4 Essential Things You Need to Do Before Going on an African Safari

I just got back from Kenya, and spent 5 magical days in Masai Mara. Watching the migration at the Masai Mara game drive is a life-changing experience that is not to be missed, but before you head out here’s a checklist of things you have to get sorted beforehand:

Kenya Visa: Most nationalities get a ‘visa on arrival’ at Kenya, but why take the hassle at a foreign airport? Do your visa application online before you leave. Click here. Alternatively, you can ask your travel agent to do it for you. My agent Shakib at Musafir.com handled our visas within 3 working days.

Malaria & Yellow Fever Immunization:

  • Where to go: This was the tricky part! We only found out about this by word of mouth. In Dubai, you need to visit the travel section of the Al Barsha Health Centre. In Sharjah, they have a Malaria Centre that specializes in these travel immunizations. Both places can easily be found on Google Maps.
  • Malaria Medication: Malaria is prevalent in Africa, and it is therefore prudent to take precautions. We were prescribed a 14-day pill, and the course needs to start 2 days prior to departure.
  • Yellow Fever Shot: The yellow fever immunization comes in the form of an injection and is mandatory by UAE law when travelling to these parts of the world. You get a yellow certificate to carry with your travel documents should you be held at the customs on your return.
  • The Cost: Expect to shell out an additional AED 500 for these immunizations.

Insect Repellants: Although mosquitos are highly prevalent throughout Africa, there are many others that can also have a nibble at your skin and spread unwanted germs. Look out for insect repellant sprays that cover a wide number of insect varieties. I personally prefer sprays to topical creams as they are easy to apply on the run.

Clothing: Click here for my post What to Wear on a Safari: My Top 10 Tips