A safari, is for some, a once in a lifetime adventure so it’s best to be prepared! Here are our handy tips to help you have an enjoyable and unforgettable safari experience:
Comfortable clothing suitable for a safari should be the most important item on your checklist. You’ll need your winter woolies – even in summer – as the weather is chilly in the mornings and evenings in the bush all year round. Bring clothes that you can layer, as this will make it easier to remove warmer clothing as the day warms up. In order to enjoy the best game viewing possible, you’ll need to bring along the right colour clothing. Don’t wear bright or white clothes – these colours attract animals and increase your visibility. Opt for brown and khaki colours, as well as dark green clothing. If you are travelling during winter months, a fleece and light rainproof jacket will come in handy for those early morning game drives.
Even in winter months in Africa, temperatures can rise which means you’ll need to take some form of sun-protection with you. Pack a bottle of sunscreen (minimum SPF 15) and put some on before your morning game drive and top up again before your evening game drive; if you do this, you should avoid leaving your destination looking like a bright red tomato. A sun hat is a quick and easy way to protect your face and neck from the sun – pop one on before your next safari activity and you’re good to go! Besides protecting your eyes from harmful UV rays, a pair of UV protection sunglasses will also dim the glare of the sun on morning and evening game drives. You’ll also look like a seasoned safari explorer with a cool pair of shades – an added bonus!
This is an obvious essential, but there are a few useful items you can add to your toiletry bag…
- Antibacterial wipes and hand sanitiser will come in handy for those moments when you’re on a game drive in the middle of nowhere and you can’t get to a bathroom to wash your hands. Both are easy to use and will leave you feeling fresh and clean.
- Moisturiser – the dry air can take a toll on your skin, so a small bottle of moisturiser and retractable lip balm will go a long way.
- Insect repellent to keep the mozzies and insects at bay; an item you won’t want to forget to bring! There are a number of brands to choose from, but make sure you buy a good quality insect repellent – in this case, you get what you pay for. An insect repellent with a mid to high concentration of DEET will last longer and if you’re taking children with you on safari, buy an insect repellent with a lower concentration of DEET.
Avoid dehydration whilst on safari and pack a water bottle. While a stainless steel water bottle is sturdy and won’t get damaged, a good plastic water bottle should also suffice. Bring a water bottle with a good seal so that it doesn’t leak, and keep it with you when you’re out on game drives.
First Aid Kit
While your safari lodge will have a first aid kit, bringing your own smaller one is a good idea. It’s the perfect way to keep all of your own medication in a safe place, and you may want to bring your own bandages and plasters for minor cuts and injuries. Items to pack in your own first aid kit include Malarial tablets if applicable, pain relief tablets, antihistamines, antidiarrheal medication and eye drops as the savannah can get very dusty. Preventative medication for colds and flu are always a good idea too…
Capture the Moment…
While you’re sure to see tons of animals and game on your getaway, close-up wildlife encounters in the wild aren’t guaranteed. With a pair of binoculars, you’ll be able to have a clear view in the distance which will enhance your overall game viewing experience. A pair of binoculars doesn’t need to break the bank and an inexpensive pair should do the trick.
Similarly a camera, be it the latest high speed shutter gadget or the one on your phone, is essential and will help capture those lasting memories which you can remember fondly when you get home.