While there are few facilities specifically for people with disabilities, East Africans are generally quite accommodating, and willing to offer whatever assistance they can as long as they understand what you need. In general, Kenya and northern Tanzania are probably the easiest destinations, and safari companies in these areas often have experience taking people with disabilities on safari. Some considerations:
- While some newer lodges have wheelchair-accessible rooms, few hotels have lifts, many have narrow stairwells and there are generally no grips or rails in bathrooms.
- Many park lodges and camps are built on ground level. However, access paths, in an attempt to maintain a natural environment, are sometimes rough or rocky, and rooms or tents raised. It’s best to enquire about access before booking.
- As far as we know, there are no Braille signboards at any parks or museums, nor any facilities for travellers who are deaf.
- In most places, taxis are small sedans. Minibuses are widely available in Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda, and can be chartered for transport and customised safaris. Large or wide-door vehicles can also be arranged through car-hire agencies in major cities, and often with safari operators as well.
Accessible Journeys (www.disabilitytravel.com) Offers a handful of Kenyan and Tanzanian safari tours.
Society for Accessible Travel & Hospitality A good resource that gives advice on how to travel with a wheelchair, kidney disease, sight impairment or deafness.
Accessible Travel Online Resources
Download Lonely Planet's free Accessible Travel guides from http://lptravel.to/AccessibleTravel.
Lonely Planet's Travel for All community on Google Plus is a helpful initial contact.
Access-Able Travel (www.access-abletravel.com.au)
Accessible Journeys (www.disabilitytravel.com)
Disability Horizons (www.disabilityhorizons.com)
Mobility International (www.miusa.org)
National Information Communication Awareness Network (www.nican.com.au)
Safari Guide Africa (www.safariguideafrica.com/safaris-for-the-disabled)
Tourism for All (www.tourismforall.org.uk)