Machame Route

6 Days Climbing Machame Route

For those who only have six days to climb Kilimanjaro, the Machame route is the best choice because of its acclimatization profile. Compared to other six-day routes, the Machame route exposes the climber to higher elevations quicker (day three) which kickstarts the body's adaptation to altitude. However, this route requires that a person is in good shape to be able to tackle the challenging elevation gains and losses.

Arrival Day: Pre-trek Briefing

If you have opted for the optional airport transfers, we will pick you up from Kilimanjaro Airport or Arusha Airport and transfer you to your hotel in Arusha or Moshi.

Pre-trek briefing at your hotel. You should be planning to arrive at least one day before the start of the trek. Today we will spend in having a pre-trek briefing. We will also review your equipment and rent any equipment which is needed.

Day 1: Hotel to Machame Camp

Drive from Moshi to Machame Gate takes about 45 minutes. The journey passes through the village of Machame which is located on the lower slopes of the mountain.

We depart the park gate and walk through the rain forest on a winding trail up a ridge. At lower elevations, the trail can be muddy and slippery. Gaiters and trekking poles are a good idea here. We continue a short distance until we reach the Machame Camp.

Elevation: 1830m/6000ft to 3050m/9950ft
Distance: 11km/7mi
Hiking Time: 5-6 hours
Habitat: Montane Forest
Meals: Lunch and Dinner

Day 2: Machame Camp to Shira Camp

After breakfast we leave the glades of the rain forest and continue on an ascending path, crossing the valley along a steep rocky ridge. The route now turns west onto a river gorge until we arrive at the Shira campsite.

Elevation: 3050m/9950ft to 3850m/12,600ft
Distance: 5km/3mi
Walking Time: 4-5 hours
Habitat: Moorland
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner

Day 3: Shira Camp to Lava Tower to Barranco Camp

From the Shira Plateau, we continue to the east up a ridge, passing the junction towards the peak of Kibo. As we continue, our direction changes to the South East towards the Lava Tower, called the “Shark’s Tooth” (elev 4650m/15,250ft). Shortly after the tower we come to the second junction which goes to the Arrow Glacier. We now continue down to the Barranco Camp. Although you end the day around the same elevation as when you began, this day is very important for acclimatization and will help your body prepare for summit day.

Elevation: 3850m/12,600ft to 4000m/13,000ft
Distance: 10km/6mi
Walking Time: 5-6 hours
Habitat: Semi-desert
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner

Day 4: Barranco Camp to Barafu Camp

After breakfast, we leave Barranco and continue on a steep ridge up the Barranco Wall (elev 4250m/13,900ft), through the Karanga Valley (elev 4050m/13,250ft) to the junction which connects with the Mweka Trail. We continue up to the Barafu Camp. You have completed the South Circuit, which offers views of the summit from many different angles. Here we make camp with views of the summit in the distance.

Elevation: 4000m/13,000ft to 4700m/15,350ft
Distance: 9km/6mi
Hiking Time: 6-8 hours
Habitat: Alpine Desert
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner

Day 5: Barafu Camp to Summit to Mweka Camp

Very early in the morning (midnight to 2 am), we continue our way to the summit between the Rebmann and Ratzel glaciers. You head in a northwesterly direction and ascend through heavy scree towards Stella Point on the crater rim. This is the most mentally and physically challenging portion of the trek. At Stella Point you will stop for a short rest and will be rewarded with the most magnificent sunrise you are ever likely to see. Faster hikers may view the sunrise from the summit.

From Stella Point, you may encounter snow all the way on your 1-hour ascent to the summit. Once at Uhuru Peak you have reached the highest point on Mount Kilimanjaro and the continent of Africa!

From the summit we begin our descent by continuing straight down to the Mweka Camp, stopping at Barafu for lunch. You may want gaiters and trekking poles for the loose gravel going down. We arrive at Mweka Camp and enjoy our last evening on the mountain.

Elevation: 4700m/15,350ft to 5895m/19,340ft
Down to 3090m/10,150ft
Distance: 5km/3mi up / 13km/8mi down
Hiking Time: 5-7 hours up / 5-6 hours down
Habitat: Stone scree and ice-capped summit
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner

Day 6: Mweka Camp to Mweka Gate to Hotel

After breakfast, we continue the descent down to the Mweka Park Gate to receive your summit certificates. At lower elevations, it can be wet and muddy. Gaiters and trekking poles will help. Shorts and t-shirts will probably be plenty to wear (keep rain gear and warmer clothing handy).

Nyange Car Hire and Tours vehicle will be waiting for you at Mweka gate to drive you back to your hotel in Moshi or Arusha (around 60 minutes).

Elevation: 3090m/10,150ft to 1680m/5500ft
Distance: 10km/6mi
Hiking Time: 3-4 hours
Habitat: Forest
Meals: Breakfast

Inclusions

  • All transfers to the mountain and back to your
  • Professional, experienced, mountain guides
  • Guides, Porters, Cook salaries and park fees
  • Quality, waterproof, four-season mountain sleeping tents (on twin sharing basis)
  • Sleeping Mattress
  • Emergency Oxygen Cylinder
  • All meals while on the Mountain
  • Quality Mess tents with table and chairs
  • Large portions of fresh, healthy, nutritious food
  • Clean, purified drinking water
  • Conservation fees
  • Camping or Hut fees
  • Rescue fees (part of park fees)
  • VAT (18% charged by the Government)
  • Kilimanjaro summit certificate

Exclusions

  • Tanzania Visa
  • International and domestic flights
  • Hotel (available as an optional add-on)
  • Personal trekking equipment such as sleepings bags, hiking boots, clothes, etc (available for renting)
  • Tips and gratuities
  • Travel insurance
  • Personal Expenses (e.g. laundry, telephone, beverages, etc.)
  • Meals not listed in the itinerary
  • Liquors, beers and bottled beverages
  • Surcharge for online payment of advance and balance

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