Table of Contents

27 Top Kenya Packing List Items for 2024 + What to Wear & NOT to Bring

Kenyan landscape
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Kenya is a spectacular country with some of the best wildlife-watching in the world – where wild animals like elephants, lions, and giraffes roam free. Whether you are looking to go on a safari, hike Mount Kenya, learn about the culture from local tribes, or relax on a beach – Kenya has a lot to offer.

Keep on reading to find out what you need to pack for your Kenyan adventure! We have a section on what to wear in Kenya, what NOT to bring, and we answer many important FAQs. Have a great trip!

27 Top Kenya Packing List Items for 2024 + What to Wear & NOT to Bring
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What to Pack for Kenya – 27 Essentials

  • 1. Universal Power Adapter

    In Kenya, the standard voltage is 240 volts. If you’re coming from North America, you will need to use a reliable universal power adapter. This one is awesome because it works in nearly every country and includes USB ports so you can charge multiple devices at once. It works in 100+ popular countries and even comes with a lifetime replacement guarantee so you can trust the quality.

    Universal Power Adapter

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  • 2. Hiking Boots

    Kenya is full of hiking and adventure activities, so you won’t want to visit without a good pair of hiking boots. You’ll need a closed-toe option when you’re hiking or walking through the bush to protect your toes from scorpions, snakes, or anything else you wouldn’t want to expose your feet to!

    Hiking Boots

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  • 3. Virtual Private Network (VPN)

    There is a censorship of freedom in Kenya, with many of your favorite websites being blocked or restricted. Not to mention, cybercrime in Africa has increased significantly in recent years and you should never take a risk with your private information. To stop hackers in their tracks, connect to a reliable VPN like NordVPN. This will also be a layer of defense when connecting to WiFi in public places like airports, restaurants, and hotels. It will protect your passwords, credit card numbers, and sensitive information, while also helping you to bypass censored servers.

    Virtual Private Network (VPN)

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  • 4. Neck Wallet

    Pickpocketing and petty theft are pretty common in major cities like Nairobi and Mombasa. It’s best to keep your essentials out of sight and well-organized. Protect your cash, credit cards, passport, and smartphone by securing them in a neck wallet like this one which can be worn underneath your clothes. We love this one because it’s big enough to hold your essentials, but small enough to be inconspicuous. It even has RFID-blocking material to stop tech-savvy thieves from scanning your cards.

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  • 5. Binoculars

    Binoculars are a brilliant item to bring if you plan on going on safari. Many animals, like leopards and lions, tend to keep their distance which makes them difficult to spot without a good lens. This is part of the reason you came to Africa, right?! Don’t miss out on the fantastic wildlife that Kenya is known for by forgetting to bring binoculars.


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  • 6. Travel Insurance for Kenya

    Though Kenya does not mandate travel insurance, it is strongly recommended to avoid paying out-of-pocket for delays, theft, cancellations, medivacs, and hospital bills. We always hope for the best, but you should prepare for the worst when exploring a foreign place.

    Faye is our go-to provider because they’re modernizing insurance with quick reimbursements through their mobile app. They even have plans for extreme sports and ‘trip cancellation for any reason!’

    Travel Insurance for Kenya

    Get a quote in less than 60 seconds with Faye ➜

  • 7. Jet Lag Relief

    A flight to Kenya is far, no matter where you’re coming from! Instead of dragging your feet with layovers and drastic time changes, use these natural jet lag relief supplements to prevent exhaustion. They’re made using botanicals like chamomile to keep you feeling rested, rather than intense stimulants like caffeine that other products use. We love them!

    jet lag relief

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  • 8. Packing Cubes

    To help yourself stay organized and avoid overpacking, be sure to use packing cubes. These can easily fit in your hand luggage and help keep your clothing wrinkle-free and in order. This set comes in a variety of fun colors and includes separate bags for your shoes and dirty clothes. Get a different color for each family member and things will never go missing again!

    Available on with an exclusive 15% discount using the coupon code “HERO”.

    packing cubes

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  • 9. Water Bottle with Built-in Filter

    Under the hot African sun, you’ll need to stay hydrated by always carrying a water bottle with you. Unfortunately, tap water in Kenya is not safe to drink and water-borne illness is a common thing. So instead of buying endless plastic water bottles, opt for a handy Grayl reusable water bottle that comes with a filter to prevent you from ingesting germs. It filters out harmful bacteria, viruses like Hepatitis A, sediment, pesticides, microplastics, and more. It’s not worth risking your health and this one is a literal lifesaver.

    Water Bottle with Built-in Filter

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  • 10. Quick-Dry Travel Towel

    Useful in endless scenarios, you won’t want to travel without a microfiber travel towel. This one dries incredibly quickly, which is perfect if you need to toss it back in your daypack after a day at the beach, hiking, or on safari. This is also useful if your accommodation doesn’t provide a towel or provides one that isn’t up to your cleanliness standards.

    Quick-Dry Travel Towel

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  • 11. Insect-Repellent Wristbands

    Malaria is prevalent in Kenya, so it is very important that you always wear mosquito repellent and take the proper precautions. In addition to wearing bug spray, these insect-repellent bracelets offer a great and easy layer of added protection and last up to 300 hours. They’re safe for kids and way better than respraying toxic fumes all day!

    mosquito repellent wristbands

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  • 12. Cooling Towel

    This item is a magical treat! Perfect for a safari or any outdoor adventure, a cooling towel is easy to bring along and will help keep you cool. They’re almost too good to be true. All you do is wet the towel, wring out any excess water, and it instantly becomes 20-30 degrees cooler than the air temperature. They’re chemical-free and we never visit warm destinations without them!

    Cooling Towel

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  • 13. Discounted Tickets on Kenyan Tours

    The wildlife in Kenya is unmatched! We use Get Your Guide to book the best excursions around the world since they have flexible cancelation and provide the most authentic experiences.

    While in Kenya, be sure to visit the Elephant Orphanage in Nairobi and take a legit African safari. One of our favorite things to do was to snorkel in crystal clear water and spot dolphins near Wasini Island. We also recommend venturing out for day trips and enjoying the legendary nightlife of Kenya; it is something to behold!

    Discounted Tickets on Kenyan Tours

    See all Kenya attractions at ➜

  • 14. Travel Flashlight

    In Kenya, the power supply is unreliable and often goes out without notice. Unless your accommodation has a generator, it is a good idea to bring a flashlight for unexpected power outages. This will also come in handy when you’re on safari and need a light to guide the way in the evenings. You may also want a headlamp for finding the bathroom at night and being hands-free!

    Travel Flashlight

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  • 15. Lipstick-Sized Portable Charger

    In Kenya, you’re likely to use your phone and camera throughout the day, whether for photos, navigation, music, or anything else. You won’t want to worry about your devices running out of battery at an inconvenient time, and many of your excursions could be out in the middle of nowhere (with no outlets in sight!) So toss this small portable charger in your backpack and use your electronics all day long.

    Lipstick-Sized Portable Charger

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  • 16. Windproof Travel Umbrella

    As an obvious but important one – you’ll want to pack a travel umbrella, especially if you’re visiting Kenya during the wet season. A travel umbrella that’s compact yet durable is essential. This is the best travel umbrella I’ve come across. I love how well-made it feels and the zippable travel case it comes in.

    Windproof Travel Umbrella

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  • 17. Electrolytes

    Depending on when you visit, Kenya can get HOT. You’re sure to be spending a lot of time under the sun, whether you’re hiking, exploring the cities, or on safari. Be sure to remain properly hydrated by bringing electrolyte packets to add to your drinking water. These will particularly come in handy if you get sick while traveling. In emergency situations, they are also legitimate lifesavers.


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  • 18. Daypack

    For all your safaris and excursions, it’s very wise to have a daypack. This one is very popular among travelers because it’s compact, lightweight, and durable. Perfect for carrying anything you might need throughout the day (phones, wallets, snacks, an umbrella, binoculars, etc). You won’t want to visit Kenya without one!


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  • 19. TSA-Approved Luggage Locks

    After having an item stolen out of our checked luggage, we always secure our bags with luggage locks. These are TSA-approved so you won’t have to worry about causing delays at security, but we also use these for crowded places on our backpacks, on purses on public transit in big cities, and even lockers.

    TSA-Approved Luggage Locks

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  • 20. Universal Waterproof Phone Pouch

    Kenya has dozens of gorgeous islands, beaches, and pristine coastline. As you swim with dolphins, snorkel, boat, and swim – this waterproof phone case will be the ideal companion to your water sports adventures. It ensures your lifeline is protected from moisture, sand, debris, and scratches. You can even film beautiful underwater videos (with sound!) and not have to purchase a separate camera or GoPro. Don’t forget to attach the flotation strap so it doesn’t sink or become hard to retrieve!

    waterproof phone pouch

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  • 21. Packable “Just in Case” Bag

    We all succumb to the inevitable shopping as we travel the world. Since there is never enough room in your suitcase, bring this “just in case” bag for those unforeseen purchases, gifts, and authentic Kenyan goods you’ll want to snag! Like Maasai Beads, Kitengela Glass, bowls, blankets, handmade art, spices, and more. This duffel is light as a feather and counts as your personal item for the flight home, which means no carry-on fees – yahoo!

    Packable “Just in Case” Bag

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  • 22. Activated Charcoal

    With plenty of local and regional delicacies to try in Kenya, there’s no doubt you’ll enjoy experiencing a variety of new cuisines. Prevent getting food poisoning or having an upset stomach from eating unfamiliar foods by taking activated charcoal caps, which will quickly absorb and expel the unwelcome toxins in your system.

    Activated Charcoal

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  • 23. Sturdy Sandals

    Whether you’re exploring Mombasa or chilling at the beach, you’re likely to live in a sturdy pair of sandals during your time in Kenya. The hot weather means sandals are in order, and a lot of time spent on your feet means you’ll need something durable and reliable. These are the perfect pair for any trip to Africa.

    Sturdy Sandals

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  • 24. Deodorant Wipes

    You can never go wrong tossing a pack of deodorant wipes in your purse or daypack while you explore all that Kenya has to offer. Don’t try to do a sink-shower where you’re spritzing your pits with water (been there!) Lots of time spent traveling around under the hot sun can leave you in desperate need of a quick refresh, and these wipes will do the trick!

    Deodorant Wipes

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  • 25. Hanging Toiletry Bag

    You never know what kind of storage you’ll get in Africa. It could be a luxury resort but if you’re camping or staying in a smaller hotel, the lack of countertop space can be difficult. We use a hanging toiletry bag that hooks on any door or shower pole to create a shelf-like system in your bathroom. Vertically optimize your life and maintain your sanity since it has 4 giant pockets that hold all of your skincare, haircare, makeup, face towels, and hygiene products.

    Hanging Toiletry Bag

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  • 26. Travel Toilet Paper

    Bathroom situations in Africa are unpredictable. It may not be what you’re used to since public areas can range from a Western toilet to a hole in the ground (sometimes known as a squat toilet). These disposable wipes are perfect for handling your business on-the-go. If you’re camping or need to make an emergency run to a bush, you don’t have to worry about the TP being harmful to mama nature.

    Travel Toilet Paper

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  • 27. Female Urination Device

    Along the same lines, women should consider bringing a female urination device. While this may sound a little… eh hem, unique… it’s really useful for being able to pee while standing up (the liberty that men enjoy every day!) You may not need to worry about your hotel where you’ll have a reliable bathroom, but it’s exploring towns, beach days, hiking, safari excursions, and everything in between that you’ll need to be prepared for.

    Female Urination Device

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What NOT to Take to Kenya

  • 1.DON’T BRING valuables

    There is a lot of poverty in Kenya and theft crimes are common. Be smart by keeping your valuables at home.

  • 2.DON’T CARRY a lot of cash

    Cities like Nairobi and Mombasa will have ATMs available and hotels and restaurants will take Visa or Master Card. Remember to protect your cash in a money belt.

  • 3.DON’T TAKE an expensive cellphone

    Tourists are strongly recommended to bring a simple burner phone.

  • 4.DON’T PACK bright-colored clothing

    If you are going on safari. Bright colors will attract insects and wild animals. Stick with neutrals.

  • 5.DON’T WEAR camouflage

    It is illegal to wear.

  • 6.DONT’T BRING heels

    Roads are unpaved and there are few places where you would ever need to wear them while visiting.

Packing for the Seasons in Kenya

DRY SEASON – June, July, August, September, and October

These months are much cooler where the temperature is around 73°F. There is very little rain and humidity during these months which makes it a great time to visit the beaches. Things to pack while visiting during the dry season include sandals, shorts, capris, teeshirts, and tanks. Don’t pack too much warm clothing, you will be fine with just 1-2 pairs of pants and long-sleeved shirts or light sweaters. Also, don’t forget a hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen. Temperatures average between 73°F to 82°F (23°C to 28°C)

WET SEASON – November, December, January, February, March, April, and May

During these months the rain will vary. November and December will receive short periods of rainfall and usually occurs in the late afternoon or evening. January and February will actually receive less rain but March-May are the rainiest months and downpours can be expected. During these months the average temperature ranges between 75°F-86°F. Make sure to pack light, breathable clothing. Shorts and dry fit teeshirts work best. Also, bring a travel-sized umbrella and a light rain jacket or a rain poncho. Waterproof shoes or plastic sandals work well for footwear. Temperatures average between 75°F to 81°F (24°C to 27°C)

FAQs About Travel in Kenya

  • 1. Is it safe to visit Kenya?

    Compared to other African countries, Kenya is relatively safe. However, you should check with your government’s national travel advisory before planning a trip. Exercise street smarts in the day and avoid going out at night.

  • 2. Do I need a visa?

    While there are some countries whose nationals don’t require a visa to enter Kenya, if you are coming from the US, Canada, Europe, Australia, and many non-African countries, you will need a visa. Check with the Kenya High Commission for the complete list of countries that are visa exempt.

  • 3. Do I need vaccinations?

    Common vaccinations required for a trip to Kenya are hepatitis A, hepatitis B, rabies and typhoid, diphtheria, polio, measles, and yellow fever. It is best to consult with a doctor for vaccinations that you will need specific to your trip.

  • 4. Can I drink tap water?

    No, you can only drink boiled or bottled water.

  • 5. Is English spoken in Kenya?

    Yes, Kenya’s two official languages are English and Swahili.

  • 6. What currency is used in Kenya?

    The Kenyan shilling is used as currency although, on safari, many national parks will also take USD.

  • 7. How much money should I bring?

    Kenya is a fairly expensive country. On a low budget, expect to pay around $100/day. For Midrange to high budgets, $100-$250 a day is the norm.

  • 8. Where are the best places to see wildlife?

    In Kenya, there is an abundance of wildlife. Some of the best places include Amboseli, Lake Nakuru, Tsavo West, Maasai Mara, and Nairobi National Park.

  • 9. What is the Big Five?

    The Big Five refers to the most popular as well as some of the most challenging animals to spot on safari. These animals include elephants, lions, buffalo, rhinos, and leopards.

  • 10. What else is there to do in Kenya besides safari?

    Hike Mount Kenya, have breakfast with giraffes at Giraffe Manor, relax on Kenya’s beautiful coastal sandy beaches, scuba dive or snorkel with abundant sea life, visit coffee and tea plantations, and try out the local cuisine!