Travel Wardrobe for Multiple Climates

We are excited to launch again…headed out this time for ten weeks of travel as we settle back into a life of long-term travel. Unlike our two months in French Polynesia, the next ten weeks have us in nine countries. It’s going to be a whirlwind. Unlike French Polynesia this time I have to think about a travel wardrobe for multiple climates.

Where Are We Going?

This black trench from Calvin Klein I got at Marshal’s for $15.99! I will wear this a lot.

I have a blog coming up next week where I will share our full itinerary, but for the purposes of today’s post, we are headed out to New York City, the Caribbean Islands, North and West Africa, Paris and the Mediterranean. Packing for these ten weeks means I need slacks and dresses, coats and walking shoes, shorts and tank tops as well as respectful attire for Muslim countries that will be hot in the day and cool at night. It’s a challenge to create this travel wardrobe for multiple climates without over packing.

But I’m always up to a challenge.

New York and Paris

I’ll be in New York City for eleven days and Paris for only one. Both cities could have temperatures anywhere from 45 Fahrenheit to 75. It’s hard to say. Since for the last few years our travels have mostly been to tropical locales, I went out and did some shopping for a variety of new items that I hope will be useful and stylish and flow seamlessly into my existing travel wardrobe.

I bought these black crepe pants at Talbots that I think I am going to love. I also bought a white t-shirt, white button down and a little black and white shrug. Here are four ways I can wear the black crepe pants in the big cities. You’ll see these tops used over and over in the weeks ahead.

Perhaps to the theater?
Walking in Central Park?
At the Met?
Dinner out?

I’m also bringing my navy linen pants. They are lightweight and I can dress them up or down. Here they are four ways for both the city and rural destinations;

Layers for cooler days
Sunny yellow option
This top works with shorts too
My fav Talbots tank


We are really excited to return to Morocco, this time with our two adult sons. Together the four of us will travel for one week, then we will attend a very formal and traditional Moroccan wedding in Fes. The bride and groom are special and dear to us, and we are excited to share this event with them. Carrying formal clothes is definitely not something we normally do. We even purchased a new suit bag to make this easier. We are sending the suit bag with our sons and will ship it home with them too (maybe with some other items) giving us more flexibility with our bags. Here are three formal looks for me;

Probably wear this to the wedding. I love the fit of this dress from Ann Klein
Another wedding option
This dress never wrinkles. Might wear this for the wedding breakfast. From Tommy Bahama

And my husband’s wedding looks;

Wedding look
Linen blazer can be used lots of ways

And Into the Oven

Two stops in the Caribbean, Senegal and three countries in the Mediterranean will put us back into tropical weather with highs in the 80’s and lows in the 70’s. Of course we love this weather and already have the wardrobe for it. I purchased two new swimsuits from RipCurl (my new favorite) and have done some mixing and matching in my current tropical wardrobe. Since I am a big fan of linen in the heat, some of my favorite linen pieces have made the cut for this trip. Yes linen wrinkles but in warm humid climates the wrinkles just fall away once the garment is next to my body. We will be in Muslim countries as well as conservative Israel where covering shoulders and sometimes knees is required. I can do that with linen pants, dresses with sleeves and scarves and sweaters. I purchased another item, this rust colored duster which I hope will be versatile. It’s from JJill. Here are some of my new and recycled pieces that made the cut.

Mix and match
More mix and match
Rip Curl swimsuit is also mix and match
Rip Curl
I love linen
I like this look
This top I can mix and match
This sundress is several years old, topped with the duster

Shoes, Always Too Many Shoes

Shoes create havoc in my packing process, and this time, with the formal events, I am even more stymied on how to not over pack the shoes. But, here are the ones I plan to take, more than usual. Some are new and some are tried and true;

Two new for formal events – I’ll send these with our sons
Ecco brand is comfort all the way, and I love both these shoes for travel
Sneakers for many reasons; walking, running, hiking and more

The Hubs

My husband indulges me with selfies most of the time, but was reluctant to let me photograph him for this blog post. I talked him into it though, because I convinced him this time to update his wardrobe with a few contemporary pieces. He is a pretty simple guy, and especially for travel has found his favorite and minimalist travel pieces and rarely needs anything more. But we did a shopping trip for him this month, and I think he looks amazing in his new travel wardrobe for multiple climates. These items plus the linen blazer (see above) will be great additions.

Slimmed down jeans are a great update
Versatile Henley and new shoes by Cole Haan
He loves these slacks, they are a nice fabric by Perry Ellis
Tropical look and new Sperry topsiders

And All the Rest

The total going into the bag for me (I may edit further) is;

  • 3 pants
  • 1 walking shorts
  • 1 hiking shorts
  • 2 t-shirts
  • 2 tank tops
  • 2 short sleeve blouse
  • 3 long sleeve blouse
  • 2 lightweight sweater
  • 1 linen duster
  • 4 sundresses
  • 1 denim jacket
  • 2 formal dresses
  • 2 swimsuits
  • 1 sarong
  • 1 coat and 1 windbreaker
  • running clothes

It looks like a lot of clothes, but actually it is less than I have brought in the past. And before it all goes in the suitcase I will likely edit it down further. I’ve learned what works and what ends up just being dead weight. I don’t really think much anymore about my toiletries, my jewelry or other items we carry regularly. We have a good system now that includes first aid, our French press, The Mug, a foldable cooler, a beach bag and usually some spices and coffee. Our cords and electronics are all conveniently organized in what we call our gadget bag and it all runs pretty smooth. We covet our packing cubes that are life altering and after so many flights and hundreds of thousands of miles, we are kinda experts with this.

Travel Wardrobe for Multiple Climates

After seven years we continue to use our two REI roller duffel bags. Arne replaced all four wheels on these bags this month and they should be good for thousands more miles. These bags are true workhorses and we love them.

Travel Wardrobe for Multiple Climates

It’s with caution that we launch this next episode of The Grand Adventure. We are excited and ready to tackle the challenges travel presents in this crazy world. Of course we always travel with caution, and will of course do so again…and still look amazing and be comfortable in our travel wardrobe for multiple climates.

And I always pack a few hats

I hope you will come back next Friday to read about our nine stops on our itinerary, and why we have chosen these places to visit – we have put a lot of heart and soul in these choices. It’s going to be an amazing journey, and I can’t wait.

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  • Reply Linda (LD Holland)

    I must admit I have a set of clothes that I generally use for travel. Pieces are added or subtracted based on climate and the mix of city versus outdoor sites we plan to visit. I love the look of linen clothes but hate how quickly they wrinkle. So these pieces rarely make it into my suitcase. But there are never enough pairs of shoes! We too are glad we finally moved to packing cubes – as much for organization as for packing space.

    April 9, 2022 at 12:11 am
    • Reply Laureen

      Everyone has a system! And packing cubes sure help! Safe travels Linda!

      April 9, 2022 at 6:35 am
  • Reply Alma

    After the advice you have shared on this blog, I will have to up my game regarding my travel wardrobe! Some great ideas there for me to try.

    April 9, 2022 at 6:21 am
  • Reply Renée

    I used to be a heavy packer when travelling, but now as I get older I manage with just carry on. The trick is 1-2 colours and mix and match. Great tips shared, especially love linen.

    April 11, 2022 at 12:47 am
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