Women Travelers - What is appropriate attire for women visiting Buddhist temples in Asia?
Spending 3 weeks in Asia (Sapporo, Beijing, Hong Kong)...most of it business but some time for pleasure in Beijing and Hong Kong is purely pleasure. I know that to tour churches and such in Europe conservative dress is required (no bare shoulders, no shorts etc)...does anyone know if the same is true for Buddist temples and the like? I'm going to do my best to only pack clothes for 14 days and hand wash so I have stuff for the other days...
Jun 17, 06, 10:26 am
My experience is that you should dress conservatively in Buddhist temples. No shorts, no short skirts, no shoulders showing. Be prepared to remove your shoes.
If you're bringing along jeans and a T-Shirt, you should be covered.
So on the days I'm planning on visiting temples, best to wear long pants and short sleeves...and bring a sweater? And since I'm going to be asked to remove my shoes, should I have on socks? Sadly, it's going to be hot but I'll make the best of it for that short time. I most certainly don't want to be disrespectful.
Jun 17, 06, 11:43 am
I wouldn't worry about a sweater. As long as you have short sleeves, as opposed to no sleeves, you'll be fine. You could wear light-weight pants or a skirt to keep cool.
Jun 17, 06, 9:12 pm
also no need for socks. i.e., you can wear flip-flops (like most of the natives), just be aware that you won't be able to wear them in the temple. I'd probably advise against jeans/ t-shirt... seems a tad disrepectful. But I dress up if I am going to be in a church/ temple in this country, so i may be in the minority here.
i agree with the previous poster that you can remain cool by wearing a (below the knees) skirt or loose pants. short sleeves should be fine. sleeveless shirts probably would not be.
Jun 17, 06, 11:18 pm
Short sleeves are fine, no shoulders showing. Below the knee pants or skirt is acceptable. Most places will have items for you to borrow if they are very strict. For example, in Thailand I went to the summer palace outside of Bangkok and was given a long sarong to borrow as my long pants still were not acceptable. If you want to be pro-active, you can always bring a lightweight guazey long sleeved top and a light long sarong, keep it in your bag and you will be covered!
I'd probably advise against jeans/ t-shirt... seems a tad disrepectful.
As always, local mores rule. I've visited temples in Japan and China (OP indicated those countries) and that's what the local women seem to wear. A nice/clean T-Shirt and jeans are fine.
Jun 18, 06, 8:50 am
I am not quite sure about China. Yet cases temples or shrines in Japan, sandals are OK, T-shirt is OK, but care about to cover your sholder, skirt is also available, but do not choose short one ;) pants is safer, I am sure, if you don't show your thighs.
Socks, you might come to Asia at Summer, mightn't you? It is already humitted. When I wear shoes, I also wear hemp socks to keep my feet comfortable :)
have a nice trip!
Jun 18, 06, 6:47 pm
Also, do remove hats/caps. I visited a temple in the rain and happened to wear a rain hat (but the rain was so light I forgot) and a buddhist monk told me to take it off because it was disrespectful towards Buddha.
Jun 18, 06, 11:23 pm
On Asia trips I always take those little black ankle sox from Target to wear inside temples. Remove shoes at entrance, put on sox, walk around without feet getting dirty, remove sox and put shoes back on. I carry a little ziplock bag to keep the sox in, inside my purse or tote.
Other posters are correct about dress, pants are OK but long skirt or sarong would be best. Wear a conservative shirt or top with at least elbow-length sleeves.
Have fun on your trip.