I was really nervous about what to wear when I went to KL. Because they are a majority Muslim country I wasn't sure if I would be offending them if I wore shorts or a skirt. I spent the first two days there wearing jeans when it was stinking hot and really humid! I ended up asking one of our tour guides and he said that wearing shorts and skirts is fine (phewf!). I think you just have to be careful if you're going into a temple or religious area. And of course, don't wear a super mini skirt! I was wearing shorts and skirts that were probably mid thigh. You may get a look from a local every now and then, but this guide assured me that there is no need to torture yourself by wearing pants all day!
Although your not likely to be arrested for not wearing correct attire, sometimes its just a really nice sign of respect for Muslim religion to cover up a bit.
I recommend just a t-shirt and jeans/cargo's.
Some restaurants, temples etc will not let you in wearing singlets or shorts - so be prepared.
I found that i just felt more comfortable walking around wearing a tshirt and cargos - most of the women can sometimes be covered from head to toe! So this is just a helpful hint so your stay in KL is a little easier.
Just arrived at KL on the second day of the Hari Raya where all the Malay people try to go back to their ancestral villages and believe you me, driving around KL this night looked like going through a ghost town.
there was a concert with Diana Krall at KLCC auditorium. it was good to watch the crowd, very well dressed Chinese Yuppies from twenty something to 30 something, very few Indians and no Malays (they are away). not many expats, nor the white community with their chinese girl friends( perhaps jazz is not to their taste rather than cafe and bars?).. it was a treat to the eyes, to see young chinese dressed well and with taste and extremely well behaved crowd and orderly. it was a pleasure indeed
the concert was held at KLCC auditorium.. delightful backdrop to the stage..
The music was anything but Malaysian, was pure jazz at moments and mostly north american, but thenagain, that is what jazz is...to distinguish it from cuban jazz, south african jazz...
Light, cool and casual clothing is recommended all year round. Shorts, miniskirts, sleeveless garments for women are not advisable, especially when visiting Mosques and temples. Comfortable walking shoes.
I am a KL born. Let me give a true guide of what to wear. In KL, there are some areas where you should avoid wearing too skimpy or sexy e.g Mosques and temples(showing respects)Chow Kit area and Petaling Street(to avoid being harass). Please don't be misguided that we wear our clothes till high up our neck or something. There are alot of locals and foreigners wear mini-skirts,short pants, hot pants, sleeveless, tight pants, tube while shopping etc. Is OK because it is hot! But hopefully you wear your bra and not provocative shirts or else you would want people to stare at you. I really think with such humid and hot weather, wearing a bra is much comfortable, unless you want your clothes to stick to your body and revealing your.....you know what i mean.
Girls try not to wear short skirts and tiny tops.
The best thing to wear is t.shirts or singlets with thick straps & shorts, skirts, 3/4's.
You wont get into trouble or anything it is just something that the people do not wear.
You can wear whatever you want in KL but do be aware of certain places. The weather is roasting hot here and most people go around with khaki shorts(my fav!) and T-shirts but if you plan to visit the mosque or holy places, it would be more appropriate to wear something that err...cover up. No, you dont have to buy a burqa. Wear jeans or long pants instead of shorts.
KL is a pretty modernised city now but westerners should remember that Malaysia is also predominantly muslim. I made the mistake of forgetting this and feeling the heat left the hotel for the morning site seeing in shorts and a vest top - for the next 3 hours I got lots of pervy stares (totally my fault) as soon as i could I went back to the hotel and changed. The shorts were fine (they weren't that short) but I changed to a t-shirt which wasn't as revealing and the differnece with passing men was amazing - now I was totally ignored! :o) So you don't have to cover up totally thankfully becuase it is so hot and sticky! Also remember that the building & shopping centres have freezing air-con so again as a woman I found a padded bra was a good item to wear as it stopped obvious problems poking through your t-shirt!!
Lastly if you want to visit the temples remember that women have to cover their head and shoulders and men can't wear shorts sometimes. But also most of them provide scarves and robes anyway for a donation.
Make sure you are not wearing any shirts with prints of pigs!! My friend was wearing this yellow top with a picture of a really cute pig on it and you could see Malays deviating from their paths as they walked towards her!!
Since Malaysia is a majority Moslem country, be prepared to dress accordingly. The country is accustomed to foreign tourists, so you won't have rocks thrown at you for wearing shorts and a tank top, but it's nice to be respectful. In mosques (including the National Mosque), women are required to cover their heads and wear full-body coverings. These are available for borrowing, if you don't have one. Here's me in full gear...I think I need some lessons on how to wear that head scarf!
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