The Best time for Hiking Mountain Kilimanjaro, is during the warmest and driest times of year, from December to mid-March and mid-June to the end of October. However, although these are considered to be the best times to climb the mountain in terms of weather, they are also the busiest months so you will need to book your hike in advance. Eco Adventure Safaris recommends the 7 Day Climbing Kilimanjaro via the Machame route. The Machame route, also known as the “Whisky Route”, is one of the best to climb Kilimanjaro as it is optimal for acclimatization, allowing the climbers to “walk high and sleep low”, and as a result enjoy one of the highest summit success rates of all the routes to climb Mt Kilimanjaro.
Best time for Hiking Mountain Kilimanjaro. This 7 Day Climbing Kilimanjaro via the Machame route offers a great acclimatization program. You will have 2 shorter days of trekking prior to your summit ascent in order to optimize your Kilimanjaro climb. Throughout the trek, we will go through stunning terrain and climb in five different climatic zones.
DAY 01: Machame – Around 45% of Climbers
Known as the “Whisky Route”, Machame is the most popular of the Kilimanjaro routes. It is a fairly challenging route with some great scenic diversity and a good success rate. One reason for its popularity is its pro-acclimatization terrain. Despite being more difficult, it has a paradoxically higher success rate than Marangu, because many inexperienced and unprepared climbers choose the Marangu route, and head back when they realize it’s more difficult than they expected. Machame has exceptional views throughout the trek and has a lot of diversity of terrain, from rainforests to moorlands and dry deserts. However, since it’s the most popular route, it is not possible to avoid crowds, especially during the high season.
DAY 02: Marangu – Around 35% of Climbers
Marangu is the easiest route to Mt. Kilimanjaro. It is suitable for people who want to hike on well-defined paths and avoid any steep climbs. The main distinction it has from other Kilimanjaro routes is the availability of sleeping huts on it, thereby eliminating the need for camping. For this reason, it is often referred to as the “Coca Cola” trail, as Coca Cola is available in the number of huts along the trail.
The Marangu route is great during the rainy season due to the availability of sleeping huts. It is also the cheapest route as not many porters are needed to carry camping equipment, and the starting point is close to Moshi, thereby reducing transportation costs. Due to its relative ease, it is also a crowded route. So, only take this route if you don’t mind crowds. These days, its popularity has been dwindling because most people have found the Marangu route to be a bit too crowded and boring, especially because it confines you to one part of the mountain and has very little scenic diversity.
DAY 03: Lemosho – Around 8% of Climbers
Lemosho is the pumped up version of the Machame route. For the first two days of the route, you walk through scenic rainforests while soaking in the African wilderness. No other route compares to Lemosho when it comes to wilderness in the early stages. After having trekked through low altitude rainforests for a couple of days, the Lemosho route merges with the Machame route all the way up the mountain and during the descent.
DAY 04: Rongai – Around 7% of Climbers
Rongai is a relatively easy route and a great alternative to the Marangu route. For those who shun crowds and want more scenic diversity than the Marangu trail while retaining well-trodden paths, Rongai is the perfect choice. Do note, however, that Rongai is a bit more expensive than Marangu, especially because the Rongai Gate is far away from Moshi and hence transportation costs add up
DAY 05: Umbwe – Around 4% of Climbers
Renowned as the most difficult route to Kilimanjaro, Umbwe is perfect for hardy trekkers looking for a challenge in secluded parts of the mountain. To add to the difficulty, Umbwe has a steep climb all the way to the top. However, a point to be noted is that due to the lack of pro-acclimatization terrain, the Umbwe route has a very low success rate, compared with the other Kilimanjaro routes.
DAY 06: Shira – Less Than 1% of Climbers
This is the only route on Kilimanjaro where you will be driven in and thereby skip walking through the rainforest. This is also one of the reasons why less than 1% of climbers go for this route. The Shira route is difficult and it approaches Mt. Kilimanjaro from the west. Moreover, it is also not considered a very acclimatization-friendly route as there is a sizable gain in altitude on the first night itself, making it less safe. However, the Shira route is scenically very beautiful and offers exquisite views of the mountain. After a few days of secluded climbing, it merges with the Machame route, which is where the traffic considerably increases.
DAY 07: Northern Circuit – Low % of Trekkers Due To Longer Duration
Northern Circuit, a remote route that offers the only way to see the entire Kilimanjaro massif The northern route is the newest of the Kilimanjaro routes. Moreover, it is the longest route both in number of days on the mountain and the distance covered. It begins in the west just like the Lemosho route, then diverges towards the north from the Buffalo Camp in a clockwise roundabout direction, which is why it’s called the northern circuit. This 9-to-10-day route offers the best acclimatization opportunities and has extremely high success rates. Plus, you get some spectacular views of the mountain from various vantage points on the route. Moreover, since it is a new route it does not have much traffic either. However, due to the greater number of days on the mountain, climbing from this route is relatively more expensive.
Tanzania Visa and work permit Advice
Best time for Hiking Mountain Kilimanjaro. You will need to purchase a tourist visa. Many tourists prefer obtaining their visas before they come to Tanzania but visas can be obtained easily upon arrival at any entry point in Tanzania upon paying USD100.00 for Tourist Visa you will be able to get it immediately. Proof of yellow fever vaccination and a COVID-19 free certificate may be asked if arriving from affected countries. Visa, work permit and other entry and exit conditions such as customs and quarantine regulations can change regularly. We advise you contact your local Tanzanian embassy or here for the latest travel information to Tanzania.
Tanzania Vehicle Hire Services
Eco Adventure Safaris will help you organize transport in Tanzania depending on interest, budget and the nature of roads in such selected locations for Hiking Mountain Kilimanjaro. We recommend Customized 4×4 Land Cruisers which costs from USD200-250 per vehicle per day with Driver/Fixer or 4×4 Safari Vans from USD200 per Van per day with driver. For us to estimate how much it will cost in terms of fuel, we will need to look at your schedule to establish mileage and distance to be travelled.
Why book with Eco Adventure Safaris your Safari Trip for Hiking Mountain Kilimanjaro?
Eco Adventure Safaris is experienced in organizing amazing safari experiences to Tanzania including for Hiking Mountain Kilimanjaro. We are also highly rated and reviewed on trip Advisor. We combine Tanzania safaris with eco-friendly and unforgettable high-end adventure and wildlife safaris that help preserve biodiversity, conserve wildlife and uplift local communities, these include gorilla trekking, chimpanzee trekking, Big 5 safaris and game viewing, Mountain Hiking, Boat cruises excursions and Cultural encounters to give you a memorable and best African Safari experience including popular and great African safari destinations Kenya, Botswana and Namibia. Feel free to contact us about the Best time for Hiking Mountain Kilimanjaro.