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Kilimanjaro – Machame Route

Trip type: 
Walking & Trekking
Trekking level: 
5. Strenuous
Max group size: 
Avg user rating: 
Africa, Tanzania | 10 days
Trip code: 
What's included: 

Transport - Minibus or 4WD, on foot.

Accommodation - Lodge (2nts), camping (5nts).

Meals - 7 breakfasts, 6 lunches & 7 dinners.

All Kilimanjaro park fees are included in the price.

Trip Highlights: 
Ascend and descend on different paths with great 360 views
Camp on the mountain for five nights
Climb the impressive vertical Barranco Wall
Diversity of scenery
see full itinerary >>

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Itinerary for Kilimanjaro - Machame Route

(Departures in 2014-15)
  • Day 1 - Arusha
  • Day 2 - Machame camp (3000m)
  • Day 3 - Shira Cave (3840m)
  • Day 4 - Barranco Camp (3900m)
  • Day 5 - Barafu Hut (4600m)
  • Day 6 - Uhuru Peak/Summit
  • Day 7 - Marangu
  • Day 8 - Tour ends
Extensions and Extras: Extend your holiday and see more of the world. View additional tours for this trip »


Jambo! Welcome to Tanzania. Your hike begins at the Marangu Hotel in the foothills (1,300 m/4,500 ft) of Mt Kilimanjaro. On clear days, in the evenings and early mornings, the snow-capped mountains are visible from the hotel grounds. Please make sure you are at Marangu Hotel by early evening, as your tour commences here with a full briefing and kit inspection before dinner by an experienced Kilimanjaro climber, in preparation for the start of our trek. Please note that it is sometimes necessary to have this meeting on the morning of Day 2 if someone arrives late. Please check at reception for up to date information on where and when this important meeting will take place. Marangu Hotel is a beautiful farmhouse set in 12 acres of delightful tropical gardens and located the foothills (1,300 m/4,500 ft) of Mt Kilimanjaro. On clear days, in the evenings and early mornings, the snow-capped mountains are visible from the hotel grounds. ALTITUDE SICKNESS: 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 - regardless of your age, gender and fitness. It even happened to Sir Edmund Hillary! Before your trip: Some pre-existing medical conditions are known to severely worsen at high altitude and be difficult to adequately treat on the ground, leading to more serious consequences. It is imperative that you discuss your pre-existing medical condition/s with your doctor. We understand certain medications are reported to aid acclimatising to high altitude. Please discuss these options with your doctor. During your trip: While our leaders have basic first aid training and are aware of the closest medical facilities, it is very important that you are aware of the cause and effects of travelling at altitude, monitor your health and seek assistance accordingly. Accommodation Hotel (1 nt)

Machame camp (3000m)

Machame camp (3000m)

You meet your guides and porters after breakfast and sort out all our gear before you set off for your 1-hour transfer by road to the 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. You begin the 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. You arrive mid-afternoon at the Machame Huts where you make camp. The huts fell into disrepair some years ago, so with the help of our porters, you set up tents for the night. Enjoy an evening meal prepared by the porters and savour the first night of sleeping outdoors. From Marangu Hotel to Machame Huts, you ascend to 3,000 m (9,800 ft) and walk for 15 km (approximately 6-8 hours). Accommodation Camping (with basic facilities) (1 nt) 

Shira Cave (3840m)

Shira Cave (3840m)

Your 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 you ascend and several distinct species, including the giant groundsel and lobelia, will soon be the only plants dominating the harsh landscape. You camp on the edge of Shira plateau where there are excellent views of the snow-dusted Kibo peaks. From Machame Camp to Shira Camp, you ascend to 3,840 m (12,600 ft), covering 12 km (approximately 5-7 hours). Accommodation Camping (with basic facilities) (1 nt)

Barranco Camp (3900m)

Barranco Camp (3900m)

Today is a great day's walk with many ups and downs as you traverse river valleys. The undulating landscape offers a great chance to acclimatise and as you 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, you ascend to 3,900 m (12,800 ft) and cover 12 km (approximately 5-7 hours). Accommodation Camping (with basic facilities) (1 nt)

Barafu Hut (4600m)

Barafu Hut (4600m)

Today is a tough day hiking up and down the craggy landscape as you make our way up to Barafu Camp. Barafu is Kiswahili for 'ice' and it is a very fitting name. You start the day off with a most challenging ascent and then embark on a fascinating walk through the dry desert region of the mountain with spectacular views of the Hiem, Kersten and Rebmann glaciers above. It is a rather tough slog up a final ridge to Barafu Camp but the knowledge that you'll conquer the summit tomorrow is wonderful motivation. From Barranco Camp to Barafu Camp, you ascend to 4,600 m (15,100 ft) and cover 12 km (approximately 8-9 hours). Accommodation Camping (with basic facilities) (1 nt) 

Uhuru Peak/Summit

Uhuru Peak/Summit

At around midnight you are woken by your 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). You 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 you begin our descent. Back at Barafu Camp, enjoy a well-earned lunch and much thicker air. After lunch, you continue on to Mweka Camp for the night and have a well-deserved rest. From Barafu Camp to the Uhuru Peak summit, you ascend 1296 m and cover about 4 km (approximately 8 hours). The descent takes approximately 3 hours. Accommodation Camping (with basic facilities) (1 nt) 



Today you continue to descend the mountain, traversing alpine meadows and rainforest to the Mweka park gate. From Mweka Camp to the Mweka gate, you trek for 10 km (approximately 3-4 hours) descending a total of 1,300 m (4,300 ft). Here you have lunch after checking out of the park and then the transport sent to meet us returns us back to the Marangu Hotel for a relaxing shower or bath - 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 nt) 


Tour ends

There are no activities planned for the final day and you are able to depart the accommodation at any time. Please check for checkout times and luggage storage possibilities.