Packing for Safari

What to pack for your African Safari ?  A common question by all travellers

You certainly do not have to look like David Livingstone with your Pith Helmet and Safari rifle,  we assure you !

Always remember , you are on holiday – and it is important to feel comfortable, cool and the aim to utter enjoyment during your time in Africa

Luggage Tips

baggage requirement You must remember that for many safari destinations, you may be travelling in smaller planes for your transfers to your lodge.

These light aircraft do have more stringent luggage restrictions that the larger commercial airlines – generally with a weight restriction of 20 kg’s per person is soft sided and topped bags.

The luggage holds of these aircraft are smaller, so they need luggage that is not hard topped [ such as Samsonite suitcases ] – and can be pushed in to fit in the smaller compartment.

We always recommend that you perhaps look at taking an additional smaller bag if possible, for the Safari portion of your trip.

Extra luggage can always be stored at the Airport lounge or at your hotel until your return – allowing you to take with you, just what you require for your safari.

If this is not possible,  remember that most Safari lodges do offer Laundry facilities

Safari Essential Packing

On Safari, you not only want to be comfortable, but you also want to be prepared so that you can capture your safari highlights on camera – memories to last a lifetime

Pack a while ahead. Most of the time you’ll be most comfortable in light, summer-weight clothes but do pack a warm jacket, socks, good shoes and a rain jacket. Pack sunscreen – lots of it – and a hat and sunglasses. Make sure you have at least one cool shirt with a collar for sun protection. Stock up on insect repellent and, if you’ll be in a malaria area, ensure you have a cool, long-sleeved shirt  and cool long pants for evenings. Bring good walking shoes.

Always pack a bandanna or cotton scarf and a sarong, kanga, pareo, kikoi – whatever you want to call it. These two garments are probably the most useful and versatile items in the world. If you’re spending time watching game, you should try to wear reasonably neutral colours but, really, you don’t have to look like an extra on the set of Out of Africa.

What to take on Safari

  • A variety of clothing : Light comfortable clothing for the hot days and warm windbreakers or jackets for your game drives.
  • The Game drives are usually conducted in the early morning and the late afternoon into the evening – and it can get chilly.
  • Clothing should be in neutral colours.  Long sleeved clothing is recommended for the evenings Comfortable shoes
  • Sunblock / Sunhats / Insect repellent
  • Anti Malarial Tablets if entering a Malarial area
  • Cameras with plenty of film / memory sticks and video camera’s and binoculars – for capturing those magical moments of perhaps a Lion Kill
  • Good quality binoculars [ nothing worse than having to share ]
  • Any personal medical supplies – including those for personal medical conditions.

It is best to dress in layers on Safari, with warmer clothing as a top layer, and cooler clothing underneath.  You can then either layer up or down as it gets hotter or colder.

Game Drive vehicles are open, so no matter how warm it may feel, once the vehicle is moving, there is the wind chill factor to take into account.

Bright colours and white are not advised whilst on safari.Camouflage clothing is not recommended for travel in southern African countries (camouflage or military-inspired clothing is prohibited when travelling in Zimbabwe).


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