Our family will be on the family safari in June. What type of clothing should we pack for dinner/evenings for adults and children? Also, what is the bathroom situation like while on the game drives? Thank you!
Hi Cindy, I will be taking my family on the Safari next year, so please post a review.
I have however been on six safari vacations, 3 of which have included Tanzania where the Bridges tour goes.
We intend to tell everyone to just take casual clothing….lightweight long pants, and long sleeved cotton T shirts…the Sun at the equator is fierce and you never know how many tsetse flies and mosquitoes will be around, so I don’t want my grandchildren getting bitten or having to wear too much Deet on exposed skin as it is not exactly the safest drug.
Avoid colors of clothing in black or dark blue as they can attract tsetse flies….sometimes you never see any, but you just don’t know, their bite hurts., I’ve been bitten through black socks! And they can carry sleeping sickness. Mosquitoes are most prevalent at night, so even more important to keep covered up for eating outside which you often do at camps.
Shoes, old sneakers, I always take an extra pair of shoes for emergency, say I step in mud or whatever. avoid white sneakers and white clothing, they show the dirt too much. Swimsuit and flip flops of course!
We have always changed just into clean safari clothes if there is time before dinner to change. Sometimes people just go straight to dinner. There is no need to be dressy.
The hotel Tauck now uses when you arrive is different, so that might be where we might say, wear shorts or something less Safari-like, but it is not really necessary. This is a safari, it’s awesome and casual! Thank goodness Tauck no longer uses the Four Seasons, their swimming pool is the coldest pool I have ever been in, I had to get straight out, it really concerned me about that being the hotel for the Bridges tour as we all love to swim.
If you need to pee pee while out on safari, you ask to check the tires and the driver will find somewhere safe for you to go, no big deal, I’ve had to do it a few times and if your grandchildren are like mine, they will just love doing that.
I once was given the all clear to go behind a bush, and just minutes later a large male elephant appeared just where I had been! Always carry a few pieces of toilet paper or tissues….actually whatever tours we are taking, nothing more annoying than having to ‘drip Dry’ 😂
In the event that some new to Africa might be confused, Tauck still uses the Four Seasons for the K&T trip. They just don’t use it for the Bridges trip. We stayed at the Four Seasons for three nights in June. The only people we saw in the pool were kids. They don’t seem to mind the cold water. None of the pools that we have visited in Africa are heated.
Ah Yes, SeaLord is correct. I never found any other pools in Africa that cold, always been able to swim, no problem.
I wonder if the hotel was changed because it was too expensive or my theory is that too many families complained about the cold pool, expecially as I believe they used to spend three nights there. When we there in 2019 the hotel said they were planning to do someone about it but clearly haven’t. Too bad for a fancy hotel.
Clothing……I get so enthusiastic about AFRICA, that I forgot to mention it’s a good idea to take a sweatshirt or a puffer jacket because of the elevation, it can be quite cold early morning and evening. We take packable puffers and a similar vest that are lightweight and take up little room.
Hats, ones with a chinstrap so they don’t blow off, in addition a beanie hat for the balloon ride both for the cold and the heat from the flame can be quite fearsome especially if you have thinning hair.
We take buffs to protect our necks from sun but also to protect our necks from our camera and binocular straps. If it is really dusty, they are also good for that. Binoculars….you will get different answers as to whether these are necessary or not, we never go without them, better to have them than not. They are good for spotting the elusive leopard in trees.
We use lanyards for our cell phones. For a safari day bag, we take small backpacks that fold up to nothing to store things like our jackets and water, tissues etc. on one tour, we were asked to take our passports and valuables on every safari drive, that may be because there had been a terrorist attack in Arusha and our TD wanted to be ready to go go go if necessary.
One more helpful hint: slip on shoes. You will often want to stand on the seats for better viewing. The drivers ask that shoes be removed before standing on the seats. Slip ins are preferable to tie shoes IMO.
I used to say slip on shoes, but once you are in the vehicle you usually keep the shoes off for the entire time out. I still do take slip ons but no longer think they are a must unless you are not agile enough to bend and tie shoes without sitting down. Do you see what I mean Nancy. Also, bare in mind that this only applies to safaris in East Africa. In Southern Africa you are not even allowed to stand in the vehicles.
Regarding the shoes: I was thinking that when we go to Africa, I would bring Crocs (that I wear in the yard) because they are so easy to slip on and off and to wear with socks. Also, they can be hosed off with soap and water as well as drying fast. I remember leaving my shoes in Africa the last time we were there which was quite a while ago because they would not get clean enough when they were washed.
Thank you all for your input! One more question....what health measures did you take before going on the trip and are there any special medications/prescripstions we should have on hand while traveling "just in case"?
My husband and I are up to date with all our vaccines from Yellow fever to Hep B, Hep A, shingles, flu, tetanus, covid etc etc. I need to check with my adult children if they are up to date. We will all be taking Malaria pills! Take your usual travel first aid kit, rehydration powders, anti diarrheal,and maybe a course of antibiotics if your doctor will agree,
I was on safari in 2016 with my family - group of 12! Going this June with just my mother. For medications, a travel doctor will give you prescriptions for a strong antibotic (Cipro), Malaria medication, Fluconozole (for women who are susceptible to yeast infections from antibiotics). Some over the counter medicine and items that we took - GasX (this was popular!), eye drops, Fiber supplements, Tylenol, Ibruprofen, Benedryl, cortisone, Immodium, Hair conditioner, playing cards. If your children are picky eaters, maybe some granola bars/protein bars.
Thank you! we are about to leave soon! What are the meals/dining like? Is everything included food and drinks/adult beverages?
Your itineraries will tell you all about meals, most will be inclined on this tour. Alcohol is only included when mentioned or when you go on an evening safari and they tell you are having sundowners.
My family including our kids and grandkids will be on the July 14, 2024 Bridges safari. Is anyone else going on that date? Any tips for this cruise? The grandkids are a boy almost 8, and two girls 12 and 13.
Yes, same tour as my family. I guess you mean safari and not cruise. My husband and myself, our kids, their spouses Two boys 10 and 7. One girl 10.
Been to Tanzania three times before and can’t wait to go again.