Africa > Tanzania > Moshi

8-Day Kilimanjaro Adventure (6-Day Climbing) - Umbwe Route

Tour code: 092-1015
From USD $1093
  • Available: Daily
  • Depart from: Moshi, Tanzania
  • Duration: 8 Days 7 Nights

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Takes you to Kilimanjaro's true summit, Uhuru Peak and you can start your trek any day of the year! This Umbwe is a steep, spectacular, and direct route to reach Uhuru Peak. You can add an extra day to your itinerary to explore or relax along the route.

Tour Itinerary

    Note: Mount Kilimanjaro is located three degrees south of the equator in Northeastern Tanzania. It is the tallest mountain in Africa and is the highest free-standing mountain in the world. Of the famous highest seven peaks in the world, this is the easiest to get to and the easiest to climb. It requires no technical climbing experience, and any moderately fit person can summit the mountain.


    6 days trekking from Moshi; 4 and a half days ascending, 1 and a half days descending


    81 km/50 mi total; 43 km/27 mi to summit; 38 km/24 mi descent from summit


    4,095 m/13,435 ft net gain; 3,915 m/12,845 ft descent Umbwe Gate (1,800 m/5,905 ft) to Uhuru Peak (5,895 m/19,340 ft) and descent to Mweka Gate (1,980 m/6,500 ft)


    This Umbwe is the most spectacular and direct way to reach Uhuru Peak. This route became famous when it was featured in the dramatic IMAX film Kilimanjaro - To the Roof of Africa. On the Umbwe, you pass through strange landscapes as you climb through five climate zones ranging from rainforest to the summitís glaciers. The route follows a forested ridge to the moorlands, then traverses below the southern icefields to reach the Machame Route, which you follow to the summit. This steep, tough, and in places slightly exposed trek is suitable for a fit individual used to walking in mountain areas. Because of the routeís steepness, it is seldom used, and trekking poles are useful on the steep, slippery slopes in the rainforest. All your equipment and supplies are carried by porters and a cook prepares all your meals. Unlike the Marangu Route where you sleep in huts, on the Umbwe you sleep in tents (tents are included), and the porters will pitch your tent for you. Meals are served in a dinner tent or on a blanket outside. You can add an extra day to your itinerary to explore or relax along the route (best taken at the Barranco Camp).

    If you arrive at the Kilimanjaro Airport, you will be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel in Moshi or Arusha (airport transfer is not inclueded in the tour fare, $20/person/way from JRO, $50/person/way from DAR). We recommend at least one rest day before starting your trek. If you are transferring from Nairobi, this can act as your rest day.

    Your guide will provide a briefing the evening before your trek, and you must separate one bag for the trek from your other luggage. Rental equipment is available. Extra luggage can be stored in a locked storage room at your Moshi hotel at no charge.

    The next morning, enjoy a hearty breakfast before last-minute trip preparations at the trekking office. Depending on the route you take, the drive to the trailhead can take up to one hour and can be very bumpy.

    Once you reach the park gate, climbers are requested to make their final preparations for the climb and sign the national park registration book. Porters will be seen arranging their packs containing the food, water, and other equipment. Make sure that you have all your day pack items with you as the porters travel very quickly. Your guide will be pleased to assist with any additional information.

    The average hiking day begins between 8-9am and is about 5 to 6 hours, walking very, very slowly. The distances you will hike each day are very moderate so as to acclimate a little at a time. Your guides will repeat over and over, "pole pole" (po-ly, po-ly), which means "go slowly" in Swahili.

    The terrain lower down is absolutely gorgeous and fascinating. Higher up, the views are vast. There is little to do at the camps themselves, so take advantage of the slow pace to absorb the scenery and take every photo opportunity.

    The hike to the summit starts around midnight depending on your route and speed of your group. You will go as high as you feel fit. Some people stop at the crater rim, and others continue to the very highest point on the mountain. Your guides will then take you down as quickly as possible to minimize any altitude problems. You will continue past your last campsite to the next one for overnight.

  • Day 1
  • Day 2
    Moshi - Umbwe Gate - Umbwe Camp
  • Day 3
    Umbwe Camp - Barranco Camp
  • Day 4
    Barranco Camp - Karanga Camp
  • Day 5
    Karanga Camp - Barafu Camp
  • Day 6
    Barafu Camp - Uhuru Peak - Mweka Camp
  • Day 7
    Mweka Camp - Mweka Gate - Moshi
  • Day 8
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(incl. tax and fees)

Day 1 Moshi

Today guests will arrive, be met at the airport, and transferred to their hotel in Moshi for an overnight stay.

Day 2 Moshi - Umbwe Gate - Umbwe Camp

Today guests will begin their day early with a briefing, followed by breakfast and an hour drive from Moshi to Umbwe Village, where the guides and porters will pack our equipment and supplies, and provide us with a lunch pack. We will start their ascent at the small Umbwe Gate just above the village and follow a gentle winding vehicle track for an hour to a signboard that announces the small steep Umbwe trail. Next, guests will climb up for several hours through a dense forest of rubber trees and giant fig trees. We will overnight at the Umbwe Camp and enjoy a hot meal in the evening.

Day 3 Umbwe Camp - Barranco Camp

We will begin our day with breakfast and then begin a steep climb through thinning forest glades. As we climb further up the ridge, we will be able to catch a view of the Uhuru Peak looming overhead. After lunch, we will hike into a zone of giant groundsels (also known as Senecio Kilimanjaro): one of Kilimanjaro's most unique garden treasures. We will arrive and overnight at Barranco Camp.

Day 4 Barranco Camp - Karanga Camp

After breakfast, we will continue up a steep ridge to the great Barranco Wall and arrive just below the Heim Glacier. From here we can truly appreciate Kilimanjaro's natural beauty. With Kibo's Glaciers soaring overhead, we will descend into the lush Karanga Valley Campsite. From the camp, we can look east and see the jagged peaks of Mawenzi jutting into the African sky. After a hot lunch at camp, we will have free-time to rest or explore the surrounding area. After two long days hiking, this short day is very important for acclimatization, since we will embark on summit push the following day.

Optional: Extra Day
Guests can add an extra day to their trek by staying at Barranco Camp for two nights. Guests will hike to the Karanga Valley Camp on Day 5, the Barafu Camp on Day 6, the summit on Day 7, and finish the descent on Day 8. Adding this day will ease effort, and amplify your acclimatization.

Day 5 Karanga Camp - Barafu Camp

In the morning, we will hike east over intervening ridges and valleys to join the Mweka Route, which will be the descent route. After hiking up the ridge through a sparse landscape for another hour, we will receive a hot lunch at the Barafu Hut. The last water on the route is in the Karanga Valley; there is no water at Barafu Camp, even though Barafu is the Swahili word for "ice." The famous snows of Kilimanjaro are far above Barafu Camp near the summit of the mountain. We will pitch a tent on a narrow, stony, wind-swept ridge.

**It is essential that guests familiarize themselves with the terrain before dark to avoid accidents. Additionally, guests should prepare equipment and wear warm clothing for the summit climb, and drink plenty of fluids.

After an early dinner, we will have the chance to relax and enjoy a few hours of precious sleep.

Day 6 Barafu Camp - Uhuru Peak - Mweka Camp

After a breakfast of tea and biscuits, we will begin the 6-hour climb to the summit at approximately 11:30 p.m. Heading northwest, through heavy scree between the Rebmann and Ratzel Glaciers, we will arrive at the most challenging portion of the route at Stella Point. Here, we will stop for a short rest and a chance to see a breathtaking sunrise. From Stella Point, we journey to the top of Marangu Route to Uhuru Peak. At the top of the summit, we can take in the surrounding scenery, and enjoy a deep sense of satisfaction and personal accomplishing from the mountain tops.

After the 3-hour descent from the summit back to Barafu Camp, we will take a short rest and collect our gear before hiking into the forest to Mweka Camp. Located in the upper forest, we can expect mist or rainfall in the late afternoon. Dinner and washing water will be prepared and we can purchase drinking water, soft drinks, chocolate and beer at the camp office. We will spend the night at Mweka Camp.

Day 7 Mweka Camp - Mweka Gate - Moshi

After a well-deserved breakfast, we will take a 3-hour hike back to the Mweka Gate. Here we will have an opportunity to sign their name and add details to the park register, and successful climbers will receive summit certificates. Climbers who reached Stella Point will be issued green certificates and those who reached Uhuru Peak will receive gold certificates. From the Mweka Gate, we will continue down to the Mweka Village (if the road is deemed too muddy for vehicles, we will be required to hike 1-hour to Mweka Village). Here, we can enjoy a hot lunch. Finally, we will be driven back to their hotel in Moshi where we can enjoy an overdue hot shower and comfortable accommodations for the evening.

Note: Guests are encouraged to wait until all of their gear has arrived at the Mweka Gate before tipping park staff.

Day 8 Moshi

Today guests will depart from Moshi. Please see "Departure and Return" for more detailed information regarding pickup and drop-off times and locations.





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