Detailed Guide to Bikepacking in East Africa

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Bikepacking is the ultimate way to experience a life-changing adventure in a new country, where you can experience the open roads, have the freedom to roam and explore, and rely on your skills to get you through the day. Bikepacking is challenging and requires high fitness levels; however, if you have some experience, you will know the rewards outweigh the risks. Our detailed guide will help you on your epic bikepacking journey in East Africa. 

Choosing the Right Equipment

When choosing your bike and the tires, you need to consider the road conditions and terrains in East Africa. You will encounter many different terrains with various difficulties, and ensuring you have the bike and tires for the job is essential for a safe and fun experience. Many suggest getting a steel frame bike. It would help if you also bought a lightweight, waterproof bag to store your belongings and bike kit. You can get a bag designed for bikepacking, which is easier to carry and improves the overall riding experience.

When to Go

Choosing the correct dates is the next essential step. The torrential rains will leave you stranded. You will need to pick the perfect season, otherwise, you will be dragging your bike through mud. You also don't want to travel during the hot or humid season either. The best months for having a bikepacking adventure in East Africa is from May to October. The worst months to plan your trip are from mid-match to May and drum December to February.

Visa Requirements

You can get an EAT (East African Tourist) visa, which gives you access to multiple East African countries. However, you can also apply for individual countries using the e-visa process. 

It is also recommended to keep a few extra passport-sized photographs with you just in case you need them.

Things to Consider

Although bikepacking can be an adventure you do not want to miss, keep in mind that the territory does not come without risks. East Africa is filled with wild and dangerous animals. It would help if you prepared yourself in case you have an encounter. Learn about the many ways you can avoid confrontations and steer clear of any areas where it is sure you will run into a wild animal.

Apart from wildlife, you must also beware of insects, especially mosquitos. You should apply a DEET mosquito repellent. You also need to be on the lookout for tsetse flies. Their bite can be dangerous. To avoid them, you can wear neutral colors.

Another thing you need to be careful about is the local drivers, especially the jeep and Land Rovers. The locals are used to driving fast and dangerously. You should pull to the side if you see a driver coming in fast.

Where to Start

There are several biking trails to consider. You will need to research according to your plans and the destinations you want to experience. For example, one biking trail starts in Kenya and ends in Tanzania, taking seven days to cover and going through eight different places. It all comes down to what you want.

Bikepacking through East Africa is a fantastic experience. Considering Tanzania as your destination, you should learn about the Best Time To Visit Tanzania in 2021.

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