Our Kilimanjaro Routes
Choose the right Kilmanjaro Route for you
When hiking up Kilimanjaro you have the option of starting your ascent up seven different routes. All routes vary in the number of days you spend on the mountain and where you start and finish your climb. The main routes can be grouped according to the direction of approach and point of ascending to the crater rim.
- From the South: Machame, Western Breach and Umbwe
- From the West: Lemosho, Shira and Northern Circuit
- From the East: Marangu
- From the North: Rongai
A map showing an overview of these routes together with a summary of each of these routes is below.
Throughout the year we operate scheduled open group climbs on the four routes with the best success rates. These are the Machame, Lemosho, Northern Circuit and Rongai routes.
All the climbing routes are available as private climbs and we also operate climbs that sleep overnight in Crater Camp as an extension to the Machame, Lemosho or Northern Circuit route for private trips.
The Machame route is the most popular and therefore also one of the busiest routes on Mt. Kilimanjaro. Due to the ascent and descent over its duration – following the golden rule of ‘climb high and sleep low’ – the Machame Route offers some of the best acclimatization and the greatest summit success. The Machame Route is definitely recommended for people experiencing high altitude mountaineering for the first time. It takes you in some of the best geological features on the mountain. Descent is via Mweka Route. A minimum of 6 days is needed, but for more comfort and to increase your chance of success, 7 days are recommended.
The Rongai route offers the best chance to experience the wildlife surrounding Mt. Kilimanjaro and it is one of the quietest routes on the mountain. Over a period of 7 days, Rongai offers ample time to acclimatise. It starts on the North Eastern side of Kilimanjaro close to the border with Kenya. The route passes close to Mawenzi before joining the Marangu Route at Kibo Hut and ascending to Gilman’s point before heading for Uhuru Peak. Descent is via the Marangu Route with a night spent at Horombo Hut before heading to Marangu Gate.
The Lemosho route can run as a 7 or 8 day trek and begins to the west of Kilimanjaro in the rainforest and moorland before ascending to the Shira Plateau. While offering some of the most beautiful and famous features on Kilimanjaro including the Lava Tower and the Barranco Wall, the ascent and descent over its duration present some of the best acclimatisation opportunities and summit success. The Lemosho route joins with the Machame route and ascends Kilimanjaro via Barfu Camp and Stella Point. Descent is via Mweka Route with a camp at either Millennium or Mweka camp during the descent.
The original route to Uhuru peak. This route starts at the south east not far from Marangu village. You’ll ascend gradually upwards passing near Mawenzi peak. Then make your summit bid via Gilman’s point. Your descent is returning more or less by the exact same trail. This route has hut accommodation only and can be busy as the ascent and descent are along the same route.
The Northern route is a longer trek starting on the north east of Kilimanjaro. This is the newest trail on Kili which takes you across the northern slopes of Kibo and eventually joining the Lemosho and later the Machame trails. The route summits via Stella point and descends through Mweka. It can be done over 9 or 10 days, gives unparalleled acclimatisation and an almost complete circuit of Kilimanjaro.
Are you looking for a really unique adventure? Try sleeping on „the Roof of Africa“ in Crater Camp on Mount Kilimanjaro, at 5.730 (18,484ft) metres. It is an incredible wilderness environment and a unique place. If you have experience at altitude and love something challenging then sleeping overnight in Kilimanjaro’s Crater is a fantastic option.