Wondering what clothes to wear in Jordan? It’s definitely somewhere you should consider both the culture and the practicalities of your trip.
To give you a helping hand, here’s my guide to what you might want to think about packing for your trip to Jordan.
I already mentioned in my blog about visiting Petra, that I had SO many questions before my trip. Although I’d travelled to Turkey and Morocco before, I knew that culturally Jordan was quite different to both.
While it’s a lot more relaxed than many of its neighbours (in Iran and Saudi Arabia, women generally cover up or wear hijabs), there’s certainly an ‘etiquette’ when it comes to clothing. I’m all for having your own style and not feeling like you have to fit in, but I think it’s important to be respectful.
Added to that, there’s the climate and geography of the country. Welcome to dry, dusty desert land. Then there are the extremes of temperature.
In Amman, Jordan’s capital, temperatures drop to 4 degrees in winter and peak at around 31 in the summer months. Heavy rain is normal in winter months, and flash floods are common – important to consider when visiting tourist sites such as Petra. Generally Jordan’s warmer months are April – October, then Nov – March are considerably cooler.
After visiting in March and spending a lot of my pre-trip research googling how to dress in Jordan to visit various attractions, I thought it’d be helpful to pass on a few words of wisdom.
From what footwear you’ll need for exploring Jordan, to perfect outfits for Petra and a few vital accessories (some of which I wished I’d packed) here’s my ultimate guide to what to wear in Jordan – basically your travel packing list! Oh, and don’t worry guys, I’ve popped a few ideas together for you men out there who are struggling to pack too.
What Should A Woman Wear To Visit Jordan?
As mentioned, most women (locals and tourists) respect the Jordanian culture and cover up. Generally women cover their legs, arms and chest, with skirts and shorts considered particularly disrespectful and provocative.
Many locals cover hair up with headscarves or hoodies, so be aware that if you have long hair (particularly if it’s blonde) that you might attract a bit of attention!
What To Wear In Jordan: Women’s Clothes
The key to planning outfits in Jordan = LAYERS! As I was there in March, it wasn’t that warm, yet when the sunshine came out it was absolutely boiling! Think T-shirts layered with cardigans and jackets.
The most useful items? Scarves. Pack a few of different thicknesses and colours so there’s one to go with everything. You won’t regret it!
Here are a few specific items of women’s clothing I’d recommend Jordan:
Women’s lightweight trousers – It’s good to have some conservative items and not flash too much skin. These are practical, lightweight but a bit cute too!
Women’s sundress – Something pretty and not too short for when it’s appropriate.
Women’s maxi dress – I quite liked having a longer item or two. If you pair it with a cardigan it’s more conservative too.
Women’s midi skirt – I live in items like this in warm countries and have them in multiple colours and patterns. They’re comfortable and not revealing.
Women’s shorts – I packed a few pairs. I’d recommend something loose and comfortable like these shorts, and then perhaps some classic denim shorts too.
Women’s summer top – I wore a lot of things like this. Neutral colours work best as you can mix and match with shorts and skirts. Plus, you can dress them up or dress them down!
Women’s zip up hooded jacket – A few places get chilly, so you’ll want to be able to layer up occasionally. A zip up hoody like this will come in handy.
Women’s bikini – You’ll need to pack a couple of items of swimwear. There are so many cute bikinis out there to choose from!
Women’s rash guard – Not essential, but if you burn easily (or plan to surf) I’d recommend one of these. This one is great as it has a built-in bra and comes with a pair of matching shorts.
Women’s sports vest – I’d recommend one or two sweat-absorbing vests like this for adventurous activities.
Women’s sports bra – Ideal for sporty or adventure activities. I prefer sports bras like this Under Armour one which has some built in padding for extra support.
Women’s leggings – Leggings are great for active adventures. These Under Armour ones are great as they’re very lightweight.
Sarong – A really useful item for any travels in warm countries! Use it as a towel, a cover up, to sit on, to lie on or for a cute addition to an outfit!
Sun hat – You’ll definitely want a sun hat to protect yourself.
Sunglasses – I’ve owned a pair of these Ray Bans for a few years now and love them!
How To Dress In Jordan: Men & Women’s Footwear
Shoes, hiking boots, sandals, flip-flops, going out shoes, flats, heels… the list goes on. Do you know what, they could ALL be useful for women visiting Jordan.
Winter temperatures are pretty cool across the country, so pack knee-highs or ankle boots, plus trainers. All year around you’ll want hiking boots or trainers for exploring the main tourist sites such as Jerash and Petra.
In the warmer months (April – October), you’ll want sandals, flip-flops and flat casual shoes.
Most men wore leather shoes or trainers for everyday activities, then hiking shoes for exploring places like Petra.
Here are a few specific items of footwear I’d recommend for Jordan:
Birkenstock sandals – Really durable, ideal for men or women and come in multiple colours. There are a few different styles to choose from too.
Teva trekking sandals – Really durable, great for travel, easy to take on and off and they come in lots of colours and patterns.
Skechers lightweight trainers – Really comfortable and they dry quickly too, so are useful for all sorts of travel.
Havianas flip flops – Male or female, everyone should own a pair! These ones for men are fun too.
Cute women’s sandals – Something like this is great for beach clubs, hotels and restaurants.
Tom’s flat loafers – A nice casual shoe for men, easy to slip on and great for exploring or going to restaurants.
Hiking shoes – Only necessary if you’re planning some big adventures. These ones are great as they’re lightweight and breathable.
Water shoes – Again, not essential, but can be useful for rocky areas or hiking around waterfalls.
What To Wear In Jordan: What Should A Woman Wear To Visit Petra?
You’ll find plenty of tips for your visit to Petra here… but as it fits perfectly into this post too here are some suggestions for clothes to wear for your day out.
While it may be warm, most women are still respectful of the Jordanian culture and choose to cover up. I wore a long skirt with leggings, my Converse trailers, a T-shirt and cardigan. I’d recommend sturdy trainers or walking boots rather than sandals or flip-flops, and be sure to pack a hat and a scarf.
What To Wear In Jordan: Men’s Clothes
For men, it’s less of a departure from standard western dress sense than for women. Most men in Amman and Petra wore jeans or chinos with T-shirts or shirts and a jumper or jackets.
I noticed that often men were quite smartly dressed. Scarves like these were popular, in particular the chequered middle-eastern style with tassels.
Here are a few specific items of men’s clothing I’d recommend Jordan:
Men’s casual shorts – I’d recommend several pairs of comfortable shorts for everyday use.
Men’s chinos or jeans – I’d recommend a few pairs of chinos, jeans or cargo pants.
Men’s T-shirts – Pack a few options of t-shirts too.
Men’s shirts – A few shirts (long or short sleeved) are a good idea. I personally love these linen shirts. They look very cool!
Men’s vests – If you sweat a lot, you might find vest tops more comfortable in the heat.
Men’s zip up hooded jacket – You might want to layer up if it gets chilly in the evenings.
Men’s jumper – A smarter option for keeping warm.
Men’s sports tops – For active days, something like this is really useful as it’s super-absorbent.
Men’s sports shorts – If you’re doing some adventurous hikes or activities, you’ll want shorts you can move freely in.
Swimming trunks – The more fun the pattern, the better! These ones have pockets and are quick dry too.
Baseball cap – Look for one with a mesh back like this one, so it’s more breathable.
Sunglasses – You can’t beat a classic pair of these Ray Bans!
What To Pack For Jordan: Other Useful Items
If you’re planning a trip to Jordan, you should think about more than just clothing when you start packing. Here are a few items I’d recommend adding to your suitcase…
Insect repellent – Don’t leave home without a decent bug spray. There are plenty of really good insect repellants like this one. If you’re travelling with kids you might want to buy a specific children’s insect repellent too. Some hotels and restaurants spray a mist of repellent each day across their grounds, while others offer sprays you can use for free.
Bite relief – I usually take an after bite / anti-itch cream like this, that helps to soothe any bites. I also swear by this amazing Bite Away Pen, which sends a small electric shock to the itchy part of the bite. It takes a bit of getting used to at first (and sometimes hurts a tiny bit), but it does work. I’ve done a full review of the item (as it goes everywhere with me!!) so feel free to read more here.
Travel towel – A fast-drying microfibre towel like this one will come in handy in Jordan. These are great not only for when you fancy a swim, but also when you want to sit down on the ground or to wipe your sweaty face on a humid day!
Sun cream – It’s important to apply suncream throughout the day. I’d recommend finding a brand which isn’t too heavy on chemicals, or is almost totally natural, like this one made by Sun Bum.
Sunglasses – It’s important to protect your eyes when you visit a holiday destination like Jordan. I’d recommend investing in some high-quality UV protected sunglasses. I’ve owned a pair of these Ray Bans for a few years now and love them!
Sun hat – You’ll definitely want a sun hat to protect yourself on all of those sunny days in Jordan.
After sun or aloe vera – Don’t forget some soothing cream incase you do burn. I really like this one made by Ultrasun. It’s lightweight and feels lovely on your skin.
Umbrella – I’d also recommend an umbrella for rainy season. I’d been looking for a super compact option for ages, and finally found this one which fits in my smallest handbag and is nice and sturdy.
Daypack backpack – I used a small backpack for day-to-day adventures, which could fit a water bottle, camera, sun cream and bug spray. I also took a small shoulder bag to use for going for dinner in the evenings. If you’re looking for something nice and small, lightweight, water-resistant and that will fit all your essentials, I’d recommend this daypack. It’s got some very handy zip-up pockets too!
Reusable water bottle – I always recommend packing a reusable water bottle for travel. Even if you can’t drink the tap water, it means you can top up from giant bottles or water coolers rather than buying lots of plastic bottles. Personally I’d recommend the Chilly’s water bottles. I’ve got a few in different sizes and they are excellent quality!
GoPro – Jordan is an adventure-filled country. The best way to capture it is on a GoPro. They’re great for photos and videos, hard wearing, shockproof and waterproof. Whether you’re snorkelling, hiking, white water rafting, wildlife-spotting or zip lining, it’s the perfect accessory. Don’t forget to take out travel insurance that covers your gadgets too.
Power bank – It depends how much you use your phone on holiday, but I used mine a lot during my trip to Jordan, snapping photos and videos along the way. A portable battery pack is a great idea so you don’t have to worry about running out of charge at an important moment.
I have a few made by Anker and they’re great quality and have lasted for a long time. This is the one I’m using at the moment, which is really small (similar size to my phone) but stores lots of charge and has a fast charging capability.
Plug adapter – I pack this universal travel adapter for all of my travels. It charges multiple items at once, using plugs or USB and can be used anywhere in the world. It’s one of my fave travel gadgets!
Dry bag – I’m really happy I invested in a dry bag like this. It’s made from a thick plastic and is totally waterproof. These dry bags are perfect for adventures on the water, visiting waterfalls, or if you think it’s going to rain heavily. I’d recommend a small one for your phone and camera gear, or a larger one if you want to use it as your main bag for an activity.
Waterproof phone case – Similarly, if you want to take your phone out and about in the water, I’d recommend getting a waterproof phone case. There are quite a few to choose from, but I’d recommend reading the reviews! You need this to protect your phone and be 100% watertight after all! I bought these Moko cases myself and my partner and they’ve been great. We’ve used them on several trips snorkelling and to waterfalls now, and no leaks!
Hopefully this post has helped you figure out what to pack for your trip to Jordan. If you have any questions, let me know in the comments below!
Read more: 21 Interesting Facts About Petra, Jordan
Read more: A tour of Petra, Jordan
Read more: Top Tips For Visiting Petra, Jordan: The Ultimate Travel Guide
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2 thoughts on “What Clothes To Wear In Jordan: The Ultimate Travel Packing Guide”
How about Capri pants? Let me know.
Hi Kathleen, I think they’d be perfect too, so long as they’re not too short – have a great time!