What To Wear In Cancun + The Only Packing List You Need

Heading to Cancun? Learn exactly what clothes to wear and how to pack for your next getaway to Cancun, Mexico!

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image of a woman wearing a large sun hat with her feet in a swimming pool

What To Wear In Cancun 

Congratulations, you’ve planned a Cancun vacation! You’ve made the hotel reservations, booked the excursions, and fantasized about your first cocktail of many on your relaxing beach vacation.

On the other hand, you might have only just started thinking about what need to be on your Cancun packing list. We’ve got you covered! So, continue reading to discover what clothes to wear (and pack) on your next Mexican vacation!

Photo: @juliaberolzheimer

What To Wear to the Beach in Cancun

Turquoise seas, white-sand beaches, and vibrant coral reefs make up the beauty that is Cancun. As a matter of fact, this beach town is one of Mexico’s most popular destinations.

With tourists from all over the world, you’ll want to make sure your outfits are fabulous. Especially your beachwear. Therefore, we’ve got the list of what you’ll want to wear while taking a dip in the ocean or sunning on the sand:

  • Swimsuits: Choose a bikini or a one-piece, it’s up to you! As long as you feel confident and comfortable, you’ll shine on this Caribbean beach.


  • Flip flops & Sandals: While you’ll definitely be kicking off your shoes as soon as you hit the water, the powdery white sand will be hot! Therefore, opt for a pair of rubber flip flops or leather sandals to keep your feet from burning from the hotel to the shore. 


  • Coverups: A cotton dress, oversized button-up, gauzy short-set or linen coverup is the perfect thing to throw over your bathing suit. For the most part, these quick dry fabrics will have you looking fashionable without being too hot in the Mexico humidity. 


image of a woman leaning against a beige wall wearing a nude swimsuit and coverup and sun hat
  • Accessories: No beach outfit is complete without a pair of sunnies and a fabulous hat! Therefore, shade your eyes and face from the sun with big frames and wide brims. Looking to go the extra mile? Throw on tarnish-free jewelry for an elevated look. 


  • Beach Tote: Lastly, but certainly not least, you’ll want a tote bag to carry all of you beach essentials. Particularly, you’ll want a straw or whicker bag to house things like sunscreen, sunglasses, headphones, your favorite book, and snacks. Also, neutral colors will go with all your bathing suits and look chic with any coverup you choose!

beach totes:

(photos: @fashionchick, @elliepagee_)

What To Wear To Cancun Clubs

While you’ll be spending most of your time on the beach during the day, you’ll want to hit at least one of Cancun’s famous clubs at night. 

Ordinarily, when it comes to club attire, there is no specific Cancun nightlife dress code. Still you’ll want to avoid wearing beach attire (unless it’s a pool party), and clothes that are too casual. By all means, dress up a little and have fun. You’re on vacation, after all!

Here’s what you’ll want to wear to dance the night away at a Cancun Club: 

  • Party Dresses: Whether you choose a tighter or looser fitting dress, make sure it is comfortable and breezy. In short, you can still feel the Mexico humidity at night, and you won’t want to be uncomfortable while you are dancing up a storm! Therefore, opt for cotton or linen dresses over polyester materials. You’ll thank us later. 

party dresses:

  • Wedges & Block Heels: Dress up your club outfit with a comfortable pair of wedges or block heels. Usually stilettos are tricky to navigate in crowds or on slippery floors. Simply go for something with sturdy heel and a strap around the ankle is ideal for walking and dancing.


  • Jewelry: Gold or silver, your choice! Simply go with something more dainty and subtle rather than big and over-the-top. 


Photo: @jennikayne

What do you wear to an all-inclusive resort in Mexico? 

If you’re staying in Cancun, you are likely staying in Hotel Zone. In this case, most of these resorts don’t have any type of strict dress code. Therefore, swimsuits, flip flops and coverups will suffice for most of your trip. However, you’ll also want a few dressier outfits if you are dining at your hotel. 

Here’s what you’ll want to wear on your all-inclusive vacation:

  • Lightweight dresses
  • Midi or maxi skirts 
  • Swimsuits and cover-ups
  • Tank tops (neutral colors are great for versatility)
  • Lightweight shorts (linen and cotton)
  • Lightweight pants (linen and cotton)
  • Wedge or block-heeled sandals
  • Leather sandals or flip flops 
  • Subtle, tarnish-free jewelry
  • Workout clothing and running shoes (see below)

Additionally, your resort will also likely have various activities for you and your travel companions to enjoy. So, take a look at your itinerary and plan accordingly for activities such as swimming, workout classes and off-site excursions.

Photos: @juliaberolzheimer, @cmcoving

What do you wear to a wedding in Cancun? 

Because Cancun is so beautiful, many couples choose it as a wedding destination. Therefore, when choosing the perfect outfit as a wedding guest think “breezy and elevated”. Simply put, long, airy dresses or shorter cotton dresses are perfect for beach-side nuptials.

Here’s what you’ll want to pack as a destination wedding guest: 

  • Midi, Maxi, or Mini Dress: Soft colors look great in beach photos. Therefore, opt for a cotton or linen dress for your loved one’s “I Do’s.” Also, if you want to go with a light color, instead of anything bright white (you don’t want to compete with the bride…), go with ivory or cream.

wedding guest dresses:

  • Sandals: Strappy wedge or flat sandals are great for beach weddings. Simply put, in the event that the ceremony takes place on the sand, you won’t lose a shoe!
  • Accessories: Try subtle, tarnish-free jewelry to add a little something extra to your effortlessly chic wedding guest outfit. Especially if it’s a fancier wedding at a high-end resort. 
image of a woman walking down a road wearing a white linen button up shirt, shorts, and sandals

What To Wear Exploring Cancun 

Looking to get off the beach for a day? Cancun is a great destination for nature lovers, adventure seekers, and history buffs alike. Snorkeling, scuba diving, golfing, sight-seeing and museums are all great activities for those who don’t like to sit still for long. 

Here’s what you’ll want to bring for any excursion you plan: 

  • Rash guard for snorkeling 
  • Sneakers for golfing or hiking
  • Comfortable walking shoes for sight-seeing 
  • Crossbody bag or bum bag to carry things such as snacks and sunscreen 
  • Comfortable shorts and tank tops
  • Sunglasses 
  • Sun Hat 
  • Sunscreen!

Additionally, different excursions will require you to pack different things. For this reason, make sure to double check your itinerary to ensure you have all that you need. 

image of a woman in a tank top and white linen pants and brown sandals

Should I take pants to Cancun?

You might be wondering, do I need pants in Cancun, Mexico? While you’ll spend most of your trip in a bathing suit, it’s always a good idea to include at least one pair of lightweight pants on your Cancun packing list. 

Therefore, go with a cropped or long pair of neutral linen pants that can be dressed up or down. For instance, you can easily throw them over bikini bottoms and wear them as a cover-up with a bikini top. Simply put, you’ll look chic and polished as you walk down to the beach.

On the other hand, for a more elevated dinner look you can pair them with a neutral tank top and wedges. This is an effortlessly glam look for drinks at the bar or dinner Al Fresco. Not to mention, it can get cooler in the evenings so pants add that extra layer. 


What To Pack For Cancun

Now that you know what kind of outfits will be in your suitcase, you can use this list as the ultimate guide while packing. Also, make sure to purchase a set of packing cubes beforehand as they’ll keep all your belongings organized while traveling. 

Moreover, the list may need adjustments depending on your itinerary. Therefore, add items where necessary and check your list twice to make sure you don’t forget anything important. 

The Cancun Packing List 

  • 2 Swimsuits
  • 1 Rash guard (for snorkelling, scuba, surfing, etc)
  • 3-4 Mini, midi, or maxi dresses 
  • 2-3 Pairs lightweight shorts
  • 3 Tank tops 
  • 1 Pair lightweight pants
  • Oversized button-up shirt or cover-up
  • Flip flops
  • Leather slides/sandals
  • Wedges or heeled Sandals 
  • Comfortable walking shoes
  • Sneakers, golf, or running shoes
  • Lightweight sweater or jacket for evenings
  • Tarnish-free jewelry 
  • 1-2 Pairs sunglasses
  • 1 Sun hat
  • 1 Baseball cap (optional)
  • Sunscreen
  • Reusable water bottle
  • Waterproof phone
  • Waterproof phone case
  • Beach bag/tote
  • Crossbody purse or bum-bag/fanny-pack
  • Toiletries
  • Hair ties/scrunchies
  • Hair tools
  • Immodium (just to be safe…)

(photos: @girlmeetsgold, @niamh_osullivan)

Final Notes

In conclusion, we hope you can enjoy your beach vacation and look fabulous while doing it! You’ve now got a perfect packing list for a week (or two) in Cancun, Mexico.

Also, you don’t need to pack two massive suitcases for your trip! Instead, you can pack mindfully and minimally with a selection of the perfect clothing for all kinds of activities on your getaway. Besides, overpacking is so 2015. 

Simply put, focus on the basics and check your itinerary ahead of time to make sure you pack appropriately for all the activities you’ll do while away in Cancun. 


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Mexico Vacation Outfit Ideas & What To Wear On Your Next Trip

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New Orleans Outfits + 4-Day Packing List


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