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Kilimanjaro, 12-day trip with ascent via the Machame Route

Join the certified mountain guides of Alpine Ascents International during this 15 day journey to the summit of Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, followed by an optional safari experience!

Mountain RangeEast African Mountains
Duration15 days
Offer periodJan, Feb, Jun, Jul, Aug, Sep, Dec
Skill LevelIntermediate
Fitness LevelFit
Type of tripGroup

Highlights

  • Tackle one of the seven summits and fulfill a lifelong personal goal

  • Mingle with zebras, elephants, and cheetahs during an optional safari extension

  • Top rated climbing company that has been guiding on Kili for 20 years

  • Every detail of the trip is planned with care

Description

Tackle an iconic seven summit and climb one of the most famous mountains in the world during this 15 day expedition to Kilimanjaro.  After the tough high altitude adventure, you will rest and relax in the company of elephants, zebra, and hippos during an incredible safari experience!

Rising above the plains of Africa, Mt. Kilimanjaro is unrivaled in its spectacular natural beauty. This dormant volcano of 5,895m/19,341ft last erupted hundreds of thousands of years ago, was first summited by Europeans in 1889, and today is a classic of the seven summits.  Mt. Kilimanjaro is the perfect test for any aspiring climber who sets out to achieve this difficult, yet incredibly fulfilling, personal goal: to stand on the highest point of Africa.

We will follow the Machame route during the 7 day climb.  We prefer this route because there is plenty of time to acclimatize along the way.  Also, we typically try to camp at some of the less popular spots on the mountain.  During the trek, we will pass through the mountain’s 5 distinct ecosystems, and it is truly fascinating to see how the vegetation and landscape change with the altitude.  A day-by-day outline of the route is included below, so you can review the path we will take and the campsites we will use.

If you’d like to mo maximize your time while you’re already in Africa, we will head to the plains for a magical safari extension (optional) after the climb.  The safari will combine interesting cultural experiences with the unsurpassed big game wildlife of Tanzania. You will have a chance to see elephants, cheetahs, rhinos, hippos, and more as we explore Tarangire National Park, Ngorongoro Crater, and Serengeti National Park.  During the Safari, we will spend 3 nights at different Sopa Lodges. These are comfortable, clean, and modern lodges with unparalleled access to African wildlife.  This experience is available for an additional $2,000.  The safari may also be booked as a standalone trip.

The journey to the summit will be led by an experienced Western lead guide, with an incredible staff of local Africans, including several support guides. We have a great safety record guiding clients on Kilimanjaro, and prioritize safety at all times.  Additionally, we work hard bring as much comfort as we can to the mountain, with nutritious chef-prepared meals, comfortable dining tents, and private commode-toilet tents with water.  We also follow Leave No Trace principles and hire a porter solely dedicated to clean-up so that we can sure no waste remains on the mountain after we leave.

While this is not a technical climb and does not require previous mountaineering experience, a high level of physical fitness is critical to the safety and success of your climb.  It is important to keep in mind that trekking at extremely high altitudes is significantly more difficult than trekking at lower altitudes. We recommend that you train for at least 3-4 months and follow a training plan that includes cardiovascular conditioning, strength training, and mobility work, along with trekking up hills (or stairs if you are training indoors) with daypacks of up to 25 lbs. We are happy to provide a training program upon request, as well as a detailed list of gear you will need for the climb.

Book now for a special journey through one of the world’s most unique landscapes. After we push to the summit of the iconic mountain Kilimanjaro, we will experience the wonders of African wildlife firsthand during our amazing safari adventure.

Accommodation

We will spend a couple of nights at the New Arusha Hotel located in Arusha. During our climb of Mt. Kilimanjaro, we will camp at various sites on the mountain. During our Safari, we will stay at the: Tarangire Sopa Lodge, Ngorongoro Sopa Lodge, and Serengeti Sopa Lodge, which are comfortable lodges with modern amenities.

Meeting point

Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO)

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Photos


Itinerary

Day 1: International flight to Tanzania

Depart your home country for Kilimanjaro International Airport (Airport Code: JRO)

Day 2: Arrival in Tanzania

When your international flight arrives, we will meet you at the airport for your transfer to the hotel in Arusha: New Arusha Hotel.

Day 3: Orientation

We will welcome everyone to Tanzania and go over the upcoming days’ program during a detailed briefing. We then conduct gear check and, if you’re interested, will take you on a walking tour of Arusha.  We stay another night at the New Arusha Hotel.

Day 4: Machame Hut

Today the trek begins! Vehicle transfer to the trailhead at Machame Gate, where we greet our porters. Our porters come from the Chagga Tribe, an ethnic group that lives on the slopes of Kilimanjaro. We will have ample opportunity to get to know them and their unique culture and traditions during the upcoming days.

We begin our trek at an elevation of 1,830m/5,800ft. We hike through the edge of a rainforest until we reach Machame Hut (3,000m/9,900ft), where we stop for the night.

Total time: approx 6 hours

Distance: 10km/6mi

Elevation gain: 1,200m/3,900ft

Day 5: Shira Camp

We pass through a short valley and then begin to climb.  As we trek, we can observe the landscape change from health forest to moor land. We eventually reach the Shira Plateau, and not long after we arrive at Shira Camp (3,800m/12,500ft), where we spend the night.

Total time: 4-6 hours

Distance: 8km/5mi

Elevation gain: 800m/2,600ft

Day 6: Barranco Hut

Today takes us to our highest elevation yet at 14,800ft. We will enjoy incredible panoramas over the landscape below.  We then descend down to Barranco Hut (12,800ft) for the night.

Total Time: 7-9 hours

Distance: 10km/6mi

Elevation gain: 2,100ft/640m

Elevation loss: 520m/1,700ft

Day 7: Karanga River Camp

Today we have another opportunity to acclimatize as we reach an elevation of 14,500ft during our climb over the Great Barranco. From there, we descend to the Karanga River Camp for the night.  The route takes us beneath the Breach Wall, a landmark of the mountain.

Total time: 4-5 hours

Distance: 5km/3mi

Elevation gain: 400m/1,300ft

Elevation loss: 300m/1,000ft

Day 8: High Camp (Kosovo Camp)

We enter the high desert plateau with today’s ascent.  You will notice the volcanic boulders that are strewn across the path. Once we reach our high camp at Kosovo, we rest before our late night/early morning (12-2am) summit attack.

Total time: 5 hours

Distance: 5km/3mi

Elevation gain: 700m/2,300ft

Day 9: SUMMIT!

Finally, the moment for our summit attack has arrived! We hopefully feel rested for the long day ahead.

We climb in the dark of night until dawn, traversing a ridge until we reach the edge of the crater. From there, we follow the crater’s rim until we reach the summit of Uhuru Peak at a breathtaking 5,896m/19,344 ft. We take a moment to celebrate our achievement as we observe the impressive panorama that surrounds us.

We then must begin our descent.  We stop at High Camp for a quick bite, and continue to our final camp on the mountain, Millennium Camp.

Total Times – High Camp to Summit: 7-8 hours; Summit back to High Camp: 2-3 hours; High Camp to Millennium Camp: 2.5-3 hours

Distance -High camp and summit: 7km/6mi; High Camp to Millennium Camp: 5.6km/3.5mi

Elevation gain/loss: High Camp to summit: 1,080m/3,544ft; High camp to Millennium Camp: 1,028m/3,550ft

 

Day 10: Return to Arusha

We wake up early and head out by 7am. Yesterday’s achievement will really sink in as we see the impressive summit looming behind us.

We follow the Mweka route on the way down, crossing a thick jungle filled with gigantic ferns.  We enjoy a final celebration at Mweka gate, as well as a delicious hot buffet lunch.

We return to Arusha (2 hr vehicle transfer) and spend the night at the New Arusha Hotel.

Day 11: Departure

Transfer to Kilimanjaro International Airport (Airport Code: JRO) for your flight back to your home country.

Day 12: Arrive home

Arrive back home.


About the guide

guide profile img

We are one of the prime guiding agencies in the US and our mountaineering school is among the most reputed in the country. We are recognized as industry leaders all across North America.

All our expeditions are carefully planned as we believe that our work prior to the start of the trip is key to helping climbers achieve their goals. We provide a wealth of important information to help participants plan more effectively and our guides are always available to answer questions.

We believe putting together cohesive groups is key and we ask participants important details about their training and climbing or hiking experience. This is key to our safety record, which stands as the finest in the industry. Injury prevention is always our top priority.

We think of climbers as modern-day explorers. Whether attending a mountaineering course or climbing Everest, you can expect us to treat every trip as a unique exploration. We know you have joined us to embrace a challenge and to learn through experience.


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Prices per person

Group of 1

USD 5052 each

Group of 2

USD 5052 each

Group of 3

USD 5052 each

Group of 4

USD 5052 each

Group of 5

USD 5052 each

Group of 6

USD 5052 each

Group of 7

USD 5052 each

Group of 8

USD 5052 each

Want a different number of travellers?

Price includes

• Guiding fee

• Accommodation

• Transport during the trip

• Permit and entrance fees

• Group porters (transport of tents, cooking equipment, etc. for the group)

• Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Price details

• Price per person for joining a group. Group size is typically 12-15 people. Includes: Transportation in Tanzania on scheduled dates, hotel accommodations in Arusha, group equipment (tents, stoves, sleeping pads, etc), all meals (breakfast, lunch, and dinner) during the climb, porters, professional guides, park fees and permits. Not included: Airfare to and from Tanzania, entry visa to Tanzania; optional activities, any meal, transport, or accommodation outside of itinerary; bottled drinks and alcoholic beverages; any evacuation fees or any other expense in case of early departure; gratuities. Price for climb with optional safari extension: $6,900 per person.


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