A month ago we went on an African safari in the Maasai Mara and it was AMAAAZZINNGG!!! I have soooo many photos to share, but in today’s blog post I thought it would be fun to share how to pack for a trip to Africa. We did a ton of research ahead of time, but by actually being there and experiencing the country you learn a lot more, so today I will break down what to pack for an amazing safari!
First, and most important thing to note is you MUST pack light! To get to the Maasai Mara, you need to take a light aircraft, and the weight allowance per person is 30 kg. So, I highly recommend a backpack or tote bag that can take a lot of wear and tear!
Okay, so now for the list. I thought I would break it down in sections.
1. Flight Essentials
- VISA – you need a Kenya Visa to enter the country which you can get once you land in Kenya or if you like to plan ahead, you can apply online. The cost is $50 USD.
- Travel shots/vaccines: you need to get a Yellow Fever vaccine, you will not be allowed to enter back to your country if you don’t have one. Another thing to note about the Yellow Fever shot is you need to have taken it at least 10 days before entering Kenya. So make sure to do this ahead of time, the shot will last you 20 years once you take it!. Also, you should probably take Malaria pills as well just to be safe. We actually took Hep B as well as Tetanus shots, but I don’t think those are necessary for traveling to Kenya. But better safe than sorry right?
- We packed an ENTIRE backpack full of food because the flight from Toronto is not short! It took us over 24 hours to reach our first destination. So I highly recommend packing snacks for the flight so you don’t have to spend a ton of money at the airport (because airport food is ridiculously expensive for some reason).
2. Clothes to Pack
- Do not pack any white or black clothes unless you can’t avoid it. White gets dirty very quick (lots of dust/sand in Africa) and black attracts bugs/insects.
- Pack clothes that are pale colors.
- Depending on when you are going (dry season or wet season), pack a rain jacket.
- It gets very cold in the mornings and evenings and super hot during the day time. You usually go for game drives in the mornings (6am-10am) and evenings (4pm-10pm), so make sure to pack appropriate clothing. I recommend packing light pants and shirts and a sweater/jacket to stay warm when it gets chilly.
- Remember it is very dusty in Africa, so pack clothes you don’t mind getting dirty, etc.
- Pack shoes that you don’t mind getting dirty as well or are long lasting. I brought my Sorels and I thought they were the perfect shoes for safari. You definitely don’t want to pack sandals though.
3. Miscellaneous Items to Pack
- Insect Repellent. The higher the Dat number the better, although the highest number you can get in Canada is 30 unfortunately. We actually didn’t need to use it too much, because the tents we stayed in were netted and lighted. Lights repel insects!
- CAMERA!!! Make sure to take a good quality camera with a lens that allows you to zoom in quite a bit. We actually rented a lens which was much cheaper.
Now that you have everything packed and ready to go, you’re all set to have the most amazing safari experience! I can’t wait to go back to Africa!!