Your Africa Travel Tips For Your First Time
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After months, or maybe years of wondering and browsing travel blogs it’s decided — you’re going to Africa! Sure, it’ll be more complicated than planning a weeklong vacation in Paris, but don’t let the preparation process scare you off. These Africa travel tips will certainly help your stay!
Since my personal goal is Kenya, I created a to-do list based exactly on this country. However, some of the official requirements are rather general, like rules on vaccines or visas.
Planning a trip to Africa (the first one especially) might seem to be confusing and overwhelming. Your family is probably trying to discourage you — Haven’t you heard of malaria?! Your friends were watching the news and heard about riots during the electoral period. That all suddenly makes you think — is it really worth it?
Oh, come on, people!
Dear friend, let me tell you this once and once only — it’s worth it more than you can imagine. Now forget the crazy rumors and urban legends and let’s get to the matter!
Let’s look what’s included in this post;
- Times For Travelling Africa
- Vaccines Needed For Africa
- Visas Needed For Travelling Africa
- Things To See In Africa
- Booking Your Stay
- Other Practical Tips
- Final Thoughts
Timeframes and deadlines
Personally, I find due dates the most important part of all my travels. I know what you’re thinking — wow, that’s boring. I’d rather be spontaneous! Man, you’ve just decided to go to another continent and collide with an entirely different culture. Isn’t that spontaneous enough?
You can have all the courage and money of the world, but if you don’t mind your deadlines, trust me — you can only keep on dreaming.
What do you have to put on your preparation schedule then?
Vaccines Needed For Africa
Obligations of a vaccination may vary slightly depending on the country. You can know one thing for sure though — some of the vaccines have to be carried out even one month or more before your great adventure. Got your trip booked a couple of months from now? Better start right away!
Thinking of visiting Thailand in Asia? Check out what vaccines are needed for Thailand post.
Visas For Africa
Getting a visa for Africa and renewing your passport period may also differ depending on whether you get things done around the summertime when the travel season is in full swing and there’s pure chaos in consulates and embassies, or closer to autumn/winter. In any case, it’s better to take action as soon as possible. The sooner you start, the better you can plan your budget, as well. Because yes, sir — visas (if needed) cost some dollars, too!
Out of all these Africa travel tips this one is very important.
Dream Things To See In Africa
You’ve probably heard some people saying that you only live once and you should appreciate every moment of your life — carpe diem, man! Well let me tell you something. Personally, I’m not a fan of cliche and cheap mottos. But let’s face it — isn’t your big African vacation a kind of a once in a lifetime opportunity? Exactly.
That’s why you definitely want to plan the trip carefully, especially when your personal timeframes and budget are somehow limited. Think about what you enjoy doing in your everyday life, mind your physical possibilities and limitations and try to analyze what you actually expect from your trip.
Check out these awesome things to see in Africa on your visit.
If you’re not going on a tour from a travel agency, you really have this absolutely amazing opportunity to shape and personalize your journey of a lifetime. While planning your most wanted experiences, always remember about your health and safety!
I’m an experienced hiker and adventurer, but I’d never try to go hiking all by myself. Especially in a totally unknown area. My Kenyan trip isn’t a sure thing yet, but I’m already looking for guided hiking tours to Mt. Kenya and Rift Valley.
Besides of unimaginable amounts of hiking and trekking, I’m really looking forward to getting to know the Maasai people culture, taste the traditional Kenyan cuisine and obviously to check off a safari trip on my bucket list.
Booking your stay in Africa
The place you’re staying at is nearly as important as planning the main points of your tour. Your hotel or tourist lodge has to meet your personal needs, so you can fully enjoy your African adventure.
I sat at my desk and wrote down what I’d expect from my stay and what I’d most certainly like to avoid. Only after that, I felt ready to browse and select my possible places to stay. Don’t worry too much if you haven’t found anything perfectly fitting your ideas! Choose a place that complies with your personal requirements for the most part.
To my surprise, I actually found a lodge that’d fit my plan just fine. It happens that Angama Mara offers even an all-day safari trip and a direct contact not only with Maasai people but also with Maasai warriors!
Other Practical Tips For Visiting Africa
Responsible planning any kind of trip includes also booking your flights and taking care of the financial part of your great journey.
While choosing flights pay attention to where exactly the destination airport is situated and arrange the transport to your hotel before you get on the road to Africa! That will spare you a lot of unnecessary stress.
Plan your budget precisely and always have some extra emergency cash! Life can really be unpredictable and things are getting particularly complicated and stressful when you’re enjoying your holiday abroad.
When it comes to money, you should also get informed about the currency of the country you’re visiting and options of currency exchange. Check what kind of currency facilities is offering your bank! I have a separate currency bank account because it’s easier for me. But you can choose what’s most comfortable and profitable for you.
Responsibility And Final Thoughts
Traveling is obviously a great piece of entertainment. Although we should not forget that every trip abroad interferes somehow with the destination country’s environment and culture.
Planning my future trip to Kenya I can’t avoid my own expectations, ideas and maybe even misconceptions. It’s natural. I’m so excited I can’t help but imagine how it’s going to be.
The trick is to turn it all off once you get off the plane. Make your mind and heart nothing else but a blank slate, embrace yourself for the total culture collision and absorb every tiny drop of your time there.
Choose the attractions responsibly, always mind the good of native people, animals, and the environment. The tourist industry can be really ruthless. Happily, we have the ability to think, analyze and make responsible choices.
Stay kind, open-minded and respectful!
I hope you have found these Africa travel tips very useful!
Thinking of travelling Asia after Africa? Check out my Asia backpacking essentials post.