. It’s the mindset of some people that has kept Indian women away from being broad-minded. Although Indian women have also some other constraints like family, friends and colleagues… they are sometime pessimists when travelling in a group.


The article here is all about ‘what should Indian men and women wear while travelling in India’, so let’s focus on it and check out what to wear…

… when going for trekking and hiking in the Indian Himalayan region


Even onions have layers and you should too while trekking in the Indian Himalayan region. The weather in the mountains is uncertain. Just because it is freezing in the morning, doesn’t mean it will stay that way. If you are dressed up in layers then it will be easy for you to adjust with any weather condition. At the same time there is nothing worse than cold feet, hence find a good pair of shoes and socks. Whatever… such adventure activities are not meant to be fashionable BUT you should be smart enough with such proper dressing sense. So don’t forget to wear a water proof out layer.

… when going for Sky diving in Mysore, Dhana, Deesa, Pondicherry OR Aamby Valley


Again it is not a fashion contest that you should be worried comparing what your friends are wearing. Loose fitting clothes and sneakers OR soft-soled shoes are highly recommended as it makes everyone comfortable. Both men and women should be in shorts and T-shirts in the summer season and in jeans and pullover in the winter season. Women should avoid wearing skirts, salwar suits and dresses. The authority will provide jumpsuits that will cover your entire outfit, helmets and goggles. Do not carry any sort of jewelry and accessories like watches are to be deposited to the authority.

… when going for paragliding in Solang Valley


For paragliding in Solang Valley, which is one of the best adventure sports in India, you need to be in right clothing and footwear. Sneakers OR soft-soled shoes, good pair of socks and layers of warm shirts mixed with a windproof on top are much better than just one or two thick heavy garments. If you have some waterproof jacket or a one-piece ski suit, it is so much the better incase you are caught out by a rain shower.

… when going for skiing in Auli or Gulmarg


Winter in the Indian Himalayan region is always freezing and you have picked one such winter sport that will sprain your body parts at every turn and slide. The ski slopes look energetic and lively when you watch skiers gliding down from a height BUT it becomes a daring venture when you are on the crampon. So you need to make sure what you are wearing when going for skiing in Auli or Gulmarg. Don’t worry you can hire, ski boots, waterproof jackets and pants but you should be in woolen socks, thermal underwear and over it a fleece to keep warm. Avoid wearing cotton clothes.

… when going for scuba diving and snorkeling in Andaman OR Lakshadweep


The underwater world has always fascinated several tourists from all over the world BUT only few could enjoy the colourful world of corals and aquatic lives. Just because you were not in your board shorts, swimsuit, briefs, neoprene vests-shorts-pants OR dive skin. But don’t forget that for scuba diving and snorkeling even if you are not carrying any of the above YOU CAN STILL GO FOR IT. Why wear anything at all when you will be provided with a wetsuit!!!

… when going for parasailing in Goa


Now it becomes bit challenging for Indian women as some feel uncomfortable in beach attire in front of public. Still you can be in neoprene vests-shorts-pants ELSE be in bathing suit (only if you are comfortable). Avoid wearing skirts and salwar suits. Men can be in board shorts OR neoprene vests-shorts-pants. Avoid wearing jeans and cotton clothes. Any kind of shoes are not allowed SO kick the shoes off at the shore.

… when on a beach vacation


Here comes the debate again. What should Indian women wear at the beach? Let me scroll down a list now. Firstly, leave the heels, boots and socks at home and be in happy feet strolling over the soft sand. Secondly, avoid leather garments as you will sweat like nobody’s business. Thirdly, instead of celebrity stylish wraparounds be in sarongs and flowy wraparounds so that you can kick the soccer ball without ripping the outfit. Fourthly, the beach is not gonna accept gobs of mascara… so don’t waste your time on it. Fifthly, avoid wearing black as it is one of the unbeachiest colours. Sixthly, it is true that goggles make you glamorous but beware of the raccoon tan lines. So avoid wearing goggles. So there you go my pretty Indian ladies… avoid sarees and salwar suits and jump over to sarongs and flowy wraparounds. GOSH! That’s so easy and trendy if you are not comfortable with swimsuits OR bikinis.

What about those men who are in jeans, pajamas, lungis and dhotis? Umm… I will recommend them to be in briefs OR neoprene shorts.

… when in the desert


So when you are going for a camel safari in the Thar Desert make sure you are wearing a loose fit jeans, long sleeve shirts (light coloured) and boots that will give you more protection from nasty plants with spines. Don’t forget to carry a wide brim hat and sunglass.

… when going for a wildlife safari


Well nothing much to say about what to wear when you are going for a wildlife safari. Just be comfortable with light cotton garments but avoid white colours, formals and traditional wears. The suitable colours to wear on a wildlife safari are green, brown and khaki.

… when going for a long drive


Long drives are often the craziest plans during a weekend. It can be planned or you can be uncertain about it. Such kind of travelling depends on the mood and nature of the travellers. At times all of a sudden your friend comes with his new landrover and waits in front of your office gate… you may end up going for a long drive in formal attire. Again… a day comes and he wakes you up at midnight saying, ‘buddy! Come down fast. It’s urgent… blaah blaah blaah…’, there you go now whizzing the highway in your night wear. So basically… there isn’t any dressing code for long drive. You just need to adjust with the overall circumstances.

Published: 09 Sep, 2014
Swairik Das


Brought up from the cultural capital of India, Kolkata, Swairik Das is a passionate traveller who seeks to travel and explore the length and breadth of the country. He is also a dedicated travel writer, blogger and photographer who by heart is also an adventure freak. His focus is mostly into exploring and writing on trekking, jungle safaris and several adventure activities; religion, festival, heritage, people and cuisine.

LET'S PLAN YOUR TRIPLet us Plan Your Trip