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Machame Route - Kilimanjaro

The beautiful Machame Route is highly rated as the most scenic route up Kilimanjaro, with diverse vegetation and fabulous views as well as a number of possible route choices beyond the Lava Tower Camp at 4630m.
If mountains are what you're after on your Tanzania holiday, the Machame Route can take either five or six days to complete, depending on the fitness of the climbers, and the final ascent is steep in each case  This route sets off from Machame village, and reaches the first Machame Camp at 3000m where the forest meets the heather.  The track continues across moorland to Shira Camp on the western side of Kibo, with excellent views over the Shira Plateau.

From here it is usual to follow the Shira Route to the Lava Tower Hut and then join with the Umbwe route down to Barranco Camp for an overnight at 3950m, but very fit climbers may continue to ascend the much steeper route via Arrow Glacier (although the hut here is no longer in use).  Those at Barranco Camp ascend to Barafu Camp by the Mweka route, and continue on this trail on the final ascent to the summit. This route will usually descend by the Mweka Route.

The Machame Route 

Day 1
Met on arrival at Arusha or Kilimanjaro and transferred to the Moivaro Coffee Estate for the night on a b&b basis. Time to prepare and rest before the trek up Mt Kilimanjaro.

Day 2
An early start with a drive to Machame gate. Begin trekking through the rain forests on a winding trail, for 5-7 hrs past the first uniport hut to the Machame hut campsite (3100m). Overnight.

Day 3
After breakfast, leave the glades of the rain forest and continue on an ascending path, crossing a little valley and walking along a steep rocky ridge covered with heather until the end of the ridge. The route now turns west onto a river gorge at 3658m (5-7 hours). Overnight at the Shira hut campsite (3800m).

Day 4
After breakfast, continue to the nearby Shira Plateau, the Shira needles and cathedral. From the Shira Plateau continue trekking to the east towards the lava tower called the shark's tooth. Shortly after the tower you come to a junction leading to the arrow glacier. Continue to Barranco hut campsite (3900m) for overnight (5-7 hours).

Day 5
Leave Barranco and ascend the Barranco Wall with some wonderful views.  Then descend through the Karanga Valley to your next camp site for the night (about 3-4 hours).

Day 6
An easy day - in the morning continue trekking to the Barafu hut campsite (4600m) for overnight (3-4 hours). The two peaks, Mawenzi and Kibo can be seen from this point.

Day 7
An early start for Stella point (5745m) on the way to the Summit, Uhuru peak. This part of the climb takes about 8hrs. You have now reached the highest point in Africa (5895m)!  From the summit descend back to Barafu, (about 3 hours) then continue to Mweka hut campsite (3100m) for overnight (5 hours).

Day 8
The day is spent descending to the Mweka gates (5 hours), where you will be met & transferred to Arusha and to the Moivaro Coffee estate for the night on a b&b basis.

Price-wise you are looking at about $2,950 per person for a set date departure, slightly more for less than 4 trekkers


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