It can be difficult to know what to pack for the Maldives, as your resort may have a formal dress code and the local islands require more conservative clothing. I’ve been lucky enough to visit the Maldives a couple of times, so thought it might be helpful to share some tips on what to wear in the Maldives, including my Maldives packing list for our honeymoon.
What To Wear In The Maldives
The Maldives is made up of 1200 islands, over 100 of which are dedicated tourist resorts. Depending on your resort’s distance from Male International Airport you will be transferring by speedboat or airplane.
I prefer to travel in smart but loose layers – see my favourite outfits for flying – and when travelling to the Maldives I recommend you bring a light scarf or shawl in your hand luggage so you can wrap up on the boat, which can get breezy.
If travelling by seaplane make a note of the luggage allowance before packing too many items.
If you’re staying at a high-end resort, like we did for our honeymoon, the dress code for both day and evening will be beach-formal. By that, I mean I saw many female guests wearing maxi dresses and beaded kaftans as opposed to mini skirts and denim shorts.
If you’re looking to wear something a little special on your honeymoon then check out Australian designer, Camilla’s, silk kaftans in vibrant prints and versatile styles that are inspired by her travels.
I think all of her clothing range, which includes swimwear, jumpsuits and capes, are perfect for floating around the Maldives and will make you look fabulous by day or night. Her items are definitely an investment piece but it was an investment that paid off for me. These are a few of my favourites from her current collections.
If you’re on your honeymoon you can totally milk it like I did and indulge in some white, lacy dresses so everyone knows it!
Here are a few more white dresses that are perfect to wear on honeymoon in the Maldives..
For the men, the dress code for restaurants will vary from resort to resort but ours stated no swimwear or sportswear (for either sex) and specifically no sleeveless shirts for gentlemen. Of an evening, men are recommended to wear smart casual clothes – so make sure your Maldives packing list includes shirts with sleeves and collars, chinos or tailored trousers, and tailored shorts to the knee.
Shoes are optional
Even though our hotel was 5-star they had an interesting approach to footwear – shoes were completely optional! After getting my kitten-heeled wedding shoes stuck between the wooden boardwalk one evening I gladly flung them off.
We spent most dinners on the beach with our toes buried in the sand so rather than going fully barefoot I wore some Barefoot Sandals. I purchased these gems for our beach wedding in Thailand so was glad to have the opportunity to wear them again on honeymoon in the Maldives.
Barefoot sandals are not only practical and comfy (no blisters!) but they sparkle and tinkle when you wear them and make you feel like an Arabian princess. I found mine on Instagram and you can shop for them here.
On The Local Islands
The Maldives is a Muslim country so you are advised to wear conservative clothing when visiting the local islands. If you plan to visit a mosque or religious site, in particular, you must wear clothes that cover your knees and shoulders and women may be required to cover their heads too so keep a scarf handy.
I loved the island visit I did on my second trip to the Maldives and felt more comfortable (and respectful) wearing a long-sleeve linen dress, which came to my knees.
If you don’t have any dresses with sleeves then packing a kimono is a great way to cover up and still be comfortable in the heat.
For Aussie readers, I recommend you check out Sportsgirl for maxi dresses, long silky skirts and colourful kimonos at decent prices.
I’d also recommend wearing quite sturdy shoes as you may be climbing in and out of the boat and walking on dusty roads.
In The Water
We spent a lot of our Maldives honeymoon in the water so I was glad to have packed a number of one-piece swimsuits that looked chic but were sturdy enough to keep everything in place when snorkelling (which we did a lot of!).
My favourite swimwear brands are Jets and Seafolly and you can shop some of my favourite swimsuits below.
We didn’t find reef shoes necessary as we were lucky to have an overwater villa and just snorkelled from there. However, other guests recommended them for snorkelling near the beach.
Post updated: November 2018