All our Kilimanjaro routes including the Machame Route have been carefully chosen both to improve your enjoyment through acclimatisation and also for your safety. The Kilimanjaro Machame Route is offered as our shortest route, whilst still giving you 6 days on the mountain, reaching the summit on your 5th day. The Machame route is scenically beautiful and varied and with six days on the mountain this gives sufficient time to acclimatise. It provides the most varied terrain and each days walk is quite different. Director Dave Pritt, having previously climbed most of the routes on Kilimanjaro, says “It remains my favorite route to the summit!” This is one of the most enjoyable routes to attempt the mountain and is ideal for the fit experienced walkers who have some previous experience at altitude. It is also the ideal way to ascend Kilimanjaro if you choose to make an ascent of Mount Meru (one of our Tanzania extensions) beforehand.
All flights are to Kilimanjaro airport avoiding the overland journey to and from Nairobi. And finally we include ALL PARK FEES in our prices.
The Kilimanjaro Machame route approaches from the south side of the mountain, initially through dense, lush montane cloud forest and on up to the eastern side of the Shira plateau to Shira 2 campsite. Shortly beyond here the route merges with Lemosho route as it passes the Lava Tower (4600m) on the acclimatisation day en route to Barranco and the easy scramble up its wall. Descent is via the Mweka route.
The departure date is based on an overnight flight departing the UK in the evening and arriving the following day at Kilimanjaro International Airport. Some same-day flights may be available but the overnight flight allows you to arrive earlier in the day giving you more time to recover from the flight before heading up the mountain.
Days 1 and 2 Overnight flight to Kilimanjaro International airport. On arrival in Tanzania you will be met and transferred to the hotel. Situated in a quiet location in the foothills of Kilimanjaro this is a pleasant and friendly hotel with restaurant and bar.
Day 3 An early start on the first day allows you some time to make any adjustments to your packing before leaving for the park gate. From the gate (1800m) the path climbs with a gradual gradient and a never tiring route in a forest full of flowers. A last ramp leads to the lovely rocky rise and metal constructions of the Machame Hut (3000m). Climb 1200 metres, walking time: 4 to 5 hours.
Day 4 A rather short day although the altitude begins to make itself felt. The path rises with a charming route along a lava ridge that offers splendid views of the Kibo and Meru peaks before crossing a number of clearings surrounded by very high, tree-like heathers. A stony stretch with the odd zigzag leads to the edge of the remarkable lava plateau of Shira. We cross this to our camp (3840 metres) near a large cave. Climb 840 metres, walking time: 4 to 5 hours.
Day 5 This stage, quite tiring at first, explains why hikers starting from Machame suffer the altitude less on the final stage to the Kibo summit. Zigzagging up and down is, on any mountain, the best way to get acclimatised. You start by reaching an enormous solitary rock and then proceed on wide, desolate, stony slopes towards the Lava Tower and the Arrow Glacier Hut. High up, in the distance are the walls of the Western Breach. Once at the ridge at the base of the Lava Tower (4600m) a rather steep descent leads to the Barranco Hut (3950m), a splendid viewpoint of the Breach Wall and the Heim and Decken glaciers. Climb 760 metres, descend 650 metres, walking time: 7 to 8 hours.
Day 6A long but spectacular day which gives an ever changing vista of the summit. You start by crossing the valley and scrambling up the Barranco wall by a series of easy rock ledges. Once at the top a broad, rocky ridge traverses around the mountain with wonderful views of the Heim glacier. A short sharp descent past some amazing rock formations leads down into the Karanga Valley (4000m) followed by a short climb to the Karanga campsite. The final stretch of the approach follows a rocky wind-beaten ridge close under the south flank of Kibo and crosses a large desolate bowl before climbing up onto the obvious ridge to the Barafu Hut (4500 metres) and our camp. Climb 850 metres; descend 200m, walking time: 7 to 8 hours.
Day 7 Leaving our camp just after midnight a good path marked by stones climbs the rocky slopes and into the wide gorge to the right of the Rebmann glacier. A section on the more friable ground (nothing like the screes of Gillman’s Point on the normal route) precedes the last slopes, sometimes covered with snow. Once out on the crater at Stella Point (5795m) you continue on round to Uhuru Peak (5895m). To descend, we drop back scree slopes to Barafu for a rest and an early lunch and then continue down for a further four hours to Mweka Camp, delightfully situated in the trees and celebrate! Climb 1295 metres; descend 2795 metres, walking time: 10 to 14 hours.
Day 8 A fully refurbished trail takes you down through the forest to the park gate (1500m) and the bizarre sight of vehicles! After bidding farewell to the guides and porters we transfer you to the hotel where you can get a meal and have a wash and brush up before transferring to the airport to catch an early evening flight home. Descend 1600 metres, walking time: 3 to 4 hours.
Day 9 Arrive back in the UK.
It is vitally important that you have adequate travel insurance for your trip with Adventure Peaks. We recognise the complexity and variety of choice in the insurance market and know that many of you either have your own preferred insurer or have annual multi trip cover in place already. If this is the case, please ensure that your insurer is aware of your Adventure Peaks itinerary and can agree to cover the activities being undertaken.
Adventure Peaks do not provide any advice on travel insurance, although it is a requirement of our booking conditions that you have travel insurance which covers the activities which you are likely to be undertaking on your holiday. Cover must include emergency medical, helicopter evacuation, repatriation and rescue expenses.
It is strongly recommended that suitable cancellation insurance is purchased at the time of booking as all deposits are non-refundable and non-transferable.
Suggested insurance companies include:
Expeditions or Treks