Guide to Bush & Safari Jackets for Men
Some people go on Safari thinking that Africa’s weather is hot and so a good jacket is not that necessary. Not true, winters can be very, very cold in many safari locations and even in summer it can be pretty cold on an early morning game drive, on night drives or even in the evenings sitting around the boma enjoying your evening meal.
I have owned a number of safari and bush jackets in my time, some very good and some not. In this article I will go through some of the features that I find useful and point you in the direction where you can find your ideal safari jacket.
The style of jacket similar to that of the main image in this article was made popular by around the beginning of the 20th century by the early European adventurers who came to Africa.
Safari & Travel Jacket
You must remember that a true safari jacket or bush jacket is a garment designed for the purpose of going on safari in the African bush and therefore function and comfort are far more important than style. But also remember that before you get to to the bush, you will also be doing quite a bit of travelling. To save on luggage space it makes sense to use the same jacket for travel, so make sure that it is comfortable and at least a little stylish!
As with most of you safari clothing, stay away from bright or shiny colours. On safari you want to blend in as much with your surroundings as possible. So stick to green, brown, beige and khaki Jackets.
Also try not to pick a jacket with camouflage colouring. I know that it seems ideal and makes popular urban wear in the west, but in Africa only the military wear camouflage and indeed in some African countries you can be arrested for wearing it.
Many Jackets will be made from a materials that are waterproof, but make a noise as you rub against it. This is perfectly fine for camping in a wet environment, but if you are trying to sneak up to skittish animals like an antelope, the noise made by your clothing can often frighten them away. Cotton drill type materials work the best and if you need your jacket to be waterproof, look out for ones that have a waxy type covering.
Buy Safari & Bush Jackets
Below are a few examples of ideal jackets to travel with and take on safari.
Joe Browns Forces Bush Jacket
Stylish as well as hardy, this bush jacket from Joe Browns has retro military styling and is a great laid-back jacket that’ll stick by you through thick and thin. Loads of large pockets ideal for storing binoculars, a compact digital camera or safari guide book.
The outer is made from 100% Cotton, the lining: 65% Polyester, 35% Cotton. Note the Shirt and T-shirt are sold separately.
Mens Workwear Safari Jacket
Made from 100% cotton canvas, the Workwear Safari Jacket has 2 bellowed hand warmer pockets, front placket with stud fastening, 2 chest pockets with stud fastenings and studded cuffs to sleeves.
Mens Jack Pyke Hunter Jacket
Waterproof – Breathable – Noiseless. The ideal safari jacket.
Details: Full length double opening zip, Concealed hood in pocket, 2 lower front bellow pockets with cartridge holders, 2 hand-warmer pockets 1 internal chest pocket, Fold-down waterproof seat flap, Elasticated weather shrouds on wrist, Available in olive green or english oak.
Safari Gilet / Safari Vest
As an alternative to a long sleeve Jacket, ideal for wearing in warmer weather is a safari gillet or vest. Good ones like the Result Adventure Safari Gilet pictured on the left come with many pockets an are ideal for photographers or indeed anyone on safari as the pockets can be use to store your binoculars, guide books or anything else.
For more, take a look at this section of the safari guide on Safari Clothing and Advice, it includes Men’s and Women’s Safari Wear.