Kilimanjaro is for many people the ultimate trekking experience because it is generally accepted as being the highest ‘walkable mountain’ in the world. It is a considerable achievement to reach the summit although no technical climbing skill is required.
It is a long, hard trek that reaches an altitude of 5,896 metres, but those who do make it to Uhuru Peak are rewarded with stunning views across the East African plains and the euphoric sensation of literally standing at the top of the continent.
Kilimanjaro, the ‘Mountain of God’, has been revered by the local tribes for many years and it was believed that those attempting to climb to the summit would be punished by the spirits. The first European to achieve this feat was Hans Meyer, a German geologist, in October 1889 and it has remained an enduring challenge ever since. It is the highest and youngest of the three large East African volcanoes (Mount Kenya and Mount Elgon being the other two) with its oldest lava flows dating back to approximately 1 million years ago.
The dry, warm months from mid-December to March and the dry, but cooler months between June to October are generally the best times to trek on the mountain when the weather is most favourable. From November to mid-December is a little more unpredictable with some beautiful sunny days mixed with some poor weather. The months of April and May should be avoided since it can be very wet with heavy snow and therefore also very cold.
The views tend to be that much clearer after the end of the rains in May since the dust in the air is swept away, although the views on clear days are breathtaking throughout the year. It should be noted that weather patterns are changing throughout the world and becoming less predictable, so it is important that you come prepared for poor weather on the mountain at any time of the year.
There are a number of different routes and different combinations of routes and although there is usually a minimum number of days for all routes, there is no maximum. Therefore you can take your time in order to become well acclimatised and we can tailor arrangements for you so that you can proceed at your own pace.
We offer weekly scheduled departures on the Rongai and Shiraroutes throughout the year, and these are ideal if you wish to join a group and make your trek as cost effective as possible. We can also arrange private treks on the Rongai, Shira and other routes such as the Machame and Lemosho.
Should you wish to go on a longer ‘Roof of Africa’ trek and climb both Mount Kilimanjaro and Mount Kenya, then that can be easily arranged, and all climbs can also be arranged as part of a longer safari.