Overlanding Trip Through Africa: Important Information to Know
Thinking of an Overlanding Trip?
An overlanding trip involves travelling in small groups. Itineraries could have been planned but they are always open to changes along the trip due to unforseen circumstances. Some small towns and rural places would be covered in the overlanding trip to immerse in the culture and the experience. Imagine a trip covering the world’s second largest continent.
This is what makes these trips all that exciting, as not many people have the opportunity to visit such areas. These trips are definitely not ordinary. They are for the fun loving, excited and adventurous at heart. The overland tours can last anything between 4 days to 6 months. Usually the trips include visiting more than one country.
Overlanding tour operators may have trips starting from Cairo in Egypt all the way to Cape Town in South Africa. Trips like these will be an epic adventure which provides amazing opportunities to see wildlife, awe-inspiring scenery, tropical beaches and islands, and to experience African cultures, from nomadic tribes to crazy capital cities.
Is it Expensive?
How an overlanding trip is planned really depends on one’s budget. It can be on a small budget or luxurious. This will then translate into the length of your trip, the style of travel and accommodation, the transport used, the number of National Park visits and also meals. The idea behind an overlanding trip is to escape the busy city life, to just be close with nature and to make new friends along the way.
You are Expected to Help Out
These trips are nothing boring; as it includes all levels of adventurous activities and is suitable for all persons with average to good fitness and good health. Tours are carefully planned so that each tour has its own optional activities. These activities can range anything from extreme adventures like bungee jumping to more fun adventure activities like elephant back safaris, scuba diving, white water rafting, fishing, and horse riding.
The great thing about optional activities is that you do not have to pay for anything you cannot afford or wouldn’t like to do.
You will however be expected to participate in limited amount of general duties on tour like washing your dishes, keeping the vehicle clean, setting up your camp and getting all muddy should the truck get stuck. This ensures that everything on tour runs as smoothly as possible and mostly so that there is not a dull moment.
Overlanding vehicles are generally specially designed trucks suited for the roads travelled on and can range anything from ìrough-it overlandingî trucks to more luxury spacious trucks with comfortable seats. The accommodation on tour can range anything from plain camping to budget National Park style bungalows or safari tents.
Local payments may be levied from tour participants in certain African countries. This is a very common on overlanding tours. Local Payments are essential in order to transfer the foreign currencies of the countries visited in order to operate the tours. Your tour itinerary should state if a local payment will be necessary for the countries you will visit.
A good tip is to always carry US$ cash on you when on tour as US dollars are widely accepted throughout Africa.
Getting to Africa
Air fares to Africa are usually excluded in the tour price, but overlanding companies or booking agents are mostly able to arrange it on your behalf.
Travel insurance is very important and compulsory on overlanding trips. You must ensure that you take out adequate travel insurance to cover the type of activities you may be interested in. Certain overlanding booking agents or companies will even be able to arrange travel insurance for you.
What makes an overlanding tour so unique is that you meet great people, you experience so much about other cultures, and because you travel in a group, you have experienced guides by your side who will be able to explain all the ins and outs on tour wherever you are off to. Imagine visiting countries like Egypt, Sudan, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Uganda, Tanzania, Malawi, Zambia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Swaziland, Lesotho and South Africa.
So, my advice to you, if you are looking for an experience of a lifetime, pack your bag of enthusiasm, excitement and sense of humour and you are ready to head off to an African overlanding adventure.