Want to know why you should always travel with a beach sarong?
Well when it comes to packing for a trip, lightweight and multi-functional is key to travelling light. These two characteristics are synonymous with sarongs and for this I included them in my expert packing tips. Luckily today you will find out exactly how multi-functional they really are.
For now though, whether you are male or female, make sure you pack a beach sarong on your next trip!
What is a Sarong?
Sarong, pareo, canga they go by many names depending on where you are in the world. Whatever the name, they are lightweight rectangular pieces of fabric, commonly found in countries with tropical climates.
Beach sarongs are great because they are fast drying, compact and light. Additionally, they are really easy to find and will hardly break the bank. I bought one on the road out of necessity but now I always use a sarong. It doesn’t matter what climate I’m going to, there is always a way that it helps me out.
Beach Sarongs are not Just for the Beach
Really there are endless uses for sarongs. They are so versatile that they’re use is limited only to your imagination, but you came here for some practical tips. Therefore, without further ado, here are their most common and practical uses.
1. Beach Sarong or Bath Towel
From a unisex perspective, this is probably the most common use. I don’t know why anyone still packs a bulky beach towel in their luggage. A sarong will take up a fraction of the space in your bag and dries 10x as fast. Plus it doubles as a towel, perfect for drying off at the pool and the beach.
2. Picnic Rug Sarong
This is one of the reasons why I take a sarong even when my trip won’t involve a beach. Whether it’s the grass, ground or just a dirty bench, a sarong will keep your clothes clean and dry.
3. Use a Sarong as Clothing
Clothing was the traditional use of a sarong and there are many ways to wear it. Although technically a unisex garment, when worn it looks pretty similar to a skirt. For that reason, as clothing, sarongs are more suited to being used as women’s wear. Ladies, this video shows you how to use a sarong to make your own play-suit, skirt or high neck.
4. Beach Sarong Scarf (winter & sand)
Unless you are intentionally travelling in winter, you’ll probably not have packed a scarf. You may move to higher ground and feel you are lacking in warm clothing, which a sarong will rectify. Not just that, because they’re lightweight they’re ideal as a sand scarfs or bandannas when winds are high.
5. Makeshift Laundry Bag for Travel
Ever wrap your laundry in your towel to take it down stairs to the washing machine? Well a sarong can serve this function when you are traveling. They are even better than a towel for carrying clothes and you will look more normal too.
6. A Sarong as a Cover up
If you’re visiting places of worship you’ll often have to cover up. That goes for men and women. Rather than spending the day melting in full length clothing, take a sarong. You can easily cover up any bear skin then whip it off as soon as you’re out the temple. Additionally, if you’re wanting to protect your skin from the sun they’ll block out the rays whilst keeping you cool.
7. Travel Pillow
You can roll your sarong into a ball and make a pillow, saving you from lugging around a travel pillow. I use mine on overnight buses and couldn’t be happier with how it performs. You could even tie it round the seat and make a sling for your head!
8. Travel Blanket
Sarongs are great to have accessible on aeroplanes and air-conditioned buses. They easily fit into the seat pocket so won’t get in your way. If you start to cool down from sitting still in the air-con, you can use them as blankets.
9. Beach Sarong to Bed Sheets
Hopefully your accommodation is clean, but if it’s not/you spill something on your sheet, a sarong can act as a replacement. Additionally if you need to crash on a sofa they are the ideal size.
10. Use Your Sarong as a Sleeping Mask
I always bring a sleeping mask travelling but if you don’t you can make one out of a sarong. Simply wrap it around your eyes and it’ll block out all of the light. Great for shared dorm rooms or when the traveling has messed up your body clock.
11. Privacy Curtain or Divider
In hostels or shared rooms you can get a bit of privacy by tucking your sarong under the bed above you and forming a curtain. If you are trying to sleep on a train you can also use it as a window curtain.
12. Sarongs are Perfect Padding & Bag Dividers
Sarongs are great for use as padding. You can wrap your valuables or fruit to prevent damage or hide them from sight. I put mine over the laptop sleeve so thieves checking my bag might not notice my laptop.
They could also be stuffed to the back of your bag to stop objects digging into your back. If your bag is part full and unbalanced, use the sarong to fill the empty space and balance the load.
13. Make Rope from a Sarong
Sarongs are really easy to tie knots in so you can use them as ropes to tie things up. That or fashion yourself a comfortable carry handle to carry awkward objects.
If someone has an injury, having a sarong could very well save their life. Tourniquet, bandage, sling or splint tie they are great to have on-hand
Beach Sarong Final Thoughts
That’s it guys, but like I said the uses of sarongs are only limited by your imagination. Hopefully my tips have given you some ideas you hadn’t considered before. If you do have any more imaginative ideas, I’d love to see them in the comments!