What to pack for Zambia

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  • Acirfa's Profile Photo

    Clothing

    by Acirfa Updated May 19, 2009

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Luggage and bags: Soft bags are best for safari type holidays and sometimes the only ones accepted on light aircraft

    Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Flip flops, walking shoes

    Toiletries and Medical Supplies: SUNSCREEN HIGH FACTOR AND LIP BALM
    ANTI BACTERIAL HAND WASH

    Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: MOSQUITO NET

    Miscellaneous: Khaki/green coloured lightweight clothing. Bright colours and white should be left at home. Trousers and jumpers for the evening. Blue clothing is best left at home also as the tsetse fly are attracted to it.

    Related to:
    • Cycling
    • Backpacking
    • Road Trip

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  • Backpackermoose's Profile Photo

    For travelling long distances

    by Backpackermoose Written Oct 11, 2005

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Luggage and bags: If you are small like me, bring something to sit on to get a better view.

    Miscellaneous: The collar full of air that I have around my neck is very good, it prevents my head from dropping to the side when I fall asleep!

    My mother put this picture on her Zimbabwe page, but I am sure it was taken after we crossed into Zambia!

    Related to:
    • Safari
    • National/State Park
    • Road Trip

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  • joits's Profile Photo

    Stuff to bring

    by joits Written Jul 16, 2004

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Most likely you'll go in the summer so bring the usual summer gear.. shorts, tshirts. If you go during the rainy season, bring a good rain jacket. When it rains in Zambia, it pours!

    Toiletries and Medical Supplies: You most likely won't see the same type of toiletries there that you are used to from wherever you are. So make sure you bring enough of your own stuff. Same thing with medical supplies. And yes, bring mosquito repellant. I hope you got all the necessary shots, you don't want to get malaria. Its not a good experience... trust me.

    Photo Equipment: Bring the necessary converters if you have a digital camera that needs to be charged. The voltage is most likely different from your own country.

    Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: If you going camping... bring all ur stuff. Camping should be fun here. Bring a mosquito net too.

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  • Bwana_Brown's Profile Photo

    Shores of Lake Bangweulu

    by Bwana_Brown Updated Apr 1, 2004

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Because of its ~4000 foot elevation, Zambia has a very pleasant climate. There is no humidity to speak of and the daytime temperatures are great year-round (hotter than usual in October-November). In the winter months of June-July, it can get down to freezing at night. Photo of the beach at Samfya on Lake Bangweulu in northern Zambia, not far from where Dr. David Livingstone died.

    Related to:
    • Adventure Travel

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  • dutch_anna's Profile Photo

    Packing List

    by dutch_anna Written Sep 12, 2002

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Miscellaneous: Books for game- and bird watching. There are small ones, like 'Southern African Birds' by Ian Sinclair, and 'Southern, Central and East African Mammals' by Chris and Tilde Stuart.
    A good and complete guide for bird watching is Newman's Birds of Southern Africa.

    Binoculars are a 'must' too!

    Related to:
    • Road Trip
    • Birdwatching
    • Safari

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  • Izak's Profile Photo

    Packing List

    by Izak Written Aug 26, 2002

    Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Be sure to enjoy very hot and rainy conditions in spring / summer.

    Toiletries and Medical Supplies: See a doctor for Malaria medication especially in spring/summer, Malaria is the worst from around Sept to Apr ! Then take good sunscreen, the worst danger is the sun ! And obviously mosquito repellant.

    Photo Equipment: Most lodges will have thier own power generators to recharge batteries, but it is advisable to take enough new ones, shops are quite scarce around there.

    Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: Camping not a problem at the lodges, and there are very good huts too.

    Miscellaneous: For beer drinkers, tri the South African and Namibian brands, the Zambian Mosi Lager wasn't my favourite, but taste differs.

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  • Packing List

    by JohnMG Written Aug 26, 2002

    1.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Luggage and bags: Take only what you can carry

    Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Adventure Travel

    Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Anti - mosquito tablets

    Photo Equipment: If you're going into the bush, take everything you might need with you from home - batteries, films, etc.There are no power points in the bush!

    Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: Not applicable -Zzambia is a land-locked country. But do take good sun creams and insect repellants.

    Miscellaneous: My first night in camp in Luangwa game park: after a lovely meal under a star-lit sky such as i have never seen before, to bed to the deafening sound of the buzz of Africa. Bed is in a camp in a bamboo hut. Sleep. Wake up to a thrashing noise, seems close by. Get out of bed, walk to the door of the hut. Look up. Can't see anything, no stars. Noises, very close. A bit of sky appears.Then some more. More noises, very close by. As your eyes adjust to the darkness you begin to realise that there's something alive, moving out there, and its very close by. Now the game park thing starts to work - fear versus excitement. You realise its an elephant, right outside your hut. (i could have taken a step forward and touched it if i wasn't shaking so much) . There's several - in your camp, feeding on the trees by your hut, pulling the fruits of the sausage trees (like salamis) down onto your roof (gets pretty loud). Its a very special, peaceful experience - at one with nature. You will find on a walking safari that you begin to appreciate how insignificant we are in such an the animal's environment. Sometimes other animals wander thru camp - lions, hyena, snakes. I'd love to go back there.
    Tip: do not get into a sleeping bag without turning it inside-out first, there are scorpions about. And shake out your shoes in the morning too. Its all part of the experience, you'll enjoy it.

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  • Conor_P's Profile Photo

    Packing List

    by Conor_P Updated Aug 26, 2002

    1.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Any time of the year you will want to bring shorts and sandals. Between November and March is the rainy season - bring rain gear.

    Toiletries and Medical Supplies: 1 - Malaria pills - of which there are may different brands. The net has a lot of information to read up on this subject. Check - http://www.pol-it.org/malaria.htm.
    Larium, which is apparently good a prophalaxis has numerous side affects which I have been warned about. I took a proguanil - chloroquine combo - did the trick.
    My girlfriend, who grew up in Zambia, and her family, don't take any perventative medication - they also get malaria frequently.

    Also bringing some good mosquito repellent can save you from getting bitten in the first place. Check the 'DEET' % on the bottle, the higher the deet level, the better the protection.

    High UV protection sunscreen and a hat are also a good idea - especially for the fair skinned.

    Photo Equipment: It is probably best not to get any of your photos developed in Zambia. The processing chemicals are often old and as a result the quality of the negatives and the prints will not be great. The negs may also fade over time, so wait until you get home before developing. Athough it will be possible to find standard 35mm film in any large town, it is a good idea to bring all your film with you - incase they dont have the brand or ASA you are looking for.

    For obvious reasons, it is always a good idea to carry your photographic equipment in a bag that doesn't look like it is carrying expensive photographic equipment.

    Don't worry too much about bringing your camera out in public places, just be smart.

    Upon landing at the airport, they will ask you to register your expensive equipment. It's not a bad idea to undervalue its worth on the form. The more money you seem to have the more chance you will find somebody asking for some sort of a customs tax.

    Miscellaneous: If you smoke, you will find that a lot of people will ask for cigarettes. I believe it's a courtesy to oblige people, within reason, so stock up at duty free.

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  • MayBarker's Profile Photo

    Packing List

    by MayBarker Written Aug 25, 2002

    1.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Luggage and bags: Roller suitcase, backpag and bumbag

    Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Strong walking shoes, a colour which won't show up the dust!

    Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Malaria tablets a must! Make sure you have all your injections before you go - there are lots of diseases in Zambia!

    Photo Equipment: Take as much film with you as you can. Because Zambia doesn't have a lot of tourists, you might find out of date film, and expensive.

    Miscellaneous: Take your own towels. Some guest houses supply them - but they might be dirty, worn, or used!

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  • AL3XKMFDM's Profile Photo

    Packing List

    by AL3XKMFDM Written Aug 25, 2002

    1.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Luggage and bags: A tent is not a must have, but its a good idea. You dont want to get to a backpackers place only to find out all the indoor rooms are full and you have no tent!

    Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: any type of warm weather clothing is acceptable. sandels are good when doing short walks.. they are easy to pack.

    Toiletries and Medical Supplies: THIS IS PICTURE IS OF MY ROOMMATE WITH MALARIA (hehehehe...)
    well if you are taking your lariam (this means you are american) dont be fooled, you can still get malaria EVEN WHILE TAKING LARIAM! Lariam itself will only protect you against the malarial parasites only if they are in a beggining stage of developement. You CAN get bitten by a mosquito carring an advanced stage parasite and STILL GET MALARIA. (This happened to my roommate, so its first hand information).
    but, dont panic! if you do end up getting malaria, the local doctors have thier own medicine that should clean you up in no time!

    Photo Equipment: I reccomend bringing a regular camera, i brought a digital camera when i went, only to find myself getting shot in the foot when it came time to send the pictures home via the net. Internet time in zambia is not cheap, you get charged every 15-30 minutes youa re on a computer. And since thier internet is not the most advanced in the world (35-56k)...i was uploading for a long long time.

    Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: if you are camping then bring light blankets. its not really cold at night. A good idea, if you are american, would be to buy a few citronella candles
    (5-6) and some 'Off!' spray repelent (2 cans). Bring them outside and share them with your fellow campers... its a quick and easy way to ward of the mosi's and make some friends.

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  • TracyG's Profile Photo

    Antimalarials a must!

    by TracyG Written Aug 24, 2002

    1.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Luggage and bags: A backpack is probably best unless you are doing an organized trip, when a suitcase/holdall should be fine as well..

    Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Again, a waterproof jacket will come in handy as will sturdy shoes/boots if you plan to do the walking safari in South Luangwa NP.

    Toiletries and Medical Supplies: A basic first aid kit, and if you plan to travel extensively into rural areas then an emergency kit, containing syringes would be worth taking, never risk aids/HIV for anything.......!

    Photo Equipment: Outside of Lusaka it can be very hard to find good quality film, and even then it may be ridiculously expensive, it would be very wise to buy what you need before you get here, otherwise stock up in Lusaka.

    Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: A mosquito net for camping outdoors, unless doing an organized trip and then you tour company should provide them.

    Miscellaneous: A torch is essential if you will be out in rural areas, but it will proabably come in handy elsewhere too.

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  • robmcmumbi's Profile Photo

    Packing List

    by robmcmumbi Written Aug 24, 2002

    1 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Luggage and bags:         Nothing fancy. There's no need, and you simply draw attention to yourself. Bring a small padlock, if possible, and keep your valuables with you at all times. I have heard more than one story of having people lose money out of their locked luggage that was locked in their room while they were out and about.

    Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear:         Every day of the 18 months I was in Zambia and other sub-Saharan countries, I wore a pair of water proof, Red Wing boots. Fantastic. Best purchase I made in preparation for this trip. Sunscreen, a broad rimmed hat, and a water proof, inexpensive watch were other unforgettables.

    Toiletries and Medical Supplies:         Condoms, malaria prophylaxis, and make sure your yellow fever and other vaccinations are up to date prior to leaving the country. Regarding malaria prophylaxis, note that there is a high rate of chloroquinn-resistant malaria, in both urban and rural areas. Consult a tropical diseases nurse or physician. Lariam (Meflaquin) has some reported side-effects, although for the three months I took it, I experienced none.

            If you come to sub-Saharan Africa, you might consider bringing a mosquito net with you for sleeping, but I found after some time that purchasing a fan that could sweep a breeze over me while sleeping was as effective if not more effective.

    Photo Equipment:         Get this! A disposable, waterproof or underwater camera for the falls. Being at Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe (or in Zambia) is like taking a long, cool shower. Everything on your person will get soaked. You will be ringing your boots out and sitting in the sun to dry. This includes your camera, and after the third time of creative attempts at keeping my camera dry, I finally got smart and bought an underwater, disposable camera. I'll post a few of the resulting photographs -- I think you'll agree you won't sacrifice quality, and you don't have to worry about water! (And for your information, plastic bags over the camera, and/or hiding it in one's rain jacket? Ineffective.)

    Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear:         I brought a tent with me, ten thousand miles to Zambia, and never used it. Not once. The only value was in loaning it to someone to use for a long weekend.

    Miscellaneous:         Books and a small short wave radio were the luxury items that I was most pleased to have. I also brought a Swiss army knife with me, one of those that has over 50 different gizmos on it. I managed to use every item on it; it came in handy on several occasions.

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  • SwedishChef's Profile Photo

    Packing List

    by SwedishChef Written Aug 24, 2002

    1 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: If you're going to see the falls or do any on-the-river stuff bring some good sandals, as it's very wet and slippery. Otherwise a good pair of walking shoes/boots will see you through.

    Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Malaria tablets, musquito repellent, and good (preferable waterproof) sunscreen are a must.

    Miscellaneous: Remember to bring a US$20 note for the airport departure tax if you're flying out through Zimbabwe.

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