Can I wear shorts on safari in Tanzania?

Can I wear shorts on safari in Tanzania?

  • Tanzania Safaris
  • Apr 17, 2024
  • 0

Tanzania has become a popular destination for avid safari enthusiasts, with its diverse wildlife, beautiful landscapes, and rich cultural heritage. As you plan your safari trip to this African country, you may have some questions regarding appropriate clothing, considering the warm climate and the need for comfort during long game drives. One common question that often comes to mind is, "Can I wear shorts on safari in Tanzania?" In this article, we will delve into this topic and provide you with all the necessary information to help you prepare for your safari adventure in Tanzania.

Understanding the climate in Tanzania

Before we can answer the question, it is essential to understand the climate in Tanzania. The country has a tropical climate, with temperatures averaging between 70-90 degrees Fahrenheit all year round. While some regions experience cooler temperatures due to higher altitude, the temperatures can still rise during the day. This means that regardless of when you plan to visit Tanzania, it is likely to be warm during your safari.

Types of safaris in Tanzania

Tanzania offers various safari options, from guided walking safaris to game drives in 4x4 vehicles. Each type of safari has its own set of dress codes, which are important to adhere to for safety and comfort reasons.

Guided walking safaris

Walking safaris allow you to experience Tanzania's wildlife up close and personal, but it is vital to dress appropriately for this activity. Loose-fitting, neutral-colored clothing is recommended to blend in with the environment and avoid drawing attention to yourself. Shorts can be acceptable for these safaris, as long as they are comfortable and not too revealing.

Game drives

Game drives are the most popular form of safari in Tanzania, where you will spend most of your time in a vehicle exploring the national parks. In this case, comfort is key, and you will need to dress for hot and dusty conditions. While shorts can be worn, it is important to note that the vehicles do not have air conditioning, and the roads can be bumpy and dusty. This means that your legs and feet may get dirty, making long pants a more practical option for game drives.

Cultural considerations

Tanzania is a culturally diverse country, with over 120 ethnic groups and various traditional beliefs and practices. As a tourist, it is important to respect the local culture and dress modestly, especially when visiting villages or markets. This means avoiding short and revealing clothing, which may be seen as disrespectful.

Tips for choosing safari attire

Now that we have explored the different types of safaris and the cultural considerations, here are some additional tips to help you choose the most suitable attire for your safari in Tanzania:

1. Go for lightweight and breathable fabrics - As the temperatures can get quite high, it is essential to choose clothing that is made of lightweight and breathable materials such as cotton or quick-drying fabrics like nylon.

2. Stick to neutral and earthy tones - Just like on a guided walking safari, it is recommended to wear neutral or earthy tones so as not to stand out in the natural surroundings.

3. Wear closed-toe shoes - Closed-toe shoes not only provide protection against dust and rocks but also keep your feet safe from any potential insect bites and scratches.

4. Pack a lightweight jacket - While it may be hot during the day, the temperature can drop significantly at night, so it is always good to have a light jacket or sweater on hand.

5. Bring a hat and sunglasses - Protecting your head and eyes from the sun is crucial, so don't forget to pack a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses to shield you from the harsh rays.


In conclusion, the answer to the question, "Can I wear shorts on safari in Tanzania?" is yes and no. While they may be acceptable for certain types of safaris, it is essential to consider the climate, type of activity, and cultural norms before deciding on your safari attire. Following these tips and guidelines will help ensure that you are comfortable and respectful while experiencing the wonders of Tanzania's wildlife. 

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