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 - Machame
We will begin their day early with a briefing, followed by breakfast, and a 50-minute drive from Moshi to the Machame Village where guides and porters will prepare and pack equipment and supplies. We will receive a lunch pack, and we can also purchase mineral water in the village. If the road is very muddy, it may be impossible to drive from the village to the Machame Gate, in which case we will hike an hour to the gate. After registering at the park office, we will start our ascent and enter the rain forest. Heavy rains often transform the trail into a soggy, slippery experience, so good foot gear, trekking poles, and gaiters are recommended. We will enjoy a lunch stop halfway up and will reach the Machame Camp in the late afternoon. Porters will arrive at camp before guests to erect tents. In the evening, porters will boil drinking and washing water while the cook prepares dinner.
Note: Night temperatures can drop to freezing at the Machame Camp so plan accordingly.
Day 3 Machame Camp - Shira Camp
Today we will wake early at Machame Camp, eat breakfast, and hike for an hour to the top of the forest, then hike 2 hours through a gentle moorland. After a short lunch and rest, we will continue up a rocky ridge onto the Shira Plateau where you will be able to see Kilimanjaro's great Western Breach with its stunning glaciers. After a short hike west, we will reach the Shira Camp. The porters will boil drinking and washing water before serving dinner. The night at this exposed camp will be colder, with temperatures dropping below freezing.
Day 4 Shira Camp - Lava Tower - Barranco Camp
After breakfast, we will hike east up a steepening path above the highest vegetation toward Kilimanjaro. After several hours, we will reach the prominent landmark called Lava Tower. After a lunch stop near Lava Tower, we will descend for 2 hours to the lower cliffs of the Western Breach and Breach Wall, before arriving at Barranco Camp where we will eat dinner and spend the night.
Day 5 Barranco Camp - Barafu Camp
Today we will begin their hike from Barranco Camp to just below the Heim Glacier where we can admire just how beautiful Kilimanjaro really is. Next, we will begin their descent about an hour to 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." 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.