8 Days
All Year

This is one of the most popular routes to take when climbing Mount Kilimanjaro. This is because it is a very scenic route while also being more budget friendly than some of the longer hikes. As such, the traffic on this route is denser than others. Known as the whisky route, the journey is a little harder than other routes (such as the Marangu route). However, the success rate is higher! Although it is possible to climb this route in 6 days, the extra day gives you an even higher chance of summiting, as such it is definitely worth an extra day on the mountain.


Day 1: Machame Gate to Machame Camp

  • Elevation: 5,380 ft to 9,350 ft
  • Distance: 11 km/7 miles
  • Hiking Time: 5-7 hours
  • Habitat: Rain Forest

The drive from Moshi to the Machame Gate takes about 50 minutes. The journey passes through the village of Machame which is located on the lower slopes of the mountain. As we leave the park gate, we walk through the dense rainforest on a winding trail up a ridge until we reach the Machame Camp.


Day 2:From Machame Camp to Shira Camp 1

  • Elevation: From 3000 metres to 3850 metres
  • Trekking distance: 9 kilometres
  • Trek time: 4 to 6 hours
  • Environment: Moorland

On day two we will leave the lush rainforest behind, trekking through high moorland until we reach Shira 1 Camp. Whilst most of the vegetation has been left behind, keep an eye out for the Giant Lobelia which few who have not explored Kilimanjaro have ever seen.


Day 3: From Shira 1 Camp to Barranco Camp via Lava Tower

  • Elevation: From 3850 metres to 3950 metres
  • Highest point: 4600 metres (Lava Tower)
  • Trekking distance: 12 kilometres
  • Trek time: 6-7 hours
  • Environment: Semi-desert

Going will start to get tough on day four, and you can expect to feel the first altitude-related symptoms of the trek. Lava Tower is 4600 metres above sea level. We will rest there for acclimatisation purposes, and have lunch as well. Because we like to ‘walk high, sleep low’, we will then descend into Barranco Valley to make camp for the night. The descent from Lava Tower is a great time to enjoy the scenery and take photos, especially of the Western Breach and the Great Barranco Wall. Camp is directly below the Wall, and sunsets here are amazing.

  • Elevation: From 3950 metres to 3930 metres
  • Highest Point: Great Barranco Wall
  • Trekking distance: 7 kilometres
  • Trek time: Around 4 hours
  • Environment: Alpine desert

In another day of acclimatisation, we will climb to the top of the Great Barranco Wall. We’ll be well above the cloud layer here, and the views are amazing in every direction. Camp for the night will be low again, in the Karanga Valley beneath the Decken, Kersten and Heim Glaciers.


Day 5: From Karanga Valley Camp to Barafu Camp

  • Elevation: From 3930 metres to 4600 metres
  • Trekking distance: 6 kilometres
  • Trek time: Around 3 hours
  • Environment: Alpine desert

From Karanga, we will go up the well-travelled Mweka descent trail, then turn off for Barafu Hut. Barafu Hut marks the end of the Southern Circuit, which offers views of the summit itself from many different angles. This is a short day, and you should take advantage of the down time to rest up for the summit day tomorrow. Do take a bit of time to look about, though. You can see both Kibo and Mawenzi clearly from this vista.


Day 6: From Barafu Hut to summit at Uhuru Peak, descent to Kibo Crater

  • Elevation: From 4600 metres to 5730 metres
  • Highest point: 5895 metres (Uhuru Peak)
  • Trekking distance: 8 kilometres
  • Trek time: 7 to 8 hours
  • Environment: Alpine desert

We’ll wake at 7am and have a full breakfast before making the summit attempt. Our route takes us between the Rebman Glacier and the Ratzel Glacier. From there, we will go up heavy scree to reach Stella Point on the rim of the crater itself. We will have a short rest at Stella, which is a good time to enjoy one of the most spectacular views in Africa. Next it is on to the summit itself, Uhuru Peak. After another break for celebration and photos (weather permitting) we’ll begin the descent to Kibo Crater to camp for the night. Depending on the time of year, Kibo could be icy, snowy or sandy desert.


Day 7: Descent from Kibo Crater Camp to Mweka Camp

  • Elevation: From 5730 metres to 3100 metres
  • Trekking distance: 12 kilometres
  • Trek time: 6 to 8 hours
  • Environment: Ice-capped summit, stone scree and moorland

Well before dawn, we will set off over the rim to see the sun rise at the very top of Africa. We will then begin the descent, first to Barafu Hut for lunch then on to Mweka Camp, at a mere 3100 metres above sea level. The last stretch is over loose gravel, and you will need your poles.


Day 8: Descent rom Mweka Camp to Mweka Park Gate

  • Elevation: From 3100 metres to 1800 metres
  • Trekking distance: 8 kilometres
  • Trek time: 3 to 4 hours

The last leg of our trek will be a short but probably muddy descent to Mweka Park Gate. it is likely to be rainy or hot, so prepare for both. After picking up your certificate for summiting Kilimanjaro, we’ll take you to Kindoroko hotel in Moshi for celebration or sleep, depending on your mood and energy.


Airport pick-up and drop-off

Transportation to & from the Mt. Kilimanjaro gate

Park entry fees

Accommodation fees for on the mountain

Rescue fees

18% VAT on tour fees & services

Accommodation on the mountain in tents (mattresses and sleeping bags are included)

Friendly and professional mountain guides, cook and porters

3 meals daily while on the mountain

Drinking water throughout the trek

Hot water for washing

Government taxes

Portable oxygen tanks & ox meter

Emergency first-aid kit



Accommodation before and after your mountain trek

Travel insurance


Laundry Service

Personal items and toiletries

Tips for guides, porters and cook (see our tipping guidelines for more information)