Guide for Planning Your First Safari

Travel Tips for Tanzania

Whether an African safari has always been on your bucket list or you’re seeking out the ultimate adventure, you should put a plan in place once you decide to go. Don’t know where to start? Let this be your guide for planning your first safari.

When to go

Tanzania offers so many things for travelers, including stunning geography, diverse culture, and (of course) amazing animals. Depending on what you’d like to see and do will dictate the best travel times. Exploration in the summer has some advantages, but the rainy season can offer incredible opportunities for photographers. For example, you can only capture a rainbow over the grasslands after a storm. Climate change is impacting Africa significantly, and taking a safari to see the things you imagine has become more urgent.

When to book

Set your plans at least a month to a year ahead of the time you plan to go. If you wish to be on safari for a special occasion such as a birthday, anniversary, or honeymoon, book as soon as possible to be sure to secure those dates. Peak seasons fill up quickly. Give yourself some time to research and prepare; the more prepared you are, the more you’ll understand and can set appropriate expectations.  

Travelers and preferences

While a safari is a fantastic solo adventure, traveling as a couple or with kids or seniors is an opportunity for creating lasting family memories. If you decide to take the entire clan, you’ll likely want to have fewer layovers as possible. If anyone has dietary restrictions, it’s vital to note this before departing so accommodations can be made. 

Paperwork and packing

In addition to your passport, you’ll need a visa. Even though Covid-19 has made travel difficult in some countries, Tanzania opened its borders on May 18, 2020, lifted the ban on international travel, and warmly welcomes visitors. Keep abreast of ever-changing Covid policies.

The season will dictate what you need to pack: dry and cold season (late June to October) or the rainy season (March to May). But let this list guide you:

  • T-shirts  
  • Long-sleeved shirts  
  • Light long pants or convertible long-short pants
  • Shorts
  • Warm fleece pullover or jacket
  • Cotton socks and underwear
  • Pajamas
  • Comfortable walking shoes or hiking boots
  • Wide-brimmed hat
  • One swimsuit (if going to Zanzibar)
  • Rain jacket
  • Heavy sweater and gloves 


Let’s address the elephant in the room right away: anyone considering a safari should understand there are expenses involved. The economy affects Tanzania and other African countries just like those of us in the United States. At Wanderful Tanzania, we know there are other options out there at lower price points. However, we intentionally take small groups on East African safaris several times each year. We take our guests on a trip of a lifetime and provide personalized attention only a boutique safari company can provide. You’re not stuck to a strict timeline, so if you or other travelers want to linger to see something that really interests you, we’ll adjust. You won’t get that with other safari companies.

We provide safe and comfortable stays with surprises like flushing toilets and showers in your accommodations. Meals are prepared by a chef. If you wish to add upgrades, such as a balloon trip or beach stay, we can customize your travels to fit the budget you have in mind.

Help with your first safari

Drawing on more than two decades of experience, the Wanderful Tanzania team is eager to help you turn your safari dreams into reality. We are dedicated to delivering an experience you will remember forever. Let us guide you through planning your first safari and help you book your adventure. Contact us, and let’s get started.


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