Being a Holy site, the Vatican has some requirements for visitors about what to wear to get in. Be a knowledgeable visitor and follow these Dress code rules below to avoid being turned away when entrance.
For women: Women’s outfits must cover the shoulders and the knees, especially do not have any offensive graphic printed on the outfits.
- Blouses and T-shirts: A basic t-shirt or a blouse will help you cover your shoulder and easy to team up with a flowing skirt, trouser, or a long-length pair of shorts.
- Jumpsuits and Dresses: Wear comfortable jumpsuits, or below-knee dresses combine with cardigans or small shawls to have a modest look while still be fashionable.
- Trousers: Keep you modest and cool when visiting a religious site with a pair of trousers.
- Skirts and Shorts: Shorts or skirts that are longer than knees are accepted; otherwise, you should use a shawl to create a long skirt.
- Jackets and Cardigan: Jackets and cardigans will be the best for those who only have tops or dresses that are sleeveless to cover the shoulders when visiting the Vatican.
- Shoes: For a long day of visiting the Vatican, a flat, comfortable pair of walking shoes or sandals is highly recommended.
- Watches: You can wear a watch that match your clothes such as digital watches or some sport watches.
For men: Outfits that cover knees and shoulders are also required for men. Offensive graphics printed on outfits are not allowed too.
- Shirts and T-shirts: Shirts and T-shirts are the simplest choices for men. Just remember to avoid offensive graphic printed.
- Jacket and Jumpers: Create a warm layer when visiting in Winter or cover the shoulders if you only have tank tops.
- Shorts and Trousers: Most men don’t like shorts that longer than knees, so if you can’t find any shorts that cover knees, wear trousers for a modest look to visit the Vatican.
- Shoes: Although footwear does not have any special requirements, you should wear cross training shoes for a long day of walking.
Table of Contents
- What Not to Wear in Vatican City?
- What to Dress for Nightlife/Dinner in Vatican City?
- Vatican City Packing List in Summer
- Vatican City Packing List in Winter
- Vatican City Packing List in Spring
- What to Wear in Vatican City in December?
- What to Wear in Vatican City in January?
- Shoes to Wear in Vatican City
- Vatican Outfits for Girls
- Vatican Outfits for Boys
- In conclusion
What to Wear to the Vatican for Women?
Blouses and T-shirts
To be allowed to enter the Vatican, all you need is just an outfit that covers your knees, covers your shoulders, and is not sheer or see-through. And we believe that a basic t-shirt will be the first item that most people will think of. Basic t-shirts are easy to team up with other items, such as shorts, trousers, dresses, or flowing skirts. Of course, these items should flow over your knees too.
Besides basic tees, blouses also help create a modest while smart and cute look at the same time. There are many blouses with different types of styles on the market for you to choose and to match with your favorite style but still be appropriate when visiting religious sites like the Vatican.
But also remember to think of the weather of this destination and of when you take your trip. If you are going to take a trip in Summer, a single t-shirt or blouse is enough. If your trip is in Winter, you can add some outer layer into your outfits with a vest or jumper. These outer layers will keep you warm and can be taken off when you are getting sweat after walking for a long time.
Pro tip: A pashmina is an additional best option when you need to cover your chest and shoulders more.
Jumpsuits and Dresses
Dresses are the most popular choice of women when it comes to dressing codes for holiday trips because this item is comfortable to walk around and flatters women’s figures. This type of outfit gives women a sense of romance and grace, especially when visiting a romantic place like Vatican City.
Dresses are suitable for any time of year. However, to experience the best trip, you should choose the suitable material for your dress. For example, you can wear a soft and cool dress made of linen or a wool dress if your trip is in Fall or Winter.
Always keep in mind that to experience the best visiting the Vatican, you must prepare yourself dresses that cover your shoulder and your knees. If it feels like your dress is not totally cover your chest and shoulders or you only have strappy dresses, team up it with a light scarf or a headscarf to look more modest.
Jumpsuits are also a perfect choice that helps you be comfortable and modest. Most jumpsuits are made of loose-fitting and stretchy cotton that offers the most comfortable and easy to wear even in the high temperature of Summer. You can create various outfit styles with a jumpsuit too.
As the Vatican is a religious place, trousers will offer the best cover but still comfortable for your trip.
For any trip in Summer, always pack yourself linen trousers to be cool on all the trip. Jersey-style or other thin materials trousers can also be used as replacements that perfectly fit your shape and suit for heat exploring.
When thinking of what to wear to the Vatican in the colder weather, thicker fabric trousers should be appropriated to keep your legs warm and comfortable.
Pro tip: For dresses’ big fans, add more coverage to keep warm from the cold temperature by wearing tights under your skirts or dresses.
Skirts and Shorts
When it comes to skirts and shorts, the first and the most important thing you always need to keep in mind is avoiding the above-knee ones. To visit the Vatican, all the outfits should cover the knees and shoulders. So, if you still like wearing skirts or shorts, they must be longer than your knee; otherwise, you will not be allowed to enter this destination.
Frankly, we highly recommend long-length skirts and trousers. There are many nice trousers made of loose jerseys, trousers in chino style, or even trousers made of linen. They will go well with any style of your outfits and create a modest look for you to explore the Vatican.
Jackets and Cardigan
To visit the Vatican, you can’t put on any outfit that is not cover your shoulders and your knees. So what to wear to the Vatican if you only have sleeveless dresses? A shawl, a cardigan, or a jacket will solve this problem. These items not only help you cover your shoulder to be allowed to enter the Vatican but also additional protection that keeps you from cold weather if you visit Vatican City in Winter.
Instead of wearing dresses or shirts that have long sleeves all day, using a cardigan or jacket will be more convenient for you to take off as soon as you leave this place and explore other areas. In case you still can’t stand the heat when wearing these items in Summer, a scarf or a pashmina can be used as a replacement to cover your shoulders.
Choosing suitable footwear is another important thing that has a direct impact on your exploring experience. Vatican City is a large place but only accepts visitors exploring by walking. Therefore, to prevent your feet from getting hurt, make sure to put on a pair of shoes for trainers, sports shoes like basketball shoes or tennis shoes, or pumps to always feel comfortable and stable when having a long time walking around.
What to Wear to the Vatican for Men?
Shirts and T-shirt
Men are always simpler and easy-going in choosing outfits for daily activity and traveling also. Most will choose shirts and t-shirts come with a pair of jeans or trousers as favorite outfits.
So when thinking of what to wear to the Vatican, shirts, and t-shirts will also be two popular types of clothes chosen by men. Of course, make sure you choose shirts or t-shirts that cover your shoulders. If this basic requirement is not followed, you won’t pass the museums’ entrance.
Depending on the season that your trip is taken on, you should choose suitable kinds of t-shirts or shirts and their material too. For example, if you plan on visiting the Vatican in the hot season, choose thin cotton shirts or t-shirts. On the other hand, shirts or t-shirt with long sleeves will be better for the cold weather.
Pro tip: For cold weather, you can add more layers by wearing a wooly pullover or jumper outside your shirts and t-shirts so that you can easily take off the outer layer in case it makes you feel too warm when exploring the buildings.
Jacket and Jumpers
To keep warm when taking a trip in the cold weather, the best way is to add more layers into outfits. A soft and comfortable shirt or t-shirt will be considered as bases. Then, you can wear thin jumpers over your shirts to create a warmer layer.
Besides jumpers, you can pack more coats or waterproof jackets and comfortable non slip shoes in case it’s snow or rain. These items will definitely keep you warm and dry if it’s sudden rain. But always remember that the best preparation is checking the weather before going to make sure you have prepared enough things for a safe and comfortable trip.
Shorts and Trousers
Shorts and trousers are like t-shirts and shirts. They are the most popular items for menswear. But the matter of fact is that there are not many shorts covering knees because men like simple and comfortable stuff. An over knee short may have some limit for men when they are doing stuff or moving. So if you don’t have any pair of shorts that meet this requirement, you can choose trousers as a replacement.
Don’t worry that wearing a pair of trousers will make you uncomfortable and getting sweat all day long if wearing in Summer. There are many types of trousers on the market. You can prepare yourself thin trousers made of linen, sports trousers, or zip-leg trousers that are easy to put on and cooling even though facing the Summer’s heat.
These trousers are more than perfect when you team them up with a basic tee or shirt. A great look to take some pictures to keep memories is also important, right?
Just like women’s footwear, there are also no actual requirements for menswear when visiting the Vatican. But we also recommend you to put on a pair of sports shoes or flat and soft sandals. Stylish Flip-flops are allowed; however, this type of footwear should never be used if you are going to have a long time of walking. As a result, sports shoes are the best to enjoy the best time of the Vatican visiting.
What Not to Wear in Vatican City?
We’ve introduced you to all means of clothes that men and women are allowed to wear when visiting the Vatican above. And here is a list of what not to wear to the Vatican:
- Sleeveless shirts, tops, t-shirts, and blouses.
- Revealing and low-cut tops.
- Above-knee skirts and shorts
- Hat – for hats, there is no complete ban for hats. It means that you can wear them when you queue, but you have to take off when getting into the buildings.
If you are planning on taking a trip to the Vatican, make sure to prepare appropriately enough for this dress code to avoid being rejected at the entrance. It is appropriated for both women and men. You just need to always keep in mind that all you are going to wear will long enough to cover your knees and shoulders.
Another important point is not to wear anything that contains offensive slogans or graphics. Although this point is not actually stated in the rule or anywhere, you should show your respect and follow these rules. As the Vatican is a religious site, it’s better to wear as much simple as possible.
What to Dress for Nightlife/Dinner in Vatican City?
It will be perfect if you have a chance to visit Vatican City at night. The building looks more mysterious and gorgeous at nighttime. And there are also no special requirements for the outfit when visiting this place at nighttime. You also do not need to worry about the sunlight so just wear what makes you feel comfortable and convenient when exploring around the buildings.
Just always remember to keep in mind that you need to have a modest look with outfits that cover your knees and your shoulders and not see-through to be allowed to enter the place.
Vatican City Packing List in Summer
The time you are planning on visiting the Vatican will surely affect your plan and your packing list. To be allowed to enter the Vatican, visitors must have to wear modest outfits that cover the knees and shoulders.
Therefore, a pair of trousers and long sleeve shirts or t-shirts are most chosen. However, when at the height of heat in Summer in Vatican City, this type of outfit will definitely make you unpleasant, and you may forget to wear the outfit appropriately. So, here is the list of what you should pack for your vacation to the Vatican in the heat of the Summer.
For women, it’s better to prepare yourself outfits that are made of linen or cotton; these material will keep you cool and absorb sweat. Breezy long trousers or dresses are highly recommended.
Just remember to avoid wearing sleeveless dresses. If you wear them, you should pair them with light and thin outer layers, such as thin cotton long sleeves shirts or cardigans. These layers will help you cover your shoulders why still look good and cool in the hot weather.
It’s the same for menswear. Choosing simple t-shirts made of 100% cotton and team up with linens or sports trousers will make you comfortable even in the hottest time or after walking for a long time.
Packing a hat to keep you from the hot temperature when queuing too. You only need to take it off when entering some places, so it’s better to carry one.
Vatican City Packing List in Winter
When Winter comes, the temperature in Vatican City may drop to zero degrees. This is the reason why prepare things that can keep you warm and dry from sudden rain and snow will be a priority.
For both women and men, finding things that are long enough to cover the knees and shoulders are now not a big deal. It is more important to pack clothes that can keep us warm, right?
Winter is time to pack long sleeves and wooly clothes. Women can now feel comfortable wearing long and wooly dresses or trousers while men can have themselves think pairs of trousers and wooly pullovers.
Wearing more layers is another effective way to keep you warm, and you can easy to take off when it becomes too warm after a long time walking around. In this case, adding into your packing list jackets, jumpers, and scarfs to add more warm layers to your Winter outfits.
Vatican City Packing List in Spring
Spring is the best time to visit Vatican City. The weather at this time is not hot as Summer and not too cold as the Winter. It’s cool and comfortable for you to walk around to explore the whole building while being able to wear your favorite outfits.
Because the average temperature of this time is just around ten degrees, you can prepare yourself a long dress or jumpsuit with long sleeves but still find it comfortable. But if you prefer sleeveless dresses or jumpsuits, use a think scarf or a pashmina to cover your shoulders and to add a highlight on your outfit and make you look more graceful.
A long sleeves t-shirt or shirt pair with trousers is also perfect in this weather condition. In general, the packing list for a trip to the Vatican taken at this time is easier than in other seasons.
What to Wear in Vatican City in December?
Although December is not the coldest month of the year in Vatican City, the average temperature of this month is just around zero degrees at night and early morning. This month is a little bit special because normally the first haft of this month the weather is warmer than the second haft. Therefore, remember to check the accurate weather of the time you visit to make sure you prepare enough warm clothes when taking your trip this month.
For women, it’s better to wear long dresses, jumpsuits or trousers that cover entire your legs. The material of these items should be wool to keep you warm and cozy. Besides, shirts or t-shirts should be ones with long sleeves, especially pullover type. Also, add to your packing list a jacket or cardigan to add more layers to your outfits. You can carry a scarf too.
These things should also be applied to menswear to ensure you will not get cold when walking around in this cold weather. For footwear, tennis shoes or running shoes are highly recommended to offer comfort and warmth to your trip.
What to Wear in Vatican City in January?
January is the coldest month of the year in Vatican City after December. If you are going to take a trip to this place in January, you have to prepare more warm and thick clothes than normal. At this time, you may not have to think of the modesty rules in outfits to visit this place because you have to keep you warm the weather of around zero degrees. You can prepare enough of all the items that we mentioned above.
And if you can’t stand cold weather, pack more thick clothes and waterproof jackets to prevent you from being wet if it sudden rain or snow.
Shoes to Wear in Vatican City
As mentioned in the first section of this article, there are no special requirements for footwear when visiting the Vatican. However, also keep in mind that this place is a large place with many buildings and structures. So if you do not want your foot to be hurt after a long time of walking, you should consider choosing a flat shoes or running shoes. A pair of sandals is also a suitable option. You just need to avoid high heels, flip flop, and other hard shoes.
Vatican Outfits for Girls
The Vatican does not have explicit about the dress code for baby girls. But to ensure your family is all allowed to enter this place without any problem, you should also dress your girls as modest as you. So, for girls’ outfits, avoid dress on your girl shorts and skirt above your girls’ knees. Anything that does not cover the shoulders should not be used too.
We know that parents do not always get long trousers or shirts and t-shirts that have long sleeves for kids because kids are more active. These long features might prevent them from playing and make them uncomfortable. This is the reason why you should pair long dresses with jackets to keep modest but still comfortable. A combination of simple jeans and T-shirts is, of course, a perfect outfit for girls too.
Vatican Outfits for Boys
Vatican outfits for boys are the same as girls’. There are no explicit requirements about their outfit too. Just dress them with items that we mentioned in the menswear section, such as t-shirts or shirts team up with trousers or shorts – must cover the knees. Let’s be ready for you and your kids for an exploring trip to the Vatican with a modest look suitable with this religious site.
What does it actually mean to “dress appropriately”?
“Appropriately dressed” means visitors need to wear modesty outfits when visiting the Vatican. If not, they may not be allowed to get into this place. So, how a modesty outfit look like? This term is just so simple. Because the Vatican is a religious place so when visiting it, your clothes must cover your knees and shoulder as well as not see-through. Your clothes also should not have any printed offensive graphic.
May I take pictures when visiting the Vatican?
In general, taking pictures is allowed in most parts of the Vatican. However, there will some strict rules in some special areas. So, it’s recommended that you should put away electronics and set your phones silent. To be more careful, before taking pictures, you should ask the tour guides if you follow a tour. If you visit this place on your own, ask any staff of the Vatican to avoid breaking their rules that lead to any problems, or you may not be allowed to continue visiting the buildings.
Which season is the best to take a Vatican trip?
To experience the best trip to the Vatican, you should visit this place in October or November. When visiting the Vatican, you must wear modest outfits, so visit it in the cool weather will be much better. Moreover, the number of visitors at this time is less dense than others times of the year. Therefore, the cost of renting a hotel is also lower than it should be in Summer.
Which day is the greatest day to visit the Vatican of the week?
Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday are the three best days of the week to visit the Vatican. Because this place is one of the most famous holy sites in the world, many visitors can queue for a long time to have a chance to visit this place. Normally, Monday is the most crowded day in the week because, on this day, most museums closed. It will be in the same condition on Wednesday because many Pope’s audiences attend. Saturday is also another crowded day.
Can I carry a backpack to visit the Vatican Museums?
Yes. A small backpack is allowed to carry when visiting the Vatican. Your backpack must be smaller than 35cm in width x 40cm in length x 15cm in depth. If you bring any bigger thing than this, you must have it checked and stored in the storage.
Therefore, when planning on visiting the Vatican, you should not bring too many things; otherwise, you will have to leave your tour early to go back and get your backpack. The worst situation is your backpack may be kept until the next day if you visit this place in the afternoon.
Can I wear a hat when visiting the Vatican?
A hat is allowed when queuing or visiting some places. But if you visit the Vatican museum and other religious sites, you have to take off your hat. It is like wearing clothes that not do cover the knees and shoulders; wearing hats indoors is also considered a bad manner.
Is it ok to wear jeans to the Vatican?
For this question, it also no explicit requirements on what exactly you can or cannot wear when visiting the Vatican. It only says that visitors must wear outfits that can cover their knees and shoulders. Outfits are also not see-through. So, if you are confused about what to wear to the Vatican, it will be best to follow the modesty rules.
Is it ok to wear legging to the Vatican?
Although leggings and tights are long and can cover all your knees, it is not recommended to wear to the Vatican. There are no exact requirements for any type of women’s hiking pants or clothes that you could wear. We heard some cases that people are not allowed to visit the Vatican due to wearing tights and leggings. So to make sure there is no problem like this happen to your trip, you should wear trousers and can wear legging under a long address to keep warm in the Winter.
Are shorts allowed to wear to the Vatican?
Yes. We also mention this in the first section. Shorts are allowed to wear them to the Vatican in case it long enough to cover your knees. If your shorts are above knees, of course, you are surely not allowed to enter the Vatican.
In short, we hope that this article will help you know what to wear to the Vatican if you are planning on taking a trip to this religious site. To show your respect and to be allowed to enter this place, your outfits should be as simple and modest as possible. Anything that you are going to put on to the Vatican needs to be not see-through and long enough to cover your knees and your shoulders.