The festive season is upon us and there is no better time to travel. Many of us will be jet-setting to warm climates where the beaches are hot and the cocktails cold. For us South Africans, a popular choice for December is South East Asia – think Thailand, Indonesia, Vietnam and the Philippines. Soaking up the rich cultures and embracing the fair exchange rate is what appeals to us most. Below we have put together examples of essential outfits, from beach wear to a night on the town.

The Great Trek

Planning on sightseeing? We have you covered. Opt for shorts when participating in tours and other activities; dresses can often be uncomfortable. Just make sure you’re always culturally appropriate – some temples and other sacred places won’t allow you in without your shoulders and knees covered. A wide-brimmed sun hat is a must as you never know what the shelter situation will be, but again, remove it when you enter a sacred spot. Sneakers lessen the risk of blisters that usually occur when walking great distances in sandals.

  • R199, Queenspark

Lady of Leisure

Kaftans are extremely useful when lounging poolside. We have found the ultimate kaftan from Mango. Its black mesh has a semi-formal appeal and will easily carry you from beach to lunch. Opt for a fun pair of espadrilles, both comfy and stylish.

  • R949, Mango

Supper club

Velvet and sequins are everything the holidays are made of. Dress or playsuit, throw a slingbag over your shoulder and put on a pair of electric blue sandals.

  • R1 499, Mango


It is always imperative to apply sun protection, rain or shine. Ensure you also take a good moisturiser along with you to avoid dry skin and peeling. A sarong is an extremely versatile piece – it’s great as a cover-up, over the head for shade or on the sand as an emergency beach towel.

  • Woodstock Duffel Bag, R5 500, Jekyll & Hide