Great Luggage for Safaris

The perfect solution to those light aircraft luggage restrictions

Load Hauler Expandable

If your safari includes traveling between camps in light aircraft, you’ll need to use luggage that works within the airlines’ requirements.  The luggage compartments of these planes are limited in space and thus the need to have soft sided luggage. While some of the companies will let us get by with our beloved 22″ bags with 3 soft sides, most require that the bags be soft-sided all around and no wheels.  When wheels aren’t allowed, I’ve found Eagle Creek’s Load Hauler to be the perfect solution.  It offers the space of a duffel while providing the option of carrying it as backpack which lightens the load while traveling through airports.

Desktop

What to Wear on Safari

We recommend packing light, wearing khaki & neutral tones  
Packing
  • Khaki and neutral tones allow us to blend in with the landscape. They’re easy to mix and match (so we pack less) and if we get dusty it doesn’t show
  • Khaki/beige shorts and shirts are also deal as they are least likely to attract the animal’s attention … and least likely to need washing.
  • We suggest comfortable clothes that are cool, but that can be layered to keep us warm in the evening or for early morning wildlife viewing. Light weight shirts and fleece pullovers are ideal. Zip off pants that turn into shorts take up less space.
  • Pack light for your trip; laundry is complimentary at most safari lodges and camps.
  • Do not bring camouflage clothing as it is not considered a fashion statement in Africa… camo might draw unwanted attention at airports or border crossings.
  • Packing with layers in mind is important. To layer while also packing light, use clothing items made with lightweight, quick-dry, versatile fabrics. They are worth the investment!
  • If you’re spending time in a large city, you might pack one “smart casual” outfit.
  • In respecting the local cultures, it is recommended that women wear a skirt or shorts that cover their knees when visiting local people in the rural area.

 

Check out our super handy Safari Packing Checklist!

Kaingo Camp – One of Our Favorite Places

Kaingo Camp 

South Luangwa, Zambia

We are fans of Kaingo Camp for many reasons. What sets Kaingo apart from other camps is their commitment to providing clients with an outstanding game viewing experience. That is their focus and they do it really well. With so few safari camps owner run these days, and so many camps imitating each other in style, appearance and offerings, Kaingo is like a breath of fresh air. It operates with a style completely it’s own…one that is super relaxed, friendly, informative, inviting and invigorating all at once. Owners Derek and Jules are always about, making the atmosphere very informal and welcoming. They have hand-picked guides who are engaging and knowledgeable with 3 game outings daily! They will even organize for you to sleep-out at their elephant hide (pictured above).

In between game drives and guided walks, you can take advantage of the various hides which have been set up in prolific locations and are especially appealing to novice or advanced photographers. Add to this excellent cuisine, comfy accommodations and the perfect location and you have a safari camp which really stands apart from the rest in one of Zambia’s most pristine national parks.

Our favorite things about Kaingo:

  • One of the few owner run camps remaining in South Luangwa which is such a treat
  • Owners Derek and Jules are very hands-on and have created a team passionate about the bush and making it special for all visitors
  • Relaxed, informal, friendly atmosphere while providing all the comforts one could want
  • Set in an outstanding, game rich area
  • Great guides who are tuned into needs of photographers
  • And… they are serious about their game viewing: offering 3 outings a day (rather than two which is customary of most camps) and have various hides that one can visit to observe behavior and take photos

 

Here’s what a recent client had to say about her stay at Kaingo:

“I loved Kaingo! It has the perfect balance of wildlife, comfortable accommodations, fantastic guides, delicious (and plentiful!) food, and the most gracious hosts you’ll find – in the bush or out.” KH

Check out this video and click on the slideshow below.

What is the best time of the year to go on safari in Southern Africa? (hint: when you are available to go!)

IMG_5911 copyWe love going on safari. We love sending clients on safari. Many people mistakenly think there is a good time or a bad time of year to visit the bush. Not so! Each season – each month – offers surprises and unique opportunities depending on your priorities and interests.
 
For example, the dry season (July-Aug-Sep-Oct) offers:

  • IMG_1192 copygreater quantity of wildlife
  • drier climate
  • thinner & more open bush (animals easier to spot)
  • incredible sunsets
  • cooler temperatures in July & August
  • fewer water sources = higher concentrations of animals
  • more intense wildlife viewing
  •  
    Downside: high demand, premium prices, wind (August), high temps (Oct/Nov), parks & airports are busier, wildlife can be stressed searching for water
     
    In comparison, the green season (Dec-Jan-Feb-Mar) offers:

  • Chongwe River Houselush, green vegetation
  • great birding
  • quieter camps = more exclusivity
  • special deals
  • great photographic opportunities
  • fewer people
  • lots of animals having babies
  • warmer temps
  • longer days
  •  
    Downside: afternoon rains, can be buggy/more mosquitoes, muddy roads and trails
     
    The shoulder months are exciting as well! It all depends on good guides, your priorities, and having realistic expectations about what you will see and experience. Expect less, be surprised by more. What is important to you? Quantity of wildlife? Quality of experience? Photographic opportunities? For example, several of our clients who have visited Africa on multiple occasions prefer to go on safari in May. Often you can get shoulder season rates, the rains have ended, the animals are getting easier to find and the parks still aren’t crowded. Through our Safari Planner, we help you to prioritize and focus on what you want to get out of the safari experience. For us, the most important thing is to increase your understanding and match your expectations with reality. This is where Global Sojourns really excels.

    Tips for traveling as a multi-generational family

    Lucas family 004-2-1 copy

    The Lucas Family

    “Thank you, thank you, thank you. The experience was all we had hoped for. Awesome, as our grand kids kept telling s. The camps and lodges you recommended were just the right fit and the right mix. 

    Both sets of camp managers were accommodating and flexible. They arranged for soccer games with the staff and set up a visit to a nearby village. Everyone was warm and friendly. The wildlife and landscapes were spectacular.

    All in all, it was just the kind of experience and exposure that Midge and I were hoping for. Thanks again for making it all happen.”  Larry and Midge Lucas (Tanzania, June 2014)

    This past June, Pete and Midge Lucas took their entire family on a safari vacation to Tanzania. Stops included Tarangire National Park, Lake Manyara, Ngorongoro Crater, and the Serengeti, where the family witnessed an actual crossing (You can’t plan that!).

    Pete and Midge shared their thoughts on what made traveling as a multi-generational family a success:

    • Everyone had a sense of adventure & was healthy
    • Waiting until the grandkids were old enough to appreciate going on safari
    • Picking a time of year that didn’t conflict with school
    • Giving adults enough lead time to make vacation arrangements with work
    • Planning early (at least a year in advance)
    • Choosing camps that fit the entire family; in some places, they were the only guests
    • Remembering that this was also a vacation for each family unit. They appreciated that we chose camps where they had total flexibility to divide up and do different activities individually, i.e. bush walking, game drives, sleeping in, playing soccer, local visits
    • Rooming all the kids together

     

    Interested in a multi-generational trip? Contact us!

    What size is the right size?

    6ebd4168-b01e-4f6c-9bd0-2ee7e964f485Strictly enforced luggage restrictions on light air transfers (between safari camps) can be confusing and frustrating for travelers. So many rules! We always recommend packing light, layering your clothes, and bringing carry on only. You don’t need much. Remember, most camps will do your laundry daily!

    Here is the bag that takes us to the most remote corners of Southern and East Africa: the Eagle Creek “No Matter What” duffel.

    Order here from REI. There are various styles and colors to choose from – just make sure it’s no bigger than 22″!

    Platypus Platy Bottle

     

    Platypus Platy Bottle

    The taste-free Platypus Platy™ bottle is a great option for your world adventures.
    • Perfect for long flights and transfers
    • Fill up before boarding and stay hydrated for your entire trip
    • Holds 70 fl. oz
    • 100% BPA free
    • Compact and flexible design can be flattened when empty and rolled up
    • Stands upright when full
    • Polypropylene screw cap allows quick and easy drinking
    • Best part is it costs less than $13!
    • Order online from  REI

     

    3 Tips To Make Your Long Haul Flights More Comfortable

    Thanks to years of traveling back and forth from the states to Africa and other special places around the world, Priscilla has three simple yet extremely useful tips to make your long haul flights more comfortable. They are:

    1. Get a great seat:

    • If there is an option for Economy Plus on the long haul, we feel it is worth it for the extra cost. You won’t have significantly more space, however, you won’t feel so lost in the masses as you are further forward in the plane with a bit more attention paid to you.
    • As soon as you make your reservation, try to get your seat assignment. SeatGuru can be a big help with this. We find a few rows behind bulkhead to be best. If you are traveling alone, try for the aisle seat in the middle section of the plane. Oftentimes, this increases the chances that the seat next to you will be empty and thus you can essentially stretch out in two seats.

    2. Have an inflatable neck pillow:

    • These are easy to buy online or in the airport. The advantage to the inflatable neck pillow is that, once deflated, you can easily store it in your luggage taking up virtually no space. It makes a big difference in providing neck support when you relax or sleep on the flight.

    3. Wax Ear Plugs and Noise Reduction headphones:

    • We recommend the wax earplugs for when you want to sleep and not watch any entertainment.
    • Noise reduction headphones are for entertainment (listening to music, watching the inflight movies, etc). We always have both. It has been found that one of the biggest impacts on jet lag is the noise from the plane. Trying to reduce that can make a big difference in how you feel upon arrival.

     

    Barefoot Shoes by Merrill

    A “must have” according to Priscilla! Featherlight, these shoes are perfect for walking in a city, going on a run, or heading out on safari. Easily stored and with lots of different styles to choose from, everyone should travel with a pair!

      • super light and flexible
      • smushes down for packing
      • variety of styles for men, women and children
      • technical design for both comfort and utility
        washable
      • great for running, trekking, walking and water sports

     

    Learn more and find your perfect fit here. We love these shoes!

    Smartwool 1/4 Zip

    The perfect item for variable weather packing. If there’s a chance of cool temps, this always goes in our bags!

    • 100% merino wool
    • Takes little space for its warmth
    • Wicks away perspiration
    • Keeps odors at bay- more uses before needing to wash it
    • Comfortable
    • Works on a hike as well as out to dinner
    • Available for men and women.

    Men’s Olive Heather is currently on sale online at REI