I sunburn easily, so a good hat is a necessity. I know I will stand out as a tourist, but I don't want to stand out like a sore thumb. On an upcoming trip, I will be both in inland Eastern Europe (Budapest, Lviv, etc) and on the Adriatic coast. Is there a hat that would look relatively okay in both the city and out on the beach?
If it's not summer, you can expand options to things like fedora or Kangol cap. I got a very nice felt packable black fedora from Bloomies (also available on Amazon) and it came in quite handy.
You're on vacation, don't worry so much about how you look. The locals always know who the tourists are, doesn't matter what they wear or say; you can just tell.
Tilley hats are great, but they do give a particular impression. Here in San Francisco, they say Straight Male Who Likes Gardening Anyway. I only wear mine on weekends.
Mike, I need to wear a hat as well. I've used a cheap version of a crushable travel hat that is presentable enough, and also a plain baseball cap (no logo - logos invite unwanted conversations). As long as you don't wear them inside, or while dining, no one will notice or care.
You could take your very favorite and then make hat buying something you do for yourself while there. Not as a project, but as fun if you happen to see something. As I recall, during the last two summers, hats were for sale everywhere. Of course, I was looking for women's hats. I saw many hats I coveted on both men and women. I ended up buying a crush-able, uni-sex, alpine style in Muerren. BTW, I am sure I saw many, many, baseball-type hats and not all of them were worn by Americans. Wear what you like and feel comfortable in.
Have fun. Debbie
You might want to try an Ascot Cap, Flat Cap, or Jaxon Cap. They will provide head protection (but not much to the forehead and none to the side) and will pack flat. Check out the site for The Village Hat Shop in San Diego.
I will second the Tilley hats. Although expensive they are crushable, washable, provide super sun protection and have some good guarantees. There are some Tilley hats which are geared for function (like the Airflo) while others combine a more urbane style (like their Fedoras.) The nice thing about them is you won't have to buy another hat for a long long time.
I third the Tilley. They have a lifetime guarantee. My original T2 wore out and was replaced. The second one wore out and my wife took it along to the Tilley store in Vancouver to get it replaced. The worn and torn look of it caused quite a commotion among the store employees and customers. It was generously replaced. Try that with any other hat.
Another vote for Tilley hats. My venerable T3 goes on every trip, and it really does help with sun blocking.
It may not appropriate for your trip to Eastern Europe but I got a packable Panama Hat from Travelsmith that was exactly right for Italy. Great coverage, lightweight, and it didn't look like I was emerging from the Outback.
Thanks everyone. It's given me a good starting point for my research.
Hi Mike, my friend just bought this hat from Eddie Baur (http://www.eddiebauer.com/product/waterproof-baseball-cap/71403303/_/A-ebSku_0143303100__71403303_catalog10002_en__US?showProducts=&backToCat=Hats&previousPage=LNAV&tab=men&dcolor=100). It's on sale now. He liked it because it's waterproof.
Another vote for Tilley. The company will even replace your hat if you lose it!