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Your African Safari Checklist: What to Carry


“African Safari” – the term that evokes great passion and emotion in many people all over the World. The decision to go on safaris in Africa can be one of the best ideas on any person’s mind. Every person wishes they can enjoy a perfect safari, without missing any experiences. The power of many tours is usually in the preparation stage. This is where you choose where to tour; and in this case we are looking at safaris to East Africa.

East Africa as a region encompasses several countries that are located on the Eastern end of the African continent. The original meaning of the term East Africa referred to three countries, namely Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda. All three nations are immediate neighbours to each other and are all linked by one major landmass. The mighty Lake Victoria is shared by these three countries, and is arguably the best-known uniting feature for East Africa.

Over the years, and through several political and economic initiatives, the region was expanded to form a bigger part of what is now known as East Africa. This added the two neighbouring countries of Rwanda and Burundi. However, in recent times, these two great nations have often been grouped as part of Central Africa. Another great nation that recently joined the region known as East Africa, is the Africa’s youngest country- South Sudan. Some authorities also expand East Africa into Eastern Africa; allowing the addition of Ethiopia, Sudan, Somalia, Djibouti and Eritrea.

We at Bovid Africa Safaris have been running exciting safaris in Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and Rwanda over the years. During this time, we have learnt many things that make your African safari the memorable experience you hope for.

Preparing for your safari can be one of the most challenging tasks if you are planning a trip to a new region. However, even seasoned and experienced travelers often face a challenge deciding what to carry and what to leave at home. An African safari can be made more enjoyable by packing the right items in your safari bag.

African Safari

Here is a list of items that we at Bovid Africa Safaris recommend you carry on your African safari. These items work on any safari to these countries; Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania and Rwanda:-

  1. Valid passport with visa stamps (at least 6 months to expiry date); and an additional form of ID in case you lose your passport e.g. passport and visa photocopies
  2. Airline tickets/ E-tickets, including any en-route hotel reservation tickets
  3. Immunization certificates and medical/ travel insurance certificates
  4. Personal medicine (plus malaria prophylaxis, basic painkillers, antihistamines, motion sickness pills, cold and flu medication, anti-diarrhoea medication)
  5. Insect repellent
  6. Sunscreen (SPF 15 or higher)
  7. Tissues and wet wipes/ hand sanitizer
  8. Credit/ Debit Card
  9. Personal attire and personal effects
  10. Small backpack for daytime use
  11. Comfortable walking shoes, flat soles often help you walk easier on uneven ground/ surfaces (you can also combine some open and closed shoes; and your guide will be happy to advise on days/ locations where you can use open shoes)
  12. A jersey/ jacket or sweater for the cold days. An extra scarf may be good to carry as well
  13. A raincoat (with hood) or a rain suit
  14. Sun hat/ cap
  15. Sunglasses
  16. Spotlight/ torch with spare batteries and bulb
  17. A pair of binoculars
  18. A field notebook and pens
  19. A camera, extra batteries, extra memory cards and charger
  20. Mobile phone charger and dynamic multi-plug/ adapter
  21. Alarm clock
  22. Field guide books on East Africa (optional) – mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, ecosystems, culture etc.– shared guide books will be provided for use during your African safari, from the Bovid Africa Safaris LTD Library

We hope you will be well prepared for your next African Safari plan; and we all look forward to meeting you here on safari. Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and Rwanda are all amazing countries, waiting to be enjoyed by you…. see you here soon on your next African Safari.