Protective clothing and helmet
The moment you mount a motorcycle you are at risk. You can minimize this risk by the way you ride and your experience, but can’t avoid it completely. That is where protective clothing and a helmet come in. If you think you won’t take a tumble so you can do a tour without protective clothing, you are terribly wrong! Adequate protection is not only there to guard your holiday fun, but also your health for the rest of your life. Besides, most insurances demand adequate protection. So please be sensible and stick to our guidelines.
A motorcycle helmet is mandatory throughout southern Africa. Use a helmet with a chin-guard, or use a full face or modular helmet. Mornings can be chilly, so a buff is advisable.
All untarred as well as many tarred roads are dusty, so bring (coloured) goggles or sturdy sunglasses. Due to the dust, during daytime we advise to use glasses rather then lenses. Remember: the sunshine is fierce!
Thick or thin is up to you, but use all-encasing gloves with build-in knuckle protection.
Sturdy shoes or boots, with build-in ankle protection.
Southern Africa has hot days and cool nights from November till April. Between May and October the days are pleasantly warm, but at night and when leaving early mornings the temperature can have dropped to zero. Light motor-riding gear with adequate protection on your elbows, backside and knees is usually sufficient; when cold wear a warm fleece sweater underneath this. Leather is comfortably warm in the cold season and relatively cool in the hot season. If you consider using an open web with build-in protectors, in case of a tumble you’ll still end up with impressive road rashes. Always bring your kidney belt!
Between December and May the Karoo and Kalahari are proud to have rain showers, some light, some heavy. If your clothing is not waterproof we advise to bring rain gear. By the way, during the rest of the year rain showers do occur…
Bring your own or rent it?
During our tours you frequently do long riding days over sometimes dusty roads. We all know it is very uncomfortable doing this with an ill-fitting helmet and too warm, or too cold, clothing. That is why we strongly advise you bring your own gear – but remember to check the luggage allowances with your international carrier! We do have a small supply of helmets and riding gear for rent, but without any guarantee that they will fit.
Always remember to bring your documents. These include your credit card (as guarantee for your bike rental), travel documents (passport), vaccination certificates, valid motorcycle driver’s license, international driver’s license (if your own driver’s license is in English you can waive this), your flight ticket or a print of your e-ticket, and a copy of the confirmation you have travel- and cancellation insurance, including the emergency number of your travel insurance. We advise you to bring a copy of all these documents and keep those in a different bag from the originals. This will save you a lot of hassle if you happen to loose the originals.
When riding your main luggage is carried in the backup vehicle or its trailer. If everyone brings a suitcase we won’t be able to fit it all in. So please avoid this and bring soft packs which can be packed away easily. You won’t be able to get to this luggage during the daytime, so we provide a tank bag or a back roll. This holds your daytime luggage (camera, snacks, rain gear, drinking water etc.). So you don’t have to bring your own day pack! Do you have an expensive camera? Buy a dust-resistant sleeve.
You transverse hot, arid areas without much shadow. In this climate dehydration is a real risk. So drink a lot of water during the day! You need to carry at least 1.5 litres of water with you. We provide safe drinking water and water bottles. You can carry these in your day pack, so you don’t need a ‘camel hump’ or other expensive drinking system. Remember: in a hot climate your body does not absorb any liquid through alcohol, but it actually dehydrates.
Bring a basic First Aid kit and your personal medical drugs. You don’t need to bring a lot of cloths, because you can have them all laundered halfway through the tour. You will need a warm fleece sweater for the evenings – temperatures drop sharply after sunset. Don’t forget to bring swimming clothes – most lodges and guest houses have a pool, usually containing water. Sun cream, cap, sunglasses and strong mosquito repellent will be needed, as well as all other personal effects you can’t do without.
Want to ride a motorbike through Africa? Africa has no secrets for Ride2Roam. We will make your motorcycle adventure different. Not just any ordinary motorbike tour - during your motorbike holiday we will show you what southern Africa really is about. Our motorbike tours are made by bikers for bikers. With us you book more than a hotel and a motorbike, you book the ride of your life. No mass-tourism - you’ll ride in a small, international group of bikers over the most beautiful roads in South Africa, Namibia and Botswana. Your steed is a dual adventure BMW motorbike, guided by the very best guide around and with a backup vehicle for your peace of mind. Some of our unforgettable motorbike group tours through South Africa, Namibia and Botswana are on gravel roads, some on tar roads. We can also make a tailor-made itinerary for the bike adventure you always dreamed about! Yes. Motorcycle tours from Ride2Roam are different. Definitely different!