Mount Kilimanjaro is the highest peak in Tanzania and usually known as the roof of Africa. Kilimanjaro is the only one in seven summits which you can reach to the top without any technical requirements. This makes Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro for Beginners an opportunity to start with their summit journey with ease. It offers the beautiful 360-degree scenic views of the country to enjoy for the climbers.
So you want to climb Kilimanjaro, but don’t know a thing about it?
This guide is for you. It takes the most frequently asked questions like which route is best to you, the best time to climb, fitness training, how to acclimatize to high altitude, and prevent altitude sickness, gear required. Let’s dive right in.
Truth about Kilimanjaro
Kilimanjaro is the tallest freestanding mountain of Africa on the tail end of the Great Rift Valley with a massive geological fog that is slowly ripping apart Africa and could be seen in the gorgeous bluffs, Lakes and the volcanoes.
- Kilimanjaro was first climbed in 1889 by a German named Hans Meyer and now has become the most popular high altitude treks in the world.
- Only around 70% of people make it to the summit every year at the Uhuru peak.
- The main thing you should as a beginner is, take it slowly; pole, pole as the porters say in the Swahili language.
- The longer you take the higher is your percentage of making it to the summit.
Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro for Beginners wouldn’t be possible without the porters, guides, cooks and other mountain crew. They are the super Humans of Mount Kilimanjaro who show their effort every single day, not for themselves but for you to reach the summit.
“Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro is not about conquering the mountain, but it is all about conquering ourselves with a never give up attitude”
How Long Does it take to Climb Kilimanjaro?
The adventure begins by climbing couple of thousands of feet from one of the popular Kilimanjaro Routes. You will be going through the main grassland at the beginning continuing towards the rainforest and other.
- The normal or general days taken to climb Kilimanjaro will depend on the type of route chosen.
- Recommended days for highest success rate would be from 8 to 9 days in a route.
- The more time taken to climb, will give you the higher success rate.
- The higher number of days will allow you for proper acclimatization.
- You will also get to sleep more time in the lower elevation and spend more time of the mountains.
- The more time you spend of the mountain depends on the success rate as longer you trek, more chances your body will get acclimatized to the altitude and you will have better chances of reaching the top.
You will be really excited to get started with walking once the porters get their bags weighed as they are limited to carry only a particular weight limit. You will need to be more careful while Climbing Kilimanjaro Solo.
“Only those who will risk going too far with more patience can possibly find out how far they can go”
How High is Kilimanjaro?
Mount Kilimanjaro is just a few degrees to the south of equator and is in the serious height of 5,892 metres above the sea level and is fourth highest of the seven summits in the world and also the tallest free Standing Mountain in the world.
There had been said different heights in the past, it was said to be more than 6000 meters by Hans Meyer. But, in the year 1951 the British cartographers concluded that the height of Mount Kilimanjaro is 5,895 meters [19,340 ft] officially.
Best Time To Climb Kilimanjaro
There are 2 main Kilimanjaro Climbing Seasons like Wet season and Dry season. The 2 dry seasons are from January to March and June to October. Climbing in rainy season is more challenging than the Dry seasons.
The Best Time To Climb Kilimanjaro would be in the Dry season and you can travel in the month of March or July for best results.
There are 5 distinct ecological zones starting from the rainforest at 7000 and 9000 ft, the moorland zone at 10,000 ft, the heather zone at 13,000 ft and the alpine dessert at the 15,000 ft. You can always experience the summer temperature at day and winter temperature at night.
You will be sleeping in the tent and campsites on the way to Kilimanjaro, so you can prefer dry days, you can also choose wet season but only if you are interested to listen to the unique noise of animals.
“Difficulties along the path of Kilimanjaro can also make your success easier with high success rate”
How Much Does It Cost To Climb Kilimanjaro?
The Cost to Climb Kilimanjaro will depend according to the type of route and number of days we choose. Every single extra day will cost you for staying and food. However, if you do not add an extra day, you may have a lower success rate.
Adding an extra day will give you an opportunity to double the success rate and make each Kilimanjaro cost worth it.
The Kilimanjaro Climb Cost can cost you anything from $1000 to $4000 and above. There are few operators providing the climb at lesser cost which is below $1,200.
The cost also depends on what type of package you are choosing, if you choose budget climb then you can save the cost with basic food and amenities. If you are choosing Luxury climb, you can successfully climb the peak, but they are a bit expensive but you will get the best amenities.
“It’s worth spending an extra dollar when you know the success”
Best Route to Climb Kilimanjaro – What Route Should I Choose?
Each and every Route in Kilimanjaro has its unique way of attracting the climbers and also the most of routes are made popular by returning climbers to Kilimanjaro.
The best route to choose is that which will give you more time for acclimatization and has the highest success rate. The longer you take the more likely you will be successful.
- You have six routes to choose from; Lemosho Route, Machame route, Marangu route, Northern Circuit Route, Rongai route and Umbwe route.
- Machame and Marangu Route are the oldest route and are called as Whiskey and Coco cola route.
- Lemosho route is the best acclimatization route with longer days.
- Rongai Route is good for rainy days and only route starts from North.
- Northern Circuit Route also has longer days and allows sleeping low and spending time in the mountains.
Tips for Climbing Kilimanjaro from Experience Experts:
A little preparation will go a long way. There is always someone who has inspired other to achieve something. Here are the reviews and tips from few success Kilimanjaro climbers:
Litoc says, “Kilimanjaro via the Machame Route”
“An amazing experience all the way to the top via the Machame Route for 7 days!
The trek was very hard and physically exhausting, but worth it! Thanks to Jerry Tanzania Tours and the whole crew for really helping us all successfully reach the Uhuru Peak. Jerry, the owner, is a very nice person and makes an extra effort make sure that our needs and concerns are properly addressed and taken care of!”
Bob E says, “A dream came through”
“Summited Mount Kilimanjaro March 13, 2018 –
I am eternally spoiled for future guided tours -whether on mountains or cities. Jerry provided our group with the most experienced, supportive and enthusiastic guides we had the pleasure of having on our trip. The food was amazing, the hospitality surreal (for a mountain trip) and the encouragement and camaraderie was appreciated and needed. Without the tremendous encouragement and support of our guides and 17 porters, I’m certain my climb would have been more difficult.
Thank you Jerry Tanzania Tours for an amazing experience to ensure our entire team of 5 summited!”
Training for Kilimanjaro – How to train for climbing Kilimanjaro?
This is the important thing to do before planning to Kilimanjaro. Every climber, “What I Wish I Knew before Climbing Kilimanjaro is how to train for Kilimanjaro.
Do not worry, you have reached the right place to get the information, there are always five steps to prepare your best to summit Kilimanjaro.
You can also get detailed information regarding the same on Beginners Guide to Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro.
- Aerobic Fitness – Do more of brisk walking, running, jogging, and short hiking.
- Endurance – You can always increase your workout with longer exercises.
- Gear- Use the shoes and backpack prior 2 weeks before climbing Kilimanjaro.
- Altitude – Prepare for Kilimanjaro by trying a few small hikes to the hills where you can adjust to the altitude.
- Know your body–Make sure you are physically fit.
Kilimanjaro Kit List – What to Pack?
Always remember, your backpack should contain drinking water, snacks, camera, and any extra clothing which you might need. Rest everything will go in the duffle bag carried by porter.
Here is the Kilimanjaro gear list:
The right gear list will help you to reach the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro in an ease. Your Kilimanjaro Gear List should consist of all the essential items rather than luxuries. Do not carry everything which you get to pack, as you should carry it to the top of the mountain. The essential items you should carry are; Clothing gear, Camping gear, Headgear, Hands and Walking gear, Footwear, Bags and Daypacks, Sleeping gear, Sun protection, Toileteries and other general accessories.
Hope the above mentioned tips will help Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro for beginners. It may be a bit of challenging but each and every challenge faced will be worth it. You will be nearer to success if you follow all the above tips.
We at Jerry Tanzania Tours make sure your safety as our priority and your success as our success. Hence our team strives hard to give you the best possible service.