Mount Kilimanjaro is the highest mountain in Africa, with its summit about 4,900 meters (16,100 ft) from its base, and 5,895 meters (19,341 ft) above sea level. The mountain is part of Kilimanjaro National Park and is a major climbing destination.
Kilimanjaro is a large stratovolcano composed of three distinct volcanic cones: Kibo, the highest; Mawenzi at 5,149 meters (16,893 ft) and Shira, the lowest at 4,005 meters (13,140 ft). Mawenzi and Shira are extinct, while Kibo is dormant and could erupt again.
Uhuru Peak is the highest summit on Kibo's crater rim. The Tanzania National Parks Authority, a Tanzanian government agency, and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization list the height of Uhuru Peak as 5,895 m (19,341 ft), based on a British survey in 1952. The height has since been measured as 5,892 metres (19,331 ft) in 1999, 5,891 metres (19,327 ft) in 2008, and 5,888 metres (19,318 ft) in 2014.
With the changing travel advisories and newer regulations coming into the picture, we understand that deciding and booking a trek can get tricky. We have relaxed our cancellation policy, read our new terms and conditions for cancellation here
- Trek and Summit Africa's highest peak
- Tick off one of the Seven Summits Peak in the world
- Summit Kilimanjaro on a Full Moon night
- Watch the sunrise from Uhuru Peak
- 2 Night stay in comfortable hotels at Moshi Town with breakfast
- Rest easy at comfortable Trekkers Huts during the trek
- Chance to see some of Kilimanjaro's most spectacular plants - the endemic Giant Lobelia
- Get ample time to acclimatize to the altitude and enjoy the trek without a worry
- Get extra time to bask in the unrivalled views with brilliant photo opportunities of Mount Kilimanjaro.
- Day 1: Arrival at Kilimanjaro Airport and Transfer to Hotel in Moshi.
- Day 2: Marangu Gate (1,800 m) to Mandara Hut (2,700 m)
- Day 3: Mandara hut (2,700 m) to Horombo hut (3,700 m)
- Day 4: Acclimatisation day at Horombo
- Day 5: Horombo hut (3,700 m) to Kibo hut (4,700 m)
- Day 6: Summit Day, Kibo hut (4,730 m) - Uhuru Peak (5,895 m) - Horombo hut (3,700 m)
- Day 7: Horombo Hut (3,700 m) to Marangu Gate (1,800 m)
- Day 8: Departure Day from Kilimanjaro International Airport.
Arrival day at Kilimanjaro International Airport and meet the team at the airport and get transferred to the Lodge/Hotel for overnight.
Marangu Gate (1,800 m) to Mandara Hut (2,700 m)
Hiking time: Approximately 4 to 5 hours
Distance: Approximately 11 Km
Habitat: Montane rainforest
The drive from Arusha to the Kilimanjaro National Park gate takes about one hour. The journey passes through the village of Marangu, which is located on the lower slopes of the mountain. Once you reach the park gate, all hikers are requested to sign in at the Park office and make their final preparations for the climb. Porters will be seen arranging and loading their packs, containing the food, water, cooking gas as well as most of your equipment. Make sure that you have all your daypack items (containing at least drinking water, your lunch pack and extra clothing) with you, as the porters ascend quicker. Our guides will be available to assist with any additional information or needs you might have. You now leave the Park gate and ascend on a cleared ridge trail through the rainforest. The forest, suffused with mist and dripping with beards of moss, is also where most of Kilimanjaro's animals are found. An alternative and more scenic parallel forest trail branches off to the left a few minutes after the gate. This trail follows the edge of a stream through the undergrowth and offers you the option to rejoin the main trail either after 1.5 hours of hiking, or 1 hour before Mandara hut. Your first night stop, Mandara hut, consists of a group of wooden A-framed huts in a forest clearing. Each hut features 6-8 sleeping bunks with solar-generated lighting. The total capacity of the camp is 60 climbers. Water is piped into the camp from springs above and there are flush toilets behind the main hut. Dinner is prepared by our cook and served in a communal dining mess.
Mandara hut (2,700 m) to Horombo hut (3,700 m)
Hiking time: Approximately 6 to 7 hours
Distance: 13 Km
Habitat: Moorland zone.
From Mandara hut, the trail passes through a short stretch of forest, skirts the base of the Maundi Crater and then emerges into the transition from rainforest to moorland. It is well worth a short detour to scramble up the rim of the Maundi Crater for your first really impressive view of the Kibo Crater. On a clear day, Kibo will glimmer in the distance, showing off her majestic glaciers in the morning sun. Once you are in the open moorland you will get the chance to see some of Kilimanjaro's most spectacular plants - the endemic giant lobelia which grows up to 3 m in height and the giant groundsel (Senecio Kilimanjaro), which can reach heights of 5m! After about 6 hour's trek from here, you reach the Horombo hut, where you will have a hot bowl of washing water, rest; an evening meal and overnight.
Horombo; Acclimatization day
Horombo hut is a village of huts perched on a small plateau, with buildings similar to Mandara, but with a total capacity of 120 climbers! Horombo is normally bustling with hikers, guides and porters, with an atmosphere of adventure and excitement. You will meet both ascending and descending hikers here. This extra day and night at Horombo are for additional acclimatization. A hike towards the Mawenzi hut, passing the Zebra Rocks on the way (about 3 hours up and 1,5 hours down), is strongly recommended. This hike will further assist with the process of acclimatization. Remember to drink enough water and move slowly! All meals for the day are provided at the hut. Retire to bed early and get a last good night's rest.
Horombo hut (3,700 m) to Kibo hut (4,700 m)
Hiking time; 6 to 7 hours
Distance: 11.5 km
Habitat: Alpine desert.
After breakfast, you now continue your ascent into the Alpine desert habitat. From Horombo there are two trails to the "Saddle" (which refers to the area located between the peaks of Mawenzi and Kibo). There is an upper route (right-hand fork) and a lower route (left-hand fork) to choose from. The upper route (right-hand fork) should be very familiar, as you will have climbed most of it the previous day (on your acclimatization hike) towards Mawenzi hut. This section is very stony and eroded. The recommended lower route (left-hand fork) is much easier and nearly an hour shorter, and it also passes the last watering point at 4,130 m. You will have to fill your water bottles with all the water you will need until your return to Horombo hut in two nights' time (unless you are willing to buy Mineral water at Kibo hut). Once again remember to slow down and drink enough water! Situated in the barren Alpine desert is Kibo hut, a stone build block house which has bunk beds for 60 climbers, but no streams with water nearby. It is, however, possible to buy mineral water and soft drinks at the camp office. There are platform toilets behind the hut. The summit is now a further 1195m up and you will make your final ascent the same night. Prepare your equipment, ski stick and thermal clothing for your summit bid. This should include the replacement of your headlamp and camera batteries and make sure you have a spare set available as well. To prevent freezing it will be wise to carry your water in a thermal flask. Go to bed at around about 19h00 and try to get as much rest and sleep as possible.
Kibo hut (4,730 m) - Uhuru Peak (5,895 m) - Horombo hut (3,705 m)
Hiking time: 7 to 8 hours to reach Uhuru Peak, 6 to 8 hours to descend to Horombo
Distance: Approximately 5.4 Km ascent and 15 km descent
Habitat: Stone scree and ice-capped summit
You will rise around 11.30 PM, and after some tea and biscuits you shuffle off into the night, and this is where the going really gets tough. The first section of the trail consists of a rocky path to the Hans Meyer Cave (5,150 m), also a good resting spot. The path then zigzags up to Gillman's point (5,681 m), which is located on the crater rim. This section is very steep with a lot of stone scree, requiring a great physical and mental effort. This is probably the most demanding section of the entire route. Do the Kili shuffle and move slowly. From Gillmans Point you will normally encounter snow all the way up to Uhuru peak (5,895 m), the highest point in Africa. Total exhilaration and satisfaction - you made it. Weather conditions on the summit will determine how long you will be able to spend, taking photographs, before the 3-hour descent back to Kibo hut. After a short rest, you gather all the gear you left behind for the ascent and head down to Horombo hut (3 hours) for your overnight. The return to Horombo hut will seem surprisingly fast compared to the ascent. The total time spent walking on this day is around 14 hours, so be prepared for a very tough day. Later in the evening, you enjoy your last dinner on the mountain and a well-earned sleep, filled with memories and stirring emotions.
Horombo Hut (3,700 m) to Marangu Gate (1,800 m)
Hiking time: Approximately 6 hours
Distance: 26 Km
Habitat: Moorland and Montane rainforest.
After breakfast you continue your descent (6 hours), passing the Mandara hut, down to the Marangu gate where you will get a chance to say goodbye to your mountain crews. It is strongly recommended not to pay your porters any tips until you and all your gear have reached the gate safely. At Marangu Gate, you sign your name and details in a register. This is also where successful climbers receive their summit certificate. After that, you will be transferred back to Arusha for a long overdue hot shower, dinner and celebrations!
Today you depart from Kilimanjaro to your home town.
Trekking comes with its own set of risks. While adventure is fun and can be extremely thrilling, nature can be unpredictable, and to help secure you during your trek, it is of utmost importance that you are covered with insurance.
We've gone a step ahead and made sure that you don't have to worry about scouting for the best insurance option out there. When you trek with us, your insurance comes as a part of your inclusions. To know more about the benefits covered and sum insured, click here.
Risk and Liability:
We will endeavor to make your program smooth and as pleasant as possible. However, the entire course of trekking depends on the ranges of the mighty mountains, physical health, and environmental conditions. Therefore, TrekNomads shall not be responsible for any changes in the itineraries due to unavoidable circumstance and natural disasters such as landslide, road blockage, flood, snowing, cancellation of flight and delay, any types of sickness including altitude sickness.
What to Expect:
The trek to Africa's highest peak is a challenging trek that requires prior high-altitude trekking experience. During the course, we will trek 4 to 10 hours per day on moderate to steep grades, at varied elevations. Some days will be rest days with optional hikes to properly acclimatize, while on other days you will continue your journey towards Kilimanjaro summit. Your Trek Captain will set a suitable pace to minimize the risk of altitude issues. Porters and pack animals will transport your gear. A signed medical consent form from your doctor will be required for participation. You will also be required to sign an indemnity bond before heading on the trek.
This trek requires a good level of fitness and prior high-altitude trekking experience.
To register for this trek you are required to complete a 5K run in under 35 minutes. Once you do register, please share the run details with our Trek Captain.
If you're not already following a fitness regime, you would need to follow the regime that will be shared with you. The training routine is spread over four months and you would be expected to work out at least 4 times a week. The regime is designed to help you climb smarter even in higher altitudes. The regime consists of a good combination of exercises that works on all parts of your body including - Upper Body, Core, Endurance, Lower Body, Shoulder strength and along with streamlining your breathing pattern. When followed religiously, you can rest assured that you will be ready for the trek. Not only does this regime help you with the trek, but it will also help you inculcate a sense of fitness in your day-to-day life.
This trek is graded challenging to extreme because you will be trekking for 7 consecutive days over rough terrain, you will be exposed to increasing altitudes each day, averaging 4,000 m and up to a maximum of 5,895 m.
Your Trek Captain will brief you on the next day's trek every evening so you have ample time to prep and be ready for the climb the next morning. You are expected to wake up at the time told by the Trek Captain. This is highly important because the earlier you start the trek, the faster you can reach the next village.
Being away from home comforts and family for an extended period of time is often a challenge for Nomads although access to communications on the trail is very good overall.
Do’s and Don’ts:
- We believe in leaving the mountains in a better condition, which is why we follow a no-litter policy on our treks. Each trekker will have to bring back the waste that is created during the trek.
- Trekking is best enjoyed when you’ve worn comfortable clothes. Try and avoid wearing Jeans, bright colours and heavy apparel as much as possible.
- A lighter backpack always helps you have a better trek, try and carry just as much as needed.
- Always be in sight of your trek lead, if you feel the need to stop for any reason at all, please keep the trek lead informed.
- If you do come across any reptiles, animals or even insects during the trek, please keep your calm and let it patiently pass by. Any kind of noise and panic will scare them as well.
- Do not venture out into the forest/waterfalls on your own as it may be dangerous.
- Trekking is a good adventure, having said that, it is our primary responsibility to take good care of ourselves and be compassionate towards fellow trekkers
- If, at any point, during the trek, you feel uneasy or unwell, please inform the trek lead immediately
- Tune in to the sounds of nature while on a trek and avoid carrying speakers or playing music during the course of the trek
- To help you enjoy the trek to the fullest, we avoid smoking and consumption of alcohol, and other intoxicants during the course of the trek
What is included in the tour
- Airport transfers
- Transfers to Marangu Gate and back to the hotel
- 2 Night accommodation in good hotels at Moshi Town with breakfast
- 6 days of trekking with professional, experienced and friendly local mountain guides
- Accommodation during the trek in Mountain Huts
- All meals and water on the mountain, including three meals a day (Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner).
- Guides, Porters and Cook fees
- Park fees for all the days of trekking
- Hut fees for all the days of trekking
- National Park entry fees
- Conservation Fees, Camping/Hut Fees and Rescue Fees
- Basic medical kit, pulse oximeters and oxygen cylinder throughout the expedition
- Tips to Porter and Guide ($300)
- All government-related taxes and service charges
- TrekNomads Fee, Trek Captain support and expertise
- 10% discount on Fast&Up products
- 25% discount on HappyBars products
- Personalized Dri-Fit T-shirt
- TrekNomads goodies
What is NOT included in the tour
- International air tickets to and fro Kilimanjaro
- Tanzania Visa Fee and other formalities
- Lunch & Dinner at the hotel
- Single room supplement at the hotel
- Personal Insurance
- Hot and Mineral water
- Any type of soft drinks
- Any extra day at the mountain
- Sleeping bags, Climbing equipment, Toiletries, etc.
- Transportation for sightseeing and for adventure activities in Kilimanjaro
- Any other expenses incurred apart from inclusions
- All personal, medical, evacuation and emergency expenses like extra day stay out of itinerary, helicopter services and vehicle charges due to delays, landslides, evacuation
- Expenses incurred for guide or porter during extra days stay, transport, flight, helicopter service, etc (divided amongst the group which utilises the services of guides/porters on extra days)
Where is the Mount Kilimanjaro trek?
This is a 12-day trek in Arusha, Tanzania. Mount Kilimanjaro is the highest mountain in Africa, with its summit about 4,900 m (16,100 ft) high from its base camp and 5,895 m (19,341 ft) above sea level. The mountain is situated in the Kilimanjaro National Park and is a major attraction for trekkers and mountaineers.
Kilimanjaro is a large stratovolcano with three distinct volcanic cones: Kibo at 5,149 m (16,893 feet), Mawenzi at 5,149 m (16,893 feet), and Shira at 4,005 m (13,140 ft). Mawenzi and Shira are no longer active, but Kibo is dormant and could erupt again.
Is Mount Kilimanjaro trek difficult?
Mount Kilimanjaro Trek is not difficult on most days because the trails are not steep and you mainly deal with altitude. Still, the summit night is tough because it is the coldest and windiest section of your adventure.
Does the Mount Kilimanjaro trek require technical trekking?
Kilimanjaro requires no technical climbing experience or climbing equipment. This makes it the most accessible of the Seven Summits in many ways. Any decently fit person can summit the Kilimanjaro mountain. That said, for most people, it will be one of the most challenging things they ever do in their lives!
When is the best time for the Mount Kilimanjaro trek?
The best months for the Mount Kilimanjaro trek are July to October and December to February, as these are the warmest and driest months, respectively. July, August, and September are the busiest months on the mountain. Another factor to take into consideration is the full moon. Summiting Kilimanjaro on a cloudless evening with the moon as your guide instead of a headlamp is undoubtedly an unforgettable experience. You also witness the beautiful sight of the glaciers glittering in the moonlight.
What is the climate like on the Mount Kilimanjaro trek?
Due to the high elevation gain on the Kilimanjaro trek, you will experience all kinds of weather, from 30° C (86° F) on the plains surrounding Mount Kilimanjaro down to -7 to -29° C (20° to -20° F) at the summit. So ensure you bring warm clothes like thermals, fleece jackets, woollen socks, hand gloves, etc.
What is the accommodation like on the Mount Kilimanjaro trek?
You will be staying in comfortable hotels in Arusha for four nights. In Mandara, Horombo, and Kibo, you will be staying in stone-built block houses (or trekkers huts) with bunk beds. Blankets will be provided for you. But we also recommend you carry your sleeping bag as it might get colder at higher altitudes.
Is fitness important for the Mt Kilimanjaro trek? If yes, how should I train for it?
Yes, we have kept very simple, easily achievable fitness criteria. In order to qualify our fitness criteria you should either complete a 5K run in 35 minutes or Cycling 10kms in 40 mins or Swimming 1 km in 40 mins or Stair climb 50 floors (10 floors up and down 5 times) in 30 mins. Any fitness app proof would suffice to qualify. We will also assist you with a fitness training program for free and guide you in getting fit to complete this trek.
Our fitness criteria are not a blocker or to stop people from joining this trek. However, it is a conscious effort to make sure you have a comfortable and memorable experience during the trek.
NOTE: Trekkers who have already trekked in the same route or have trekked at a similar altitude (highest altitude of this trek) or even higher automatically get qualified.
Check out this blog for some more fitness tips: How to get fit for a Himalayan trek.
What kind of food will be available on the Mount Kilimanjaro trek?
Our cook will prepare healthy, nutritious food for you. Porters will carry all the food, water, cooking gas, and materials required to cook the food. The cost of the food is included in our trek package.
Are there restrooms available on the Mount Kilimanjaro trek?
Yes, common flush toilets are available at Mandara, Horombo, and Kibo. These toilets will be located behind the huts. During your stay at hotels in Arusha, good quality western toilets will be available in your room.
What are some common injuries faced on the Mount Kilimanjaro trek? How does one deal with them?
The most common injuries that occur are leg and foot injuries such as blisters and ankle twists/sprain. Injuries should be handled extremely carefully while on a trek. Injuries such as blisters, cuts and scrapes should be thoroughly cleaned with an antiseptic solution. Post that, an appropriate ointment should be applied. The wound should be then covered with cotton and secured in one place with the help of a bandage. It is imperative that a first-aid kit should be carried on a trek.
Injuries such as an ankle twist/sprain can be quite painful. If the sprain is minor, it can be easily treated by applying some pain relief balm or a spray and then covering it with a crepe bandage. However, in case of serious injuries such as fractures, the patient needs to be taken to the hospital.