Visas are required for all visitors to Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda, Botswana, Namibia and India. Visitors to Kenya and Tanzania can still obtain their visas at the airport but we would highly recommend obtaining the visas prior to your arrival. The process usually takes about two weeks.
Visas for Rwanda, Uganda, Botswana, Namibia & India must also be applied online in advance or by visiting the nearest consulate in your area.
Kenyan citizens do not require a visa to enter Uganda, Tanzania or Rwanda.
There are a few basic health matters that require care and attention. We are not medical practitioners and the following points are recommended guidelines only. Please consult your doctor and also check with your health department prior to departure for any changes in health regulations.
Yellow Fever certificates are needed when entering East and Southern Africa especially if you come from or have recently visited high-risk countries, especially certain parts of Africa (East, West and Central). Bilharzia still occurs in parts of Namibia, HIV infection is on the increase and TB is widespread in the few more densely populated areas. Recommended (but not compulsory) vaccinations are Tetanus and Infectious Hepatitis.
Malaria within East & Southern Africa is prevalent in some but not all areas. It is encountered mainly in wetter areas, as mosquitoes require calm waters to breed. It can be found throughout Kenya, Tanzania, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, and much of Botswana. Northern Namibia is also a malaria area. Should you be visiting these areas malaria precautions are advised.
Malaria transmission is at its highest during the warmer and wetter months of November through to April. From May to October the risks of contracting malaria are reduced. Malaria is transmitted by a very small percentage of female Anophelesmosquitoes. They are generally only active in the early evening and throughout the night, at the times when one is usually sleeping or sitting around the campfire. The malaria parasite requires a human host in order to complete its life cycle. In most cases, camps and lodges are situated in remote, unpopulated areas, so the chances of contracting malaria are very slim. Nonetheless, we believe it is worth taking preventative measures. Both chloroquine-resistant and normal strains of malaria are prevalent in Africa.
Malaria prophylactic recommendations for southern Africa travelers
Expert opinion differs regarding the best approach to malaria prophylaxis. It is important to bear in mind that malaria may be contracted despite chemoprophylaxis, especially in areas
where chloroquine resistance has been reported. Please remember that the best insurance is the preventative kind; avoid being bitten by using mosquito repellents liberally; wear long-sleeved shirts and trousers/slacks in the evenings; if staying in a bungalow or tent, spray with an insecticide like DOOM to kill any mosquitoes that may have flown into your room. If you become ill on your return, while still on prophylaxis or even once you have stopped taking them, ensure that you tell your doctor you have been in a malarial area and that they do everything to establish that your illness is not malaria. Malaria is not a serious problem if you are sensible and take basic precautions. There have been no cases of our guests contracting malaria in over 15 years of operation.
It is very important that you drink plenty of water, especially during the warmer months. It is generally recommended that guests drink at least 2 to 3 litres of water per day to limit effects of dehydration. This excludes tea, coffee and alcoholic beverages, which act as diuretics and can actually contribute to dehydration. Generally, water throughout Southern Africa is safe to drink directly from the tap, with exception of locations beside perennial rivers where the tap water may be pumped from the river, as in parts of the Caprivi Strip. However, bottled water is readily available, so please ask you guide or lodge staff if you are unsure and do not allow yourself to become dehydrated. Besides keeping yourself hydrated, please note that water is a scarce commodity in southern Africa, and every effort should be made to save where possible!
In East Africa, it is highly recommended not to drink tap water. Please consume bottled water only!
Ticks can be found in Africa’s wilderness areas. To avoid getting bitten when going for bush walks, guests are advised to take precautions by wearing long trousers, socks and boots. Please note that there is a possibility that tick bites could lead to tick bite fever. Symptoms include fever, headaches and painful, enlarged lymph glands in the area of the bite. If you experience these symptoms after returning home, please visit your doctor and advise them of the possibility of tick bite fever.
No vaccination is mandatory to travel to India but we would recommend taking your doctor’s advice on the same.
There are excellent medical facilities in all modern cities of India and to a certain extent in the towns as well. However the villages and the remoter areas do not have the best of the facilities and if you have a past medical history we request you to pre-inform us. We try and arrange the best possible help within the limitations of the place we are in.
The cold Benguela current keeps the coast of the Namib Desert cool, damp and free of rain for most of the year, with a thick coastal fog. Inland, all the rain falls in summer (November to April). January and February are the hottest months, when daytime temperatures in the interior can exceed 40ºC (104ºF), but nights are usually cool. Winter nights can be very cold, but days are generally warm and pleasant.
Botswana’s climate is mainly temperate. Summer, October to April, can be very hot, but daytime temperatures typically average around 30ºC (86ºF). The rainy season lasts from January to March. Winter, May to September, brings cooler weather with an average temperature of 25ºC (77ºF); early mornings and evenings may be very cold.
Although located in the tropics, temperature conditions prevail all year as the climate is moderated by altitude and the inland position of the country. The hot and dry season is from August to October, and the rainy season from November to March. Nighttime temperatures can become very cold during the winter months.
Kenya’s climate is mainly temperate. Summer, July to October, can be very hot, but daytime temperatures typically average around 30ºC (86ºF). The rainy season lasts from March to May (long rains), and November to December (short rains) brings cooler weather with an average temperature of 25ºC (77ºF); early mornings and evenings may be very cold.
Tanzania’s climate, like Kenya is mainly temperate. Summer, June to October, can be very hot, but daytime temperatures typically average around 30ºC (86ºF). The rainy season lasts from March to May (long rains), and November to December (short rains) brings cooler weather with an average temperature of 25ºC (77ºF); early mornings and evenings may be very cold.
The India Meteorological Department (IMD) designates four climatological seasons:
The Himalayan states, being more temperate, experience an additional season, spring, which coincides with the first weeks of summer in southern India. Traditionally, North Indians note six seasons, each about two months long. These are the spring season, summer, monsoon season, autumn, winter, and prevernal season.
On safari, the emphasis is on comfort and informality. Warm clothing like pullovers, fleeces & jackets are required for early mornings and evenings. Middays are usually warm in the equatorial sun. Safari hats and sunglasses are a useful protection against the sun and dust. We recommend a safari jacket with pockets, a pair of comfortable tennis shoes, shorts during the day, light cotton trousers, t-shirts and swim suits. The dress code while on safari is usually informal.
There is limited space available in safari vehicles and internal flights, so it is highly recommended to bring soft-sided luggage. On domestic flights, luggage is strictly restricted to 15 kilograms per person in East Africa and 20 kilograms per person in Southern Africa & India. Any luggage exceeding the mentioned limits will be subject to a surcharge. Excess baggage costs vary depending on the country and is subject to change; hence it is highly advisable to travel light and to carry only the bare essentials while on safari. It is highly recommended that all visitors arrange for travel insurance for their luggage.
Africa & Asia are no different than anywhere else in the world. This is a matter of common sense and the same precautions should be taken as in any major city. It is advisable not to carry large sums of money around, to keep a close watch on handbags, purses, wallets and personal items. whilst walking in crowded areas. It is highly recommended to avoid walking at night (especially alone) and to lock up valuables in hotel/lodge safe deposit boxes and to never leave valuables like cameras on show in an unattended car or tour bus. It is recommended that you do not bring expensive jewelry or watches.
Both Namibian dollars and South African Rand are equal in value and are accepted as legal tender anywhere in Namibia (other currencies such as US$ are not so). When departing Namibia we recommend that any cash you take with you is in South African Rand as Namibian dollars are generally not easily exchanged outside of Namibia.
In Botswana, the currency is Pula, but US Dollars cash is widely accepted.
In Zimbabwe, we recommend small denominations of USD cash. Credit cards are accepted just about everywhere. Foreign nationals are able to withdraw cash from ATM’s with a foreign bank card, although it is limited to $200 per day.
In Zambia, the currency is US Dollars.
In Kenya, the currency is Kenya Shillings (KSHS), in Uganda, the currency is Ugandan Shillings, In Rwanda, the currency is Rwandan Franc and in Tanzania, the currency is Tanzanian Shillings (TSHS). US Dollars cash is widely accepted and so is Great Britain Pound (GBP) and Euros. In India, the currency in The Indian Rupee (INR).
Credit and debit cards are widely accepted. Visa and Master Card are usually accepted throughout East & Southern Africa and Asia, but American Express and Diners Club are not as widely accepted.
Travelers cheques can be exchanged at most bureaus de change and banks (with passport identification). Suppliers of services are less likely to accept Travelers cheques.
Most foreign hard currencies (US$, £, €, ZAR, INR and CHF are the most commonly accepted) can be exchanged at bureaus de change and banks.
Most fuel stations only accept cash payment and not credit card payments.