Dress Code for Women in Myanmar

By Mridula Dwivedi April 15, 2017 10 Comments , ,

I visited Yangon and Inle Lake in Myanmar for Escapers17. It was a fast paced super fun event. I still found time to look at what was the dress code for women in Myanmar.

Beautifully Dressed Local Women at Yangon!

The local women dress beautifully in Longyi and tops. Men also wrap the same longyi in a slightly different style. Given the hot weather, the comfortable skirt makes a lot of sense. It is almost the same as the wrap around skirts worn in North East India and Thailand.

People Waiting at the Yangon Airport!

I clicked this picture at the Yangon Airport. You can see both men and women wrap the same longyi but slightly differently. They wear it with a t-shirt/shirt/top. This is by far the most common way to dress in Myanmar.

Locals and the Tourists at Yangon!

When it came to tourists, they have more leeway in the way they decide to dress. It might be a little contrary to the local dress code but I don’t think wearing sleeveless or spaghetti is going to raise too many eyebrows, though locals certainly cover up more.

Women in Yangon!

Women (men too) in Myanmar put Thanaka on their face. It comes from the tree (not sure what is the Indian equivalent) bark and it is applied on the face to prevent sunburn. It is also used as a beauty product in Myanmar. I tried it out too, it is cool stuff!

The Tourists and the Monk!

The people in Myanmar are friendly, but many may not speak English! I saw this group walking by on the road! Not sure what they were talking about but I am sure wearing sleeveless tops in no way affected their conversation!

Longyi, the Traditional Dress of Myanmar

By now I was used to clicking beautiful women in Longyi but I was wondering why these two were wearing an identical dress. I was in the Scott Market in Yangon and my guess is they worked in a place where this was the uniform? But then what do I know, I am just a curious tourist!

Dressed for Summer!

And nearby, a tourist was dressed for the hot summer afternoon in Yangon! Let me bring in the temple code here. If you are dressed like this you cannot enter a temple (pagoda, shrine etc) in Myanmar. Like many other Buddhist places in South East Asia it is required that you cover your knees and shoulders. If you are wearing a short dress you can cover the knee by simply carrying a longyi! For shoulders many places will give you a wrap.

The Local Women Buying Hats at Inle Lake, Myanmar

At Inle Lake which is in the Shan State of Myanmar women wear a headgear which I am sure can be part of a ramp model’s style! Inle Lake has cooler weather so you can see women wearing a jacket over their top. Longyi is still by far the common dress here too.


I close the post by a picture of the woman I chanced upon in Inle Lake. She was smoking the local cheroot. She has swag!


PS. I visited Singapore and Myanmar for Escapers17 where my hosts were Accor Hotels, Scoot and Asia Holidays.


10 thoughts on “Dress Code for Women in Myanmar”

  1. It was really a very nice read and the photography is really very good as always.
    Longyi is similar to Lungi( The famous “Lungi Dance” song), in our country the design changed slightly and the name also, as you have mentioned its quite popular in North east India,if you cut it in middle it can be called “Dhoti”.
    The women in the last picture can be my very good friend.

  2. Great capture, the last one: Har fikr ko dhuyen me urata chala gaya…. I love this song 🙂

    Liked the subtle humour in your write up, like this one: ” I am just a curious tourist!”

  3. I am much into your dress code series now though I read this after your latest post on dress code. Apart from the dress part, I guess it was also a fun pastime of watching humans. Which I do many a time when I am in a crowd and have nothing else to do 🙂
    The wrap around skirts or rather the Longyis are a really cool dress and it gives them a different identity. Enjoyed reading your post.

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I am Mridula Dwivedi, I love to travel! I started my travel blog in 2005. I have been going places since! For more details do check out my media kit! In another life I did a Ph.D. from IIT Kanpur. I was a professor when I quit my job in 2015.

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