Your AfrikaBurn experience will be made all the easier and enjoyable if you seriously consider where you’re going, what you’re doing and what you’ll need to do it. AfrikaBurn is not somewhere you can expect to rock up with a bootload of booze and have a jol, but rather an exercise in art and expression in an extreme environment. So plan ahead, but plan smart. If you do it right, you’ll be in for the ride of your life.
YOU NEED THESE THINGS
Minimum 5 litres of water per person per day – carry a bottle of water with you and rehydrate regularly
Food and beverages for your entire party and your entire stay – there is nothing on sale but ice.
A basic first aid kit
Shelter: a tent with bedding, and preferably an open shade structure too. If it’s not windproof, kiss it goodbye.
Camping lights, torches, headlamps and LED’s. Pack spare batteries.
Rubbish bags – because you’re going to be taking it all back with you
DO NOT BRING THESE THINGS
Plants. If it doesn’t belong there, leave it where it does.
Feathers of any kind, such as boas, which shed and get blown in the wind
Glitter. Save it for the disco, divas. It’s a bitch to clean up after.
Excess packaging. Lighten your load – just bring the contents.
Explosives or firearms of any kind, including BB guns or pellet guns
Pets of any description (see ‘Plants’ above)
Don’t overstock on fresh produce – just bring enough to eat. Why? It rots, and it’ll stink up you car as you head back to reality.
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED THINGS
Umbrellas, parasols, hats, sunscreen, lip balm and sunglasses
Bring a bicycle (mountain bikes are best) and decorate it, make it an installation, light it up for nighttime cruising. Bring a puncture kit.
A portable shower
Smokers should bring a portable ashtray. No butts on the floor. At all. Not even one, boet. The Tankwa is pristine and we are all tasked with keeping it that way.
Anything that can make sharp tent staves safer (tennis balls: perfect)
An extra set of car keys, just in case.
Costumes, musical instruments, signs, body paint and anything else that might enrich and make your AfrikaBurn more fun for you and your neighbours.
If it wasn’t made by your body, don’t put it in the loo. Putting anything but human waste and one-ply toilet paper into the portable toilets makes decomposition nearly impossible.
This includes tampons, rubbish, and wet-wipes.
Put the lid down when you’re done – it helps keep odours under control.
Do not dump grey water or bags from your personal camping toilet in the toilets: this fills them up much faster, resulting in nasty toilets for all.
Here it is again: NO TAMPONS, RUBBISH OR WET-WIPES in the toilets
Tankwa Town is set out in a large circle. Within this is the Binnekring, where art is located – no camps are allowed. Whether a Theme Camp, or just camping, you will have a designated area. When you arrive, get a program, then stick to the plan.
AfrikaBurn is for pedestrians and bicycles only. Unless it’s an art car or emergency vehicle, it’s parked from arrival until departure.
THE SPEED LIMIT IS 10KMH
AfrikaBurn is decommodified zone with a gift economy, where gifts are given without an expectation of anything in return. There is nothing to buy, and no-one’s selling anything. Your money’s no good in Tankwa Town.
Bring a fire extinguisher, and inform your campmates of where it is. You can use a campfire to cook on, but it is absolutely your responsibility to monitor; you should NEVER LEAVE YOUR FIRE UNATTENDED. In addition, open fires on the ground are not permitted. If you have a fire (in a brazier, or braai) and leave your camp, put it out.
LEAVE NO TRACE
This one’s not negotiable – AfrikaBurn is a Leave No Trace event.
EVERYTHING YOU BRING TO AFRIKABURN, YOU TAKE AWAY WITH YOU.
The land AfrikaBurn takes place on is pristine Karoo semi-desert. As a citizen of Tankwa Town, you have a civic duty to make sure it stays that way. The only way for that to happen is for you to leave no trace. You’re encouraged to clean up as you go, so if you see someone dropping something, let them know. Loudly.