For the Vatican city (and other Italian places of worship), would a slightly see-through kimono - like the attached picture - be allowed, or would they not allow it as you can sort of see the shoulders?


  • 3
    A comment, as items that are sheer are not mentioned specifically in the Vatican guidance. It might be allowed but if is thought to be too sheer or too revealing, you could be stopped. An easy solution is to bring a lightweight scarf that you can wrap around your shoulders (or buy one from the tons of street vendors right outside the City).
    – Giorgio
    Apr 21, 2018 at 21:46
  • 18
    I suggest going with the spirit of the dress code and being respectful, rather than finding a loophole in the wording that might upset people. It is their space: not yours. Apr 21, 2018 at 21:58
  • 13
    I don't see a kimono here...
    – fkraiem
    Apr 22, 2018 at 7:46

1 Answer 1


The places in Vatican that do have the dress code are St Peter Cathedral and Vatican Museum. Their official rules state that:

Low cut or sleeveless clothing, shorts, miniskirts and hats are not allowed.

From my experience even those rules aren't strictly enforced, and you'd see fair amount of visitors in shorts inside. I was there twice, both time wearing shorts. The photo above should be okay.

Other churches in Rome, however, seem to be more strict; generally the less touristy the church, the stricter it seem to be. I was denied admission to 2 out of 7 churches for wearing shorts, but none of them were in Vatican or in tourist spots.

And for the sake of clarity, the Vatican City itself does not enforce the above "dress code", as long as you're on the streets you can wear shorts and tank tops.

  • Note that shorts that cover the knees are generally OK. Italians never wear shorts that don't cover er the knees.
    – zaph
    Jun 25, 2018 at 18:36
  • Italians wear shorts on the street, but I didn't see any of them going to church in shorts.
    – George Y.
    Jun 26, 2018 at 8:27
  • Italians never wear shorts that don't cover er the knees. You mean in churches? Because in general that's false; you will see people wearing shorts and skirts above the knees in Italian streets, in the hottest months. Sep 23, 2018 at 10:02

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