Dress code at Kow Tham

When visiting Kow Tham, as well as attending retreat here, keep in mind that we are on the grounds of a Thai monastery, and a part of traditional Thai culture.

At all times at Kow Tham

  • Wear clothing that is clean, and completely covers the body from the shoulders to below the knees, including the upper arms.
  • If you are visiting Kow Tham or the Temples, there is a box in front of the Dining hall where you can borrow long pants, shawl, etc. for your visit.
  • We do not wear shoes in the meditation hall, temple, or dining hall — you must take off your shoes before you enter.

Special care during retreat

We are not here to look beautiful — we are here to be beautiful!

  • Clothing must completely cover the body, as at all times at Kow Tham.
  • Pants and dresses should be loose-fitting and cover from the shoulders to elbows, and to below the knees while standing and sitting.
  • Absolutely no yoga pants, no tight pants or shirts, no transparent or semi-transparent clothing.
  • Retreatants must adhere to the dress code at all times on the Khao Tham grounds.
  • We recommend modest, light, loose clothing, that’s easy to wash and is comfortable for meditation and yoga.
  • Clothing without logos and loud designs is appreciated, and shows consideration of the equanimity of the people around you — which is why we are here!
  • It is not necessary to dress in white during the retreat.

Shoes and no-shoes

  • The meditation hall, temple, dining hall, etc, are no-shoe zones — this means you will take off your shoes, and put them back on, every time you enter or leave.
  • So it is recommended to bring shoe wear that is easily removable, for example flip-flops or sandals.
  • At the same time, you may like your flip-flops/sandals to be somewhat sturdy, for walking up and down the Kow Tham paths. And sometimes we go on alms rounds with Phra Marut, or walk to some distant point for meditation with Phra Chaiwat.


  • The same regulations are to be obeyed during our daily Mindful Yoga classes, and during the entire time you are on the Kow Tham grounds — not just during the 7-day Silent Retreat.
  • We can be understanding how the calmness and peacefulness of our clothing reflects our care for the experience of our companions, and for the traditions and culture of our Thai hosts and monks.
  • So it is all part of our mindfulness!

page revised: 29 May 2018

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