Climb Mount Kilimanjaro - Your Gateway to Tanzania's Iconic Summit Adventures

The first person to climb Mount Kilimanjaro was Hans Meyer. Since then, many have conquered this mountain, often called "The Roof of Africa." In addition to booking hiking tours with us, you'll learn about the duration, cost, and difficulty of climbing Kilimanjaro.

We offer both budget Kilimanjaro treks, luxury Kilimanjaro treks and combined East African safaris that include Mount Kilimanjaro climbing.

Reaching the peak of this high mountain means standing atop Africa's highest point. Kilimanjaro is the tallest mountain in Africa and one of the tallest globally.

To fulfill your dream of standing on top of Africa, book our Kilimanjaro trekking tours. The price depends on factors such as routes, porterage services, group size, and season.

However, we strive to keep the prices affordable. Our Kilimanjaro trekking tours range from as low as USD 1,000 and include climbing permits, accommodation, meals, guiding, and porterage services.

We recommend obtaining travel insurance before your journey to cover any potential need for helicopter rescue services. Browse our selection of Kilimanjaro trekking tours above or request a tailor-made package.

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Top Tanzania Kilimanjaro Safari Tours

Book highly popular tours for climbing Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania. All our trips are guided by expert safari guides and supported by well-trained porters.

Mount Kilimanjaro Tours & East Africa Safaris

Book tours to Mount Kilimanjaro National Park below or book combined Tanzanian packages to explore other travel destinations in East Africa as well.

Ultimate Guide for Planning Tanzania Kilimanjaro Safaris

The Kilimanjaro are very popular mountains not just in Tanzania, East Africa, Or Africa but world over being that it’s the tallest mountain Africa.

Some people only know the Kilimanjaro for its part in several movies and documentaries. When one picks interest in the Kilimanjaro, they would want to know how it was formed, where it is found, how tall it is and many other questions.

Kilimanjaro Meaning – Meaning of the word “Kilimanjaro”

Kilimanjaro Meaning – Meaning of the word “Kilimanjaro”
Kilimanjaro view from Amboseli National Park in Kenya

The question mostly asked but has never gotten a good answer is the origin of the name “Kilimanjaro”. It is believed that the Kilimanjaro name has roots in Swahili, Chagga and Masai languages.

There has been however no conclusive research to ascertain this claim.

The Nuttall Encyclopaedia was the first official document in the year 1907 to refer this mountain by then as the Kilima-Njaro.

There is no clear origin of this name but from the time the Europeans started exploring the Kilimanjaro in the 1860s, the mountain adopted this names somehow.

In 1885, Jim Thompson claimed that Kilima-Njaro that the locals believed that this name was interpreted as the mountain of glory (kilima) (njaro).

“Njaro” in one Kiswahili dialect means shining which is asserted that it was to refer to the snow on the top of this mountain.

There are a group people that claim the word “kilima” means mountain in Kiswahili. However the actual word means “hill”. “Mlima” is the actual word to mean mountain in Kiswahili.

The Chagga people who are the natives of the area are credited for naming the Kibo and Mawenzi peaks of the Kilimanjaro.

Mount Kilimanjaro Hiking Video by Mike Corey from Fearless & Far

11 Essential Kilimanjaro Hiking Tips

  1. Physical preparedness
  2. Slow and steady
  3. Hiking equipment
  4. The right hiking route
  5. Make water your best friend
  6. Keep your energy levels up
  7. Layered dressing
  8. Hiking poles
  9. Wet wipes
  10. Expect altitude sickness (Carry enough Diamox)
  11. Follow the leader

Recommended Kilimanjaro Packing List

Kilimanjaro Mountain located in Tanzania is the tallest mountain on the African continent. Climbing to the top of Africa is a great accomplishment to those who are able to summit to Kilimanjaro’s highest peak, Uhuru.

You need to be well prepared for the fluctuating temperatures and different weather conditions at each elevation.

See full packing list here

Hiring Porters on Mount Kilimanjaro

Hiring Porters on Mount Kilimanjaro
Porter carrying equipment on Kilimanjaro Mountain

Kilimanjaro porters are the hardest workers on Mount Kilimanjaro, the support crew of the tourists who climb the mountain. You will need them. Porters are the people who help carry your luggage (apart from your day bag) on your ascent to the summit.

Including other things like camping tents, food, water, medical kits, gas cylinders, chairs, tables, camping toilets and any other equipment/supplies needed while on the mountain. They carry the heavy loads so that you can walk lightly up the mountain and enjoy your trek to the summit, Uhuru peak. A maximum of 15kg per porter.

Before you start your ascent to the top, you will meet your support crew, that is the porters and your guides. The number of porters and guides per group depends on the size of the group and varies from one company to another.

Park Entrance Fees for Mount Kilimanjaro National Park

Adults (16 & above): Tsh 10,000 (East African Citizens), USD 70 (Foreign non-residents), USD 35 (Foreign non-residents)

Children (5 to 15 years old): Tsh 2,000 (East African Citizens), USD 20 (Foreign non-residents), USD 10 (Foreign non-residents)

Children below 5 years old: Free entry

East African Citizens (EAC): Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda, Kenya, South Sudan, Burundi

Note:

Different ways of making your payment: TANAPA Online Reservation, Electronic Cards (MasterCard, VISA card)

Payments are exclusive of VAT (18%)

List of Kilimanjaro Hiking Routes

List of Kilimanjaro Hiking Routes
Pole Pole (Slowly Slowly) Rule of Hiking Kilimanjaro Mountain

There are 7 established routes on Mt. Kilimanjaro that can take you to the summit of Uhuru. With varying scenery, length, crowds, difficulty levels, success rates and acclimatization possibilities, it is up to you to choose which route to take you from the base of Mt. Kilimanjaro to the roof of the African continent.

These are: Machame Route, Lemosho Route, Northern Circuit Route, Marangu Route, Shira Route, Rongai Route and Umbwe Route.

Is Mount Kilimanjaro Safe?

One of the famous Seven Summits, Kilimanjaro is the tallest mountain in Africa standing at 5,895m (19,341 ft) above sea level landing itself in the extreme altitude mountaineering category. Nonetheless, considering its size, it requires no technical skill to reach its summit, at Uhuru Peak.

That doesn’t mean it should be underestimated, climbing Kilimanjaro to the summit is quite challenging. Utmost, 1,000 people get evacuated from the mountain and some deaths have been recorded, the main cause of the deaths being altitude/mountain sickness.

Kilimanjaro Animals & Wildlife

The ecosystem of the Kilimanjaro National Park on the Kilimanjaro Ranges covers an area of about 652 square miles. This national park was first gazette as a forest reserve in 1921.It was later upgraded to national park status in 1973 and a few years later in 1987 it was declared a UNESCO world heritage site. Since then, there has been a good protection to the animals and other habitats against human encroachment.

There are cases of large mammals like the Buffalos, elephants and Giraffes. Some other animals include Porcupines and aardvarks. Because the mountain is covered in thick tropical rain forests, then most animals may not be seen as they hide in the lush forest.

What is the Best Time to Climb Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania

What is the Best Time to Climb Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania
Mount Kilimanjaro Sun-downer (Sunset)

If you are thinking about trekking the highest mountain ranges in Africa or have you have already booked your safari to Kilimanjaro? The most common thing will be what’s the best time to visit and the other terms and conditions for the hike.

It’s possible that you can trek the Kilimanjaro any time throughout the year but some months are covered in cold weather and rains and snow especially the top and yet some are dry and a lot more favorable.

Its best advised to hike the Kilimanjaro is between the months of December to February and Mid June to September. Ideally these are the dry months but even then, sometimes it can and gets a bit messy.

The Birds of Kilimanjaro Mountain

The Kilimanjaro has a bird count of about 716 bird species. Most of the bird will be seen in the cultivated zone of the Kilimanjaro. The others will be seen the forested zone of the Kilimanjaro.

There are no birds in the rest of the zones as the conditions are very hard and do not support plant or animal life.

Butterflies on Mount Kilimanjaro

Butterflies on Mount Kilimanjaro
Butterfly on Mount Kilimanjaro

There are very few people that will come to Kilimanjaro to see butterflies, but the few that come are rewarded abundantly. There are about 44 butterfly species in the Kilimanjaro area of Tanzania.

There are other things you will see while on your search for butterflies like a lot of primates in the canopy of the forest and the bird are a spectacular reward you ought not to miss.

The species of trees and mammals are also something you will be delighted to see.

Climate & Weather of Mount Kilimanjaro National Park

Mountain Kilimanjaro has varying weather with some hot spells and extremely cold spans in the same day. The temperature ranges don’t however differ a lot from season to season.

The temperatures are also determined by the altitude and the time during the day.

The first part of the mountain which is the base has temperatures ranging between 21 to 27 °C. As you approach the peak, temperatures will drop to between 20 and -20°C.

Just like all the other mountains, there temperatures at the Kilimanjaro are very hard to predict therefore hikers should make sure they are prepared for all the conditions, be it extreme cold or extreme heat as both of these can happen in the same hike.

Dormant Volcanoes on Mount Kilimanjaro

The Kilimanjaro Mountain is made up of three volcanic cones Namely; Kibo, Mawenzi and Shira. Each has its own fault line. With many eruption from over a thousand of years ago, the volcanic power of this cones is believed to have died out.

The Shira cone which about 16,000 or 17,000 feet high is believed to have died about 2.5million years ago. It is believed that after its extinction, the cone collapsed to form the current Shira plateau.

The Kibo and Mawenzi cones are believed to have first erupted about 1 million years ago and they formed a ridge between them since they are so close to each other.

It is believed that Mawenzi died about 450,000 years ago and by this time it was at about 18,000 feet above sea level

The Cones Mawenzi and Shira are believed to b completely dead but the highest peak which is Kibo is believed to just be dormant will at some point in time erupt according to research.

Vegetation & Ecological Zones of Mount Kilimanjaro

Vegetation & Ecological Zones of Mount Kilimanjaro
Alpine Desert Zone of Kilimanjaro Mountain

The Kilimanjaro Ranges are made up several types of vegetation zones. There are about five distinct vegetation types on the Kilimanjaro. Every vegetation type runs about 100 meters. In the range of about 800 to about 1800 meters there will be human settlement and human activity

Are ecological zones are: Cultivation Zone, Forest Zone, Heath/Moorland Zone, Alpine/High Desert Zone & the Arctic Zone.

Kilimanjaro Elevation – How High is Mount Kilimanjaro?

The Kilimanjaro stands at about 5,895 meters high above sea level. The Kibo cone has the highest peak called Uhuru. There over 50,000 people that visit giant every year.

Other than having beautiful view from both the bottom and the top, the Kilimanjaro Mountain is one of the best adventures of not only Tanzania but the world.

Some people refer to it as the roof of Africa. The very accurate height of the Kilimanjaro Mountain is 5892.55 meter as of the year 2008.

Risks of Climbing Kilimanjaro Mountain

Risks of Climbing Kilimanjaro Mountain
Hiking Kilimanjaro Mountain via Rongai Route

The mountain is safe despite its height and if one follows all the guidelines then there is no way you will get into trouble. There is an estimated death rate of about 10 people a year.

Deaths are usually due to altitude related illnesses and injuries from falls. Most of these deaths are avoidable if one follows the advisories.

There is a rescue mission of the Kilimanjaro that can attend to some of the medical emergencies and therefore one will need to meet all the requirements especially the having insurance to afford this emergency evacuation services.

You are not required to have hiking skills to hike the Kilimanjaro Mountains; you will just be required to have prepared yourself for the hike. The lower slopes of the Kilimanjaro are not as cold as the top since the Kilimanjaro ranges are located along the Equator.

Is Mount Kilimanjaro Active, Dormant or Extinct?

It is believed that Mountain Kilimanjaro was formed over 3 million years ago. It was formed by the process of Vulcanicity as molten magma as forced through a vent to from molten rock when it reached the surface which later turned into the Kilimanjaro Mountain.

The mountain erupted several times to make it bigger and that’s the current Kilimanjaro that we see today.

The Kilimanjaro Mountain is made up of three volcanic cones Namely; Kibo, Mawenzi and Shira. Each has its own fault line. With many eruption from over a thousand of years ago, the volcanic power of this cone sis belied to have died out.

The Shira cone which about 16,000 or 17,000 feet high is believed to have died about 2.5million years ago. It is believed that after its extinction, the cone collapsed to form the current Shira plateau.

The Kibo and Mawenzi cones are believed to have first erupted about 1 million years ago and they formed a ridge between them since they are so close to each other.

It is believed that Mawenzi died about 450,000 years ago and by this time it was at about 18,000 feet above sea level

The Cones Mawenzi and Shira are believed to be completely dead but the highest peak which is Kibo is believed to just be dormant will at some point in time erupt according to research.

Mount Kilimanjaro Eruptions

It is believed that the Kibo cone was the last of the three to erupt and this happened about 360,000 years ago. There was however some activity around 200,000 years ago.

At this time the highest point of the mountains stood at 19,341 feet above sea level. It is believed that the peak was a bit higher that that but the effects of other natural processes like erosion have affected it.

There is definitely some activity expected on the Kilimanjaro sometime in the future. There is either going to be some eruption or the mountain will collapse under its weight.

There have not been any foreseeable future activity recorded by scientist and it is safe for now.

Facts about Kilimanjaro Mountain

Facts about Kilimanjaro Mountain
Mount Kilimanjaro Sunset View
  • A series of volcanic eruptions that happened a million years ago led to the formation of Mt. Kilimanjaro. It has 3 volcano cones, namely; Kibo, Mawenzi and Shira. While Kibo is a dormant volcano that could erupt again, Mawenzi and Shira are considered extinct as they have not erupted in over a million years. Kibo is the youngest and tallest of the 3 volcano cones with its summit, Uhuru peak elevated at 5,895 meters above sea level.
  • The first recorded summit of Kilimanjaro at Kibo was in October, 1889 by Hans Meyer, a German Geology professor. He had tried to summit the mountain on 2 occasions before his 3rd attempt that was the successful summit. Many Europeans before him had attempted to summit Kilimanjaro but had failed. First record of an attempt was in 1861.
  • Sheila McDonald was the first female to summit Kilimanjaro in 1927.
  • In 1973, Mount Kilimanjaro National Park was established to protect the mountain’s vast wildlife unique environment and ecosystem. Years later (1978), it was declared a UNESCO Natural World Heritage Site. The indigenous Chagga people of Tanzania still farm the lower slopes of the mountain.
  • The Chagga people have lived in the Kilimanjaro region for hundreds of years, considering the mountain to be a sacred place where their god, Ruwa lived at the white peak. A place of cultural and spiritual significance to them.
  • As some records say the name “Kilimanjaro” is a name of the mountain in Kiswahili, also commonly accepted as a mixture of Kiswahili and KiChagga where “Kilima” (Kiswahili) means mountain and “Njaro” (KiChagga) means whiteness. Otherwise, the origins of the name are so unclear.

List of Gates on Kilimanjaro Mountain

Like all the other mountains, there are several routes to reach the summit of the Kilimanjaro Mountain. Each route will start at its own gate or point of entry to the Kilimanjaro.

All the entry points are at the base of this mountain and the most renowned routes are Marangu Gate, Machame Gate, Umbwe Gate, Mweka Gate, Lemosho Gate, Londorossi Gate, Rongai Gate and Nalemoru Gate.

There are different gates and routes to offer different experienced to the tourists. In most cases you will star form a different gate and complete from another to give you a unique experience.

Geology of Kilimanjaro Mountain

Kibo, Mawenzi and Shira are the peaks that make up the Kilimanjaro ranges. These volcanic cones are stratovolcanoes. The Shira cone is the lowest at an altitude of about 4,005 meters above sea level, then the Mawenzi at an altitude of about 5,149 meters above sea level.

The Kibo peak is the highest of them all. Kibo peak is believed to be dormant and could erupt in the future while Mawenzi and Shira are dormant volcanoes.

The Kilimanjaro Mountain is the tallest mounts in Africa and also among the biggest stratovolcanoes in the world. A stratovolcano is a mountain formed by vulcanicity with a serious of lava and ash laying on top of each other.

Mount Kilimanjaro Glaciers

Mount Kilimanjaro Glaciers
Glaciers on Kilimanjaro Mountain

Glacier are rare in Africa and can only be found In Uganda (Ruwenzori), Kenya (Mountain Kenya) and the Kilimanjaro in Tanzania. These being tropical countries, the occurrence of glaciers are such a unique thing and it bits the laws of science.

Here are some of the glaciers of the Kilimanjaro ranges: Credner Glacier, The Rebmann Glacier, The Ratzel Glacier, The Balletto Glacier, The Heim Glacier, Arrow Glacier and The Drygalski Glacier.

Arriving through Kilimanjaro International Airport in Moshi

The Kilimanjaro International Airport is also known as KIA/JRO is the major airport between Arusha and Moshi. It facilitates most tourism activities of the northern circuit in Tanzania an it the best get in for people wanting to visit Kilimanjaro Mountains.

It is estimated to host over 750,000 visitors a year.

The airport is a bit small in size compared to many international airports but it handles all sizes of aircrafts in including the large Boeings.

Wrapping it up

Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro depends greatly on your fitness for reaching the summit. Prior training is highly recommended and will help you endure the hike.

When booking budget Kilimanjaro trekking tours with us, we consider factors like your training background, health condition, age, weight, and more.

This helps us assign routes suitable for your abilities as routes vary in difficulty. The cost of climbing Mount Kilimanjaro is not determined by the routes alone.

It includes climbing permits, accommodation, meals, porter-age services, guiding fees, and other facilities. Explore our Kilimanjaro trekking tours above or send us an inquiry below.

Why visit Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania for Hiking Tours?

With its snow-capped peak, lush rainforests, and diverse flora and fauna, Mountain Kilimanjaro is a very beautiful place to be. It's also the highest mountain in Africa; so summiting it puts you at the Roof of Africa. When it comes to culture, the region stands out. There is a lot of cultural community experiences around this marvelous mountain; when you visit some of their villages.

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We shall then create your itinerary, send it to you and keep making ammends until you are comfortable.

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