Kilimanjaro, the tallest mountain in Africa, rises on the Tanzania - Kenya border, well into the Eastern half of the African continent. Towering above the Tanzanian plains so close to the equator (3.04 degrees South), the snowclad mountain leads a spectacular existence on the African plains. So spectacular that well into the nineteenth century, much of mainland Europe refused to believe eyewitness accounts of its existence. In our own time, Kili (as it is affectionately called by the climbing community) is a proud member of two exclusive clubs viz. seven summits of the world (composed of the tallest mountain in each of the seven continents) and seven natural wonders of the world.
December end to March and June to beginning of October when the weather is more likely to be dry are the popular climbing season for Kilimanjaro. These months also tend to be the busiest on the mountains.
|Route||Hiking Days||What's Good||What's Not|
|Shira / Lemosho||7-9|
The Machame route (also called the Whiskey route) is extremely popular among guides and climbers alike for several reasons. For one, Machame is the amongst the most scenic routes to the top of Kilimanjaro. The route traverses the Southern and Western faces of the mountain and passes through five climatic zones including spectacular cloud forests in the lower ranges. It also offers great acclimatization opportunity, as it naturally follows the mountaineer’s caveat of walking high and sleeping low. This is perhaps one of the reasons for the relatively high success rate for this route, especially when compared to the Marangu route (also called the Coca Cola trail). Compared to Marangu, you need one or two days more on the Machame route which again improves the acclimatization and success rate on this route. You also have the option of splitting the pre-summit day climb which means you are better rested for the all important summit push. And the cherry on your summit dessert is that you will take a different path on your way down than the one on which you ascend, enabling you to savour more of Kilimanjaro. To its fault, Machame is sometimes too popular by its virtues which means it is usually a bit more crowded than other routes. Also it is usually more expensive to climb on Machame than Marangu, as the Whiskey versus Coca Cola nomenclature would suggest.
Machame vs. Marangu
Whiskey Route (6-7 days)
- Good acclimatization
- Option to split pre-sumit day
- Come down on a different route
- Fully catered camping only
Coca-Cola Route (5-6 days)
- Shortest and cheapest
- Less time to acclimatize
- Lowest success rate
- Ascend/descent on same route
- Accommodation in huts
- 2 nights hotel accommodation in Moshi (before & after climb), Breakfast at hotel
- Group transport to and from Moshi to the trailhead
- National Park fees, camping fees, and rescue fees
- Guides: Very experienced guides. Guide-client ratio 1-2
- Porters: 3-4porters per client. You carry around 10 Lbs
- Accommodation in the Mountain in good quality tents and sleeping mat
- Private toilets.
- Fresh nutritious meals, cooked and served in dinner tent with table/chairs
- Bottled oxygen, only for rescue/emergency use
- Information sessions and Trip preparation assistance provided by US based guide
- Visa Application Fee
- Lunch or dinner at hotel
- Personal gear and equipment
For the price that it charges Miyar tries to offer maximum value. Few points worth noting are:
- We deliver an end to end experience, all inclusive. This means we assume responsibility from your arrival point near Kilimanjaro (Kilimanjaro, Arusha or Moshi) till when you depart the region after hike.
- Our US based team would work with you as you prepare for your trip. We are there to answer your questions related to health, safety, packing or just about anything related to climbing.
- We use our own local operator and lead guides in Tanzania to ensure that all aspects of the climb are in line with the expectations we have set with our customers and our own uncompromising attitude towards customer experience.
- Our US based guides personally lead climbs several times in an year to ensure that all ground operations are in accordance with our expectations. Usually US based guides accompany larger groups to ensure better coordination.
- Accommodation on nights before and after the climb is included. Stella Maris Lodge is our preferred choice. Depending on availability and logistics considerations, we sometimes use an equally reputable, comfortable and convenient facility. For more details please refer the day by day itinerary.
- Accommodation are in comfortable tents on twin share basis. We use Alps Mountaineering Taurus 3 Outfitter tent in all our expeditions. They are sturdy, spacious and comfortable and are ideal for the conditions on Kilimanjaro.
- We serve great food on the trek, food that is fresh, hygienic and nutritious. We will serve you fresh fruits, veggies, chicken, meat, eggs, sausages, pancakes, juice, soups, fish, rice, pasta etc. We have logistics arrangements to get fresh supplies delivered while we are into our trek. We take care of a wide range of dietary restrictions or preferences like gluten free, lactose intolerant, vegetarian, vegan, kosher, halal etc.
- We carry private commodes / toilets for the use of our guests. Toilets provided by the Kilimanjaro Park Authority at camping sites are not exactly clean or hygienic. So this can be a big factor if such facilities put you off for the day (as is the case with most of us).
- We carry our own safety equipments including oximeters and oxygen cylinders. Hopefully they would not be used but this is an expenditure we would rather waste than avoid.
- All our local guides are carefully chosen for their Kilimanjaro experience, English speaking ability and professionalism. We ensure that all of them are Wilderness First Aid trained.
While comparing Miyar Adventures with other guide companies, please bear the above advantages in mind. We are confident that for the amount you pay, no one else would offer you as much value. Should you still have questions, do not hesitate to contact us.
We will transfer you to the Stella Maris Lodge (SML) located conveniently between Kilimanjaro Airport and Moshi. Here you would meet your fellow hikers as well your lead and local guides. There will be a pre-climb briefing for us to go through the finer details of the climb one last time. We would also use the opportunity for last minute questions, a final gear check etc. Relax, network, eat and rest well for the big expedition starts the next day.
We will have a short drive from SML to the Machame gate in the morning. Machame gate is the ‘official’ entry point to Kili on the Machame route. Permits and other formalities with the KINAPA (Kilimanjaro Administration) would be sorted out at this point. Once the formalities are finished, we will proceed on the trail. Nearly two hours into the hike we will stop for rest and lunch. Post lunch we will hike for another 150 minutes to reach our destination for the day, Machame huts. We should have a very good view of Kibo from our camp.
- Machame Gate (1811 m / 5940 ft) to Machame Hut (3021 m / 9900 ft)
- Elev gain: 1210 m / 3970 ft
- Time: 6 hours on average
- Distance: About 10 km / 6 miles
We will set out on the trail moving eastwards after breakfast. The terrain would alter significantly from the first day. We will walk nearly five miles (8 kms) today and gain about 2680 feet (818 meters). Note however that the path is undulating which means you would have some steep sections to climb, heights that you will soon relinquish. This approach would greatly improve your acclimatization. End of the (climbing) day should see you at Shira camp savoring well earned rest and refreshments.
- Machame Hut (3021 m / 9900 ft) to Shira Camp (3839 m / 12,600 ft)
- Elev gain: 818 m / 2680 ft
- Time: 6 hours on average
- Distance: About 8 km / 5 miles
We will cover about 7 miles (11 km) this day. Net altitude gained would however be a miserly 480 feet (147 m). We would go up by about 2590 feet to touch about 15200 feet above MSL at a point called the Lava tower and relinquish most of the altitude gained to settle down at the Barranco camp (13080 feet). Classic climb high, sleep low stratagem for acclimatization! By now we are well into alpine terrain. Barranco offers spectacular views all around.
- Shira Camp (3839 m / 12,600 ft) to Barranco Camp (3986 m / 13080 ft)
- Elev gain: 790 m / 2590 ft; Elev loss: 643 m / 2110 ft
- Time: 7-10 hours on average
- Distance: About 11 km / 7 miles
We have a tough scramble up the Barranco wall in the morning. And that is pretty much the hard work to be done for the day. From there it is mostly downhill and easy to Karanga camp. We should reach there in time for a slightly late lunch which would be served hot. This would be our shortest climbing day on Kili.
- Barranco Camp (3986 m / 13080 ft) to Karanga Camp (4034 m / 13230 ft)
- Elev gain: 400 m / 1300 ft; Elev loss: 350 m / 1170 ft
- Time: 4-5 hours on average
- Distance: About 5 km / 3 miles
The route from Karanga to Kosovo is barren and strewn with volcanic rocks. Views all around would continue to be great. We will stop at Barafu for lunch and a short break before proceeding up by another thousand feet to the Kosovo camp. It is a significant improvement in several ways over Barafu which is the default camp location on Machame route.
- Karanga Camp (4034 m / 13230 ft) to Kosovo Camp (4863 m / 15950 m)
- Elev gain: 830 m / 2720 ft
- Time: 5-6 hours on average
- Distance: About 5 km / 3 miles
You would wake up shortly past midnight and make a night time push for the summit. Nearly five hours of persistence would see you at Stella Point even as the day is breaking or about to. You are now on the rim of Kibo’s crater. Another hour and five hundred feet up would have your hitting the roof of Africa.
- Kosovo Camp (4863 m / 15950 m) to Uhuru Peak (5896 m / 19344 ft) Summit!!
- Elev gain: 1033 m / 3390 ft
- Time: 8-10 hours on average
- Distance: About 7 km / 4 miles
After spending time basking in the morning glory atop Kilimanjaro, we will start our descent. On our way back, we will stop over at Kosovo camp for packing our stuff, as well as lunch and rest. Seven miles (about seven hours including pit stop at Kosovo) of descent would see us at Millennium camp, where we shall spend the night.
- Uhuru Peak (5896 m / 19344 ft) to Millenium Camp (3810 m / 12500 ft)
- Elev loss: 2086 m / 6840 ft
- Time: 7-9 hours on average
- Distance: About 10 km / 6 miles
Millennium camp to Mweka gate (our exit point for Kili) should be nothing more than a saunter. We will drive back to Stella Maris for a farewell dinner. You will spend your night here.
- Millenium Camp (3810 m / 12500 ft) to Mweka Gate (1800 m / 5900 ft)
- Elev loss: 2010 m / 6600 ft
- Time: 6-7 hours on average
- Distance: About 10 km / 6 miles
Most customers prefer to club their Kilimanjaro hike with a Tanzanian Safari. Assuming you are bundling the two, we will commence our Safari today. Else we will see you off to Kilimanjaro Airport. Either way, the Kilimanjaro hike comes to an end and hopefully leaves great memories that you would cherish for a long time.
Tanzania uses square shapes power sockets (UK style) as shown. We recommend you carry a suitable adapter or use a universal power socket.
I climbed Kilimanjaro via the Machame Route with Miyar Adventures in Jan. 2016. Sandeep did a lot of hand-holding before and during the trip in terms of providing information and answering questions. He also took care of all the logistics and made everything hassle free. I was concerned about joining a big group but was relieved to find some quiet time on my own during the hike. My favorite thing about the hike was the local guides, especially Aaron and Sunday. They're very kind and supportive.
Really enjoyed the experience in Kili - staff are extremely nice. The tour guides, and even the porters, are very helpful and experienced. I feel safe throughout the trip. Would definitely recommend Miyar!
LOVED the Kili Climb! Very well organized, the food was amazing! FRESH fruits and veggies at every meal, and they even accommodated dietary restrictions!! GF, Vegan and dairy (just to name a few) in our group of 14! The morning ritual of GINGER TEA was my fav, for sure!!! Sandeep is a great team builder, the group or climbers were so amazing, helpful and cheery the entire time!!! I will climb with Miyar again! Wish you could experience this for yourself, it is a once in a lifetime experience!!!
Climbing Kili was a mind opening experience thanks to Sandeep, our group, and local guides. It's not just about breathtaking scenery, which you will experience. It's about the people. Sandeep and the people he works with are genuine, knowledgeable, wonderful people. I can't wait for my next trip with them! Love you guys!
I climbed Kilimanjaro with Sandeep, it was an amazing experience. The trip was really well arranged, and we did not need to do much planning-wise. Sandeep was super friendly and helped us train for the climb, with the visas, vaccinations. He even brought some extra "just in case" jackets for the climb - which I ended up borrowing :) The mountain guides were awesome, the food was exceptional. It was a great trip and I look forward to my next trip with Miyar
Climbed Kilimanjaro with Miyar a few months ago. It was an awesome trip. Everything was very well organized, and we didn't have to worry about a single thing. In fact Sandeep went out of his way to make things go smoothly. He was available months in advance to provide/discuss trip details and answer any questions that we had. He was also very flexible about the trip plan. And finally, he was willi...ng to organize training hikes for us as well, although that didn't work out due to the conflicting schedules of the group members. He made sure that all the group members met and got to know each other beforehand, which I think was really helpful. The trip itself (climb, safari, the group I went with) was one of the most enjoyable and fulfilling experiences of my life.
I joined Sandeep on a climb to the highest free-standing mountain in the world - Kilimanjaro in Africa not quite knowing what that meant or what was involved and gained more than what I could have ever imagined. It was a rather long climb and the last day was very tiresome for me. Sandeep continued to encourage me when I was tired and truly exhausted and felt like I could not move an inch. Thanks to that, I did end up summiting and got safely back down to basecamp. I truly appreciated how the climb was coordinated by Sandeep with the guides and porters and it was really pain free for the clients with great food and all conveniences one can expect on a mountain. The pre-planning and gear check sessions all helped me immensely and thought the price was by far the best I had observed for the services provided.
After having been part of climbs with other leaders, I think Sandeep's climbs are very accommodative to a wide set of climbers with varied skill set and preferences. I highly recommend his climbs and would definitely join on future climbs to some of the most beautiful places in the world.
Kilimanjaro was my first mountain excursion outside of the US. I was equally excited and nervous. Sandeep and Miyar Adventures set up the most phenomenal trip I could have imagined! The plan fell perfectly into place upon arrival: hotels were lovely, food was delicious and the mountain guides were marvelous. Sandeep left nothing out when coordinating all of this. He was also available for the months prior to the departure to meet and make sure we had the correct flight plans, gear and clothing, vaccinations, passports, visas and any thing else we might need. Lastly, Sandeep set up local hiking treks prior to our big trip to ensure that we are all physically ready for the trip and so that we may meet one another before the big climb. I know this is a long review, but I wish I could write even more! I felt so comfortable in the hands of Sandeep and Miyar Adventures the entire time! There is nothing that could have gone better and I will certainly be booking another trip with this company soon!