One of my biggest woes before embarking on my trip to was what to wear in Jordan. My trip was in the spring, so I knew the weather could be warm, in particular in the south, but also with the potential for some cool breeze.
I was also very aware that Jordan is a Muslim country, and considerably more conservative in comparison to the majority of other countries I have visited. I certainly didn’t want to attract unwanted and unjustified thinking from the locals that ‘western women are promiscuous’.
In the confides of your hotel room, resort or private space you can wear what you like. However, there are some items of clothing to avoid like the plague and that will gain you unwanted attention, especially if you are walking around Amman, or using public transport. Some of the biggest no-nos are;
- booty shorts and hotpants
- skimpy dresses
- mid-drift tops
- figure hugging tops which expose your cleavage.
- basically anything that shoes off your figure
- clothes that expose a lot of flesh
I’m wholeheartedly for the argument that women should jolly well be able to wear what they want, when they want. And that what they are wearing doesn’t necesarilly equate to wanting male attention. In the west, we do have a lot of freedome with regards to this, it is somewhat lax in any Middle Eastern country. I was very conscious as well as cautious with what I packed and left a lot of my warm weather clothing at home.
So, that leads to the question; what to wear in Jordan? To sum it up and to make it easy, avoid showing off your body in any shape and form and you’ll be fine.
Essentials on what to wear in Jordan.
These were my saviours – loose fitting and lightweight, yet not figure-hugging, these were a godsend here. I lived in them! The added bonus is that you can roll them up to make cropped trousers when it did get too hot.
I know crop tops are all the rave right now and I live in them in most hot countries, however, it’s a bit of a no goer in the Middle East. I opted for a selection of oversized shirts and t-shirts – think ‘boyfriend style’. Get them with baggy sleeves so you can roll them up in the heat. They always covered my mid-drift even when they were tied up – these still looked cute and feminine.
This was invaluable. Sometimes I felt like the local men were staring at my boobs! Especially if I was wearing a regular bra with a lighterweight top – my scarf was a quick cover up for anything that might seem misconstrued.
….which leads me onto Sports Bras – I know lacy bras with straps the show are just the norm back home, but this is something else that made me feel self-conscious about in Jordan. In the UK I never consider any of my tops to be low cut (I’m not a boobs-on-show-person) Sometimes my bra could be seen under my clothing and the shape of my body. This is evidently all too much for some of the local men. Henceforth my trusty sports bra! Comparatively high necked and squash my boobs down – ain’t that a sexy thought! – but no one says a sports bra is sexy right!?!? this definitely made me feel more comfortable.
Ponchos, Throw or Shawl
Or anything that you can cover your shoulders and arms with quickly. Similar to the reason for the scarf, and also for the chilly breeze that was in the air during the early Spring when I visited.
I felt in most areas, but in crowded tourist spots – like with anywhere in the world, there are opportunists about. So make sure you have a secure bag to put your valuables in. Better still, use common sense, and leave them locked up safe in your room.
Yes, the obvious reason for keeing sun out of your eyes, but also for a sneaky reason. Generally, the key tip is to ignore ANY form of unwanted male attention. The guys do try it on. As a solo traveller with blonde hair, I was an easy target. A pair of glasses means you can do a quick sideward glance without them noticing, whilst pretending to be looking straight forward and ignoring their advances.
Here is my full packing list for my trip on what to wear in Jordan, don't forget save it for later on.
As a heads up
Don’t get me wrong, the majority of people I met were awesome, however at times, particularly if I was waiting for a public bus I would get approached. Sometimes ‘no’ doesn’t always mean ‘no’ to some of the locals and they will try and try again to engage in conversation with you. Although none of them physically touched me or got aggressive, it was somewhat irritating.
If you’re looking for this then great, you’ll have no problems finding it 😉 If you are not then several stern ‘no’s’ complete with a palm up – as if to say stop and full on blanking them works. As a last resort walking in the opposite direction is a clear indication you aren’t interested.
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Do you have any questions? Then please ask away. What other essentials do you think I have missed off this list? I’d love to know. Please comment below.