There are few vacation experiences more profound than an African safari. They are seen by many to represent the pinnacle of the primal animal world and our closest interaction with it. A safari holds the promise of so much opportunity and plenty of unique and unforgettable experiences. If you are looking for a travel experience unmatched by any other, a safari is the way to go.
But if you want to have the absolute best experience you possibly can, you need to make sure you pack correctly. There are certain things you must bring with you that are crucial for enhancing your safari adventure and helping you enjoy it a whole bunch more. These are five safari essentials that absolutely need to make it on the plane to Africa with you and accompany you on whichever safari excursion you choose!
1. Camera & Binoculars
Let’s get something straight, any safari without a quality safari camera and some powerful binoculars is going to be a wasted trip. You need to have these things with you so you can document your remarkable adventure in picture form. And it’s even better these days with social media and sites like Instagram that allow you to upload pictures instantaneously.
You can share your jaw-dropping experiences with the world by making sure you document your adventure in style! There are also such things as photographic safaris, where guides will take you on tours that allow you to capture all of the incredible sights in the local area. You’re definitely going to need your camera for a photographic safari!
When taking any trip to Africa, you can’t forget the medication you’ve been given. There are many common myths about traveling through Africa, one of the main ones being that it’s full of diseases. That being said, malaria is still a big concern, and you will need to take malaria pills.
You may well have other medication to think about too, like inhalers or painkillers. Many of these safari excursions can be very long and grueling — for instance, the Masai Mara in Kenya covers close to 1,000 square miles! You can’t afford to be away from your medication for the best part of a day, so make sure you bring it with you.
3. The Right Clothing
You’re going to Africa, so that means light clothes with arms and legs uncovered, right? Not necessarily. This is why you have to be sensible and consider what clothes you’re going to pack carefully. It’s true that the afternoons are hot so a t-shirt, hat, and shorts would be ideal.
But if you’re visiting somewhere like the Okavango Delta in the cooler months (June-August) temperatures can get very cold in the mornings, often dropping as low as around 7°C! So you will need to research the place you’re going to visit and make sure you pack properly for your safari.
There are lots of safari guidebooks out there that give a great insight into many of the species you can expect to see on your excursion. These are an eye-opening read, and can actually be a really useful companion piece to any safari trip you might choose to take.
One of the very best guidebooks you could take with you is the African Safari Field Guide by Mark W. Nolting (available for around $13). There is also Fodor’s The Complete Guide to African Safaris, which can be bought on Amazon for as low as a couple of dollars. Take a handy guidebook with you and you’ll get to experience some of the hidden gems on safari.
Keep in mind that the dry season in Africa just gets hotter and hotter, and you could be facing temperatures in excess of 35°C at points! Sunscreen is absolutely essential for protecting your skin and stopping you from burning. Make sure you take the highest factor of sunscreen you can get and apply liberally before you embark on your safari adventure.
These five things are among the essentials you’re going to need to bring to ensure your safari adventure is the best it can be. The stage is set for you to have an incredible time, as long as you pack properly. Do you have any others you think should be added to the list? Let us know in the comments.