Pakistan is one of the easier countries to pack for. Comfortable casual light clothing is the call of the day, unless you’re heading into the mountains, in which case you’ll need a few items to stay warm and some sturdy shoes. For those of you who are more brave, you can try out some local attire and try to blend in. Pakistan is a great place to buy cheap, well-made clothing so you don’t even need to pack.
Pakistan is definitely an exotic location and not a well-travelled path, however you can pretty much get everything in Pakistan that you’ll need so also no need to worry if you’ve forgotten something.
Here's the definitive guide.
Pakistan is a huge country and covers a lot of different climates. If you’re in the south, near Karachi, you can expect hot weather all year round. Whereas in the north of Pakistan you can expect some of the world’s highest mountains with heavy snowfall and frigid conditions.
You really do need to check exactly where you are travelling and the weather you should expect. Chances are you will fly into Islamabad, Lahore or Karachi, which are all going to be hot for most of the year. In places like this you should wear loose-fitting, conservative, but comfortable clothes.
Definitely no tank tops or singlets for men/women. Women should avoid having their mid drift showing and should have a skirt or trousers lower than the knee.
There is no need for a woman to wear a headscarf in Pakistan, however there may be times in which you’ll feel more comfortable having one.
If you are heading into the mountainous areas, you need to make sure you have some warm clothing regardless of what time of year you are travelling. It can still get cold even in summer especially, at night.
For around the hotels
Back at the hotels you will be able to jump into your shorts or lighter clothing, but you still can’t reveal too much. This is especially relevant to any females who have had to wear very conservative and often quite hot clothes all day, especially if you have had your head covered.
Once again it depends on the climate, however in most situations it will be acceptable for men and women alike to wear shorts, t-shirts, etc. around the hotel. Obviously one still wouldn't parade around in a bikini, and you do need to listen to the specific instruction or advice from your guide for each specific situation, but it's generally a very relaxed atmosphere.
The streets of Pakistani cities can be very dusty, dirty and if it’s been wet, very muddy. It’s best to have good solid footwear for everywhere in Pakistan. There will be rural conditions as well as climbing ruins or taking the opportunity to ride a horse. You will also need to take your shoes off when entering any mosques, so that is something else to take into consideration.
You are free to bring any suitcase or bag with you on our trips. We will always be staying at accommodation where there will be someone to help you carry you bag to your room. We also have transport which has enough space for luggage.
You probably won’t need much in the way of luggage as you really don’t need to take much to Pakistan.
A day pack is invaluable for keeping your money, passport, water, phone or whatever else you might be carrying.
There are few places in the world as photogenic as Pakistan. It seems that on every street corner there is the next cover of National Geographic waiting to be snapped up. Make sure you bring the best camera that you own! You’ll only regret not bringing it once you see the photogenic opportunities you’re giving up. But also make sure that you bring a good phone or small point and shoot camera as well. There will be times such as the small winding alleys of the markets where you need to be able to take a photo quickly and keep moving.
Drones are best left at home unless you're travelling to really rural areas and away from any people.
Pakistan seems to have more pharmacies than any other type of shop. For all the basics you’ll have no issue finding a cheap simple solution. Even more complicated medicine is likely to be available, but of course don’t depend on it.
The pharmacies will still have all the basics you're used to, whether it’s pain killers, anti-inflammatories, something to help block you up or something to unblock you. However, if you have some serious conditions that require medicine make sure you bring extras and the relevant scripts as well.
What you don't need but can still bring anyway
A lot of people bring lots of books, music, games etc, thinking there will be lots of opportunities to use them, whether it be long drives or early nights. Nothing could be further from the truth. It's unlikely you'll want to take your eyes off your surroundings for a moment longer than you have to. Of course still bring the things you love doing, but it's unlikely you'll get that many opportunities.
Torch: The power often goes out if you’re in rural areas and while it might only be for 10 minutes, sometimes it can be a couple of hours, so a torch usually comes in handy if you don't have a phone. Of course, everyone has a phone so you probably don't need a torch, but those with torches are usually well admired for their resourcefulness. This isn’t an issue in the major cities.
Sunscreen: If you’re travelling in summer, sunscreen will stop you turning in to a tomato. That Pakistan sun can sure be harsh. Even if you’re well covered you might not want your nose to start peeling.
If you’d like to speak to us about any of this or you’ve got a question about what you should take to Pakistan or not, please contact us .