How to prepare for a Kilimanjaro safari

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How to prepare for a Kilimanjaro safari

Going on any safari entails a lot of preparation, from packing essential items to ensuring you arrive for your flight on time. However, a safari in Kilimanjaro is a unique and exciting experience which may require a different sort of preparation. Outlined below are the steps you should take to prepare for your trip.


For climbing safaris

A Kilimanjaro safari for the more adventurous at heart, climbing Mount Kilimanjaro requires intense fitness preparation. Before you book your flight or make the trip to the base, you need to ensure that you have practised hiking and walking for at least one month beforehand.

This may sound like intense preparation, but you will not be able to handle the seven to eight-day trek otherwise. You should also train while wearing your trekking kit, as this will prepare you for how to handle the weight you will need to carry on the journey. It is also vital to work on your mental stamina and strength.


For national park safaris

The national parks of Kilimanjaro offer the wildlife highlights of Africa, from the Big Five to other incredible sights. However, it is important to be prepared for the weather and insect population found in these parks.

Be sure to wear light, cotton clothing with long sleeves and pants to keep the sun off of your body. Also bring a wide-brimmed hat with you if the game drives are open air. It is vital to wear sunscreen and carry a bottle of water with you as well. To ward off insects, pack Tabard, Peaceful Sleep or other DEET based products. It may seem like a wild, untouched landscape but the Kilimanjaro area has mod-cons in the hotels surrounding it, so do not forget cell phone and tablet chargers.


For camping safaris

There are areas in Kilimanjaro where you are able to camp and go on daily and nightly game rides. It can be an exciting family adventure when done right, so be sure that you are prepared before you take the plunge and go on an African safari.

Be sure that you pack clothes suitable for hot weather, and plenty of insect and mosquito spray. You should ensure that if you bring your own tents and sleeping bags, there are no holes or damage to them, as this can mean they are unsuitable to spend the night in. Some camping grounds may not have stable electricity, so pack a flashlight or headlamp for when you need the ablutions at night.  


For trekking safaris

Trekking safaris involve some walking and some driving, so be sure to bring comfortable walking shoes with you. A top tip before you leave for the safari is to wear in your new shoes by walking in them daily a week beforehand. This will help to mould them to your feet and make sure they do not give you blisters.

If your trekking safari is more intense than the basic tourist options offered, you will need to be fit and healthy. Do not forget your photographic equipment to capture the stunning views, and be sure to bring plenty of sunscreen with you. A trekking safari doesn't have to include a hike up Mount Kilimanjaro but many of the more adventurous safari companies offer to include it in their packages. You may even be able to experience the Maasai culture on one of these trekking safaris, as many of them live in the untouched areas of Tanzania.


For a self-drive safari

A self-drive safari is an exciting way to experience the landscape of Tanzania and the beautiful wildlife found there. You are not constrained by the tour guide’s schedule, and can drive at your own pace to capture the stunning surroundings and special family moments.

To prepare for a self-drive safari you will need to have the correct license or have applied for an international driving license in order to rent a 4x4 for the trip. You will need to bring plenty of water with you on this trip and remember to wear sunscreen. Also be wary of approaching animals too closely in the vehicle, as some may be scared and anxious. Bring binoculars with you for game spotting and bring healthy snacks that will not dehydrate you.


Remember to enjoy the experience

A Kilimanjaro safari is a once-in-a-lifetime experience, so the most important preparation of all is to remember to enjoy it! Pack a camera, a spare set of batteries, and a pair of binoculars for the family to share. Immerse yourself in this oasis of calm and dream away the hustle and bustle of the modern world.‚Äč

Kilimanjaro safari