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What to Wear in Bali: A Complete Guide for Every Traveler

Updated 06 Mar 2024
What to Wear in Bali

Bali, a gem in Indonesia’s tourism crown, the island is a magnet for travelers seeking its warm beaches, lush rice terraces, and vibrant culture. Knowing what to wear in Bali is essential not only for comfort but also to respect the local traditions and climate. This guide expands on the basics, diving deeper into each aspect to ensure you’re perfectly packed for your Balinese adventure.

Guide on your inaugural journey to Bali? Discover essential insights and expert advice in our dedicated article on Bali Tips for First Timers, seamlessly integrated within our informative collection.

What to Expect from Bali’s Climate

Bali's Climate

Bali is usually warm year-round, with a tropical climate that splits the year into two main seasons: the dry season from April to October and the rainy season from November to March. The dry season is characterized by sunny days, with temperatures between 80-90°F (27-32°C), making it the best time for beach lovers and outdoor enthusiasts.

However, occasional rains can surprise you, so a light jacket or a raincoat can come in handy. The rainy season sees more frequent downpours, especially in the afternoon and evening, but Bali remains relatively warm, with temperatures ranging from 75-85°F (24-29°C). During this time, the island’s lush landscapes are at their most vibrant​​. If you want to know when The Best Month to Visit Bali I’m happy to share your recommendation.

The highlands, including Ubud, offer a cooler escape, with temperatures slightly lower than the coastal areas. Regardless of when you visit, lightweight and breathable clothing is key. Nights can be cooler, particularly in the highlands, so packing a light sweater or jacket is also advised.

Respecting Cultural Norms

Sarong Bali

Bali’s rich culture is one of its biggest draws. When visiting temples or attending ceremonies, dressing modestly is a sign of respect. This means covering shoulders and knees and wearing a sarong (often provided at temple entrances).

Outside these sacred spaces, Bali is quite relaxed about dress codes, but modesty remains appreciated, especially in rural areas.

Daytime to Evening: Outfits Guide

Daytime Explorations

Think light and airy. Cotton, linen, and other natural fibers offer comfort and breathability during Bali’s warm days. T-shirts, blouses, shorts, and skirts are great for wandering through towns or exploring nature. Comfortable walking shoes or sandals are a must, especially if you plan to trek through rice fields or visit waterfalls.

Beach Sessions

Swimwear is essential for Bali’s Beautiful Beaches, but remember to cover up when leaving the sand. Sarongs, sundresses, and lightweight shirts are perfect for transitioning from beach to café. Sun protection, including hats, sunglasses, and sunscreen, will keep you safe under the tropical sun. To ensure easy movement when you walk around the beach, you could go for flip-flops rather than shoes.

Evening Attire

Evenings in Bali can be casual or sophisticated, depending on where you’re headed. A smart-casual dress code works well for most restaurants and bars. Lightweight trousers, casual dresses, and layered outfits can tackle the cooler evening air, especially by the sea or in the uplands.

On the other hand, a relatively more expensive and upscale restaurant or nightclub might require you to dress nicely from head to toe, this ranging from wearing a nice dress for women and collared shirts for men or requiring you to wear shoes when visiting the establishment.

Dressing Accordingly for Each Bali’s Regions

Each part of Bali has its vibe, this in turn has a significant influence on what to wear:


The cultural heart of Bali calls for modest, comfortable clothing suitable for temple visits and cooler evenings. Think loose-fitting dresses, long skirts, and shirts that cover your shoulders. For a relaxing coffee session in one of Ubud’s cafes, dressing in earthy tones will blend perfectly with the local atmosphere.

Seminyak and Kuta

These beach-centric locales are all about relaxed, trendy attire. Daytime beachwear transitions easily into nightlife options with the simple addition of a lightweight jacket or a chic dress.

Keep in mind that some of the more upscale clubs or establishments require somewhat tidier, semi-casual attire. For men, polo shirts, jeans, and sneakers work well, while women can opt for dresses and heels during the evening.

Nusa Dua and Uluwatu

These upscale areas favor elegant resort wear by day and night. Flowing dresses, stylish swimwear, and sophisticated evening outfits are the norms here.

Packing Smart for Bali

To make the most of your Bali wardrobe, choose versatile pieces that can mix and match, creating multiple outfits from a few items. Lightweight and quick-drying materials are ideal, saving you from the discomfort of humidity or unexpected rain showers. Consider packing:

  • A waterproof bag for beach days or rainy adventures.
  • Eco-friendly sunscreen to protect your skin and the environment.
  • A reusable water bottle to stay hydrated while reducing plastic waste.

Avoiding the Wrong Fit

While Bali is accommodating to tourists, there are a few things to avoid wearing:

  • Overly revealing clothing, especially in rural areas or when visiting temples.
  • Heavy materials that don’t breathe well in the humid climate.
  • Anything that might offend local sensibilities, including clothes with religious symbols or inappropriate language.

Remember, Bali’s beauty lies in its diversity, from its landscapes to its cultural expressions. Dressing appropriately means you can comfortably and respectfully enjoy everything this island paradise has to offer. Whether you’re soaking up the sun on a beach, exploring ancient temples, or dining under the stars, your attire can enhance your experience, making every moment in Bali as comfortable and enriching as possible.

For more travel insights and tips for your Bali journey, check out our article on The Best Things to Do in Pererenan.

Once you’ve chosen your best outfit, don’t miss the opportunity to experience the Finest Indian Cuisine in town at Red Gunpowder. With our commitment to serving only the highest quality and most delicious food, crafted from locally sourced ingredients, we promise an unforgettable dining experience. Your time at Red Gunpowder won’t just be a meal; it will be a cherished memory that lasts a lifetime. Reserve your table now and make your time here in Bali unforgettable!



Journeying through life with a camera in hand, Rifka Setia Arianti is a passionate explorer of the world's diverse landscapes. Currently settled in Bali as a web designer, her lens captures the essence of her travels, weaving together a tapestry of stories that encapsulate her love for both photography and adventure.

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