Kilimanjaro Marangu Route 6 Days Itinerary

Trip Introduction

This itinerary covers the Marangu Route 6 Days trek. Along with the Machame route, this one happens to be the most popular route on Mount Kilimanjaro. This probably because it affords climbers some little luxuries such as sleeping in huts as opposed to tents and is relatively easy to trek on. It has rightly been named the Coca-cola route.

The ascent on this trail starts at the Marangu gate on the South Eastern face of the mountain and back out using the same route. The trail takes climbers through the rainforests, the low and high alpine zones, moorlands and the glacial zone all the way to the summit through Gilman’s point.

Just like other routes the effects of altitude are real. During the day you get exposed to the intense sun during the day and bone chilling temperatures at night. This is a trip of a lifetime with opportunities to discover what you are capable of as you push your boundaries to achieve your goal and forge everlasting bonds with fellow trekkers.

Kilimanjaro Marangu Route 6 Days

Day 01: Marangu Gate (1,860m / 6,102ft) to Mandara Hut (2,715m / 8,907ft)

Time: 5 – 6 hours

After a quick drive from either Moshi or Arusha towns, we arrive at the Marangu Gate. While the luggage gets weighed and the support team (porters, guides and cooks) get organized, we settle down to a hearty lunch. Once all the expedition logistics are sorted we begin our trek into the lush mountain Montane forest filled with an abundance of trees.

Here you will get a good chance of seeing various species of monkey most notably the Colobus monkey. As we gain altitude we climb a series of gradients and steps cut into the narrow foot trail that snakes through the thick forest canopies. Hours later we arrive at Mandara Hut where we take a well deserved break at the hut. The camp consists of wooden huts with a capacity of six to eight campers each. The cabins, so to speak have solar lighting and water is available onsite as well.

Included meals: Lunch Dinner

Day 02: Mandara Hut to Horombo Hut (3,705m / 12,156ft)

Time: 6 – 7 hours

We start off this day by clearing the rest of the rain forest and traversing the Maundi Crater as we enter into the Moorland zone. On this day you will get a great view of Kibo peak and its glaciers and you will get to see the giant grounsels and lobelias which are endemic to the high East African mountains such as Mount Kenya and Ruwenzori. This zone is is characterized by moorlands and grasslands. At the end of the trek we will end up at Horombo Hut in time for much needed rest and nourishment. Overnight in a wooden hut.

Included meals: Breakfast Lunch Dinner

Day 03: Horombo Hut Acclamatization Day

This is the hut where you will be able to meet climbers descending and you may get an opportunity to hear some stories of great quests made by these climbers higher up as they tackled Kibo. On this acclimatization day, we will get to hike towards the Mawenzi hut, by the Zebra Rocks for about 3 hours up and 1.5 hours down. This hike will further assist with the process of acclimatization by helping climbers acclimatize by climbing high and sleeping low. This is one of the best ways to shock the body into acclimatizing for high altitude without the increased risk of altitude sickness.

Note: For those on the Marangu route 5 days itinerary will only have the luxury of stopping here for one night before proceeding to Kibo Hut.

Included meals: Breakfast Lunch Dinner

Day 04: Horombo Hut to Kibo Hut (4,730m / 15,518ft)

Time: 6 – 7 hours

The day starts off early with a trek through the remaining Moorland and into the Alpine dessert popularly known as the “Saddle”. It gets its name from the impression of the area between Mawenzi and Kibo peaks.

There are two routes to Kibo Hut from Horombo. The upper route (right fork) which was trekked the day before but is about an hour longer and has rocky and rough terrain. The lower route (left fork) is the easier and faster route and affords climbers the option of passing by the last watering point before returning from the summit.

We get to Kibo hut in the afternoon in time for nourishment and rest. This night we sleep early to get rest and prepare for the summit push later that night. Kibo has no water but one can purchase it or soft drinks from the hut office. Overnight in a mountain hut.

Included meals: Breakfast Lunch Dinner

Day 05: Kibo Hut to Uhuru Peak (5,895m / 19,341 ft) then descend to Horombo Hut (3,705m / 12,156 ft)

Time: 14 – 16 hours

This leg of the trip takes Trekkers through the Glacial zone to the Uhuru peak (the Summit) through Hans Meyer Cave (5,150m), Gilman’s Point (5,681m) and Stellar point (5,739 meters). The route is slow, steep and rocky up to the summit but quick down all the preceding zones. Trekkers will be woken up at 11:30pm for hot tea and biscuits. After a quick gear check, the trek in the dark starts off at midnight. There are sporadic freezing winds and not much to see until dawn when the sun begins to rise over Mawenzi and the Tsavo plains in Kenya.

It takes about seven to eight hours to reach the summit. After a brief rest at Stellar point, you then have another 156 meters of altitude to gain as you walk around the crater rim to Uhuru Peak (5,895 meters).

From the summit there is another seven to eight hours of trekking to Horombo Hut with a quick stop over at Kibo Hut to pick up your stuff and have a quick breakfast. This is where you will notice the richness of oxygen and moisture in the air as well as increase in warmth.

Included meals: Breakfast Lunch Dinner

Day 06: Horombo Hut to Marangu Gate (1,860m / 6,102 ft)

Time: 5 – 6 hours

Today’s trek takes you down the rainforest through Mandara Hut down to the gate. The walk is easy but with potential stress on ankles and knees as you descend as well as effects of descending on the previous day from the summit. Upon reaching the gate and signing out there will be the subsequent presentation of climbing certificates for those who reached either Gilman’s Point, Stellar Point or Uhuru Peak.

It is then customary to give out gratuities to the guides and porters before bidding them farewell and being transported to the respective hotels in Moshi and Arusha. Depending on your onward travel arrangements, you will be transferred to the airport at the appropriate day and time or transferred by road to Nairobi as your final destination or to catch your onward flight back home.

Included meals: Breakfast

Total distance covered is 69.4 Km /43 miles

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