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What to wear for a week in Zanzibar

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In my last article I have share with you why I think Zanzibar is worth a visit. I have also explained that although Zanzibar is prised to have such a relaxed atmosphere, the population is very religious and mostly Muslims, so dressing appropriately is imperative and that’s why I want to show you what to wear for a week in Zanzibar.

If you think about it, it’s actually pretty easy to put together what you will wear for a week on a beach destination like Zanzibar. Most time you will be on the beach soaking up the sun or swimming in the sea with beautiful starfish, but, there will be other times where you will be out and about exploring the rest of the island.

So, I made a small list with my favourites that I have packed for my week in Zanzibar. I have also included some tips for ‘dressing appropriately’ that I hope will make your packing experience much easier.

My list on what to wear for a week in Zanzibar

General Tips

As general advice when you walk around the beach and hotels of the north of the island it’s fine wearing your bikini/shorts but when going for lunch/dinner, even in the beach restaurants, please put something on, even if it’s just a shirt. Outside this areas avoid walking with just your swim costumes. For women, topless in the beach is not allowed.

When out in the villages or Stone Town dress modestly. For women cover the knees and shoulders, you can use long skirts or even a scarf.

It will be hot and humid most time so choose materials that are lightweight and preferably cotton.  At night if it’s the hottest season (I have travelled in February) you don’t really need a jacket so I didn’t include that on my list.

The Essentials

(Click on the image to shop)
  • Hat

  • Sunglasses

  • Beach Bag: I love the straw ones and they are also useful as hand luggage.

  • Beach Towel: I normally use a thin one like these Turkish bath towel because it doesn’t take much space when packing.

  • Sunscreen: not really to wear but to apply all the time. The sun is strong and the sunshine hours are long so, be careful!

  • Scarf: I have included this one as essential because in some areas of Stone Town you may have to use it to cover up and will warm you up in case you’re cold.

Footwear

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  • Flip Flops

  • Small heel sandals

  • Flat sandals

Clothing

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  • Bikinis/Swimsuit: always in the plural for me, can’t have enough of them! I am a self-confessed bikini lover – have a look on my favourites.

  • Dresses

  • Beach tunic: I normally pack this one on my way to the beach and then wear it after for lunch and to come out of the beach. It’s a comfortable option when you have your skin full of sand and sunscreen.

  • Jumpsuit: you can use for day or night time

  • Shorts

  • Top
  • Short skirt
  • Long skirt: Women should cover shoulders and knees when out in Stone Town (dress modestly) so I opted for a light long skirt.

  • Maxi Dress

Hope you find this helpful for your trip to Zanzibar and let me know how can I help you in the comments below.

 

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links, I’ll receive a small commission.

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AfricaPackingTravel EasyUganda

What to wear for Gorilla Tracking

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In one of my recent posts I have told about my experience trekking in Uganda to see the mountain gorillas. Now I want to share with you some advice on what to wear  for gorilla tracking and hopefully make your experience much easier.

You can really use this list at any time because Uganda’s climate it’s very similar all year round.

Going to trek in the mountains takes some preparation, especially if you are going to such dense ones like Bwindi Impenetrable Forest. The best advice I can give you is to think carefully about the cloths you are going to wear as well as the materials of it. Overall choose good quality ones, remember, one hour in the forest will seem like five and there isn’t hardly any trails around. It is hard, but you can do it, with the appropriate clothing.

Then, think about the trek stages. Initially it was very hot and humid and I was wearing a t-shirt for almost the first part but once we stopped to see the gorillas I got really cold. This happened because I was at a higher altitude deep in the mountain with no sun light. At that point I put on a long-sleeved shirt. On the way back it started to rain, very heavy for about 30 minutes and I was glad I packed the rain jacket, so another item of great importance. During the trekking you will mostly experience several types of weather conditions so be prepared!

What to wear for Gorilla Tracking

Hiking boots

This item is probably the most important on the list. They should be comfortable and waterproof. The trail can be slippery and unsteady. Most of the way you are climbing paths full of vegetation and rocks. So the boots must have a good ankle support and again comfortable!

To complete it don’t forget a good pair of socks. They should be quite thick and fit just right with the boots, again remember to get some above the ankles. A trick that I have learned was to put the socks on top of the trousers to avoid been bitten by ants, apparently they are very common.

T-shirt

The weather is hot but humid. Remember the advices I gave you on how to dress for a safari? They are pretty similar, which means, the t-shirts should be of neutral colours, preferably greens, browns, khakis. Also choose lightweight cotton fabric, this will help with the humidity.

Long-sleeved shirt

For some parts of the trek I really recommend you to wear a long-sleeved shirt, to avoid scratches along the way were the path gets rougher. Also when you finally sit down to watch the gorillas it can get really cold. I remember I was freezing at one point! Put in the backpack just in case.

Waterproof Jacket

You should take this with you, even that the day is really hot and bright and there aren’t any previsions of rain. This is because the weather in Uganda is unpredictable and after all you are going to trek in the rainforest. At any moment can rain. That happened on the way back of my trek; it just started pouring rain and good that I had this jacket with me.

Trousers

Do not wear shorts by all means. You can seriously injury yourself if you opt by shorts or dresses. It’s really important that you cover your legs as much as you can to avoid scratches, bites from insects or others harms. Choose light materials and neutral colours. Leggings are a good option.

Backpack

A small backpack will be essential to carry water (at least 1,5L), the packed lunch, camera and some extra layers of clothing as mentioned above. If you can get a waterproof backpack, if not get some plastic bags to wrap around the camera in case it starts raining. Also important to take in the backpack is the sunscreen and insect repellent.

Gloves

Gloves are optional and I did my trek without it but I strongly recommend you to wear a pair. This is because most of the time you are grabbing anything along the way such as branches and rocks which can harm your hands. To be comfortable get some thick gloves, maybe like the gardening ones. This will keep your hands safe along the way and if you feel like you don’t need it you can just put it way in the backpack.

Walking sticks

If you want to bring your own walking sticks because you use them a lot in other treks please do, but, if you are going to buy them just for this activity I really wouldn’t recommend it. In the park they have walking sticks for you for free and it’s one less item you will have to pack. They are really handy and will help you on some parts of the trek but you don’t really have to have it.

Tell me if these advice’s helped you with your adventure in the mountains in the comments below!

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AfricaKenyaPackingTravel Easy

What to wear on a Safari

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A Safari is a unique experience that you will cherish for the rest of your life and surely will want to repeat. For this adventure to go smoothly, I will give some advice on what to wear and avoid that hopefully will make your packing/safari experience much easier. Depending on the seasons you may take one or other extra but, with this list you should be able to pack for any safari throughout the year.

What to wear on a Safari

Neutral Clothes

You should be able to blend in with the surroundings as much as possible. Wear: greens, browns, khakis. Wearing bright colours may draw unnecessary attention to you and scare the animals. Wearing full black clothes may attract the Tsetse flies. White clothes will get dirty very quickly as the dust is a constant during game driving when they rush to find the animals.

Use Layers

Sure it’s hot during the day, but when you leave camp at 05:00 am or at 17:00 pm the temperature is dramatically low and you will be happy to have a fleece on. By wearing layers you will be able to remove or add as you go along during the day. Also, prefer the clothes with cotton material as they are much more comfortable when it’s hot – this is by experience! Keep in mind that the Safari vehicles are either completely open on the sides or with an open roof so the wind can be pretty strong.

A Multifunctional jacket

This type of jacket with several pockets will save lives! Literally, you easily put the several camera gadgets in and out as you need it so you don’t miss any actions from the animals.

Trousers or shorts?

It’s up to you! I have worn both and the comfort it’s the same. If you choose to wear trousers make sure they are of light material and neutral colours. Leggings are a good option. I suggest for the early game drives put on trousers and then after breakfast switch to shorts. Another option is to wear the trousers that zip off at the knee.

Sunglasses, hats and scarves

With the strong sun throughout the day, sunglasses will protect your eyes and make your viewing of the animals easier. Wearing a hat can also help with game viewing and will protect your face and head from sun burns. Scarves will keep you warm and protect you from the dust. They are also good to clean the lenses of the camera.

Comfortable shoes

I have used my hiking boots most days, just because I was going to gorilla tracking later on my trip and they are very comfortable.  But, if you are just going for the safari, you only need comfortable trainers or even simple sandals.

Swimsuit/Bikini

At the end of a safari there is nothing better than a dive in the pool and refresh your tired feet. Research where you are staying, not all lodges have this facility and you don’t want to pack unnecessary items.

Kibo safari camp

Casual Outfit

On the lodges the atmosphere is very relaxed, so for dinner a very simple casual outfit will do. Most of the days I just put on flip flops and simple dresses or a top and skirt.

1 Small Bag

This will be with you every day when out for game viewing. Choose one with some pockets, preferably front and side (to keep a bottle of water) and small. Try to pick one with neutral colours and preferably with thick straps to bear the weight of camera, water and other items that might be heavy.

 

Tell me if these advices helped you with your travels!

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AfricaPackingTravel Easy

What to pack for Africa

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The backpack I used for my travels in Africa was the ‘Caribee Jet Pack 75L’ and I used it before for long travels because it’s very comfortable even when it’s super full!

 

What to wear on my trip to Africa?

Clothes

  • Dresses
  • Skirts (at least 1 long)
  • Long cotton pants
  • T-shirts
  • Long-sleeve shirts
  • Light hoodie
  • Jacket (waterproof)
  • Scarves (culture and weather)
  • Shorts
  • Underwear
  • Socks
  • Pyjama
  • Bikinis

Shoes

  • Flip-flops
  • Sandals
  • Trainers
  • Short heels

Accessories

  • Canga (works as beach towel)
  • Toilet towel medium
  • Purse
  • Umbrella
  • Hat
  • Sun glasses

No need to pack a lot of items – use the dry cleaning shops – it’s cheap and quick or hand-wash as things dry from one day to another in Africa.

Toiletries

  • Small containers for: shampoo, conditioner, shower gel, deodorant, body lotion (restock in the hotels or buy new ones when finish)
  • Sunscreen – I have used factor 50 during my trip
  • Toothpaste and toothbrush
  • Make –up bag: face cream, eye cream, foundation SPF 30, compact powder, bronze powder, eyeliner, eye-shadow, lipstick/lipbalm, tweezers, small mirror, cotton wool, tonic/make up remover.
  • Accessories bag (I like to use this small plastic bags that you see in the image below): earrings, necklaces, bracelet, hair elastics, bobby pin, hairbrush, hair straightener (I didn’t really use it).
  • Nail bag (nail file, nail polish remover, nail polish)
  • Epilator
  • Tampons

First Aid Kit

  • Medication: ibuprofen, paracetamol, Imodium, laxatives, anti-sickness pills, oral re-hydration salts, anti-septic cream, malaria tablets (optional)
  • Yellow Fever Vaccination card (depending which countries you are going)
  • Band-aids
  • Gauze
  • Scissor
  • Thermometer
  • Mosquito repellent –  IRF 4 with 50% DEET
  • Toilet paper

Gadgets

  • Phone
  • Laptop
  • Headphones
  • Portable charger
  • Camera – I used the 100D Canon alternating with 2 lenses, the 70-300mm to close up and the 18-55mm to shoot wide pictures
  • GoPro 4
  • Selfie-stick
  • SD cards x6
  • Travel adaptor

Hand Luggage

  • Passport + Copies
  • Passport photos
  • Visas – You can get some visas in advance online like the East African Visa, valid for Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda
  • Flight information/tickets
  • Hotel information/ reservations
  • Travel Insurance
  • Pencil/pen
  • Hand wash sanitizer
  • Guidebook
  • Maps
  • Small toothpaste and toothbrush
  • Inflatable neck pillow
  • Cash/cards
  • Snack Food
  • Ear plugs
  • Eye cover
  • Tissues
  • Baby wipes

Safe travels!

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