What to Wear on an African Safari: Top Tips for the Lodge & the Bush

We all want to look good when we travel, and most of us spend a fortune on our holiday wardrobe before going away, but if you are planning on an African Safari in a luxurious lodge in the Serengeti, Sabi Sands, or the Okavango Delta, you need to pack wisely if you are to look your best both in the lodge and out in the bush, without exceeding your baggage allowance.

Safari Fashion Tips

On Safari: What Not to Wear

When heading off on a safari for the first time, it can be tempting to unleash your inner Indiana Jones and stock up on brown leather hiking boots, cargo pants, a dozen khaki shirts, and a wide-brimmed fedora, but in reality, you are going to look a bit daft sitting in an open top safari jeep dressed like you’re going into combat!

Don’t get me wrong, khaki, beige and other neutral colours are essential for this type of trip as they allow you to blend in with your surroundings and become less obvious to the local wildlife, but you should dress for style and comfort rather than action and adventure, unless of course, you plan to do some walking safaris, in which case, hiking boots and long trousers are a must.

Packing for All Weathers

When packing for your African Safari holiday, light mix and match layers are the way to go. During your early morning game drives, it can be chilly in an open top jeep, so pack a warm fleece, a buff, and long zip-off trousers that you can adjust to suit the weather. Once the sun is up, the temperatures rise quickly, so make sure you have a cool t-shirt on under your fleece, and take a sunhat to protect from those harmful rays.

You could go for a wide-brimmed sunhat for added neck protection, but if you want to look cool, wear a neutral coloured baseball cap (most lodges sell branded caps on site), and team it with your favourite shades.

The same goes for sunset safaris. Your luxury lodge will provide you with warm blankets and rain ponchos, but a long-sleeved t-shirt, a cashmere sweater, and a warm fleece will allow you to layer up as the sun (and the temperatures) go down, and still look stylish.

Safari Lodge Looks: Chic and Sophisticated

You may be in the middle of the African Bush, but if you are on safari in a luxury game lodge, you should go for smart-casual attire that will look good during mealtimes and when lounging around camp. You’ll be getting in and out of safari jeeps, so skirts and dresses are not practical. Go for shorts, lightweight trousers, cotton shirts, wraps, scarves, and comfortable closed shoes that are suitable for walking across the open terrain. If your lodge has a pool, you’ll also need swimwear, and something comfortable to slip into after a pampering session at the spa!

After dark, you can be expected to be joined by more than a few bugs (you’re in the bush, after all!) so avoid ugly mosquito bites by using insect repellent and covering up with longer layers.

Accessorise-Wise Travellers

The only accessories you need for your African Safari Holiday are binoculars, a camera, a selfie stick, a refillable water bottle, and perhaps a small leather bag to keep everything together. You won’t need designer handbags, expensive jewels, and the latest Manolo Blahnik’s, so leave them at home, and master the art of travelling light…




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