What To Wear In Luxor

Egypt is a Muslim country. The culture and dress code are not as strict in Egypt as they are in some other Muslim countries, but it is still best to be modest, especially for ladies. There are many who will say they have been to Luxor and have worn exactly what they want, where they want, and nobody cared. The truth is that many people probably cared a great deal but were too polite to say anything. It is far better to be sensitive to local culture and to dress in a way that will avoid offence. It should also be remembered that most of the places you are visiting were, and possibly still are, sacred sites and it is preferable to show a degree of respect.

The other reason for dressing on the more conservative side, is the sun. Be under no illusion, Egypt is hot, especially further south, like Luxor or Aswan. It is crucial that you wear a hat, and we would suggest something with a wide brim, that offers some protection to, not only your face, but also the back of your neck. 

Guys, normal pants, jeans or chinos, nothing too tight, and shirts, t-shirts or golf shirts are fine. Make sure they are lightweight and natural fibres – cotton is best. Polyester or any similar artificial fabric will become uncomfortable very quickly. Shorts seem to be accepted in the hot season, more so on the West Bank. Remember, Luxor is a working ancient city, not a beach resort.

Girls, sorry, but for you it is a little more. Apart from the need to respect local custom and religion there are two other benefits from modest clothing. First, it will protect you from the sun. The sun is fierce most of the time and will soon damage exposed, unprotected skin. Second, the more modest you are the less attention you will attract. A basic wardrobe would be loose cotton or linen trousers and/or a longish skirt and cotton tops with sleeves that are at least half-length. No-one expects you to cover your face. Nor do you have to cover your head. However, in the street you should not expose too much skin, and preferably also cover knees and elbows. Clothing, especially blouses and skirts, should not be transparent or tight-fitting. Above the waist, baggy is best.

Shoes: we would suggest anything that you are comfortable walking in, the pavements in Luxor are not the best, and the terrain on the West Bank can be quite uneven. Many of the tombs have wooden floors laid to make it easier, but sometimes there are gaps between the planking, so heels are a no-no. Also, due to the sand and dust, any kind of open shoe is going to quickly become uncomfortable. Sneakers, walking shoes or desert boots are all good. It is not a good idea to rush out and buy something new, as shoes usually take some time to wear in.

This may all sound a little over the top, but we want you to enjoy your time in Egypt, and to protect you from the sun.

This is not a fashion show, and comfort should be your priority.