What to Wear in Oman

Keeping covered in Muscat

Keeping covered in Muscat

Women must wear headscarves when entering a mosque

Women must wear headscarves when entering a mosque

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General Style Tips

  • Oman has a sub-tropical desert climate; high daytime temperatures, low night time ones and little rainfall.
  • This is a Muslim country and you will cause offence if you expose too much flesh; moderate dressing especially in public places is recommended.
  • In the shopping malls, restaurants or main tourist hotels the attitude is more relaxed but we would recommend keeping your shoulders and stomach covered.
  • Pack lightweight loose-fitting clothes in natural fabrics such as linen, bamboo and cotton that will keep you cool and are easier to wash and dry.
  • Long-sleeved tops and long pants will cover you from the harsh sun and protect against mosquitoes at night.
  • Be sure to take a pashmina or wrap because even though it's 45 degrees outside the air conditioning works well and it can be cool in both shopping malls and restaurants. Men may like to carry a light jacket.
  • Quality sunglasses and a sunhat are a must. Local Omanis, men and women, will always carry something to cover their heads when outside.
  • A t-shirt is advisable when swimming in the sea, to protect against poisonous jellyfish.

What Shoes To Pack

  • For footwear sandals are the norm for all, unless you are heading into the countryside when you'll need sturdy sneakers or preferably light walking boots. We love Hotter shoes - they're really lightweight and stylish too. Remember your feet may swell in the heat.
  • Save your high heels for the evenings. Why not try the Lindsay Phillips Switch Flops range - using interchangeable shoe and flip-flop bases with snap-on decorations, you can change your look from day to evening in an instant whilst still packing light.
  • The beaches have many sharp shells and rocks, so flip-flops or dive shoes are suggested to protect your feet.

Clothing Tips for Women

  • Short tops, short skirts / shorts, tight or body-revealing clothes etc. should be avoided entirely. Cotton or other natural fiber shirts or t-shirts, with cotton pants or an ankle length skirt, are good and do cover your shoulders. Keep clothing loose - it has the double benefit of keeping you cooler and attracting less unwanted attention.
  • The evenings are the time to dress up - be glamorous and add accessories.
  • A few well-chosen pieces of costume jewelry will transform any outfit.
  • And a pashmina is a versatile piece that will dress up any outfit, as well as covering up for modesty.
  • When visiting any religious sites then out of respect cover your shoulders and bare legs - again your pashmina or a sarong can come in very handy.
  • Topless sunbathing is illegal and a definite no-no. We would suggest taking a one-piece swimsuit; bikinis are only allowed at private hotel pools. Get completely dressed when away from the swimming areas.

Clothing Tips for Men

  • For guys keep it cool and casual; linen pants and shirts work well.
  • For the beach and your hotel pool, opt for longer bermuda-style shorts for bathing. And away from swimming areas you should get properly dressed.
  • For versatile and stylish beach, casual and swim wear, we recommend the Madda Fella range.
  • For great versatile travel jackets with multiple pockets including RFID security options, we love the SCOTTeVEST range.

Pack for the Weather

  • Through spring - March, April and May - and the summer - June, July, August and September - the hot Shamal wind blows and is full of dust; use a sarong or scarf to protect your face.
  • And in winter (December, January and February) pack a lightweight raincoat and a sweater, especially for night.
  • We love the Weather+ app - it gives an accurate 6 day forecast for day and night, which when you're planning from home is really helpful. You can keep all the places you've been to too - a nice way to remember your trip :) Download for iPad/iPhone or Android

Other Things To Pack

  • Toiletries and sunscreen (we love the Riemann P20 range for 10 hour protection) are expensive so ensure that you take them with you. Remember your insect/mosquito repellent too.
  • Note that toilet paper is not always provided in bathrooms, so you may like to carry some with you.
  • Don’t drink or even brush your teeth in tap water. Consider taking a Water-to-Go Filtration Water Bottle. Make sure you drink plenty as dehydration is common in the intense heat.
  • A lightweight day sack or shoulder bag will come in handy to carry your daytime essentials.
  • Look after your mobile phone with a phone bunjee - it protects against loss, theft and damage.
  • To use electrical gadgets you may need a travel adapter plug, and also a step down voltage converter if your devices are not designed for the local voltage (240V).
  • If you're aiming to travel with just carry-on baggage, try the CabinMax soft-sided rucksack - it's light, roomy and has plenty of pockets to keep your stuff organized. You can use packing cubes to compress the volume too.
  • Avoid paying unexpected baggage fees - use an accurate luggage scale to ensure you keep within the weight allowance. Don't forget to leave room for souvenirs on the way home! The Mutrah Souk in Muscat is a popular place to shop - look for perfumes, silver jewelry, spices, dates... just remember any liquids will need to be packed in your checked in luggage to fly home.
  • If your visit coincides with the Holy Month of Ramadan, be particularly careful to respect local customs: do not eat, drink or smoke in public places during daylight hours and dress sensibly. Your hotel should be able to give you more information on their policy e.g. bars may be closed during the day.

Last updated 16 December 2016.

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Pack Light

  • Less luggage to carry
  • Save time packing and unpacking
  • Save money on baggage fees

Pack Right

  • Respect local cultures
  • Feel comfortable and confident
  • Suitable outfits for all occasions

A Message From Helen



I want you to have an amazing holiday. That's why I started WhatToWearOnHoliday.com,
to help you pack with confidence and stay safe, secure and comfortable.