You’re going on your first Asilia Adventure but you’re not quite sure what to pack. So, what are the absolute must-haves when exploring East Africa’s open plains on foot, and what can you leave behind? We’ve asked Safari Fundi, Roelof Schutte, to round up the most essential items you will need.
It’s best to pack neutral coloured clothing such as khaki, olive green or browns, these colours are the most suitable to wear in the African bush for multiple reasons Lighter colours absorb less heat and will keep you cooler, while brighter colours are proven to attract insects. Lightweight, breathable and quick to dry clothing items are also a good idea to include in your baggage. Try and avoid bringing thick cotton and wool clothing, these are heavier than other alternatives and take much longer to dry as well after being washed.
Essential clothing and accessories to pack are:
- Sun-protection clothing (long-sleeved shirts)
- A raincoat, lightweight but 100% waterproof (neutral colours)
- Fleece jacket for cold nights and mornings
- A broad rim, neutral colour sun hat
Ideally, you can do some additional research on the climate of your destination to help decide on what clothes to pack – areas with high altitudes and are much colder in winter, and lower altitude areas are hotter and more humid during summer months.
Walked in and sturdy waterproof walking boots along with ankle gaiters are recommended. Don’t forget to bring a pair of flip flops or sandals, they’re great for when you’re back at your fly camp location and relaxing after the day’s adventures.
Skip the huge commercial bottles or packaging, the number of products people usually pack are often way too much for the duration of their holiday. Transfer your products into smaller plastic bottles with screw tops that will be enough to last for the duration of your adventure. The same applies to small tubes of toothpaste and contact lens fluid as an example. Do not forget to pack your sunscreen – factor 50 sunscreen, is your best bet!
All personal medication that you use daily and need for your well-being is vita – don’t leave these at home.
Measure the quantities you will require and only pack the amounts you will be needing while on safari. If you suffer from allergies, ensure that you bring appropriate medicine with you, as a safari can be dusty in the dry season and full of bugs and pollen in the wet season. Don’t forget personal essentials such as an Epi-Pen if you are allergic to bees. Be aware of all health warnings when travelling to a certain country, such as Malaria. Some vaccinations are required for travel to Africa – to be sure, consult your local travel agent to obtain the latest health travel advisories.
Photographic gear, personal gear, and gadgets
When going on holiday or safari, you wouldn’t want to leave behind any important camera equipment to capture the amazing memories. However, some gadgets and camera accessories can weigh a lot and take up extra luggage space. Therefore, it is important to only take along what you will certainly need and use!
- A good pair of binoculars (10 x 42 Roof Prism), one per person, to ensure no one misses out on any action that might too far off to spot with the naked eye. Have a look at the Nikon Monarch here.
- Compact camera or SLR with 1 wide-angle lens, a 300/400mm lens and a rapid strap will be needed while walking.
- Headlamp or headtorch with rechargeable/extra batteries.
- Solar charged portable power bank and carabiner hook, to charge your phone or batteries while hanging behind your backpack.
- A neutral colours Backpack with a hydrating system that can hold 2-3 litres and a neutral coloured rain cover to protect your belongings.
If you enjoy reading in your downtime, be sure to bring along your Kindle or Ipad and don’t forget to stock up on specialized energy bars.
Now, that you have your packing list ready, all that is left to do is choose your Asilia Adventure, and you’ll be all set for an unforgettable adventure!