Kilimanjaro, Marangu Route – 5 Days – 5 Days
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Also known as the “Coca Cola route” – the Marangu route is one of the most popular routes leading to the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro. Many hikers believe that the Marangu route is the easiest route to Uhuru peak, since it is the only route which can be hiked in 5 days (making it the cheapest option). It is also the only route offering accommodation on the mountain, in A-frame huts. It is unfortunately a well-known fact, that the 5 day Marangu route has one of the lowest summit success rates of all the routes up mountain. If you choose the Marangu route, we strongly recommend hiking the route over 6 days, to increase your chance to reach the summit successfully. This is the only route, which provides comfortable communal sleeping huts, equipped with solar lighting, bunk beds and mattresses at every overnight site. There are also cold showers and flushing toilets at Mandara hut and Horombo hut. The Marangu route utilises the same route for the ascend and descend.

Climate

The climate is mainly influenced by the prevailing trade winds. There are two rainy seasons in a year. The wet season is from March to May during which it rains around the mountain base and snow accumulates on its peak. The dry season is from late June through September during which the nights are cool and the days completely clear.

Source : Tanapa Website

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  • Destination:Mt. Kilimanjaro
  • Duration:5 days

DAY 1 - Kilimanjaro National Park to Mandara Hut

  • Elevation: 5,500 ft / 1,700 m to 9,000 ft / 2,740 m
  • Distance: 7 km
  • Hiking Time: 4-5 hours
  • Vegetation Zone: Montane Forest

After breakfast and briefing, drive to the Kilimanjaro National Park Gate (45 minutes), register and commence the climb. Walk through the rainforest to the Mandara encampment. A side trip to Maundi Crater is a good way to see the surroundings including Northern Tanzania and Kenya. In the rainforest, look for towering Eucalyptus trees, bird life, and Colobus monkeys.

DAY 2 - Mandara Hut to Horombo Hut

    • Elevation: 9,000 ft / 2,700 m to 12,100 ft / 3,700 m
    • Distance: 11 km
    • Hiking Time: 6-8 hours
    • Vegetation Zone: Heathland

    You leave the glades of the rainforest and follow an ascending path on the open moorlands to the Horombo encampment. Views of Mawenzi and the summit of Kibo are amazing. Look for giant lobelias and grounsels. You may begin to feel the effects of the altitude.

DAY 3 - Horombo Hut to Kibo Hut

      • Elevation: 12,100 ft / 3,700 m to 15,400 ft / 4,700 m
      • Distance: 10 km
      • Hiking Time: 6-8 hours
      • Vegetation Zone: Alpine Desert

Ascending, we now pass the last watering point, walking onto the saddle of Kilimanjaro between the peaks of Kibo and Mawenzi. Vegetation begins with upper heathland but then disappears into “moonscape”. Dinner, rest, and prepare for summit climb.

DAY 4 - Kibo Hut to Summit Then Horombo Hut

  • Elevation: 15,400 ft / 4,700 m to 19,300 ft / 5,895 m
  • Elevation 19,300 ft / 5,895 m to 12,100 ft / 3,700 m
  • Hiking Time: 4 km up / 14 km down 10-15 hours
  • Vegetation Zone: Alpine Desert

Very early in the morning (midnight to 2am), commence the climb to the summit on steep and heavy scree or snow up to Gilman’s point located on the crater rim. Continuing, we now ascend to Uhuru Peak, which is the highest point in Africa. There are unbelievable views at every turn. Have your picture taken at the summit to show your friends and family. From here we descend, stopping for lunch and a rest at Kibo before continuing on to the Horombo encampment.

The beginning of this climb is done in the dark and requires headlamps or flashlights. It will be very cold until you start descending, so you will need all of your warm layers. This is by far the most difficult part of the trek with many switchbacks. Going slowly “pole pole” and an optimistic attitude will get you there!

DAY 5

    • Elevation: 12,100 ft / 3,700 m to 5,500 ft / 1,700 m
    • Distance: 18km
    • Hiking Time: 5-7 hours

    After breakfast, a steady descent takes us down through moorland to the Mandara

    Hut. Continue descending through lush forest path to the National Park gate at Marangu. At lower elevations, it can be wet and muddy. Gaiters and trekking poles will help. Shorts and t-shirts will probably be plenty to wear (keep rain gear and warmer clothing handy).

    A vehicle will meet you at Marangu village to drive you back to your hotel in Moshi or Arusha. Don’t forget to tip your guides and porters. It is time for celebration!

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