WHAT TO PACK FOR YOUR SAFARI TOUR
A few safari essentials to consider when you start packing for your trip to Southern Africa.
If you will be taking any charter flights on light planes, it is essential to have a soft bag (duffel) in which luggage with a maximum weight of 20kg (just under 45lbs) should be packed. If not, the standard international airline restrictions are adequate for overland travel.
Light, comfortable clothing is essential. You would not wish to be constrained by uncomfortable outfits throughout your adventures and activities. A holiday is, after all, about relaxation, and South Africans are generally a casual bunch when it comes to daily attire.
Warm Jacket / Sweater
At least one warm jacket or sweater. When embarking on an early morning or late afternoon safari, temperatures either start out quite chilly or drop after the sun sets. Winter in the southern region definitely requires a good jacket, as it can be quite cold and wet.
If you are traveling on the Blue Train, Rovos Rail or staying in one of the top five star hotels, a dinner jacket will be required. This is, however, the only time you will find the necessity to ‘dress up’, unless you are so inclined.
Hat / Cap
A hat or cap is always a good idea, particularly if you are fair-skinned. Even in the winter months, the African sun may have a harsher effect than you realize, and a nasty sunburn is sure to spoil any trip. A hat or cap will also aid viewing during peak sunset and sunrise hours.
Binoculars are a fundamental safari accessory. Though our guides or the lodge rangers typically have a pair handy, this may not always be the case. If you are enthusiastic about game viewing and want to maximize the experience to its full potential, pack a pair of binoculars.
If you are prone to allergies, be sure to pack allergy medication. Springtime sees a proliferation of flowers, and winters in the north of South Africa can be quite dusty. Any food allergies should also be treated with the same amount of, if not more, care.
Comfortable walking shoes are a must. Though the majority of our itineraries do not really include strenuous activities or too much walking, if you are interested in partaking in a bush walk or scenic hikes, your shoes could make or break your experience.
Sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher is recommended. As mentioned above, the African sun can be a scorcher in summer and a ‘silent assassin’ in winter. If you plan to spend time on the beach, we would also recommend ‘after-sun’ products.
A small flashlight can be very useful. Though during a safari guests are always guided to their accommodations at night, many people feel safer and more confident with their own flashlight. Regardless of where you are staying, a flashlight is a handy tool.
Some US dollars in cash can be very useful if you are traveling to Zambia, Zimbabwe or Botswana. The US dollar is widely accepted throughout these countries – even at traditional craft markets – and is typically easier to use than the local currency.
Photographic equipment and enough film/memory is imperative for both the enthusiastic wildlife photographer and those who wish to capture the memories of their extraordinary tour or safari on film. Memory cards and film can also be purchased in South Africa.
Converters/adapters for South African 220V power supply. These can also be purchased both before your departure to or on arrival in South Africa. For more information on the plugs used in each country, visit our ‘ General Information ‘ page.
Insect repellent, particularly when visiting an area where malaria is prevalent, is indispensable. Aerosol-type repellents are typically the easiest to apply and ‘Peaceful Sleep’ and ‘Tabard’ are widely available throughout South Africa.
Though sunglasses are generally an essential everyday accessory to many people, you may find that is even more so the case when visiting Southern Africa. Always have a pair of sunglasses handy for sharp, bright days or overcast days with a glare.