What To Wear In Goa - Dresses For Goa That You Must Carry!

A hippie with his hair tied in a bun and tint in his glasses enjoying chilled beer against the seashore, impervious to the world around him - this would be Goa if it was to be personified. From the hip and happening beaches of North Goa effortlessly strewn alongside the Western coastline to the peace of the South, Goa is for anyone seeking some much-needed respite. It might be the nation's smallest state, but without a shred of doubt, it is the most sought-after destination for the perfect beach holiday.

In keeping with the very laidback spirit of this place, it is an absolute must to dress appropriately as the way you look tends to have an enormous impact on how you feel. Be it a casual day of beach tripping or sun-bathing at Palolem or an evening of indulgence in Baga's electrifying nightlife, here's what to wear in Goa and not feel out of place.

Dresses for Women

1. Cover-up Dresses

Again, these can be layered over swimwear when you are ready to leave the sand. Light and airy, these are perfectly in rhythm with the humidity of Goa's climate. You don't have to tie them up like sarongs, and they come in different styles to choose from - kaftans, ponchos or kimonos.
What To Wear In Goa, Dresses for goa
Beach kaftans draped over swimwear (Source)

2. Bikinis/Monokinis

If you plan on getting into the water, a good swimsuit is essential. And Goa is one of the fewest places in the country that is liberal concerning stylish beach outfits. Been working hard at the gym? Here is your chance to redeem those strenuous hours and flaunt your gains.

If, however, bikinis make you feel uncomfortable, high-waisted bikinis and tankinis are great options too. You shouldn't have to feel like a misfit in your jeans among all the bikini-clad women and let your insecurities double. Just pick the one that suits your body type the best. Make sure that you wear bikinis only in the beach/pool areas and not in general public places unless you want to be a walking showpiece. Goa keeps modernity strictly limited to its beaches.
What To Wear In Goa, bikinis, Dresses for goa
A tankini suitable for Indian figures (Source)

 

3. Sarongs

We know bikinis are not exactly everybody's picnic. A sarong is something ideal especially for them curvy bods out there. These wraparounds go with the beachy vibe and can be easily thrown over your swimwear. You could even turn a sarong into a dress, wrapping style and comfort together. They come in a large variety of vibrant colours, accentuating the overall vacation mood and can be tied up in different ways.

Sarongs are readily available in any Goan beach market. If you can bargain right, they'll be a total steal.

What To Wear In Goa, Sarongs, Dresses for goa
Tourist sporting a sarong at Paradise Beach (Source)


4. Cotton Shorts

When on a beach holiday, it is always wise to carry fabrics that dry up easily. Denim shorts not only take their sweet time while drying, but they can also be quite intolerable in the heat. Not to mention the numerous pockets that will have sand pouring out of them for weeks.
What To Wear In Goa, shorts, Dresses for goa
Linen lace shorts for a laid-back yet stylish look (Source)
 

5. Spaghettis/Tank tops

Leave your formal looking shirts and dull T-shirts at home. Save space in your bags by packing basic halter-neck spaghettis and racer-back tanks that you are unable to wear normally. The best part is that they can be paired with almost anything.

What To Wear In Goa, tank tops, Dresses for goa
Source
 

6. Loose-fitting trousers

Now, there are some of you who are either less inclined to wearing shorts or simply don't want to get tan lines on your legs. Harem pants, wide-leg pants, linen cargos, palazzos, culottes and gipsy pants are your best friends.
 

7. Sundresses

What is more vacation-like than a floral printed sundress accessorised with a sunhat and a pair of Havaianas flip-flops So this is great when you are out for an evening stroll, sightseeing or just grabbing brunch.
What To Wear In Goa, Dresses for goa
A perfect strappy sundress (Source)

 

Evening Wear

Obviously, you won't want to dance at a beach party in a sarong. When the sun goes down, you will need a change in your outfit while still maintaining the comfort level. Here's how:
 

8. Long skirts

Skirts that are flowy will ensure that you have the best time dancing your worries away while still feeling the air. No room for sophisticated tight mini-skirts here.
 

9. Maxi dresses

Be it enjoying a trance party at Curlies or simply stopping by a bar for a couple of drinks; you can never go wrong with a tropical printed maxi dress. Go for off-shoulders and side-slit maxis to spice things up.

 

What To Wear In Goa, Dresses for goa
Beach themed off-shoulder maxi dress (Source)
 

10. Printed jumpsuits/playsuits

If dresses are not your thing, try long jumpsuits or playsuits. Jumpsuits, especially printed ones, add to the fun quotient and can also double as beachwear.
What To Wear In Goa, Dresses for goa
Floral print long-sleeve playsuit (Source)


10. Sequined shorts

Let's admit it. Shorts are comfortable. And these days, they come in various styles to choose from - lace shorts, high-waisted shorts, sequined and embellished shorts. Pair them with a neon top before you go party hopping.
What To Wear In Goa, Dresses for goa
Shimmery sequin shorts (Source)

 

Accessories

Along with the right clothing, it is of utmost importance that you accessorise right. Remember, less is always more, and you just need one statement accessory to turn heads.
 

11. Straw hats

Available in plenty in any Goan flea market, straw hats not only protect you from the raging sun but also add that extra oomph to your look.
What To Wear In Goa, Dresses for goa
Asian print straw hats (Source)

12. Scarves

The humidity in the air wreaks havoc on your hair. A pretty looking scarf not only protects you from that but also enhances your outfit. Bandanas can also be tied up around the head.

 
What To Wear In Goa, Dresses for goa
Colourful beach head-wrap (Source)


 

13. Flip-flops

A staple for any beach holiday. Leave the bulky shoes and stilettos at home. You can also invest in a good pair of Crocs or open-toe sandals.

 
What To Wear In Goa, Dresses for goa
Funky flip-flops at Candolim (Source)

14. Sunglasses

As the sun comes up, so should your sunnies. Nowadays, reflective mirror finish glasses are a rage. They protect both your eyes and your style quotient. Don't be afraid of experimenting with the frames - Goa welcomes quirkiness.
What To Wear In Goa, Dresses for goa
A pair of orange-tinted aviators (Source)


15. Chunky jewellery

Lightweight and trendy. Large bead necklaces, shell bracelets, anklets, waist chains, funky toe-rings and dangle earrings are perfect for beaching. Go boho! Keep your metal accessories away from saltwater though. 
What To Wear In Goa, Dresses for goa
Source
 

16. Tote bags

And finally, a bright-coloured tote to stock all your essentials in - beach towels, sunscreen, gloss and a book maybe. A beach bag made of waterproof material is indispensable.
What To Wear In Goa, Dresses for goa
Canvas tote bag (Source)


What To Wear In Goa For Guys

Sons of beaches, we didn't forget you. Everyone is going to have their toes in the sand so you might as well look hot while doing it! Apart from the basics like swimming trunks, sunglasses and flip-flops, here's what else to pack:
 

1. Tanks

Tanks are unisex, and they are not just for your gym sessions. Sleeveless t-shirts with funky logos and prints are so much in sync with the beach than boring polo necks.
What To Wear In Goa, Dresses for goa
A classic black tank top contrasted with white shorts (Source)


2. Linen shirts

It's time to put your feet up and de-stress. It's okay if you don't like getting tanned in those sleeveless tanks. Loose-fitting shirts are a boon. But, pack nothing more than cotton or linen shirts. Probably in beautiful shades of blue.  You can also go back to the 90's and opt for the fundamental Hawaiian shirt. Nothing is jauntier or spells "on vacation" louder than that! Just kick back with a shrimp cocktail in hand, and you are Jim Carrey from Ace Ventura.
What To Wear In Goa, Dresses for goa
Hawaiian shirt (Source)
 

3. Shorts

Ditch that idea immediately if you were planning on wearing trousers throughout the holiday. Differentiate swim trunks from shorts. Whether you are hanging by the pool, or just taking a walk on the seashore, you need shorts that go up to the knee. Probably more than one pair. And these days, even shorts come in tropical prints. Make sure you get them in fabrics that dry quickly.
What To Wear In Goa, Dresses for goa
Printed board shorts (Source)


4. Chinos

Both chinos and trousers were made for soldiers, but the former comes with a maximum of two or three pockets as opposed to the latter which have a large number of pockets. Trousers are always more fitting on formal occasions. So when you are out partying in Goa, consider the more comfy/informal alternative - chinos. A sure-fire way to get the fairer sex's attention.
 

5. Cotton espadrilles

Flip-flops and crocs are kings in sandy settings but what about those tan lines that don't go for weeks? Espadrilles are the ultimate beach shoes which combine fashion and ease. Open-toe sandals and boat shoes work as well.
 

6. Fedora hats

Timeless, elegant and a must for summer, fedora hats are made of felt or straw. Sported by men and women alike, these babies not only protect you from the scorching heat but also add confidence to the air around you.
What To Wear In Goa, Dresses for goa
Source

7. Tote bags

Yes, that's right. A tote bag can also be one of the men's accessories given that they do not carry it with its handles in the crook of their elbows like the ladies. Go for one that has a rugged look. If it's still too girly for you, go for messenger bags.

 
What To Wear In Goa
Source

 

What Not Wear In Goa

While we are addressing the dilemma of what to wear in Goa, let's also rule out complete no-no's that will only hog necessary luggage space:
 

Jeans

Remember, you are in Goa to unwind. You cannot do that if your clothing is tight and doesn't let you breathe. Loosen up!
What To Wear In Goa, Dresses for goa
Denim bottoms + Sand = A recipe for disaster (Source)
 

Synthetic fabrics

Anything involving polyester, nylon or leather are best kept away from the sultry weather. Instead, carry Egyptian cotton, fine silk or linen.

 
What To Wear In Goa, Dresses for goa
Pure silk pareos (Source)
 

Underwear as swimwear

Do not confuse your lingerie set with a swimsuit. It not only is inappropriate but also looks very tacky.
What To Wear In Goa, Dresses for goa
Don't do it! (Source)
  

Ill-fitted Swimwear

Goa beaches may be bikini-friendly, but nobody wants to see parts you didn't plan on showing. Make sure things are tucked in at the right places and stay away from sheer tops/bottoms if you fancy a dip in the water.
 

Heels/Closed Footwear

Your feet deserve a break too. Unless you want to unleash hell on them, do not bring your pumps or pencil heels along. If it is imperative, settle for low-rise wedges.
What To Wear In Goa, Dresses for goa
Walking with those in the sand? Are you kidding? (Source)

Similarly, closed footwear like sneakers is neither vacation-like nor beach-friendly. The only thing more annoying than walking in sand is walking with sand filled inside your shoes. Just carry running shoes if you are going to go for morning jogs.

 

Expensive jewellery

All the gold, silver and shimmery bling are to be skipped. There is a high risk of losing them in the sand, and they do not exactly match the carefree vibe of the place. Leave the Casio watch safe at home and carry silicone strap watches if you must.
 

Heavy make-up

Goan water and climate ruin overly done make-ups. Keep it minimalistic and simple. Hair tied up in a bun, coral pink for the lips and lightly lined eyes - enough.

Hair dryer

The salty wind and water are going to make your hair frizzy and dry. Do yourself a favour and don't worsen it by carrying hair dryers or hair gels. Go natural for once. Windswept wet hair looks amazing.

 
Some extra tips that might come handy:

1. Skin-care: Sunscreen with a minimum of SPF 40 is a must. Other skin-care essentials are aloe vera gel and calamine lotion. You might also want to carry a good moisturiser.

2. Colours to include: Whites and creams for the day, blues and blacks for the night are ideal.

3. Patterns to include: Stripes, nautical stripes, colour blocks, polka dots and floral/tropical prints never go out of style.

4. Pack light but always carry an extra pair of slippers.

5. Goa is infamous for its dark orange dust. So be careful with your tighty whities!

6. Winter wardrobe: Long sleeved tops, light pashmina shawls and jersey material jackets are best for winter in Goa.
 

Just put comfort as high as you put good-looks, and you are all set for a quintessential vacation in India's most happening beach capital!

This post was published by Manisha Panda

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