3 simple packing tips for your safari

I suffer from chronic over-packing disorder! Guilty as charged… Packing for any kind of holiday lets me break out in a sweat before I even start with this nearly impossible task on hand. The good news: Packing for an African safari is fairly easy when following these 3 simple packing tips…

Packing tips No 1: Pack lightly

Easier said than done; especially when you suffer from the same disease like me…but it’s a very important one to consider. Although your luggage allowance on your international flight might be 20kg, the luggage allowance on small safari planes is limited to 15kg per person in soft bags. No excuses accepted; large items will not even fit into the luggage compartment and your safety and the safety of your fellow passengers is simply more important. But even if you are on a guided driving safari please remember that vehicles don’t have a massive boot – and your transfers will be so much easier to handle.

Packing tips No 2: Leave your favorite items at home

Hand washing of clothes is the way to go in Africa. Bleach is also very popular to ensure the last bit of dirt is gone. In order for clothes to dry, they usually get chucked over a picket fence. Do you see where I am going with this? To avoid tears (I have shed a few of them, believe me) leave any delicate and valuable items at home. It’s all about enjoying the wildlife, listening to the unfamiliar sounds of the bush and becoming one with nature.

Packing tips No 3: Pack comfortable clothes

You think ‘safari’ and you picture a camouflaged outfit. No doubt, you can certainly go overboard with the latest safari fashion on offer.

My packing tips:

  • Comfortable, breathable clothes – ideally cotton.
  • Muted colors, e.g. beige, khaki or green. Leave that bright pink or canary yellow at home; you might scare off the wildlife.
  • Don’t wear black or blue as it’s the favorite color of the nasty tsetse flies – although more dominant in East Africa, I still would go with those earthy colors.
  • Definitely pack a warm jumper – early morning game drives can be quite chilly!
  • Personally, I prefer the layer look. Depending on the temperature I can peel off one layer after the other.
  • You don’t need more than 2 or 3 comfortable short-sleeved shirts and a similar amount of long sleeved tops.
  • Pack 2 or 3 comfortable shorts and long trousers or get those zip-off-pants.
  • Unless you do walking safaris, heavy walking boots are unnecessary.
  • Definitely bring some flip-flops for those outdoor showers.
  • Last but not least, a hat could come in handy to shade off the sun.

Happy Packing – what are your packing tips for an African Safari?