• Date
    22 Jan - 03 Feb
    7 Days
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    Overview: Machame Route, Tanzania Climbing Tour

    The itinerary below (and the detailed description below the itinerary) describes the six night/seven day Kilimanjaro climb on the Machame route. This is one possible variation of this route.To shorten the below itinerary to six days you skip the night in the Karanga Valley and instead walk straight from the Barranco Huts to the Barafu Huts in one day.Theoretically you could also extend the trek to increase your summit chances, but if you can afford a longer trek then the Shira or Lemosho route are better options. They share the same scenic path for the last four days to the summit but offer real wilderness and solitude on the first couple of days. For experienced mountaineers there is also a challenging and dangerous specialist version via the Western Breach.

    (Note: altitudes and distances are approximations. Different sources will give you different numbers.)

    Starting Point: Machame Gate (1830 m/6000 ft)

    Duration: 7 Days

    Machame Route, Tanzania Climbing Tour Itinerary

    Day 1: Machame Gate (1830 m/6000 ft) - Machame Huts (3030 m/9940 ft)

    Your first day on Kilimanjaro starts with the transfer from your hotel to the village of Machame and the Machame gate. The drive from Moshi takes about 50 minutes. Whichever way you get to the gate, once you arrive you will meet your guides and porters, you need to complete the registration formalities, and then you are off... Your equipment has been distributed amongst the porters and they are already ahead of you. (If not, they'll overtake you soon.) The rainforest isn't called rainforest for nothing. This side of the mountain sees a lot of rain, and this climate zone gets 96% of all rain on Kilimanjaro!

    The first few kilometres you are following a four wheel drive track, but that soon becomes a neat, wide footpath.The forest is beautiful, a real fairytale forest, lush and deep and green, albeit misty. (That's why it's also called "cloud forest". It's always in the clouds.)It's about two and a half hours to a lunch stop in a clearing near a stream. And after lunch the same again, much through the same terrain, until you get to the Machame Huts Camp, your stop for the night.The forest has gradually opened up. If you are lucky you have clear weather and you get your first peek at the Kibo peak.

    Walking distance: 5.5 km/3.5 miles

    Walking time: 5-7 hours

    Altitude gain: 1200 m/3940 ft

    Day 2: Machame Huts - New Shira Camp (3850 m/12630 ft)

    The Machame Huts marked the altitude where the montane forest gives way to the giant heathers of the moorland zone. The vegetation has opened up and, weather permitting, you will have great views. You can see Kibo, Mt. Meru in the distance and also Machame way down below as you make your way up towards the Shira Plateau. This is also the first day that you will find the giant senecios and lobelias growing along the path.The taller vegetation has all but disappeared and the scenery is starting to look barren, more like a real mountain.Your tent tonight will definitely be "a room with a view": Kibo, the Western Breach, the Shira Cathedral, the Needle... And whether it's coincidence or not, many of the best sunset shots from Kilimanjaro seem to have been taken from here.

    Walking distance: 5.5 km/3.5 miles

    Walking time: 4-6 hours

    Altitude gain: 820 m/2690 ft

    Day 3: New Shira Camp - via Lava Tower (4640 m/15220 ft) - Barranco Huts (3985 m/13070 ft)

    Today is a long day. The first part of the day is spent climbing up towards the Lava Tower, a 100 m/300 ft volcanic plug, left over from times when Kilimanjaro was volcanic. It's a gentle slope and as you climb towards it the landscape becomes sparser still. Even the short heather disappears altogether to reveal the rocky ground of the lava ridges. Though not as steep as yesterday's, the climb is often experienced as more strenuous. After all, you'll be climbing up to over 4500 m and your body will sure notice the the lack of oxygen! After a much deserved lunch break near the Lava Tower you descend into the beautiful Barranco Valley, the result of a massive landslide some 100,000 years ago. The valley is sheltered by towering cliffs and is much greener. The senecios and lobelias are back. You have great views across the plains way below and you also get your first glimpse of the Barranco Wall. You will climb it tomorrow.Whether climbers reached the Barranco Camp via Machame, Shira, Lemosho, or even on a special route around the northern circuit, from this point onwards all climbers follow the same trail...

    Walking distance: 10 km/6.2 miles

    Walking time: 5-7 hours

    Altitude gain: 135 m/440 ft (790 m/2590 ft to Lava Tower)

    Day 4: Barranco Huts - Karanga Camp (4040 m/13255 ft)

    Today, first thing in the morning, you will tackle the Barranco Wall. There are stories about the Barranco Wall "requiring significant climbing experience", being "almost impossible" or "perilously dangerous". That's not true I find.The wall takes about an hour and a half to scale, and as you come over the final ridge you are met with a breathtaking view of Kibo, which all of a sudden looks a lot closer! You'll have a short break to enjoy the stunning views, and then it's down again on a much gentler slope. From here it's another couple of hours over volcanic scree and through several small, sheltered valleys until you reach the Karanga Valley Camp. The narrow and steep Karanga Valley is a green oasis, albeit a cold, windy one. The camp is on the other side of the valley (another climb...) and you can spend the afternoon resting, exploring, or chasing that perfect picture of one of the iridescent, malachite sunbirds that live here.

    Walking distance: 5.5 km/3.5 miles

    Walking time: 4-5 hours

    Altitude gain: 55 m/185 ft

    Day 5: Karanga Camp - Barafu Huts (4680 m/15360 ft)

    The walk today is short. You leave the Karanga Valley on an easy but steep path, through an increasinlgy inhospitable landscape, with the Southern Glaciers looming to your left. The path keeps getting steeper until you reach the Barafu Camp for lunch. This is the benefit of having the extra night at Karanga in your schedule. You have plenty of time to eat, rest and recover, prepare everything for the summit attempt, maybe even go on a short acclimatisation walk, eat some more, and then have an early night. Tonight is the night. Barafu Camp has an otherworldy feel to it, perched on an exposed ridge in a bleak and barren landscape. Do familiarise yourself with the area before the sun goes down! It is quite possible to simply step of the edge if you have to stumble around in the dark to find the toilet....

    Walking distance: 3.5 km/ 2.2 miles

    Walking time: 4-5 hours

    Altitude gain: 640 m/2105 ft

    Day 6: Summit attempt via Stella Point (5752 m/18871 ft) to Uhuru Peak (5895 m/19340 ft) and descent via Mweka Route to Millenium Camp (3820 m/12530 ft) (or to Mweka Hut)

    I hope you arrived at Barafu Camp early enough to get plenty of rest. (Climbers on shorter treks skipped the Karanga Camp and may not have.). Your day pack should be ready with everything you will need tonight: rain gear if you aren't wearing it anyway, enough water, hand warmers, balaclava... You should have fresh batteries in your head torch and camera and you should already be wearing the right clothes. Make sure everything you are wearing is bone dry! This day will likely go down in your memory as the most physically challenging day in your whole life. Likely it will also be one of the earliest starts you ever made, Your guides will wake you up some time between 11 pm and 1 pm. There will be some hot drinks and maybe some food, but mostly it's a matter of crawling out of your sleeping bag, putting on a few more layers of clothes, your boots and your head torch. Grab your day pack and off you go...

    After an initial little scramble over some small cliffs to get out of the Barafu Camp, the path becomes easier to follow. But it doesn't take long and you reach a sharp turn to the left. And then it starts, the endless succession of switchbacks, snaking back and forth, back and forth, up the steep slope of loose, volcanic scree that is the side of Kibo Peak.As steep as the slope is, due to the many switchbacks the path itself isn't all that bad. However, the scree is lose and you keep sliding down, and nothing's easy without oxygen. The air is incredibly thin, getting thinner all the time.You may feel horrible. Don't push yourself too hard. Take all the time you need and for goodness sake don't let anyone pressure you into moving faster than you feel comfortable to. Steady, steady, one tiny little step after the other.

    Walking distance: 5 km/3 miles ascent + 10 km/6.2 miles descent

    Walking time: 5-6 hrs + 1-2 hours up, 5-6 hours down (the overall walking time may vary from 10 - 16 hours)

    Descent: 2075 m/6810 ft

    Altitude gain: 1072 m/ 3511 ft (Stella Point) or 1215 m/3980 ft (Uhuru Peak)

    Day 7: Millenium Camp - Machame Gate

    After beakfast you set off, down, down, down again. It's your last day on the mountain and you may have trouble getting enthusiastic about your surrounds.What you will probably notice more is the fact that the path is rather steep, and that the steps on the steepest sections are hell for your abused knees.The day takes you through some really pretty forest with lots of birdlife. Try to muster some interest. It may distract from the pain.Once you get to the gate you'll have to endure some more formalities, but eventually you will say good bye to your guides (a sad and emotional moment), climb into the vehicle waiting for you and be whisked away to your hotel for hot showers and cold beers.

    Walking distance: 20 km/12.5 miles

    Walking time: 5 hours

    Descent: 1990 m/6530 ft


    1 7800 Single
    2 9800 1 Double
    3 11800 1 Triple
    4 13800 2 Double
    5 15800 1 Double & 1 Triple
    6 17800 3 Double or 2 Triple


    1 6800 Single
    2 8800 1 Double
    3 10800 1 Triple
    4 12800 2 Double
    5 14800 1 Double & 1 Triple
    6 16800 3 Double or 2 Triple


    1 6800 Single
    2 8800 1 Double
    3 10800 1 Triple
    4 12800 2 Double
    5 14800 1 Double & 1 Triple
    6 16800 3 Double or 2 Triple
    • Park fees, camping fees & rescue fees
    • 18% VAT on tour fees & services
    • Accommodation in wooden cabins on the mountain
    • -29C Extreme Limit Sleeping Bags
    • Double layered Sleeping Mats
    • Transportation to & from the mountain gate
    • Professional mountain guides, cooks and porters
    • 3 meals daily while on the mountain>
    • Katadyn filtered water throughout the trek
    • Pre & Post Trek accommodation at the Weru Weru River Lodge (or alternative) on Bed & Breakfast Basis
    • Fair wages for the mountain crew as approved by the Kilimanjaro Association of Tour Operators (KIATO)
    • 10% discount on meals at selected restaurants in Moshi Town
    • Tree donation in support of our environmental conservation projects
    • 2- way shared airport transfers (for private transfers it costs $20 extra per vehicle.
    Not Include
    • Tips
    • Laundry Services & Items of personal nature
    • Add-on tours & activities

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