The Machame route is one of our most highly recommended routes to climb Kilimanjaro as it offers great acclimatisation program, allowing the climbers to “walk high, sleep low”, and as a result enjoy one of the highest summit success rate of all the routes to climb Mt Kilimanjaro.
It goes by the nickname of “The Whisky Route” although no whisky is available!
You can climb Kilimanjaro over 6 days via the Machame route but we recommend taking 7 days. The reason for this is that it offers much better acclimatisation and allows the pre-summit day to be split into 2, which means that you have 2 shorter days of trekking prior to your summit ascent. This really helps and has proved a great success, as well as a more enjoyable way to climb Mount Kilimanjaro.
Here are some of the key facts of the ascent I organise for my clients:
- We go through stunning terrains and climb in five different climatic zones during this challenging trek
- Highly recommended route with best success rate
- Allows travellers to “walk high and sleep low” enabling better acclimatisation
- Ascent and descent via different routes
- Fully catered camping
Owing to its high success rate the Machame route can be busy, but we ensure we hit the trail early to avoid the crowds. I also ensure that my porter team arrives into the designated campsites early so that your tent will be set up and ready for your arrival, together with a nice hot drink prepared by our team cook.
I present to you the following daily program:
Day 1 – Arrival in Tanzania
Arrival at the Kilimanjaro International Airport and meeting with my representative who will pick you up and drive you to Silver Palm Hotel for your overnight.
Day 2 – Machame Gate – Camp Machame
*Altitude change: from 1800 m to 3000 m (+1200 m)
*Distance: 11 km
*Time: 5-7 h
*Environment: Montane Forest
Transfer from the Hotel by car until the Mount Kilimanjaro National Park. We sign up at the Park’s office, at the gates of the Park. Then we get ready to start climbing. We go by a rain forest, a winding trail takes us up on a ridge until Machame Camp, our camping site for tonight.
Day 3 – Camp Machame – Camp Shira
*Altitude change: 3000 m to 3850 m (+850 m)
*Distance: 9 km
*Time: 4-6 h
We have breakfast and then start our walk, during which we leave behind the rain forest. We continue ascending, traversing a valley and going up a rocky ridge, quite steep and covered in heath. Then we turn west, to the river’s gorge. We end the day at the Camp Shira, where we have dinner and spend the night.
Day 4 – Camp Shira through Lava Tower – Camp Barranco
*Altitude change: 3850 m to 4600 m to 3950 m (+750 m)
*Distance: 12 km
*Time: 6-7 h
Today is crucial for acclimatisation, our bodies are getting prepared for the summit day. It’s an intense day and you may feel the altitude symptoms. We ascend until Lava Tower (4600m), where we have lunch and rest. Then we go down to Barranco campsite, where we will sleep. This camp is located in a beautiful valley under the Breach and the Great Barranco Wall. and the sunset here is memorable! It’s a special place to photograph.
Day 5: Camp Barranco – Camp Karanga
*Altitude change: 3950 m to 3930 m
*Distance: 7 km
*Hiking Time: 4 h
*Environment: Alpine Desert
The day begins with a fun scramble, quite short, until the top of Great Barranco Wall. Then we cross over the scree to Karange Valley (3930 m), located under the icefalls of Kersten, Heim and Decken Glaciers. We spend the night at the camp Karanga.
Day 6: Camp Karanga – Camp Barafu
*Altitude change: 3930 m to 4600 m (+670 m)
*Distance: 6 km
*Hiking Time: 3 h
*Environment: Alpine Desert
Leaving the Karanga camp behind, we reach the junction that connects with the Mweka Trail for descent. Then we continue until the Barafu Hut. This marks the completion of the Southern Circuit. From here there are views of the top from different angles. We will camp, rest and enjoy some dinner. From here we can clearly see the Kibo and Mawenzi peaks.
Day 7: Barafu Camp until the Summit – Hut Mweka
*Altitude change: 4600 m to 5895 m (+1295 m) (and down to 3100 m)
*Distance: 7 km ascent /23 km descent
*Time: 6-8 h ascent /6-7 h descent
*Environment: Stone scree, ice-capped summit / Alpine desert.
We will wake up at 11:30PM, quickly have some tea and cookies and start the hike. The destination is the summit located between the Ratzel and Rembman glaciers. Heading to the north-west, we go up through scree to Stella Point, on the rim of the crater. This is probably the most challenging portion of the hike, both physically and mentally. At the Stella Point (5732 m) we have a short stop to rest, and the sunrise here will likely be the most marvellous you have ever seen, if the weather permits. At the Uhuru Peak (5895 m), we reach the culminant point both of Mt Kilimanjaro and of Africa.
It can get really cold during the night. But it’ll be very warm at the end of the day of hiking. From the peak, we go down until the Hut Mweka campsite, via Barafu, where we have lunch. We need trekking poles for the loose gravel heading down to Camp Mweka (3100 m). Later in the day, we enjoy the last dinner on the mountains and a well-earned rest.
Day 8: Mweka Camp – Silver Palm hotel
*Altitude change: 3100 m to 1800 m
*Distance: 8 km
*Time: 3-4 h
*Environment: Montane Forest.
We go down until the Mweka Park Gate where you receive the summit certificate. At lower altitudes it may be muddy and wet. Gaiters and trekking poles will be helpful. It’s convenient to have t-shirts and shorts for this part, but keep your rain gear and warmer clothes at hand.
Of course we can combine this program with some other adventures (safari, beach stay…).
Please get in touch with me and let’s discuss about your wishes. I will be very happy to bring you up there and let you live an unforgettable experience to the summit of Africa! Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro through other routes is also possible: Rongai, Marangu or Lemosho.
Price per person
|Group of 6||1643USD|
- Guiding fee
- All meals during trip
- Transport to the start of the trip
- Transport during the trip
- Group equipment
- Permit and entrance fees
|We will meet at Kilimanjaro airport.|
|The first night you will stat in a hotel and then we will camp.|
|The price will vary based on the number of participants and the option you take, either the 6 or the 7-day ascent. - USD 1643 per person for the 6-day ascent for a group of 6 - USD 1888 per person for the 7-day ascent for a group of 6 Tips: The typical tip is $15-20 day for guides, $10-12 day for assistant guides, $10-12 day cooks, $6-10 day porter This is from the whole group, not per hiker.|