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The ultimate packing list for a Tanzania safari


So you’ve booked your Tanzania safari adventure and the excitement is already building. With dozens of unique attractions to enjoy, The East African country is on the bucket list of many travel-lovers but like any trip, particularly a safari, you need to ensure you’re well prepared.

Most safari travel experts like Tanzania Odyssey have taken the headache out of arranging your vacation but it’s still wise to create a tick list for essential items.

Tanzanian safari picture

From clothing to hygiene, we’ve put together this handy list to help you decide what to take and how to be expertly prepared:

Clothing

  • Sweat-wicking T-shirts / Vests
  • Insulated jacket: Only if you fancy climbing Kilimanjaro, Oldonyo or Mount Meru
  • Down mittens: Only if you fancy climbing Kilimanjaro, Oldonyo or Mount Meru
  • Thermal long-johns for summit night: Only if you fancy climbing Kilimanjaro, Oldonyo or Mount Meru
  • Lightweight walking trousers: For a safari that includes hunting or trekking. Jeans or heavy cotton are not recommended because they chafe and take time to dry
  • Underwear: Briefs or boxer shorts, even though briefs are better because they don’t rub
  • High quality hiking socks and thin liner socks: It’s recommended that they are at least a size too small to avoid blisters when they stretch and bunch
  • Breathable lightweight waterproofs
  • Jacket and trousers: For safari trips that includes hunting or trekking
  • Waterproof walking boots: They should be sturdy and worn in if a safari comprises active elements otherwise comfortable leathers shoes are ideal

Hygiene

  • Toothbrush, toothpaste and deodorant
  • Kleenex tissues in plastic travel pouches or toilet paper
  • Hairbrush/comb
  • Flatly- packed travel wipes for personal hygiene, only if you fancy climbing Kilimanjaro, Oldonyo or Mount Meru
  • Sanitary products
  • Lip salve with UV protection
  • Vaseline: To protect against heel friction blisters and chafing skin

Baggage and Sleeping for camping

  • Large Holdall: to carry everything you will need during a safari
  • Daysack, 23-35 litres: to contain ready-access items; only for personal use
  • Sleeping bag: Rated +5c if on safari only or -10c if you fancy climbing Kilimanjaro
  • Waterproof rucksack liner or heavy-duty plastic sack: Only if you’re planning a multi-day walking safari
  • Elasticated waterproof rucksack cover: Only if you’re planning a multi-day walking safari

Health

  • Malaria Tablets: It’s up to you to decide whether to take these or not. Nevertheless, anti-malaria treatments should be taken before you travel
  • Sun cream: Some believe most sun creams are carcinogenic. Alternatives to consider are organic sun barriers or loose fitting clothes that cover the skin

Documents

  • Passport: It should be valid for an extra six months after the proposed trip return date
  • Tanzanian Entry Visa: Necessary if you’re flying to Nairobi and taking a bus to Arusha. You can purchase Kenyan Visas on arrival at the airport
  • Cash in USD denominations of $10 and $20- handy for tipping allowance and local purchases, meals etc…
  • Travel insurance/ travel documents
  • Vaccination certificates
  • Traveller’s cheques have poor conversion rates in Arusha, and Africa more generally, so they are not recommended for use

Other stuff

  • Digital camera, spare memory card, batteries and charger
  • Camera and film: recommended for camping
  • Sunglasses with Ultra Violet-filter lenses
  • Extra contact lenses (optional)
  • Earplugs (To help you sleep if near barking dogs)
  • High energy snacks (cereal bars, dried fruit and nuts
  • Head torch and spare batteries
  • Water bottles and Camelback (up to 3 litres carrying capacity if climbing)
  • Water purification tablets or Iodine drops
  • Plastic bags
  • Mobile phone: It’s recommended to unlock phones to aid use of local SIM card to reduce costs when calling home.
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