Are Kenya & Tanzania Safe to Travel to for a safari?

By Claudia Smargiasso | 18 October 2023

A safari in East Africa is an exciting prospect. Key questions often temper this excitement: Is it safe to travel to Kenya? Is a safari in Tanzania safe? These concerns often arise from misconceptions or outdated information. So, let's clear the air and explore the safety of a safari in East Africa. 

We've operated our camps in East Africa for two decades and have safety procedures in place in the unlikely event they are required. 

Untangling real concerns from myths

Wildlife Safety – is a Safari safe?

The primal rawness of a safari often conjures up images of dangerous encounters with untamed wildlife. But it's important to remember that as our guests, your safety is our number one priority. Our safari guides are some of the best in the business, and they're extensively trained in animal behaviour and predicting their movements. This ensures that you can enjoy a thrilling encounter with a wild animal from a safe distance and never at the expense of your safety and well-being.

Health concerns - Is there a risk of Malaria?

A safari can come with a risk of certain illnesses, most notably malaria. However, you can substantially mitigate these risks with proper precautions like antimalaria medication and insect repellent. Mosquitoes are typically most active in the early evening, so wearing a long-sleeved shirt, trousers, socks and shoes will go a long way in preventing being bitten in the first place. A yellow fever vaccination may be required, but as these rules can change, it's always best to work with your local travel clinic to ensure you have all the right vaccinations and protection.

Crime - How safe is it to visit Kenya and Tanzania?

Questions like "Is it safe to travel to Kenya?" or "Is it safe to travel to Tanzania?" are common. Like in almost any city around the world, there are areas that are safe and frequented regularly by locals and tourists alike. And, then, there are areas that locals know are considered dangerous and should be avoided. The cities of Nairobi, Dar es Salaam and Arusha are similar in this regard, which is why we will always recommend using Asilia town transfer drivers and vehicles instead of hiring local transport. Once you are out of the cities and in the bush, crime is a rarity. However, most camps will provide safe boxes, which should always be used for cash and valuables.

Food and beverage - What Should I know?

Our guests are issued refillable water bottles for their stay. You're advised not to drink tap water, not bathe in rivers or lakes, and avoid food and drink from street vendors. However, similar to local knowledge around safety in cities, our local guides will know where to find good food vendors and which vendors should be avoided. Water used for bathing in the camps will always be clean, but only water marked safe for drinking should be consumed.

LGBTQ+ travellers - Is it recommended to avoid this area?

While Kenya and Tanzania have laws against homosexuality, it is still possible to enjoy a safari, as most lodges and camps are gay-friendly. Public displays of affection should be avoided.


6 Tips for a safe safari experience

1. Choose an established safari operator

Our solid safety record is owed to our strict operational safety protocols. Our safety practices are not only effective in managing any emergency but also in preventing unsafe situations from occurring, both in camp and outside in the bush.

2. Heed your guide's advice

All our guests receive a safety briefing on arrival. It's important to respect and follow your safari guide's instructions. Most of our camps are unfenced, but our guests are safeguarded by 24-hour Askari security, who keep a lookout for animals and escort guests around the camp after dark or when wildlife has been sighted nearby.

3. Get Travel insurance

Ensure you're covered by comprehensive travel insurance.

4. Stay updated

Regularly check travel advisories. While most safari destinations in Kenya and Tanzania are safe, staying informed about the broader region helps you travel confidently.

5. Prioritise your health

Consult your local travel clinic for the appropriate vaccinations and medications before setting off on your safari adventure.

6. Ditch the plastic

Tanzania and Kenya have made producing, selling, and using plastic bags illegal. Please pack eco-friendly bags for your trip. Ziploc bags specifically used to carry toiletries will be permitted.


The bottom line

So, is it safe to travel to Kenya or Tanzania for a safari? Absolutely! A safari with Asilia ensures an immersive and authentic safari experience, untamed wilderness, and exceptional hospitality, all whilst held in a safe pair of hands. 

We've been making safari dreams come true for our guests for two decades. Our team of travel experts have plenty of experience crafting customised dream safaris.


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