Conquer the highest peak in Africa – Tanzania's Mt Kilimanjaro

Trek the amazing Machame Route to the summit of Mt Kilimanjaro, Africa's highest point. At high altitude, it's a challenging journey through uniquely varied terrain. Camp out at night and enjoy incredible scenery along the way. Then at the very top of Uhuru Peak, rising 5,896m above sea level, feel the exhilaration of achievement and marvel at the incredible views.


Start
Marangu, Tanzania
Finish
Marangu, Tanzania
Country
Tanzania
Style
Basix
Theme
Walking & Trekking
Code
YKXA
Physical rating
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1, Max 12

Why we love this trip

  • Size up mighty Mt Kilimanjaro from the lush tropical surrounds Marangu

  • Travel with a group of experienced guides and porters with 1 guide for every 2 passengers

  • Spy hiding monkeys and colourful bird species flitting through the rainforest

  • Spend a night camped out on the Shira plateau

  • Marvel at the Hiem, Kersten and Rebmann glaciers

  • Catch a dazzling sunrise from Stella Point on your way to summit Africa's highest mountain peak

  • We are an official partner of IMEC’s Kilimanjaro Porters Assistance Project (KPAP). This means all of our climbs have been assessed and scored based on a number of criteria, all of which are designed to ensure the proper treatment of porters on the Mountain. Read more here: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/au/theme/walking/kilimanjaro-trek

Is this trip right for you?

  • A good level of fitness is required to join this tour. While the distances covered are not far, the effects of altitude will make it much harder than the usual uphill hike.

  • To allow for your body to adjust to the altitude the going will be slow. The speed of the hiking may be much slower than you are use too. However, we have found that this slow speed allows your body’s reserve levels to remain higher plus also allows for your body to adjust to the altitude as you walk.

  • Tried and tested all-purpose hiking equipment is required. Night time temperatures can get very cold above 3500m so warm clothing and sleeping bag is essential. Hiring of equipment/sleeping bag is also possible.

  • Your safety comes first. Our experienced guides will monitor each passenger for any signs of acute mountain sickness. If any signs are shown you will be instructed to descend immediately with the assistance from one of our guides.

  • Be prepared for dusty and therefore dirty conditions. It can be tough going hiking for continuous days without a shower. A dust mask, wet wipes and face washer may become your best friends.

Itinerary

This itinerary is valid for departures from 01 January 2018 to 31 December 2018. View the itinerary for departures between 01 January 2017 - 31 December 2017

Jambo! Welcome to Tanzania. Your hike begins in the foothills of Mount Kilimanjaro in Marangu. The hotel is a short walk from the village’s bustling market and some excellent coffee shops. It is also very close to some beautiful waterfalls and ancient Chagga caves. Please make sure you are at the hotel by early evening, as your trip starts with a full briefing and kit inspection by an experienced Kilimanjaro climber. This will take place before dinner. Your insurance details and next of kin information will also be collected. Check with hotel reception for the exact location of the meeting. If you can't arrange a flight that will arrive in time, consider arriving a day early so you can attend. We'll be happy to book additional accommodation for you (subject to availability). If you're going to be late, please inform the hotel reception. In the event that someone is late, the meeting may have to be rescheduled for the following morning.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Mount Kilimanjaro - Trek Briefing
  • Mount Kilimanjaro - Complimentary equipment hire (sleeping bag, sleeping mat and walking poles) - must be requested at time of booking
Meals Included
  • Dinner
Special Information
This trip visits places that are at high altitude, and as a result some people can suffer from altitude sickness, regardless of age or physical health. Please see the ‘Health’ section of the trip notes for more important information on this.

If you are doing an Intrepid safari in Tanzania in combination with your climb of Kilimanjaro, you can speak with your consultant about the possibility of either finishing your trip in Arusha (if doing the safari first), or starting your safari trip in Arusha (usually Day 2 of the safari). This will save you having to transfer back to Nairobi only to travel the same road (7–8 hours each way) the following day.
We meet our guides and porters after breakfast and sort out all our gear before we set off for our 1-hour transfer by road to the South Western side of Kilimanjaro and the Machame Gate at the entrance to the Mt Kilimanjaro National Park. Each person has a personal porter and there are extra porters for the food, etc. Please read your trip notes on for further information about your guides and porters and a detailed packing list.

We begin our walk around lunch time, starting with a pleasant stroll through the rainforest. In the forest, there are many species of brightly coloured birds and different types of monkey can be seen and heard. Beneath the leafy canopy it can be wet and muddy but it is not very cold.

We arrive mid-afternoon at the Machame Huts where we make camp. The huts fell into disrepair some years ago, so with the help of our porters, we set up tents for the night. Enjoy an evening meal prepared by the porters and savour the first night of sleeping outdoors.

From Kibo Hotel to Machame Huts, we ascend to 3,000 m (9,800 ft) and walk for 15 km (approximately 6-8 hours).
Accommodation
  • Camping (with basic facilities) (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Fully catered trek including National Park entrance fees, climbing fee, tented camps & rescue services (7 days)
  • Mount Kilimanjaro - Porterage of 1 bag (15kg max)
  • Mount Kilimanjaro - Return transfers from hotel to park gate
  • Mount Kilimanjaro - Emergency oxygen and comprehensive first aid kits
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Our second day on the mountain takes us out of the rainforest and up a steep ridge into moor land. You'll notice the vegetation getting more sparse as we ascend and several distinct species, including the giant groundsel and lobelia, will soon be the only plants dominating the harsh landscape. We camp on the edge of Shira plateau where there are excellent views of the snow-dusted Kibo peaks.

From Machame Camp to Shira Camp, we ascend to 3,840 m (12,600 ft), covering 12 km (approximately 5-7 hours).
Accommodation
  • Camping (with basic facilities) (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Today is a great day's walk with many ups and downs as we traverse river valleys. The undulating landscape offers a great chance to acclimatise and as we ascend to the more rugged areas of the mountain, there are great views of the Kibo Massif and its magnificent surrounds. Tonight is spent at Barranco Camp.

From Shira Camp to Barranco Camp, we ascend to 3,900 m (12,800 ft) and cover 12 km (approximately 5-7 hours).
Accommodation
  • Camping (with basic facilities) (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Today is an important acclimatisation day as you are going to be walking for the morning only. Climb the Barranco Wall (not a technical climb) and then follow the Kibo South Circuit. If the weather is clear you can expect to have some magnificent views of Kibo's southern glaciers. Arriving at your camp at around lunchtime you can enjoy great views by the river in the Karanga Valley.

From Barranco Camp to Karanga Valley Camp Camp, we descend to 4,200 m (13,780 ft) and cover 7 km (approximately 4 hours).
Accommodation
  • Camping (with basic facilities) (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
From Karanga you head up to the intersection of the South Circuit and the Mweka route where you’ll start climbing up a ridge to Barrafu Hut. Barrafu is Swahili for ‘ice’ – it can be very cold here at night!
You should arrive at Barrafu around late lunchtime, allowing plenty of time to rest before the final summit attempt.

From Karanga Camp to Barafu Camp, we ascend to 4,600 m (15,100 ft) and cover 3.5 km (approximately 4 hours).
Accommodation
  • Camping (with basic facilities) (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
At around midnight we are woken by our guides and hot tea and biscuits are served to give us energy before the long, difficult ascent up scree, and sometimes snow, to Stella Point (5,780 m). We pass the giant Rebmann Glacier en route and hopefully arrive at Stella Point in time for sunrise and superb views of the crater, the glacier glistening in the morning sun, and maybe even of the world around.

From Stella it is a further 1-hour hike along the rim of the crater to Uhuru Peak (5,896 m), the highest point in Africa. From the summit, take in unforgettable views of the crater, the ice fields and the vast and distant East African plains below. After photos and back-patting we begin our descent. Back at Barafu Camp, enjoy a well-earned lunch and much thicker air. After lunch, we continue on to Mweka Camp for the night and have a well-deserved rest.

From Barafu Camp to the Uhuru Peak summit, we ascend 1296 m and cover about 4 km (approximately 8 hours). The descent takes approximately 3 hours.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with basic facilities) (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Today we continue to descend the mountain, traversing alpine meadows and rainforest to the Mweka park gate. From Mweka Camp to the Mweka gate, we trek for 10 km (approximately 3-4 hours) descending a total of 1,300 m (4,300 ft). Here we have lunch after checking out of the park and then the transport sent to meet us returns us back to the hotel for a relaxing shower - a real treat after the physical exertions of the last few days! Relive and share our experiences of the past six days on the mountain with fellow travellers.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
You are free to depart at any time on the final day of your trip.
Transfers to Kilimanjaro Airport or a shuttle to Nairobi can be arranged locally. Please speak to your leader at the welcome meeting.
Meals Included
  • Breakfast

Meals

8 breakfasts, 7 lunches, 8 dinners

Transport

Minibus

Accommodation

Camping (with basic facilities) (6 nights), Hotel (2 nights)

Included activities

  • Mount Kilimanjaro - Trek Briefing
  • Mount Kilimanjaro - Complimentary equipment hire (sleeping bag, sleeping mat and walking poles) - must be requested at time of booking
  • Fully catered trek including National Park entrance fees, climbing fee, tented camps & rescue services (7 days)
  • Mount Kilimanjaro - Porterage of 1 bag (15kg max)
  • Mount Kilimanjaro - Return transfers from hotel to park gate
  • Mount Kilimanjaro - Emergency oxygen and comprehensive first aid kits

Dates & availability

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Important notes

1. Passenger Self Assessment Form required for this trip.
2. A single supplement is available for this trip. Please speak to your booking agent for further information.
3. Parts of your trip go above 2800 metres / 9200 feet where it is common for travellers to experience some adverse health effects due to the altitude.
4. Please arrange your flights to arrive at Marangu hotel before 4pm on Day 1 in order to attend the very important pre-climb briefing and information session.

Essential trip information

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Essential Trip Information provides a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what's included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.

Reviews

Our Kilimanjaro - Machame Route trips score an average of 4.89 out of 5 based on 9 reviews in the last year.

Kilimanjaro - Machame Route, January 2017

Nicholas Thompson

Kilimanjaro - Machame Route, January 2017

Jordyn Sellers