Day 1: Marangu Gate to Mandara Hut
After breakfast at the hotel in Arusha, your duffle bags will be loaded into our vehicle and be transferred to Marangu Gate. The drive is through a s open land savannah,maize, banana and coffee plantations to Marangu Park Gate (6,000 ft). Your guide will do some park entry formalities before you get introduced to the climbing crew team. Our climb begins as we enter the mountain rainforest on the well maintained trail. On the trail, it is possible to see black and white colobus monkeys and tree hyrax. We arrive at Mandara Camp late afternoon and have dinner and stay there overnight. Hiking time: 3-4 hours.
Day 2: Mandara Hut to Horombo Hut
After breakfast at Mandara Hut, we pack and hike for 1.5 hours to the Heath Zone. The heath zone has gorgeous colorful birds and flowers, sunbirds, and blooming protea and lobelia’s. After 3/4 of our days journey, we have lunch. At this point, you will see stunning views of Mawenzi Peak and Kibo Peak. We continue on the hike for about 2 more hours. We arrive at Horombo Hut (12,205 ft) in the late afternoon. After a long rest, we have dinner and stay overnight. Hiking time: 5-6 hours.
Day 3: Acclimatization Day at Horombo Hut
This is a leisurely day designed to help build your body and get rid of any accumulated exhaustion and get adjusted to the altitude. After breakfast, we pack and start the hike on Moorland and Heath Zones through the upper Mawenzi Route to Zebra Rocks for just 1,000 ft and have lunch. Afterwards, we we descend back to Horombo Hut for rest, dinner, and overnight sleep.
Day 4: Horombo Hut to Kibo Hut
After breakfast, we pack and start the hike through Heath and Moorland Zones. As we arrive at Maua River marsh areas, you will see gorgeous giant groundsels. We continue with the hike at Moorland Zone passing the last water and enter the Alpine Desert Zone at the saddle between Kibo Peak and Mawenzi Peak for lunch and rest. After lunch, we do 2 more hours of hiking along the exposed desert as we arrive at Kibo Hut ( 15, 430 ft). Before dinner, there is a briefing about how to dress for the next day while summiting. Afterwards, we have an early dinner and stay overnight.
Day 5: Kibo Hut to Summit to Horombo Hut
At midnight, you are woken up, have a light breakfast, and start the final push to the Summit. You must dress warmly to protect yourself from wind and rain from head to toe as you go through the harsh weather of the Summit in the frozen Tundra Zone. You will need to use your headlamp. The trail switches back and forth as it zigzags on our route up on gravel stones. The temperature will plummet to freezing (0 or below 0 degrees Fahrenheit) on this steep and strenuous climb. We go at a slow but steady pace with many stops to drink water. We arrive at Gillman’s Point (18,600 ft) by dawn when the sunrise appears to the East. Climbers feeling strong enough and less affected by altitude symptoms can continue from Gilman’s Point to the Summit which will take about 2 hours. These climbers will hike along the crater rim and arrive at Uhuru Peak ( 19, 340 ft). Uhuru means “freedom” ! Climbers will have the opportunity to take pictures and will descend along the same route to Kibo Hut for brunch and a long rest. Afterwards, we pack, get more water and descend through the saddle Alpine Desert, Moorland, and Heath Zones to Horombo Hut ( 12,205 ft). Hiking Time: 12-14 hours.
Day 6: Horombo Hut to Marangu Gate
After breakfast, we pack, tip the climbing crew team and descend through Moorland and Heath Zones to Mandara Hut ( 9,000 ft) to rest, eat lunch, and afterwards descend through mountain rainforest to arrive at Marangu Gate ( 6,000 ft). You need to register into the Kilimanjaro guest book the highest point you reached. If it is Gillman’s Point you will be awarded the green certificate. The climber’s who reached the Summit of Uhuru Peak receive the golden certificate. Your duffle bags will be loaded into our vehicles and you will be driven to your hotel in Arusha for shower, dinner and overnight or transferred to the airport for your flight back home. Hiking Time: 5-6 hours.