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Shots for a safari holiday

Shots for a safari holiday
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What travel vaccines do I need for a trip to Africa?

The great migration across the plains of the Masai Mara in East Africa is one of the world’s best loved wildlife spectacles. Perhaps this year you are joining the many travellers who flock to Tanzania and Kenya to see wildebeest, zebra, eland and gazelle as they migrate in search of water and pasture. The timing of events such as the crossing of the Mara River cannot be accurately predicted, but safari holidays are commonly taken from the end of July, during August and in the early weeks of September.

How can I stay healthy on safari?

The best way to stay healthy on safari is to inform yourself about potential health risks well in advance of your trip so that you can make good risk assessments before and during your travels. If you are planning to join the great migration, now is the time to get your travel health appointment – we recommend you come and see us six weeks before you travel. The nurses at our travel clinic in Downtown Calgary specialize in holiday health and can give you advice tailored to your destinations and your planned activities.

You should ensure your health and fitness levels are appropriate for the activities you have planned in East Africa, and that you are prepared for hotter conditions than you are used to at home – that includes sun protection. Remember that it may be hard to access your normal medical supplies while on safari, particularly if you will be accessing remote areas, so bring enough of your meds for the full time you are away.

Your travel health nurse can give advice on food and water hygiene, too. Remember that sanitation in East Africa may not be up to the standards you are used to in Alberta.

Another important part of your travel health regime is protecting yourself from insect bites. Insects carry many dangerous and unpleasant diseases, including malaria, dengue fever and Rift Valley fever, and not all of them can be prevented by vaccination.

Your normal health insurance may not cover you while travelling, so find out before you go what extra cover you need.

What shots do I need for Kenya?

Are your regular shots all up to date? You should check this before visiting Kenya. Your travel health nurse might recommend shots against some food- and water-borne illnesses that can be difficult to avoid, including hepatitis A and typhoid. Depending on where you are going, malaria prophylaxis might be recommended, too.

Do I need any travel vaccines for Tanzania?

Again, you will want to ensure your regular shots are up to date before your trip to Tanzania. Rabies shots may be recommended depending on your travel plans. And you should also ask whether you need a yellow fever certificate.

Where can I get travel vaccinations in Calgary?

If you need an appointment at a travel clinic in Canada, turn to Canadian Travel Clinics. It is quick and easy to book online.