Comprehensive Safari Packing List & Safari Advice - for just about all safaris: Why do we spend so much time thinking through and creating our safari packing lists to ensure they are the best out there? In a sentence: we are dedicated to ensuring that you have the most incredible time on safari and packing the right safari clothing, safari luggage, safari binoculars, and all the other important safari accessories is key to this.
This is the new version of our general safari packing list and it is a list of essential safari supplies you should not leave home without. The list has been made by our safari packing list experts to ensure that you pack the correct clothing and gear for just about all types of safaris.
As a general introduction to the safari experience, most safaris start early in the morning and will be on open safari vehicles with little protection from wind and rain. Therefore, the rule of thumb is to dress in layers for all activities. For more in-depth information on what to pack for your safari and why, we recommend that you read through our safari clothing advice, safari luggage advice, safari binocular advice, and our safari accessories advice pages.
To find out what our experts have to say about each item we recommend that you pack, please simply click on "more info." We have also included accessories you may need for add-on safari activities such as gorilla safaris on this page under "other essentials to not forget," plus everything else you will need to remember to pack in your bag.
Please also read our "top tips" section for handy insider information on the guidelines for packing for a safari and visit our expert advice pages too.
This packing list calculates the total number of items you will require for the number of men, women, and children you have indicated above. Simply divide by the number of men, women, and children should you wish to work out the number of items required on a per person basis or, of course, set the number to one for each in the form above.
When packing for your safari, select safari clothing which offers some or all of the following six key travel garment technologies:
1. Safari clothing which is easy to pack, dries quickly, and wicks moisture away from the skin;
seeing proof that the built-in insect repellent has been proven to work by asking to see the laboratory test results;
3. Safari Clothing that offers protection from the sun. This will be shown as an SPF rating. 50+ is the highest rating available today;
4. Safari Clothing that is lightweight, but which also has built-in ripstop for added strength;
5. As we all prefer to smell fresh, select safari clothing that uses an anti-microbial or anti-bacterial fabric. This also means that you will be able to wear the same safari clothing for longer and so pack less and travel lighter.
6. Add to the protective performance of the safari clothing which you take on safari by packing a wide-brimmed, packable safari hat, an effective sunscreen, and insect repellent which has been proven to work to spray onto your safari clothing, safari hat and skin.
▢ For gorilla safaris pack a pair of gardening gloves to protect your hands from the sharp foliage you may encounter while trekking to find the gorillas.
▢ Ensure that you pack blister-proof socks should you be going on a dedicated walking safari
▢ For canoe or white water safaris, a small dry bag is very useful to keep your phone, camera and other personal effects dry. Should the colour of the dry bag not be safari-suitable, simply place it inside a safari-suitable satchel or backpack. This advice also applies for other waterborne activities such as motorboat and mekoro (dugout) activities while on your safari.
▢ For photographic safaris - whether you are using an SLR or your smartphone - always make sure you have more storage space than you think you will need. It is highly frustrating having to try to quickly select images to delete while on safari and the wildlife action is hotting up. Take spare batteries for your SLR and a portable charger for your other electronics.
▢ Not sure what to wear around the safari camp and in the evenings? If you have to pack light then our safari clothing certainly doubles as suitable safari camp clothing. If you are able to take few extra items of clothing then you may also wish to pack your own casual clothing to wear around the camp in the evenings and between game drives. Take a look at our travel and outdoor clothing made exactly for travel to your safari lodge and to be worn around the camp. Every lodge we have ever been to does not have a dress code, but it is best to check with your tour operator or the lodge itself. Nothing beats a crisp white shirt for him and her for lunches and dinners at your safari camp or lodge - no matter how rustic the camp is (think Out of Africa!).
▢ Swimming Trunks
▢ Malaria prophylaxis (please check with your doctor or travel clinic)
▢ Motion sickness pills (if needed for light aircraft flights)
▢ Lip Balm
▢ Shampoo/Conditioner (most camps have these available, but you may prefer your brand of choice)
▢ Toothpaste / Toothbrush
▢ Dental Floss
▢ Hair Brush / Comb
▢ Electric / Hand Razor
▢ Emery Boards, Tweezers etc
▢ Hand & Body Lotion
▢ Ladies Hygiene Supplies
▢ Health card and Insurance details
▢ Air tickets & Vouchers
▢ Money Pouch
▢ Credit Card & Calculator
▢ 2 to 3 months before departure:
VISA: If you require a visa and want to get it beforehand, make sure that you apply for the visa asap!
PASSPORT: Check that your passport has sufficient pages as most African countries require two blank pages or more, and that your passport does not expire within 6 months. Apply for new passport if needs be.