Climbing duration: Machame Route – 6 Days / 5 Nights
Machame route is probably the most beautiful route while climbing Mount Kilimanjaro. Offering a unique scene of the western breach of the mountain the route is also referred to as the “Whiskey route”. Unlike Marangu route and other route Machame is officially hiked for minimum of six day and accommodation is strictly on tents. The stunning scenic of the sunset at Shira and the great Barranco Wall are among the beauty of the route.
Provided that Machame route offers more challenges comparing to Marangu route 80% of climbers climbing Kilimanjaro Machame route make to the top of Africa. The Machame route takes you high to Lava Tower (4630m) on the day 3 and brings you down by nearly 700m for an overnight at Barranco camp (3950m). This is the secret to successful acclimatization.
Day 1: Machame Gate (1800m) – Machame camp (3000m)
In the morning 8:00 a.m after taking your breakfast at your designated hotel you will meet our guide for Mountain Kilimanjaro Machame route briefing. After briefing you will be transferred from either Moshi or Arusha town to Machame gate which takes 45 minutes to 1.30 hours with your picnic lunch. Depending on the condition of the road, it is possible to drive from the village to the Machame gate, but if not, the muddy 3 kilometers walk will take about 1 hour to complete. After registering at the gate office, you start your ascent and enter the rain forest almost immediately. On your arrival at Machame camping site your will have dinner and overnight at the tent.
Day 2: Machame camp (3000m) – Shira camp (3840m)
Wake up in the morning and have your breakfast thereafter starting another day of climbing. Today the trail will take us to Shira plateau before retire in to the tent in Shira campsite. A gradient of about two hours in moorland zone before lunch stop and continue up into a rocky ridge of Shira plateau, at this point you will be on the position of sighting well the western breach of the Kilimanjaro with full of ice. Dinner and overnight at the Shira camp on your arrival.
Day 3: Shira (at 3840m) to Lava Tower (at 4630m) to Barranco camp (at 3950m)
In the morning after breakfast at Shira camp the trek proceed to the east into semi desert and rocky landscape. A little bit of a challenge will arise on attempting the Lava Tower which will bring you to an altitude of 4630m after around 4-5 hours of walking. At a course of a day you will have your picnic lunch before descending by almost 700m to the Barranco campsite for dinner and overnight.
Day 4: Barranco camp (3950m) – Barafu camp (4600m)
In the morning after taking your breakfast you will spend the day trekking Kilimanjaro with different superb views heading to Karanga valley then join with Mweka route which is commonly reserved for descending. Another hour will take you to the last water point and reach Barafu camp.
The summit is now a further 1345 m up and you will make the final ascent the same night. To prevent freezing it will be wise to carry your water in a thermal flask. Go to bed at round about 1900 hours and try to get some precious rest and sleep.
Day 5: (Summit attempt) Barafu camp (4600m) – Uhuru Peak (5895m) – Mweka (3100m)
In the mid night around 00:30 hours you will be awaken by our Kilimanjaro Mountain guides for the preparation of equipments and having a cup of coffee/chocolate/tea with snacks before starting trekking to the summit of Africa. The trek will take you towards Stella Point on the crater rim.
This 6-hour walks to Stella point is for many climbers, mentally and physically the most challenging on the route. At Stella Point (5685m) you will stop for a short rest. Do not stop here for too long, as it will be extremely difficult to start again due to cold and tiredness. Enjoy your accomplishment of summit at Uhuru Peak (5895 m) and a day to remember for the rest of your life. The walk back to Barafu from the summit, takes about 3 hours earn short rest before heading down to Mweka hut (3100m). Dinner and overnight at the Mweka camp.
Day 6: Mweka camp (3100m) – Mweka Gate (1650m)
In the morning after breakfast the trail will take us more down to the Mweka gate at 1980m at Mweka gate you sign your name and details in a register. Commonly at the park gate successful climbers receive their summit certificates. Those climbers who reached Stella Point (5685m) are issued with green certificates and those who reached Uhuru Peak (5895m) receive gold certificates.
From the Mweka Gate you will continue down into the Mweka village, normally a muddy 3 km (1 hour) hike. In the Mweka village you will be served a delicious hot buffer lunch. After hot lunch you will be transferred to Moshi or Arusha town for a rest and hot shower at the hotel or lodge.