WHAT TO PACK WHEN YOU’RE TRAVELLING INTO AFRICA WITH CARRY ON LUGGAGE
When you’re jetting off to a safari via air charter, you’ll need to comply with weight and space restrictions relevant to the aircraft so it’s good to know which essentials to pack. This is a collection of tips for women from travellers who have learnt to be prepared for hot and cold weather relevant to their destination.
Gloves, a scarf or sarong that can double as a scarf, and a knitted hat (fitted enough that it won’t blow off) or a beanie are the best defense for chilly early morning or late afternoon game drives. Early morning is the best time for game viewing so you need to be prepared for the cooler pre-sunrise temperatures.
When it comes to underwear, packing a sports bra is a great idea. If the game ranger decides to venture off road in the game-viewing vehicle (bundu bashing, so to speak), the ride can get very bumpy.
Look for merino wool socks, panties, a cami that can be worn as a base or on its own as well as thermal leggings. Merino wool is light and warm, with the added benefit of being able to absorb moisture from your skin and release it into the air. That means you don’t need to wash it as often, and you can pack less.
Don’t forget a pair of shorts, a swimming costume and sunglasses.
Invest in clothing that is sunscreen rated/treated with bug repellent. At the very least wear light cotton pants and shirts with long sleeves to protect sensitive skin from sun and insect bites.
Colour is important. Steer clear of black as it shows the dirt. Choose earthy basics as opposed to bright colours that will attract the wrong kind of attention from the wildlife you hope to encounter on safari. Lighter colours are also cooler.
Cargo pants, jeans or leggings are the best staples, with a variety of vests and T-shirts to layer on top.
Pack flip flops and closed-toe sandals/ trainers or walking boots if you’re doing a walking safari.
If you’re staying at a luxury lodge or a luxury tented camp, pack a pair of smarter shoes and a couple of pretty tops and coordinating scarf in case there’s an occasion that warrants it.
A windbreaker that doubles as a raincoat or a waterproof jacket with a hoodie is invaluable. Should you get caught in the rain, and there’s no chance of drying the wet clothes, pack them in a waterproof compartment of your luggage or in a plastic bag (that you can reuse/recycle when you get home). That way, you’ll keep the rest of your belongings dry.
Keep a clean outfit aside for the trip home.