Mt. Kilimanjaro Climb – Machame Route
This is probably the most beautiful route up Kilimanjaro. All your equipment and supplies are pottered and a cook prepares all your meals.
Where accommodation on the Marangu route is in huts, the Machame route offers strictly tents only. This makes Machame (also referred to as the “Whiskey route”) better suited to the slightly more adventurous hiker.
Keep reading to get more details about the climb using this route!
THE CLIMB AT A GLANCE
Climbing Kilimanjaro does not require any technical skills or special equipment, just some physical fitness and determination.
Day 1 – Arrive at hotel in Marangu
Day 2 – Machame Gate – Machame Camp
Day 3 – Machame Camp – Shira Camp
Day 4 – Shiraa Camp – Lava Tower – Barranco Camp
Day 5 – Barranco Camp – Barafu Camp
Day 6 – Summit Day – Barafu Camp – Uhuru Peak – Mweka
Day 7 –Mweka Camp – Mweka Gate
THE BEAUTIFUL ROUTE
From late afternoon sunsets at Shira, to the misty revelations of Kibo at the great Barranco Wall, he Machame route offers the adventurous hiker a stunning scenic “slide show” over 6 days. The Machame route is normally completed in a minimum of 6 days. There is an added benefit to this, as you are afforded the most valuable commodity on the mountain – acclimatization. The Machame route takes you high to Lava Tower on Day 3.
THE MACHAME ROUTE OVERVIEW
ARRIVE AT HOTEL IN MARANGU
At 9am, you will be picked up from Arusha for a scenic drive to Marangu, a town located on the lower slopes of Mt. Kilimanjaro.
After lunch you will meet your guide for a briefing and also check all your climbing gear and equipment. You will also have time to discuss the climb in detail with your guide. Enjoy your dinner and take a good night rest, ready for a 6 day adventurous climb of a lifetime.
MACHAME GATE – MACHAME CAMP
Hiking time: 5-6 hours
After breakfast, you will depart from your hotel and you will be transferred to Kilimanjaro National Park – Machame Gate. Depending on the weather you will have a lunch stop about half way and will reach Machame camping area in the late afternoon.
On your arrival, you will find your tents ready and food on the stove. This is what the forwarding party does. Dinner is served during the early evening.
MACHAME CAMP – SHIRA CAMP
Hiking Time: 5-6 hours
You rise early at Machame camp and after breakfast you climb an hour or so to the top of the forest and then for 2 hours at a gentler gradient through the moorland zone.
After a short lunch and rest, you continue up a rocky ridge onto the Shira plateau. You will reach Shira campsite and have an early dinner and retire early.
SHIRA CAMP – LAVA TOWER
Hiking Time: 7 hours
The route now turns east into a semi desert and rocky landscape surrounding the Lava Tower.
Lunch is served in a designated area before ascending the rocky scree path to Lava Tower. The descent to Barranco Camp takes about 2 hours and offers great opportunities to take some beautiful photographs of the Western Breach and Breach Wall.
BARRANCO CAMP – BARAFU CAMP
Hiking Time: 7 hours
After spending a night at the Great Barranco Wall, you make your way up this awesome looking obstacle, which in the end normally turns out easier than anticipated.
The route then heads down through Karanga Valley over intervening ridges and valleys, and then joins up with the Mweka route. This is the preferred route down from the summit, so remember it. Barafu Camp is the camping area to spend the night, you will make the final ascent the same night and only sleep for about 5 hours.
BARAFU CAMP – UHURU CAMP
Hiking Time: 13-14 hours
You will rise around 2330 hours and after some tea you shuffle off into the night. The 6-hour walk to Stella point is for many climbers, the most challenging on the route. You will rest at Stella and watch the sunrise.
From Stella Point you will walk 2 hours on your ascent to Uhuru Peak. At Uhuru Peak you will enjoy your accomplishment and a day to remember for the rest of your life! You will walk back to Barafu camp and head down to the Mweka hut.
MWEKA CAMP – MWEKA GATE
Hiking Time: 3 hours
After an early breakfast, it is a short, scenic hike back to the park gate. After breakfast you will descend to Mandara Hut. You’ll be transported back to Babylon Lodge. You will be in a mood for a celebration after conquering the roof of Africa!
After breakfast, you will be dropped off either at Arusha to continue with your safari or at Kilimanjaro Int. Airport for you flight back to North America.