Climbing to the top of Kilimanjaro is totally regarded as a lifetime achievement goal because of the following reasons.

  1. Kilimanjaro is the world most difficult and longest walkable peak which attract more than 15,000 climbers each year. Only 40% of them make it to the top
  2. The mountain has different alternative climbing routes providing broad choice to many  climbing groups and individuals
  3. The two amazing peaks, mawenzi or uhuru are fantastic. Uhuru the first highest and Mawenzi the second highest. Its highest point, Uhuru Peak, rises to an altitude of 5,895 m (19,341 ft) AMSL (Above Mean Sea Level).
  4. The mountain is a stratovolano that was formed millions years ago due to volcanicity within East Africa Great Rift Valley. While other peaks are dead, uhuru peak (the highest one) is dormant and can erupt at any time. The last eruption recorded 360,000 years ago and some recent activities recorded just 200 year ago.
  5. The mountain has seven climbing routes with different characteristics. These differences in features lead to easy climb for some climbers at the same time challenging climb for other climbers.

Kilimanjaro Climbing Routes

  1. Machame route is a good route for climbers who are interested with a challenging climb, and who are confident to trek over longer periods through steep terrain. Acclimatisation is said to be better using this route due to changes in altitude during the trek.
  2. Marangu route is good for those who are not confident to trek over sharp and rising slopes and do not want to sleep in a tent. it is also good for climbers who want to spend less time on their climb.
  3. Rongai route is the best route for Kilimanjaro climbers who are interested in gentle slopes. It is also the most direct route to the summit, unlike the western routes which tend to have undulating ridges. Some believe this is good for acclimatisation, others argue the western routes offer better acclimatisation due to the rise and fall in altitude when climbing. Rongai is still the more quieter of the eastern routes and has lovely views over Amboseil and Tsavo.
  4. Shira route is ideal for climbers who are confident to acclimatize to altitude, and to walk over steeper slopes for extended periods. It is also suitable for climbers who wish to spend more time on the mountain to acclimatise. The route joins with the Machame and Lemosho routes at Shira hut, and offers breathtaking scenic views of the mountain features and the surrounding areas.
  5. Just like shira route, Lemosho route is a longer route yet a good route for climbers who wish to acclimatise over a longer period than most other routes. The route starts on the western slopes of the mountain across the Shira plateau and meets with the Machame and Shira routes at Shira hut . Lovely views of the Kilimanjaro landscape, vegetations and wildlife.
  6. Umbwe route is ideal for experienced mountaineers since it contains consistently steep slopes. Umbwe is also suitable for experienced climbers who are used to trekking at altitudes above 4000m with ease and who are confident that the anguishing schedule of Umbwe route does not interfere with their ability to adjust to altitude. Umbwe is also good for climbers who want a private hike away from other trekkers, it is not recommended for inexperienced mountaineers.
  7. Northern Circuit Route is the newest route on Kilimanjaro. Very low traffic traverses nearly the entire mountain including the north side. Long route with great scenic views and adventures, it is made up of the Rongai ,Marangu, Machame and Shira routes combined. A very long route, the benefits of which are doubtful.

Recommended affordable climbing guides with high climbing success rate:

Kilimanjaro Lemosho Route 8 Days with Tanzania Onfoot

Machame Route 7 Days with Africa Joy Tours

5 Days Marangu route Kilimanjaro climb with Abakombe Tours

Rongai, Machame or Lemosho Route 6-7 days with Aim 4 Africa Ltd

Kilimanjaro Umbwe route 7 days  with Mremi Expeditions

For help in picking the right route for you with Real Life Adventure Travel