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TanzaniaHike the Kilimanjaro Machame route

  • Adventure
Machame Route is after Marangu Route, the most popular route to reach the Uhuru Peak. We love to call it also the Whiskey Route, as you might need some power in between. Your journey starts at Machame Gate at a height of 1790 m and leads you via Machame, Shira and Barranco Camp via Barranco Wall up to Karanga Camp. Here we plan one acclimatization day for you, so your body gets used to the height,...

Machame Route is after Marangu Route, the most popular route to reach the Uhuru Peak. We love to call it also the Whiskey Route, as you might need some power in between. Your journey starts at Machame Gate at a height of 1790 m and leads you via Machame, Shira and Barranco Camp via Barranco Wall up to Karanga Camp. Here we plan one acclimatization day for you, so your body gets used to the height, before you are starting to reach Barafu Camp, the last camp before the summit. The Highlight of course is reaching the Uhuru Peak at the time of sunrise and enjoy a short view. After that you are descending the mountain back to Mweka Gate.


So don’t forget to pack the Whiskey and get your journey starting to Uhuru Peak!

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Trip highlights
  • Walking and trekking
    Walking and trekking
  • Nature observation
    Nature observation
  • Nature escape
    Nature escape
  • Mountain
    Mountain
  • Local culture
    Local culture

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Day 1: Kilimanjaro Airport - Arusha

Arrival at Kilimanjaro Airport. Get your visa, get your luggage and go through customs. Our driver will wait for you there and bring you to Machame. The transfer takes about 1 hour. In the afternoon briefing for the Kilimanjaro climb. 

Visited:
Kilimanjaro International Airport, Arusha
Accommodation
Kaliwa Lodge (Kilimanjaro)

Day 2: Start of Machame Route at Machame Gate (1790m) – Machame Camp (3010m)

Ascent in the rainforest zone. Walking time: 6-7 hours for 9 kilometers with an altitude difference of 1220m.


On the first day of your Kilimanjaro climb you will be picked up after breakfast from your hotel and transferred to Machame Gate. From Arusha, the journey takes about 2 hours. On the way you get a first glimpse of Tanzanian life. Just after the village Weru Weru you leave the main road and make your way on a small mountain road, past banana plantations to the gate. There all the paperwork is done and your luggage will be distributed to the porters. Once registered in the official book of TANAPA you can finally start climbing. You will walk the first meters on the way to the first camp on a well-developed forest road. The rain forest is responsible for the wet and humid climate. Right and left of the road you will find the Kilimanjaro Bright red giant ferns and impatiens. On the way enjoy your picnic lunch. Strengthened you will continue your way after lunch. The path gets narrower and steeper winding through the jungle, past the gargantuan trees and ferns. After another hour, the landscape is slowly changing. You enter the moorland zone. After 6 hours of climbing to reach the Machame Camp at an altitude of 3010m. The porters have already built your tent and welcome you with tea and biscuits. After resting, get a briefing for the next day and enjoy a tasty dinner. With luck, you will experience a beautiful sunset and see the first snow-capped peak of Kibo.

Visited:
Machame

Day 3: Machame Camp (3010m) - Shira Camp (3845m)

Ascent in heath - moorland. Walking time: 4-6 hours for 7 kilometers with an altitude difference of 835m.


On this day you have only a short stage. Wake up with the first rays of sun to start your day with a good breakfast.


Enjoy an incredible view of the summit of Kilimanjaro and start to walk towards Shira Camp. The route begins in the moorland zone. At an altitude of 3200 meters large rock formations obstruct the now only 50 cm wide path. After passing those rocks you will be rewarded with a magnificent view over the Machame Camp and down to Machame Village. The air is already much thinner and the lunch break is held at an altitude of 3400 meters. After lunch you have the most difficult part of today's stage. The vegetation is decreasing and the black lava sand is increasing. Again and again, it goes up and down, past the small mountain streams to rocky walls and deep ravines. At an altitude of 3700 meters, the landscape changes again. The Shira Camp is situated at an altitude of 3845 meters in the middle of the Shira Plateau. If you are still fit, ask your guide to go with you to the Shira Cathedral and the Needle and the Shira-Hill. The view of Mount Meru, among other things is more than worthwhile. The rest of the evening is as the previous day.

Visited:
MachameShira

Day 4: Shira Camp (3845m) – Barranco Camp (3960m)

Ascend in Moorland / alpine desert
Walking time: about 6-7 hours for 10 kilometers with an altitude difference of 700m up and 600m down.


Use this day for acclimatization. During the ascend and descent past the LavaTower you do a total of about 1300 meters, but you will only sleep 100 meters higher than the previous day.


After breakfast you start your 3rd stage. First trek south of the Shira / Lemosho route. The path runs through a black lava desert past millions of heavy rocks. Some of them remind us of cairns. The route is well passable. On Lavatower at an altitude of 4430 meters you have reached your altitude goal for today. It is very quiet up here, so you can hear your own heartbeat and the wind in your ears. During the lunch break you can glimpse the snowline above the Lavatower and the temperatures are very close to freezing point. After lunch break move on to Barranco Valley. The path runs along the mountain range over the Kibo Circuit. 


Slowly the stonedesert disappears and along the way you find again the typical giants cross herbs, as well as heath and moorland. After about 7 hours you reach your destination.


From the Barranco Camp you can see the Great Barranco Wall, the Western Breach of Kibo, the window and the south glacier. In the evening sun occurres a wonderful play of colors. The evening is similar to the evening of yesterday.

Visited:
Shira, Barranco

Day 5: Barranco Camp (3960m) – Karanga Camp (4250m)

Ascend in the Alpine desert. Walking time: 3-4 hours for 6 kilometers with an altitude difference of 290m.


After breakfast the first big challenge is waiting for you. You have to climb over the Great Barranco Wall. Therefore it is a good idea to start early to avoid a traffic jam at the wall. You will need about 1 to 1,5 hours to climb the Great Barranco Wall. Behind the wall a barren and rocky plateau is waiting for you. Enjoy the breathtaking views of Kibo and the three southern glaciers. The path then continues on gravel and sand through the rocky moors. Again and again you will pass streams, pastures and giant stone cross herbs. After 2-3hours you reach the Karanga Camp at an altitude of 4250 meters. As you climb up hill after hill, you have a good outlook at the upcoming route. At the camp enjoy your lunch. Use the rest of the day to rest.


If you have chosen to climb Kilimanjaro in 6 days you will go directly to Barafu Camp (Days 5 and 6 are in one day).

Visited:
BarrancoKaranga

Day 6: Karanga Camp (4250m) – Barafu Camp (4640m)

Ascend in the Alpine desert. Walking time: 3-4 hours for 4 miles with an altitude difference of 390m.


After breakfast start ascending to Barafu Camp (4640m). The first still existing moorland slowly disappears and the landscape becomes rocky. Stones and boulders dominate the landscape. The Barafu camp is a challenge for the entire crew. There are only a few flat areas to put the tents. The rest of the day you spend with a snack and the dinner. Then you should go to bed as early as possible to get enough sleep for the upcoming summit climb.

Visited:
Karanga, Barafu

Day 7: Summit Day: Barafu Camp (4640m) – Uhuru Peak (5895m) – Mweka Camp (3080m)

Night ascend to the summit and then descend to Mweka Camp. Time: about 14 - 16 hours for 19 kilometers with an altitude difference of 1255m up and 2815m down.


After a short night wake up at midnight and take a small snack and then start for the final part of your ascent of Mount Kilimanjaro. Together with your guide you will step into the freezing cold and silent night. Step by step the path leads steeply up and over boulders to reach the crater rim after 5-6 hours, and thus the Stella Point, at an altitude of 5740m. From here there are only 150 meters left to reach your gaol. Accompanied by the first rays of the day you pass the Rebmann Glacier and move to the Hans Meyer Point. During sunrise occurs an amazing play of light across the ice formations. Soon you can see the summit sign of Mount Kilimanjaro and then you have actually done it. Congratulations you have reached the highest point of Africa. At an altitude of 5895 meters, you will be rewarded with a fabulous view of the hardships and you can proudly make the typical summit picture.


After a short break, the descent is made along the crater rim back to Stella Point and further down to the Rebmann Glacier. The descent is via the same route as the ascent back to Barafu Camp. There, a hot lunch is waiting for you. After that you will go further down to Mweka Camp. The vegetation is of increasing interest and in the late afternoon you will reach your camp. The rest of the day is to relax and gather strength.


Day 8: Descend: Mweka Camp (3080m) – Mweka-Gate (1680m)

Descend through moorland and rain forest. Walking time: 3-4 hours for 10 kilometers with an altitude difference of 1400m.

Your last day of the Kilimanjaro climb begins with a good breakfast. There is one last souvenir photo of the whole team before your way towards Mweka Gate continues. The route is a well-developed forest road and in the second half, it is mainly characterized by rain forest. After 10 kilometers you will reach the Mweka Gate. Your driver is already there waiting for you and transfers you back to your hotel. At the end of the tour your guide will present to you a more than earned certificate for your Kilimanjaro climb. Transfer back to Moshi. 

Visited:
Mweka
Accommodation
Kaliwa Lodge (Kilimanjaro)

Day 9: Departure

Transfer to the airport or bus station. We would be happy to offer you a following safari or a following trip to Zanzibar. Please don’t hesitate to ask us!

Visited:
Kilimanjaro

Kilimanjaro International AirportArushaMachameShiraBarrancoKarangaBarafuUhuru PeakMwekaKilimanjaro

Price details

This tour idea is fully customizable

The price reflects this specific itinerary and is designed to give you an idea of the budget required for this destination. Throughout the trip-planning process, our local agency will tailor your itinerary around your budget.

For 2 Adults
SeasonPrice Per Adult
Average trip price
All year round $2,810

Included in the price:

  • Accommodation
  • Breakfast
  • In-trip ground transportation
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  • Airport transfers
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Not included in the price:

  • Arrival and departure flights
  • Meals and beverages not indicated
  • Personal expenses
  • Service gratuities
  • Visa fees
  • Travel insurance
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