It’s important to keep a few things in mind when packing clothing for a safari first of all being the temperature winter or summer. It’s hot in Africa during the day so light, breathable, and quick drying clothing will be your best bet. In some areas evening and morning temperatures can drop drastically so layers are important to remember as well. The second thing to think of is colour. If you will be going on any bush walks bright, vibrant colours and patterns are highly discouraged as they can spook or upset animals. Be sure to check your itinerary and pack some muted tones to be safe. The last thing to remember is the dust, everything you pack will inevitably get dirty.
- Long pants – useful for chilly weather and for days when you want to keep the sun off
- Long sleeve sun shirt
- Tank top and t-shirts
- Dress – light and breezy, I packed one last minute and ended up wearing it the most
- Quick dry / travel underwear – they tend to pack down small and dry fast so you can wash and wear
- Bathing suit
- Warm jacket – something like a Down Sweater will pack up small while providing good warmth
Everyone’s ideal footwear will vary, but once again it’s important to know if there will be any footwear requirements. If you are headed out on any bush walks the guides will insist you have a pair of closed toe shoes. As well as some tourist attractions won’t let you participate if you are wearing sandals. If your first pair of sandals are waterproof then you will not need shower shoes.
- Sturdy sandals – something you feel comfortable walking in, you will want to be in sandals most of the time, lighter sandals like flip flops can be dangerous when stepping through thorns or broken glass.
- Close toe shoes -breathability can be a huge feet-saver
- Shower flip flops – anything that can get wet while in the shower, or leaving the pool
- Merino socks
The easily forgotten or overlooked items are often the ones that could make a big difference while on your trip. Packing light is very important to me, but there are some items that are worth the extra weight.
- Buff – handy for those really hot days – dip it in water and wear it on your neck
- Sun hat
- Warm hat – for early morning game drives
- Binoculars – I chuckled a little when my dad offered me his but we ended up using them on every safari
- Water bottle
- Travel soap sheets – bathrooms will often not have any soap, these sheets are tiny and you don’t have to worry about them spilling in your bag
- Travel lock – If you are camping a simple travel lock can prevent you from waking up with a monkey or baboon in your tent
- Bug spray – with DEET, it is the only thing that will keep the mosquitos off
- after bite – something to put on if you get bit
- Travel towel
- Day pack – something you can throw anything you’ll want with you in for your day to day
- Ear plugs & eye mask – if you are a light sleeper the nighttime animals are very noisy