Below are some general suggestions that can serve as guidelines for your planning. Please remember there are luggage restrictions of between 15 kg (33 lbs.) and 20 kg (44 lbs.) depending on destination, in a soft bag with no wheels, frames or rigid structures for light aircraft flights.
Layers are the key! Dressing in layers during your time on safari allows you to stay warm in the cool mornings, strip off layers as the day warms up, and reapply the layers as the evening cools off.
We recommend bringing quick-dry synthetic fabrics if possible. The rule of thumb as to color is earth tones. It is generally recommended that you avoid blacks and blues because they attract the tsetse flies that sometimes accompany the great migration herds. White clothing will tend to get dirty more quickly. There is no dress code for dinner and wearing your safari attire is expected and normal.
This is a suggested list based on our own packing. It is not comprehensive, and you may want to bring more or less depending on your individual packing style. Remember laundry is included many places (refer to your itinerary for specific inclusions).
o 3 x face masks
o 1 x sun hat/bush hat
o 1 x headscarf/bandana/buff – particularly for dusty dry regions
o 4 x t-shirts / base layer for hottest temperatures
o 2 x long-sleeved cotton shirts
o 3 x each shorts & pants (pants especially recommended if your itinerary includes a walking-oriented safari or primate trekking)
o 2 x pajamas – lightweight for summer and warm/thermal for winter
o 1 x quality walking shoes with heavy soles (comfort is key)
o 1 x comfortable walking sandals like Tevas
o 1 x swimsuit
o 1 x lightweight sweater
o 1 x warm jacket or fleece
o 1 x pair of gloves, and
o 1 x beanie for early mornings and late evenings
o 1 x polarized, UV protected sunglasses
o Personal toiletries (basic amenities are supplied by most establishments)
o Personal first aid kit (Antihistamines, anti-nausea, aspirin, etc.)
o Sunscreen – SPF 30 or higher
Other optional equipment
o A headlamp
o Binoculars (8×40 or 10×42)
When going gorilla trekking, consider that you will be in a warm rainforest. Light, moisture-wicking or quick-dry fabrics are key! Some of the specific items may be available in camp for you to loan, but we cannot guarantee their condition or availability which is why we suggest them here.
o Gaiters (waterproof fabric that covers your lower pants and your shoe tops)
o Rain jacket
o Gardening gloves (to protect hands from nettles)
o Waterproof and comfortable hiking boots
The packing list above will serve you well for a walking safari. The only additional note we feel we need to make is regarding your footwear:
o Walking/hiking boots with impermeable soles (to protect you from thorns and sticks). We also recommend that they are high tops to support ankles over ungroomed and uneven terrain. Where you’ll be walking is not a smooth, groomed trail, but a rocky, natural path.
*Please purchase them well in advance and wear them around significantly to wear them in and avoid blisters!
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