Kenya is one of more favorable tourist destination, for its comparative affluence to its contemporary African nations. But it is always important to be extra prepared if you are travelling in a country with higher temperatures and tropical forests. The change in weather, environment can be a difficult thing to adjust to. Here are a few tips on what to pack on your trip to Kenya.
Sunscreen and Shades
These are perhaps the most obvious and the most important items you need to carry with you at all times. Don’t expect the Kenyan sun to be kind on your skin. The scorching heat will leave a tan you might not have planned for. Keep a pair of shades with you at all times, preferably Polaroids. As adventurous as you might feel, its not wise to welcome sunburns or headaches.
Hats and/or Scarves
Again, to protect yourself from the sun, carry a hat that will shade your pretty head or perhaps a nice cotton scarf. Make sure the material of the cloth is breathable or it will only absorb the heat further when you’re out shopping in the markets or are trekking through rough tracks in broad daylight. You could also use an umbrella if you’re on a little stroll during the day. So it’s a good idea to keep a shrinkable umbrella too.
Anti-Mosquito and Insects Repellent
If you are planning to experience the wild. Then you may also encounter some insects thus a mosquito repellent especially in areas that highly infested like Nyanza and Westerns parts of Kenya is must have. Carry the widely available mosquito-repellent lotions or creams and rub it all over your exposed skin every time before you head out, day or night. An added safety precaution would be carrying malaria pills, in case you get bitten by a mosquito and get infected.
Some Warm Clothes
This is specifically for the folks planning on visiting the highlands like the Mt. Kenya. The African country may be known for her tropical climate that mostly hot, but make sure you bring some warm clothes with you if you plan on be hiking Mount Kenya as well as visiting areas around the mountain. This areas are often quite cold during the nights and before the sun rises. Enjoy the summit all warm and cozy and avoid freezing due to unpreparedness. It is advisable to always engage your guide to advice you on the weather, and the kind of clothing required based on your itinerary.
Since there will be many dirt paths and rough tracks make sure you are travelling with the right kind of shoes. For your basic hiking and walking, carry a pair of trail runners, which are light and comfortable and also easy to pack. They will be kind on your feet in the hot weather of Kenya. Over-the-ankle hiking boots are hardly necessary unless you are hiking up a mountain. There are lots of footwear shops that offer a variety of shoes ideal for all activities you may intend to engage in.
First Aid Kit
A first Aid Kit is highly recommended. However there are lot shops and chemist that sell all your first aid requirement. First aid kits are also a requirement for all tour vans, buses and overland trucks thus there is no need to be too worried in case of an emergency.
Pack your first aid kit with the following:
- Antidiarrheal – This includes Imodium and Pepto-Bismol
- Hand Sanitizer – In case you don’t find water or sink to clean up
- Band Aids – Carry lots of these in case you get cuts climbing or trekking
- Antiseptic Cream/Ointment – To heal any cuts
A few devices you should carry with you for sure during this trip should include:
- Power Bank – You may not find a place to charge your phone
- Go-pro – To capture your experiences as thoroughly as possible
- Flashlights – Just in case you find yourself in a dimly lighted area
- Converters – In case your plug doesn’t fit a socket
Finally, bring with yourself some local lingo, so you aren’t completely clueless when trying to communicating with any locals, be it in the market or when asking for directions to somewhere. Keep an offline translator in your phone and it will most certainly save you from a lot of trouble. English and Swahili are widely spoken. Some basic Swahili will allow you to communicate with a majority of local that you may encounter during your safari.
Finally as a rule in all other countries worldwide, ensure your are safe, avoid back streets. Kenya is relatively safe thus bring an adventurous spirit with you, stay vigilant when necessary but above all enjoy your stay in Kenya and have lots fun!