Climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro: Routes Overview

Every year, thousands of adventurers pursue the dream of reaching the summit of Mt. Kilimanjaro, the highest mountain in Africa and the world’s tallest free-standing mountain. Reaching the roof of Africa is a feat that requires physical and mental preparation, as well as careful consideration of the different routes available to climbers. This article looks at the different approaches to climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro and the pros and cons of each.

Overview of Mt. Kilimanjaro Climbing Routes

Mt. Kilimanjaro can be climbed using any of the six available routes. All routes ascend through rainforest terrain, where porters and guides accompany climbers and assist with luggage and supplies. Of the six routes, the Machame, Marangu, Rongai, and Umbwe routes are considered the most difficult. The Lemosho and Northern Circuit routes are considered the most scenic and offer the best chances of a successful summit.

Most climbing groups that choose the Marangu route opt to do a five or six day hike, while most other routes require at least seven days. For those looking to reach the summit in the quickest possible time, the Umbwe route is the most direct. This route, however, is considered one of the most strenuous and has the lowest success rate of the six routes.

A Closer Look at the Different Approaches

The Machame route is considered one of the more challenging routes, but has the highest success rate, with the busiest section taking place on the second day. This route is considered one of the most scenic, with fantastic views of the surrounding area and plenty of rest stops. Climbers following the Machame route are often rewarded with a spectacular sunrise as they reach the summit.

The Marangu route is the most popular of the six routes, offering climbers comfortable sleeping accommodation. Hikers on this trail can choose between a five or six day hike, with the former offering a better chance of success. Despite the comfortable sleeping arrangements, the Marangu route is considered the least scenic of the six.

The Rongai route is the only trail that approaches the mountain from the north. This approach offers spectacular views, but is one of the more difficult routes with a steep incline and a long distance to cover. The Rongai route offers a better chance at seeing wildlife, as it is less popular than the other routes.

Climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro is a challenging and rewarding experience. Each of the six routes to the summit has its own unique pros and cons, and climbers should carefully consider each approach before making their decision. Whichever route is chosen, it is sure to be an unforgettable experience.

About The Author

Chat with expert
Need Help?
Hello 👋
Can we help you?