Safari EssentialsNovember 7, 2017
The most important thing to remember when packing for safari is NOT to overpack. The tendency to overpack stems from the idea that you’re going to be changing your clothes more than you actually are. In most cases you’re simply too busy, or you’re getting back late from the afternoon drive, or you don’t want (or need!) to change for dinner. The only time I changed my outfits was when I was adding or subtracting layers (depending on the weather), usually when the morning drive got so hot that I sweated through my shirts. Another important thing to remember when packing: there is always going to be a second transfer flight to the savannah. These transfers are almost always on tiny propeller planes which tend to limit each passenger’s luggage allowance to about 20kg or less. You don’t want to risk having heavy luggage as they are very strict about the allowance and may very well deny you from boarding.
Here’s a list of things to remember while packing:
1. You will need a pair of binoculars. Check with your hotel before spending money on a pair as some hotels provide them for their guests.
2. Always pack a bathing suit. Some days might even be too hot to be out in the sun, but most hotels will have a pool or spa for you to relax at in between game drives.
3. You will definitely need sunscreen. Like I said, the African sun is no joke.
4. Insect repellent is a must. Not only is it important to protect yourself from potential malaria-carrying mosquitos, but the huge and pesky beetles will be all over you if you don’t spray yourself. (It’s like the real life Lion King – you know those beetles that Pumba eats? Yeah, those ones).
6. Most safari vehicles are topless so your head will be baking in the sun. Bring some sort of hat for protection and shade. Make sure you wear a tight hat so it doesn’t fly off during the drive (this happened to a girl on my truck!)
7. Shoes to protect your feet, especially if you plan on doing a walking safari. I wore hiking boots.
8. The African bush can get chilly in the mornings and evenings so make sure you pack some sort of jacket or sweater that is easy to put on/take off since the afternoons get brutally hot. (Layering is important!)
9. Things are casual at the bush, even at upscale lodges. Loose fitting, breathable clothes are best! Keep the colors of your clothing to khaki, olive, nude, or anything else neutral.
10. Stay away from bright whites as they tend to distract the animals. Also stay away from black and blue as they attract the flies as well as the sun.
11. A waterproof jacket with a hood or even a rain poncho would be smart to pack incase you get caught in bad weather.
12. You must pack a camera! You’ll want to capture every moment on your exciting adventure.
13. Lastly, you will want to take a bag on the drives to store your camera, bug spray, and anything else you think you may need. It’s better to keep all your things in one easy place as the drives can get extremely bumpy and things can fall off the truck easily.