June 13, 2022
by Nicole Rowles

At Adventure Out Loud, our goal is to ensure your safari preparations are as easy and stress-free as possible. That’s why we’ve put together a comprehensive safari packing guide that details everything you need to pack for your safari adventure. If you're travelling with us, we also work with you to recommend good, reliable brands where you can purchase any gear you need. Some of our suppliers offer discounts to our customers, so make sure you let us know if there’s anything you need to buy!





  • 5 - 6 pairs of safari outfits (i.e. pants, shirts, skirts, etc)

One of the great things about safari is you don't need to dress up. You can ofcourse go out and buy a stylish safari suit, or buy new outdoor gear to look the part, alternatively, you probably already have everything you need in your wardrobe. In fact, our favourite safari outfit is a pair of pants (or a long skirt) and a shirt. 

Just remember that Africa is a conservative region, and it is appropriate to wear clothing that covers the knees - this may be long pants, shorts, skirts or dresses. Choosing clothing in neutral colours, as some insects such as the Tsetse fly (found in Tarangire, Tanzania) and mosquitoes are attracted to dark fabrics, is also a good idea. Ensure that you have long sleeved tops to protect you from the sun and from any creepy crawlies you might encounter while out on safari. For women, there may be some areas where wearing pants is considered inappropriate - these include religious sites or certain villages with highly conservative values. Your guide will be able to let you know about this the day before you visit, but it’s advisable to have at least one long skirt or dress (preferably ankle-length) in your luggage.

  • 1 - 2 pairs of smart casual dinner clothing

It’s nice to have something fresh and clean to change into at the end of the day and I recommend 1 - 2 smart casual dinner outfits. Remember that temperatures can drop quite significantly once the sun goes down during your safari, so plan your evening outfits accordingly. Long clothing is also advisable for insect protection.




  • 1 - 2 sweaters, jackets or jumpers

Mornings can be chilly on safari, especially if you are leaving early for a dawn-safari. Something water and wind resistant is a great way to go, especially if you’re going at a time of year when you might experience some wet weather. My favourite is wearing a wind-breaker jacket over a small down jacket or fleece jumper, and then a scarf around my neck. 

  • Rain jacket, poncho or umbrella

A good quality, breathable rain jacket like a Goretex is a great investment for a trip to Africa, especially if you’re going at a time of year when it might rain. Ensure there is ventilation in your jacket, so that you don’t get too hot and sweaty while wearing it. An umbrella is a good addition, but should not be packed instead of a rain jacket as umbrellas have limited useability in off-the-beaten-track locations like Africa. They can be useful at your safari lodge, although most safari lodges will provide umbrellas. 

  • 1 thermal layer, gloves and beanie

If you know you’re the type of person that gets cold, a top and bottom thermal layer is the way to go! You may also want a pair of gloves and a beanie.



  • Shoes or boots

If you’re planning on doing a longer walking safari, you will want a pair of runners or may even want to invest in a pair of hiking boots. If you buy a pair of boots, make sure you get these professionally fitted. Also, if you're adding a Kilijmanjaro trek to your safari, make sure that you purchase waterproof boots, especially for trekking purposes. There’s nothing worse than walking around with soggy feet, or knowing that your shoes haven’t dried overnight and that you’ll have to put them on wet in the morning!

  • Sandals or flip flops

Sandals are good to accompany with your dinner outfit for something a little lighter. You may wish to wear flip flops when you’re taking a bucket shower while out on a mobile safari. If this is the case, rubber shoes are best.

  • Socks

Make sure you try your walking shoes on with your socks before you depart for your trip. This will ensure that your socks aren’t so thick that your shoes become tight, and that your socks are not so thin that they fail to protect your feet from blisters. Some woollen socks for night time are a good addition to your luggage if you know you’ll be in locations that get cold in the evenings.




  • Hiking pack or a soft-shell suitcase to leave at the hotel with unnecessary gear

It is important that your bag is not too large, particularly if you are in a group or if you ar flying in or out of your safari destination. All baggage needs to fit into the boot of your jeep, so the bigger your group, the smaller your luggage needs to be. Best to have a soft-shell bag that can squeeze into smaller spaces and weighs no more than 15kg. Also, remember not to pack valuables like electronic equipment in the back, you should keep these on you, as the bumpy roads may cause them to malfunction.

If you are flying, it is a good idea to bring a larger suitcase that you can leave at your base hotel, and a smaller suitcase that you can pack your safari clothes in. The maximum you can take on smaller planes is 15kg per person. 

If you’re planning to bring a backpack, make sure it is properly fitted to reduce the strain on your body when you’re carrying it around. Your guide can help you with this. You can also get your pack fitted for you when you buy it.

  • Carry on duffel, backpack or suitcase for safari gear

A carry on size bag will come in handy for all those things you’ll need to take out in the field with you. This should include your camera, sunscreen, a jumper, water at a minimum.



  • US$50/day per person cash to buy souvenirs, visas, drinks and tips

Remember that many local shops and markets across Africa prefer to be paid in US dollars, instead of local currency, and most will not accept credit card. We recommend having USD cash currency with you prior to arriving in Africa. If you are planning to shop in local shops or markets, your guide can help you exchange this in to local currency where needed. If you know you are a shopper, you might want to bring a little more. 

If you are shopping in larger tourist shops, or paying for drinks and souvenirs from your safari lodge, you should be able to pay using a credit card, but you may incur additional fees. 

  • 28 Degrees credit card or Citibank debit card

In our experience, 28 Degree cards offer the best rates if you are using your card overseas. Citibank debit cards are also great because they usally don't charge a withdrawal fee when you are overseas.  




  • Passport

Ensure that your passport is valid for at least 6 months. Some countries state this as a requirement for entry.

  • 1L re-usable water bottle

Nalgene bottles in particular are very handy, as they are light, durable and you can heat or cool them if you need to. Adventure Out Loud does not support the use of single-use bottles, and we provide large water bottles that you can refill from. Beware, if you bring single-use bottles on one of our trips, we will charge you a $5/day penalty per bottle. This fee goes to charity. 

  • Travel adapter

Different countries in Africa require different travel adapters. Depending on where you’re coming from, you may also need to bring a voltage adapter to protect your devices. See the helpful table below: 







230 V

50 Hz



240 V

50 Hz



230 V

50 Hz




50 Hz

South Africa


230 V

50 Hz


  • Swimmers and travel towel

If you are staying at a mid-range or luxury safari lodge, towels will be provided for use at the pool. If you are staying at a budget option, a portable, quick dry travel towel can pack down to a small size so that it doesn’t take up too much space in your luggage. Invest in a microfibre towel to ensure that it will dry quickly.  

  • Sun hat and fly protection hat

A hat is a must-have on safari, and bringing one with fly protection/netting  is a wise addition to your safari kit, particularly if you are visiting during the Great Migration. You can find hats with easily removable fly barriers.

  • Sunglasses, eyeglasses, contacts and solution

Eye protection is important, as the glare from the sun while you’re on safari can be extreme. If you wear glasses, make sure you bring a spare pair, just in case. Bring plenty of spare contact lenses if you wear them, too.

  • Toilet paper

Just in case! You can add this to your “toilet kit”.

  • Toiletries, medications, sanitary products, hand sanitiser and sunscreen

You will know what you personally need to bring for this section. Make sure you have more than enough of any medication you take on a regular basis, and speak with your doctor for any additional tips about how to store or pack medication whilst on safari. It is also a good idea to get a letter from your doctor outlining your medication so that it isn't taken off you during a customs search.

  • Energy bars, nuts and snacks

Some extra snacks never go astray, but make sure you check with your guide before packing them for your game walk or drive - they may need to be stored in a specific way so as not to attract curious and hungry wildlife!

  • Insect repellent

Essential. You may wish to bring a repellent with deet. Chat to your doctor or pharmacist about this for safe recommendations.


Clothing for a safari



  • Ear plugs

This is recommended for anyone who is a light sleeper, especially if you’re planning to go on a mobile safari and sleep in tents. When nothing but the walls of a tent separate you from a snorer, you might be glad of your ear plugs! This is less of a concern if you are staying in mid-range and luxury accommodation, where luxury cottages, rooms or safari tents are well spaced for optimal privacy. Regardless, it is common to be woken up by a lion roaring or an elephant trumpeting. 

  • Portable battery to recharge your phone

Look for a portable battery that is light and has plenty of recharge capacity. Don’t forget to bring the cord to recharge your recharger! Power is available at all safari camps & lodges so this is only necessary during the day. If you are on a mid-range or luxury safari, most safari jeeps will have a charging station. 

  • Camera

When you take your camera on a game drive, best to bring a strap so that you can place it around your neck, or carry it on your lap. Large bumps on your drive may cause your devices to stop working! It is also a good idea to have at least a 300mm lense. You will get very close to the animals, but without a good zoom, your pictures will not look very impressive. Ideally, we recommend a 600mm lense. 

  • Reading book or playing cards

There is often enough time to relax by the pool or in a hammock with a good book. Alternatively, you can make friends with other travellers by bringing a game or a deck of cards. 


African safari itinerary ideas





Ready to start planning your african safari?

Check out our comprehensive guide to safari in Africa or book a consultation with an African safari experts to get an experts ideas and start planning your safari. Our private and custom-built luxury adventures are individually crafted to meet your wildest dreams! Secluded beach getaways, romantic safaris, honeymoon surprises, unique accommodation, or something a little weird and wonderful, tell us your wildest adventure dreams and we’ll make them a reality.



About The Author:

Nicole Rowles

PR & Content Manager

Nicole is an outdoor enthusiast with a passion for travel and adventure. A publicist, podcaster and former journalist, she loves to weave words into magic!