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Tanzania Safari Packing List (2)

Embarking on a Tanzania safari is an unforgettable adventure, but packing for it requires careful consideration. The country’s varied weather conditions and weight restrictions create the need for a meticulous Tanzania safari packing list. From essential clothing and accessories to crucial travel documents and portable chargers, every item plays an important role in ensuring a perfect safari experience.

For Entry into Tanzania

Passport

Your passport must have at least six months of validity from the date of entry. Additionally, Tanzania requires that there should be a minimum of one blank page in your passport for a visa stamp upon arrival.

Visa

Most travelers visiting Tanzania require a visa for entry. You can determine your eligibility and apply for an e-visa by visiting the official website. The standard cost for a visa is $50 USD and processing time is around 2 weeks.

Travel insurance

Insurance is not a requirement to enter Tanzania, but in my opinion, travel insurance is a must – especially when going on safari. It provides peace of mind, covering unforeseen circumstances such as health emergencies, accidents, and loss of belongings.

Yellow Fever Vaccine*

Travelers aged 1 year and older arriving from countries at risk for yellow fever virus transmission must provide proof of yellow fever vaccination. This requirement also applies to layovers exceeding 12 hours in countries with a risk of yellow fever virus transmission. If you’re considering a layover in Addis Ababa or another place with yellow fever risk, keep this in mind.

Travel tip

Store your important paperwork securely in a waterproof and sealable bag to protect them from humidity and unexpected downpours. It’s also a good idea to make scanned copies of essential documents and store them in a separate location from the originals. This ensures a backup in case of loss or theft.

Tanzania Safari Packing List (5) - cheetah in Serengeti National Park
Tanzania Safari Packing List (38)

Everyday Essentials for a Tanzania Safari

Medicine

Malaria pills and up-to-date vaccines are important preventive measures to protect against potential health risks during the trip. Visit your doctor or a travel clinic a month or two before your trip to make sure you have everything you need. We took Malarone (anti-malarial) and neither of us had any serious side effects.

Don’t forget any other medications you may need – daily medicines, anti-diarrhea/nausea, paracetamol or ibuprofen, and oral rehydration salts.

Cash

You’ll likely have prepaid for your safari with a credit card or a bank transfer, but don’t forget to bring cash to tip your safari guide.  A general rule of thumb is around $10 USD per person/per day.

So if you’re a couple on a 5-day safari, you’d want to tip at least $100 USD to the safari guide at the end of the trip. 

Insect repellent

Given the prevalence of mosquitoes in safari areas, it’s crucial to use effective mosquito repellent. Applying and reapplying repellent is vital in preventing diseases such as malaria and dengue fever. For protection on our safari, we took malaria pills and used Sawyer Picaridin Insect Repellent Lotion, which is my favorite repellent as it has worked effectively for me in every country I’ve visited. This is one of the most important things on your Tanzania safari packing list!

Good quality binoculars

Binoculars are a must-have for a Tanzania safari, enhancing the wildlife viewing experience and allowing for close-up observation of distant animals. Investing in high-quality binoculars ensures clear and detailed views. Your guide will usually have a pair that you can borrow, but it’s ideal for each person to have their own pair of binoculars.

Sunscreen

Protecting your skin from the strong Tanzanian sun is crucial during safari activities. Applying sunscreen generously and frequently shields from potential sunburn and skin damage.

Make sure to apply your insect repellent about 10 minutes after applying the sunscreen.

If you are taking doxycycline as an anti-malarial, be extra careful with the sun. These antibiotics can make your skin a lot more sensitive to the sun. Opt for at least 50 SPF to avoid sunburn. 

Sunglasses

The bright and often glaring outdoor conditions in Tanzania make sunglasses a crucial accessory. Bring your polarized pair for more protection!

Hat

Wearing a hat, in addition to sunglasses, will help shield your face and skin from sunburn.

Toiletries

  • Toothbrush & toothpaste
  • Hand sanitizer or wet wipes
  • Body wash, shampoo, and conditioner
  • Lip balm with SPF
  • Moisturizer and lotion
  • Deodorant
  • Hairbrush
  • Soap and razor
  • Feminine hygiene products
  • Basic first aid kit
  • Contact lenses/solution
Tanzania Safari Packing List (23) - malaria pills
Tanzania Safari Packing List (1)

What to Wear on a Tanzania Safari

When venturing into the natural habitats of Tanzania, the goal is to observe wildlife in their natural state without causing any disturbance. Opt for neutral, earthy tones like beige, army green, brown, or khaki, that help you to blend into the environment.

AVOID wearing dark colors like blue and black. These colors attract Tsetse flies and other insects.

Linen or long-sleeved shirts

Lightweight and breathable, linen shirts in earthy tones not only keep you cool but also blend with the environment.

Cargo pants – Green or khaki

When it comes to safari activities, cargo pants are a practical and comfortable choice. Their numerous pockets provide convenient storage for essentials, making it easier to keep everything organized while on the move. Additionally, their durable fabric makes them well-suited for the rugged terrain often encountered during a Tanzania safari.

A light jacket

While the days might be warm, the evenings and early mornings can bring about considerably lower temperatures, making a light jacket essential for comfort and well-being.

Boots

Sturdy boots are essential for trekking in the rugged terrain of Tanzania (if you’re planning on doing a walking safari). They provide protection and stability, ensuring a safe and comfortable safari experience.

Sneakers

I wore boots for our whole safari (even though we didn’t do a walking safari). If you plan to stay in the safari car most of the time, you can opt for sneakers instead.

Scarves

The dust in the Serengeti can be brutal, especially during dry season. Make sure to bring a scarf or two to cover your nose and mouth.

Rain jacket

Even in dry season, you may still see some rain. Bring a light rain jacket just in case.

If you’re planning on visiting Zanzibar before or after your safari, check out my Zanzibar packing list as well.

Tanzania Safari Packing List (6) - Serengeti National Park
Tanzania Safari Packing List (8) - leopard in Serengeti National Park

Electronics

Camera and memory cards

The diverse and stunning landscapes, along with the magnificent wildlife, create countless opportunities for incredible photography. Make sure to bring a high-quality camera with a powerful zoom lens (at least 200mm, but preferably more) to capture distant subjects effectively.

Don’t forget your camera batteries, charger + extra SD cards!

Phone charger

Most of the safari vehicles have outlets. Make sure to bring your USB charging cable!

Universal adaptor

Ensure you pack a universal adapter for Tanzanian outlets, as their plugs differ from those in many other countries. You can purchase a universal adapter at travel stores or online before your trip.

Tripod

A tripod will be extremely helpful for capturing the perfect shot. With the varying lighting conditions and diverse wildlife, a tripod provides the stability needed for stunning, high-quality imagery.

Power bank

While most safari vehicles are equipped with chargers, we encountered an issue where ours would randomly stop working. Luckily, we had a power bank with us, which ensured our phones stayed charged so we could capture all of the incredible moments on our safari!

Tanzania Safari Packing List (36) - Ngorongoro Crater
Tanzania Safari Packing List (14)

Useful Packing Tips and Tricks

  • Opt for versatile items – Packing versatile clothing and gear that can be used for multiple purposes helps minimize the number of items you need to bring.
  • Roll your clothes – Rolling clothes instead of folding them not only saves space but also minimizes wrinkles, keeping your attire looking fresh.
  • Use packing cubes – These nifty organizers keep your belongings neatly compartmentalized, making it easier to locate specific items without creating a mess. This is a life saver on safari!
  • Consider lightweight and compact options: Look for travel-friendly versions of essential items, such as compact toiletry bottles and lightweight, quick-dry clothing.
  • Plan for laundry: Pack a small amount of travel detergent in case you need to hand wash essentials during your safari to extend the usability of your clothing.

I hope this Tanzania safari packing list helped you feel more prepared!

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Hi! I'm Carrie Salter, a travel blogger originally from the USA, but now traveling and living abroad full time. I share travel guides, travel tips, and inspiration from around the world!

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