September 23, 2019

Sarong Suggestions for Life on the Road


Photo Credit: Alex.Ch

I first got turned on to these when I moved to Guam years ago, and got addicted to buying them on my first trip to Bali. They are colorful, versatile, dry quickly after washing them in the hostel shower, take up very little space in the backpack, and are just plain fun. Following is my list of top sarong suggestions for the hard core independent traveler.

Shower towel.

If you can release the desire for thick fluffies, sarongs are more than capable of getting the job done. Bonus? They dry super quick so you wonít have moldy smelling clothing after carrying one around in your bag for a few days on a long bus trip.

Tie up laundry tote.

If you are traveling for some time, you may need two in order to still have one to wear. However, if you are going for a few days to only one hotel, you can save up the laundry and roll it all up in your sarong to take home, tying the ends for closure.


Flickr Photo Credit: Steve Weaver

Privacy screen for changing on the bottom hostel bunk.

Iíve actually used this tip quite a bit. Depending on how the bottom bunk is attached to the top one, you can either tuck the horizontal edge under the upper mattress, or hook with safety pins to the metal support grid above. This makes for a decent curtain to at least get into your undies and T-shirt before climbing out to finish dressing. My husband and I try when possible to get corresponding top and bottom bunks. Then, we can hang up our toiletry kit in a mutually convenient location, share lighting and alarm clock in the morning, etc. And, when Iím done getting pseudo dressed, he can duck in behind the privacy screen and do what he needs to do as well.

Picnic blanket.

OK, this requires youíre not wearing it at the time. (Or again, consider bringing two.) But it sure is nice to be able to pull out a cloth from your day pack and plunk yourself down with mineral water and fruit on the grass of a plaza somewhere as fabulous as say, Pisa. Incredible, really.

Wrap skirt.

Various styles abound with this. And if you are comfortable with unpredictable winds and constantly readjusting, fine. Personally, I prefer to add a few safety pins into the mix. Your call.

Window curtain.

Weíve used this when there wasnít any privacy in our hostel bedroom window. Hey, when it makes the difference between a twenty dollar room and a six dollar room, my philosophy is at that price, there are some things I just donít mind going without. Bonus? Sarongs are light enough so that the breeze can still easily blow through.

Shower curtain.

Depending on how many branches are available in your selected spot for a solar bag shower, you may be able to go for a couple of these secured together for a little more wiggle room.

Bathing suit cover up.

Wrap and tie, baby. Thatís it.

Halter wrap dress.

There are loads of way to do this, as well as strategies for men who want to keep cool and wear one as a Polynesian style male wrap skirt. Hereís a super cool video that demonstrates boatloads of styles for each gender.

Pillow cover wrap.

Roll it up lengthwise, and knot the ends to keep a layer of sanitary protection between you and a well used hostel pillow.

Baby carrier.

Save yourself the stress of carrying unnecessary travel gear. This site has lots of resource links for instructions on various styles.††† It even has instructions to show how to wear it while nursing and site seeing at the same time. How powerful is that, ladies?

Sun shade.

Tie it to tree branches or empty poles on the river boat for sun protection on the fly.

Thatís my list, folks. Iím sure there are more out there, and welcome additional resources if you want to post a link below.† For those of you with full sized curves who are tired of not being able enjoy sarongs to their fullest potential, hereís a link to a source that sells plus sized ones.


  1. Molly says:

    Where can I buy some of these? These are great ideas.

  2. This is why I carry my sarong with me wherever I go. It’s soo versatile!