What to Wear in Istanbul

Posted on Aug 10 2013 - 10:41am by Tyler Coleman

Istanbul is Turkey’s second largest city, and the city has a lot to offer apart from the famous blue mosque. As it is an Islamic city, you must take care the way you dress and behave. Knowing what to wear in Istanbul is definitely going to help.

What to Wear in Istanbul

Weather of Istanbul

The weather of Istanbul is typically similar to Marmara region, a neighboring district that covers 8.5 percent of the total area of Turkey. Its various regions have varying degree of climates, such as the Bosporus strait and its surrounding regions have a Mediterranean climate while a Black sea climate can be detected towards north. Eastern parts of the city are dominated by Anatolian climate with hot summers and cold winters. The weather of this city is so diverse that you can witness snowfall in a region along with sunshine in another part of the city.

The summer season starts from June and lasts until September in Istanbul and the common daytime temperatures cross 40 degrees Celsius usually. The hottest month is July and the coldest is January, with their average temperatures being 47 and 5 degrees, respectively. Summer is also the driest time of the year.

Autumn far is not just pleasant but also the longest season here and the morning haze makes the skies look as bright as pearls. Morning clouds usually clear by afternoon and you can have clear crisp days.

During winter months, the daytime temperature is 10 degrees which further fall down to 5 degrees at night. Sometimes, if you are lucky, you might get to experience snowfall.

Spring brings cool and comfortable climate with it from April to May, with temperatures ranging from 15 to 25 degree Celsius. The city gets ample rainfall and you can see gardens and parks laden with lush green trees and colorful flowers.

What to Wear and How to Pack for Istanbul?

Despite the climate, the style rules are same in Istanbul as in any other city; sophisticated rather than resort wear. For an Islamic country, Istanbul is very liberal in terms of its dressing, but respecting the culture always helps. Here are some suggestions:

Women – Shorts are okay in this city in the summers, but if you do not want unwanted attention, go for knee-length ones. Sundresses and cocktail dresses will work well for day and night sightseeing and partying. You will see many locals in skirts and at the same time you can spot some in hijab, too. So, dress according to your comfort, keeping in mind how to avoid unwanted attention. When visiting the blue mosque, you are required to cover your feet, shoulders, and head; so, going for jeans or trousers along with scarves is a good idea. For winter wear, you can go for jeans, woolen leggings, and tunics with some heavy jackets and sweaters or cardigans. You can see an abundance of street style along with glamour in this city.

Men – As far as men are concerned, anything goes for them. Lucky men! So, you just have to dress up according to the weather. For summers, pack clothes in breathable fabrics such as cotton and linen and khaki pants. Cotton T-shirts along with chinos will look absolutely chic and street-savvy. As far as mosques are concerned, you will need full pants and shirts and something to cover your head. For winter wear, you can go for heavy clothing or layer them, too. A thick shirt can be worn with a heavy jacket or woolen sweater.

Kids – Kids can also go for anything as long as it suits the weather and doesn’t disrespect their traditions. Cotton shirts, T-shirts, shorts, and Capris will work just fine for the summer season. For spring or autumn, you might need a thin jacket or sweater. Winters will see thicker and heavier clothing with jackets and sweaters or windbreakers.

Footwear – Though women do wear high heels here, the rough and uneven sidewalks of the city might make it difficult for you to walk. Carry comfortable shoes. Open-toed will work during summers while winters will require sturdy boots. Going for flip-flops is also a good option.

Accessories – Scarves and shawls will save the day for you by being a fashion accessory to help you cover up. A wide-brim hat will save you from the sun. Carry an umbrella, too.

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