Before we get to the clothing detail, you need to understand that Varanasi is a typical tropical region with humid summers and mildly pleasing winter. Also, Varanasi is a sacred city, celebrated as a forefront of the Hindu religion in the world. Following bare minimum decency in clothing would help you enjoy a peaceful vacation. Saree or Indian traditional costumes are not compulsory. Locals expect both the genders to wear covering attire, which stretches well below the knee and cover up the neck.
The place will be chill, foggy, and dark. Out of the eleven hours of daylight per day, January provides only 7 or 8 hours of daylight, thanks to the climate. Temperature can fall down or go high, unpredictably. However, the place remains comfortably cool. Wear thick cotton clothing and have a removable jacket on you.
February ends the winter season. However, the cool breeze from Himalayas gives a chill every now and then. Thus, pack a shawl with you. If you wear woolen clothing, you would feel sweaty. Thus, thin or thick cotton clothing will suffice.
March is refreshing and you can find mild warmth and humidity in the air during this month. Stick with thin cotton clothing. Have a thin jacket with you, in case the evenings get cold, which is quite uncommon.
Summer starts in April. The summers are expected to be hot and humid, but the scorching sun would not reach its prime power until May. Thus, wear cotton clothing and airy clothes. It is recommended to wear open footwear. But, if you insist on wearing shoes, go for breathable socks and pack extra socks, as you would be sweating a lot.
This is the peak summer season. Choose light and airy clothing, breathable footwear, and head cover for your Varanasi trip. The temperature is quite dehydrating. Thus, make sure to wear clothing that covers most of the body to combat dehydrating. The more skin is exposed to the sun, faster will be the dehydration.
June is a combination of summer and rainy. First two or three weeks of June are hot and humid. Thus, stick with cotton clothing. By the end of June, heavy rainfall starts. Thus, bring your rain gear. The temperature will still be hot and humid. Thus, choose thick cotton clothing.
Varanasi road conditions are not quite optimal. Thus, during the rainy season of July, muddy puddles will occupy most of the roads. Avoid light clothing if you do not want to stain them forever. Raincoats, thick boots, umbrella, and other rain gears are must.
August is also a rainy month but, the frequency and the intensity of the rain would vary from year to year. It is safer to pack rain gears for August, but do not go with thick clothing. The monsoon will stop by mid of August, usually.
This is the autumn season, with windy climate. The breezes will not be cool. Thus, stick with thin cotton clothing. Wear breathable footwear and have a shawl, in case the breezes get chilly by late evening.
October sees the start of the winter season. The mornings will be still humid and warm. As the dusk sets in, the breezes from Himalayas blow through the city, giving chilly nights. Pack both light and thick cotton clothing.
Temperature drops significantly during early morning and after sunset. Wear thick cotton clothing and layers of sweater or jacket. Do not wear one thick outfit. Sometimes, the temperature might rise without notice and you would end up sweating throughout the day. A shawl would be enough to keep you warm in November.
Thin woolen clothing or thick jackets would be required to keep you warm during December, especially by evening. The River Ganges will be running cool. If you plan on getting on a boat cruise, wear woolen clothing.
While visiting Varanasi, always wear comfortable clothing and footwear. You would be on your feet throughout the day walking from one temple to another. During peak hours, the queue in the temples would be longer. Thus, be prepared for the hustle.