Routes & Itineraries

There are several routes to trek Mount Kilimanjaro; each has their own personality and offerings. Based on a variety of factors, from the season to the desired level of challenge, let’s discover the right one for you.

How To Choose A Kilimanjaro Route

When choosing a trek route for Kilimanjaro, we recommend looking at a few key factors, such as:

  • The level of authentic wilderness experience, as some routes have more than others.
  • The distance of the trek and costs for each route.
  • Success rates and best possible summit prospects for each route.
  • The length of the trip, including the possibility of more days for a safer extended acclimatisation.

Naturally, there are varying levels of these factors on each given route. We have outlined a basic summary of the Kilimanjaro routes below, so you can pick the one that feels right for you and/or your group.

The Lemosho Route

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This is our preferred route. Here’s why; the Lemosho Route is:

  • Considered the most scenic trail on Kilimanjaro, featuring panoramic vistas on various sides of the mountain.
  • One of the newer and most “unspoiled” routes. It has an ideal balance of low crowds, beautiful scenery and a high summit success rate.
  • A comparatively quiet route.

Direction-wise, this is how the route goes.

  • It approaches Mount Kilimanjaro from the west. It begins with a long drive from Moshi to Londorossi Gate.
  • From there, the first two days are spent trekking through the rainforest to Shira Ridge.
  • Then, the Lemosho route crosses the entire Shira Plateau from west to east. It’s a pleasant, relatively flat hike.
  • Crowds are low until the route joins the Machame route near Lava Tower. Then, the route traverses underneath Kilimanjaro’s Southern Ice Field on a path known as the Southern Circuit, before summiting from Barafu.
  • Descent is made via the Mweka route.

How long does it take? Jambo Kilimanjaro® offers the Lemosho Route as a seven to eight-day private climb.

(When NOT to climb: We do not recommend hiking the Lemosho route during the rainy season because its starting point is not very accessible.)

All-Inclusive Pricing

Prices begin at $2,180 per person for 6 days and vary based on the number of climbers in your group and how many days in your trek.

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The Machame Route

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The Machame Route, also known as the “Whiskey” route, is the most popular route on Kilimanjaro. This is because Machame has incredible scenic beauty.

Important to Note: Although very beautiful, the trail is considered difficult, steep and challenging. This is partially due to its shorter, more intense itinerary.

Therefore, we recommend this route for those:

  • Adventurous folks who seek a more challenging climb.
  • Who have some high altitude, hiking or backpacking experience.

Direction-wise, this is how the route goes.

  • The route approaches Mount Kilimanjaro from the south, beginning with a short drive from Moshi to Machame Gate.
  • This path leads hikers through the rainforest to Shira Plateau.
  • Here, many of Kilimanjaro’s routes converge. Then, the route turns east and traverses underneath Kilimanjaro’s Southern Ice Field on a path known as the Southern Circuit, before summiting from Barafu.
  • Descent is made via the Mweka route.

Jambo Kilimanjaro® offers the Machame Route as a six to seven-day private climb. We strongly recommend hiking the route in 7 days, allowing for more time to acclimatize.

All-Inclusive Pricing

Prices begin at $2,010 per person for 6 days and vary based on the number of climbers in your group and how many days in your trek.

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The Marangu Route

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Also known as the “Coca Cola Route”, the Marangu route is one of the most popular routes to the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro.

Here are some top reasons people choose the Marangu Route:

  • It’s the only route that can be hiked in 5 days. (Although we recommend doing it in 6. Below, we share why.)
  • With the shorter time frame, it’s also the least expensive route option.
  • It is also the only route that offers accommodation on the mountain, in A-frame huts – instead of tents. (This includes comfortable communal sleeping huts, equipped with beds and mattresses at every overnight site.)

Here’s the catch: Many people think the shorter number of days means it is an easier route. This is not true.

In fact, the 5 day Marangu route has one of the LOWEST summit success rates of all the routes up the mountain. That’s why, if you choose the Marangu route, we strongly recommend hiking the route option that’s over 6 days. This will increase your chance to reach the summit successfully.

The Marangu route utilizes the same route for the ascend and descend.

All-Inclusive Pricing

Prices begin at $1,710 per person for 5 days and vary based on the number of climbers in your group and how many days in your trek.

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The Mweka Route

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This is not a full, complete route; it may only be used as a descending route for all the western routes, including:

  • The Lemosho Route
  • The Machame Route
  • The Umbwe Route
  • The Shira Route

The Rongai Route

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The Rongai Route is most recommended for those:

  • With less backpacking experience.
  • Who want an alternative to the popular Marangu route.
  • Desire a more remote hike.
  • Climbing during the rainy season. This is because the north side receives less precipitation, and this is the only route that approaches Kilimanjaro from the north (close to the Kenyan border).

This route is growing in popularity amongst climbers but still experiences low crowds. This may be because the scenery is not as varied as the western routes. However, the Rongai Route makes up for this by passing through true wilderness areas for nearly the entire way. Because the route offers a more “unspoiled” level of wildness, this also makes the route ideal for those who seek a more authentic nature experience. (Descent is made via the Marangu route.)

Jambo Kilimanjaro® offers the Rongai Route as a six to seven-day private climb.

All-Inclusive Pricing

Prices begin at $2,100 per person for 6 days and vary based on the number of climbers in your group and how many days in your trek.

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The Shira Route

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The Shira Route is a little used trail that has one of the most fascinating areas of the mountain, the Shira Plateau.

Although beautiful, we typically do not recommend this route because of the high altitude of Shira Ridge, the starting point which is accessed by vehicle. The high altitude may mean that climbers will experience altitude related symptoms on the very first day.

That’s why we only recommend this route to climbers who are confident of their ability to acclimatize quickly. For example, it may work for hikers who are already acclimatized to 4,000 m by hiking either Mount Meru or Mount Kenya a few days before attempting Kilimanjaro.

Direction-wise:

  • The route approaches Mount Kilimanjaro from the west, beginning with a long drive from Moshi to Shira Ridge.
  • The vehicle bypasses the rainforest zone, and the hiking trail begins on Shira Ridge.
  • The Shira route crosses the entire Shira Plateau from west to east in a pleasant, relatively flat hike.
  • Then, the route traverses underneath Kilimanjaro’s Southern Ice Field on a path known as the Southern Circuit before summiting from Barafu.
  • Descent is made via the Mweka route.

Jambo Kilimanjaro® offers the Shira Route as a seven to eight-day private climb.

All-Inclusive Pricing

Prices begin at $2,090 per person for 6 days and vary based on the number of climbers in your group and how many days in your trek.

Learn More

The Umbwe Route

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The Umbwe Route has a well-deserved reputation of being the most challenging route on Mount Kilimanjaro.

This is why and the important factors to consider:

  • Due to the fast ascent to high altitude, this route does not provide the necessary stages for acclimatization. This means that the number of people on this trail is very low, but the chances of success are also low.
  • Based on this steep ascent and terrain, Umbwe is considered to be a very difficult, taxing route.
  • We recommend this route only for strong hikers who are confident in their ability to acclimatize quickly to altitude. Such strong hikers will get to see the beautiful,
    dense scenery of the initial forest path and strange, breathtaking Senecio Forest. (It’s a part of the Southern Circuit.)

Direction-wise, this is how the route goes.

  • Approaching from the south, the Umbwe route is a short, steep and direct climb.
  • After reaching Barranco Camp, the trail turns east and traverses underneath Kilimanjaro’s Southern Ice Field on a path known as the Southern Circuit before summiting from Barafu.
  • Descent is made via the Mweka route.

Jambo Kilimanjaro® offers the Umbwe Route as a six to seven-day private climb.

All-Inclusive Pricing

Prices begin at $2,010 per person for 6 days and vary based on the number of climbers in your group and how many days in your trek

Learn More

Technical Climbs for Kilimanjaro

As much as we love adventure, we must advise you: No technical climbs or adventure activities such as paragliding, cycling or skiing are allowed on Mount Kilimanjaro.

The good news: These treks offer a great deal of adventure in and of themselves already! We’re happy to share more information on these climbs; feel free to ask questions.

Contact Our Guide Team

*The all-Inclusive trek pricing and amenities are based only on the routes listed above. Prices may vary based on the number of climbers, days on your trek, and other requests customized for your journey. They do not include flights, specially chosen hotels or lodging, safari-extensions, or any other requested additions to your trip.