Mount Kilimanjaro stands almost 6000 meters above sea level, but one does not need to be an experienced mountain climber to reach its peak but moderately fit. To climb to the summit of Kilimanjaro, you need to be in a fit and healthy state with a good all-round condition and strong will power– we will do the rest.
Before you ascend on your trekking adventure, you will meet with a Trekking Operations Manager for a briefing. Route, safety procedures and health issues will be discussed in detail and you have enough time to ask any remaining questions. Your trekking gear will be inspected to ensure that you have everything you need to be safe and comfortable. During your climb, you only carry your backpack with essentials such as water for the day’s hike.
Porters will carry all equipment, food and additional luggage – they are tough climbers and the true heroes of the mountain. Your safety is vital to us. Most of the mountain guides have been part of our team for many years, been up Kilimanjaro hundreds of times and all receive regular training. You are in good hands. The cooks are miracle workers. With simple gas cookers, they conjure up 3-course feasts, hot drinks and snacks to revive and nourish you when you need it most. Drinking water comes from mountain streams and is boiled before you drink it.
From Arusha drive to the Machame route, often called the “Whiskey Route.” From the Machame Park gate is a gentle climb up through the original Montane forest, carpeted with unique -busy lizzie- flowers, begonias and ferns. First camp among the giant heather at 1.8mi/3,000m.
Distance: Ascent of 0.8 mi/1,200m and 5 to 6 hours walking.
Emerge from the giant heather zone and hike through fine open moorland to camp by the Shira Cave at 2.4 mi/3,840m. Herds of eland up here (& occasional lion!) and there are fascinating geological features in the old volcanic caldera which can be viewed during a half-hour optional walk in the afternoon.
Distance: Ascent 2,755 ft/840m and 4 to 5 hours walking.
From Shira, climb towards the main peak Kibo, with the western glaciers clearly visible across the rugged high-altitude desert of volcanic rocks and boulders. Skirting around its base and under the imposing western Breach, descend into the sheltered Barranco Valley for mid-way camp at 13,000 ft/3,950m.
Distance: 6 to 7 hours walking and only 360 ft/110m total ascent but having climbed much higher and dropped back down to assist acclimatization.
Up the steep Barranco wall with some sections of very easy scrambling and drop down again to the Karanga Valley where you take a break for lunch. After lunch hike on to Barafu Hut 15,000 ft/4600 m, You have fantastic views across to Mawenzi peak from the camp after having completed a longer day of hiking which now requires you to adequately relax in preparation of the challenging summit hike early the following morning.
Distance: A total of 7 to 8 hours and ascended 2,132 ft/650m.
A bracing 1am start to climb the steep frozen scree. This is unavoidable on any route but we aim to go past Gillman’s Point to reach Stella Point on the crater rim for sunrise another 40 minutes and you are at the highest point on the continent (Kibo: 19,456 ft/5900 m), usually in warm sunshine. Return on the Mweka descent route. This is a long hard day but you feel absolutely ecstatic when you have done it!
Distance: Ascent of 4,265 ft/1,300 m and about 7 hours trek to the summit; 8,500 ft/2,600 m descent and 6 to 7 hours trek to the Mweka campsite (11,154 ft/3400 m) above Mweka gate.
From Mweka campsite it is a 4 to 5 hours descent through the forest to Mweka gate (depending on individual fitness) to collect certificates and meet the vehicle. Return to Arusha for the night.
How intense is this trek?
This is quite a strenuous hike up to nearly 20,000 feet in only 5 days. Call it 9/10 on the Vacayou Strenuous Meter.
What airport do I fly into?
Book your flight to Kilimanjaro International Airport (KIA) which is an international airport in northern Tanzania that serves the cities of Arusha and Moshi.
Tour operated by Safari Soles Tours. Cancellation policy: If individuals cancel less than (1 day) prior to tour they will forfeit tour fees. Consideration for a refund can be made in extraordinary circumstances that can be proven. If individuals cancel less than 3 days prior to tour they will receive 70% refund(less bank transaction costs). If individuals cancel before (7 days) to tour date, a full refund will be made (less bank transaction costs). If for any reason the tour is cancelled by Safari soles tours, a full refund will be made to the contracting party.