Mara&Meru™ gives expression to the wild in your veins™ by marrying hardcore technical outdoor-wear with urban everyday-wear. This versatile range of adventure-inspired luggage, clothing, and accessories is just as at home on safari, in the mountains, or on the open plains as it is in the boardroom, on the high street, or around the home.
You will need a smaller safari bag to take with you on all safari activities - whether a few hours or a few days - including game drive safaris, walking safaris, horse riding safaris, mountain biking safaris, boating safaris, fishing safaris, canoeing safaris, and mekoro (dugout) safaris.
Into this smaller safari bag will go any number of safari essentials such as sunscreen, sunglasses, insect repellent, binoculars, waterproof jacket (assuming you are wearing your warm-layer safari jacket or fleece), a safari beanie, any books you want to take on safari with you, water bottle, perhaps your passport if you prefer to keep it with you - and any other personal effects you want to take with you on safari.
The nature of your safari will determine which bag - or bags - you decide to take with you on your safari. For example, if you are only planning on going on game drives, then you will be fine to take any safari satchel, safari backpack, safari tote, or over-the-shoulder safari bag as you will just be walking with it from your room to the safari 4x4 and then placing it on the seat next to you. If you also want to do walks from the lodge (recommended), then you would need a safari satchel or safari backpack and, if you are on a proper walking safari, then you would need a safari satchel or safari backpack which you are happy to have over the shoulder or on your back for many kilometres or miles of walking.
Your choice of smaller safari bag (or bags) could and should also double as your safari carry-on bag for flights to and from Africa. If you prefer a larger carry-on to carry some clothes, then take this bag in addition to your carry-on. Some brands of holdall/duffel luggage - such as the Mara&Meru™ Voyager range - also allow you to zip and lock the ideal safari satchel-backpack combination bag as an end pocket on to your main safari bag, which means that you simply unzip it when you get to your safari to use it as your smaller safari bag. That way you are able to check it into the aircraft hold for your international flight to Africa.
Number of smaller safari bags to pack for your safari:
1 x smaller safari bag per person.
For the best protection from the strength of the midday sun in Africa - for your neck and face - pack a wide-brimmed women's safari hat.
With mean high temperatures reaching mid-20 to mid-30 degrees Celsius on most safaris and with safari areas in Kenya, Tanzania, Botswana, and Zambia high above sea level, the effects of the sun will be pronounced and the risk of being burnt by the sun will be high. A wide-brimmed women's safari hat is literally your first line of defence against sunburn.
Wide-brimmed women's safari hats also provide shelter when it rains. We find that a wide-brimmed safari hat definitely makes it more comfortable when you are caught out on a walk or game drive by a sudden thunderstorm or tropical shower, as at least your face remains dry and fewer drops go into your eyes.
Colour is key when choosing a women's safari hat - with neutral shades such as khaki, green, or brown the best. Your safari hat will often be the most conspicuous part of you while viewing wildlife on a walking safari.
Pack a women's safari hat which suits your safari style. Fortunately, there are more styles available for women today which range from leather hats to classically-styled indie and panama-shaped hats.
Modern wide-brimmed women's safari hats are also conveniently packable and are easy manipulate back into shape. A note though: not all hats are packable and should be carried with your carry-on luggage - and, even when a hat is packable, never crush your safari hat under a hard object - such as shoes or binoculars - when packing.
Number of wide-brimmed women's safari hats to pack for your safari:
1 x wide-brimmed safari hat per person.
*Pack a warm and cosy safari beanie for cold mornings and the African winter too.
For your main large safari duffel or safari holdall, choose safari luggage which is soft and squashable and which has no frame. This is especially true for safari travel to Namibia, Botswana, Zambia, Mozambique, Malawi, Tanzania, and Kenya and the reason for this is rather a practical one. The majority of safari lodges and camps within these countries are accessible only by light aircraft. As a result, in order for your pilot to fit your luggage into the small, cramped hold, your luggage must not have hard sides, nor rigid frames or structure, and should rather be soft-sided so that the pilot is able to fit (squash) your bag into the plane. The same is true for some overland and expedition-style safaris where there will be limited space for luggage in the safari 4x4.
Please check with the safari company you have booked with about luggage limitations for the internal flights on your safari, as the requirements may vary from safari to safari. Where luggage weight limitations are specified please note that - as the maximum take-off weight in any aircraft has to be strictly adhered to by pilots to maximise your safety on each flight - you may find that your pilot will not be able to take any luggage over the maximum allowed weight per passenger. In this instance, you may have to pay for your luggage to be flown separately.
Use a travel trolley to carry your main safari duffel or safari holdall as you are not meant to take safari luggage with a frame. Simply remove the travel trolley from your safari luggage when you do not need to wheel your safari luggage, collapse it, and either stow it in the hold or take it with you into the cabin. Your safari pilot will be able to advise which option he or she prefers.
Number of large, soft-sided safari bags to pack for your safari:
1 x large safari duffel or holdall bag per person.
While safari-coloured clothing is ideal to wear when you travel to your safari and to relax in around camp, sometimes nothing beats a crisp white shirt to wear around camp - or to dinner at night.
When our founder, Steve, worked as a safari guide, this is exactly what the guiding team used to do for dinner. After a long hot day in the sun, take a long bath or refreshing shower and put on a crisp white shirt or a stylish blue travel shirt for the evening to look and feel great.
Packing extra safari shirts will of course depend on how much space you have left in your safari luggage once you have packed the essential safari clothing and gear.
If space is limited only take an extra shirt which is not safari-coloured and wear the shirt with your safari trousers or shorts.
It is important that you pack safari-suitable shirts for your children on safari which also offer maximum protection from the elements and defence from most biting insects.
Pack children's safari shirts in neutral, natural tones such as shades of khaki, brown, and green.
We recommend long-sleeved safari shirts for children with roll-up sleeve tabs over short-sleeved shirts. These enable boys and girls to roll their sleeves up and down to stay cool, keep warm, or to avoid sunburn on their arms. It also increases defence from most biting insects when sleeves are rolled down, which is further increased when the fabric is treated with insect repellent.
Kids' safari shirts with a collar also give your kids added protection from sunburn - and, again, from insect bites.
Look for children's safari shirts which have the following key characteristics: the ability to wick moisture to keep them cool, high level of sun protection (SPF50+ is best), and an anti-insect fabric finish assists in reducing bites from most flying and biting insects.
Pack more children's safari shirts made from man-made fibres (polyamide) than natural fibres (such as cotton). Man-made fibres are better at wicking moisture from the skin - and it is this movement of moisture which will keep them cool.
Number of children's safari shirts to pack for their safari: Up to 4-day safari: x 2; Up to 8-day safari: x 4; Up to 12-day safari: x 6
Pack a multi-functional Head&Neck scarf for just about all outdoor adventures, including safari. Head&Neck Scarves keep your neck and head out of the sun when it is hot, and provide an element of warmth too when it starts to get cold. They offer maximum versatility.
It can and does get cold on safari. See our Womens Safari Jackets and Fleeces page for more information on why this is the case.
Pack women's garments and accessories for your safari which keep you warm. Women's safari scarves, safari beanies, and safari gloves should be considered a packing essential over the African winter - and may also be required for some mornings on summer safaris too.
At the very least, we recommend packing a safari beanie on any safari as they are so small and light to carry in your luggage, yet have a big effect on how warm you are should you get cold. Keep your safari beanie in the bag you take on game drives. You may well get some envious stares from others who have not had the foresight to pack a safari beanie.
Further to the point above, for the African summer, pack a women's safari beanie just in case. For the most part, your women's wide-brimmed safari hat should keep you warm enough, but why take the risk? Please also take note of the altitude of the area in which you are going on safari. The Ngorongoro Crater in Tanzania, as an example, is over 2000 metres above sea level and most camps are on the rim of the crater and so may have cold temperatures (morning and evenings in particular) and precipitation throughout the year, so we would recommend taking warmer safari accessories just in case.
Pack safari scarves, safari beanies, and safari gloves in safari colours.
Number of women's safari scarves, safari beanies, and safari gloves to pack for your safari:
1 x women's safari scarf; 1 x women's safari beanie; 1 x women's safari gloves - although you should be fine tucking your hands into your women's safari jacket or fleece to keep them warm.