5 Days Marangu Route

  • Icon5 days
  • IconKilimanjaro
  • IconMarangu Route

Marangu Route is the oldest route for reaching the top of Kilimanjaro, it is also the cheapest and well established. It has earned the moniker of tourist route because of its popularity among the trekkers.Accommodation is in huts and no camping equipment is needed. Coca cola was served in the huts back in days and the tag has since stuck.

One Of The Popular Routes
It’s certainly not the easiest route but the wide, direct and comfortable paths and gradual slopes make it less challenging.  Inexperienced backpackers and those lacking technical knowledge of climbing can access the Marangu Route. But it’s definitely not easy, so those with poor fitness levels should stay away. So you can follow our Health And Safety Guide On Kilimanjaro & be prepared for it.
Less Scenic And Crowded
Ascent and descent are on the same route so it gets crowded. The quick ascent means there is less time for acclimatization which one can know through the Altitude Sickness While Climbing Kilimanjaro and the main contributing factor to the low success rates, besides it being the preferred route of inexperienced, underprepared trekkers. Though the Marangu Route covers the moorlands, varied vegetation, and different climate zones, high altitude deserts and craters, it doesn’t offer much for variety as the same route is used for ascent and descent.
For more detailed information on the Marangu Route contact Lifetime Safaris.

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1445 USD (2-3 pax)


1295 USD (4-6 pax)

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Your Itinerary


Itinerary Details

Start Location
End Location
Over Night
Marangu gate
Horombo Hut
Eileens Tree lodge
12+ Old

Select A Day

Day 1: Marangu gate to Mandara Hut

Walking distance: approximately 12 km Duration: 5 hours

Altitudes: Marangu gate (1,980 m) – Mandara Hut (2,700 m)

Vegetation zone: Montane forest, low alpine zone (heath and moorland)

After your breakfast, you will depart with your driver from Arusha/Moshi to the Marangu Gate for necessary paperwork and official formalities before you start your trek. You will be accompanied by porters who will carry your major pieces of equipment while you carry all your necessary item which you need frequent access to on the trek on a backpack

After making your way through a small stream and couple of waterfalls you will reach Kisamboni picnic area, in about thirty minutes and have your lunch. After that it’s another 90-minute trek to reach Mandara hut (2,700 m). At this point, the initial rainforests have started to dwindle and have given way to low alpine regions characterised by heather moorlands. This is the only route which has dormitory style sleeping huts with added benefits of fresh spring water to drink and flush toilets. Mandara hut is the site of your overnight and if you are feeling particularly adventurous you can head to the Maundi Crater and check the view of Mawenzi peak and some blue monkeys and black-and-white colobus monkeys.

Day 2: Mandara Hut to Horombo Hut

Day two of your trek begins after a light breakfast. No sooner have you started you would have made your way through the last vestiges of the montane forests, leaving behind Maundi crater to enter the heather moorland vegetation zone. Besides the heath, you will also see the beautiful Senecio and lobelias and weather permitting, views of the volcanic twin peak peaks of Kibo and Mawenzi. You will have a brief stopover for lunch. Food and hydration are important and the trek is long high altitude trek. After another 90 minute trek, you will reach Horombo hut (3,720 m), which has a capacity of 120 beds with hot water to wash. A fulfilling evening meal later you will hit the bed for sleep. The temperatures fall below freezing points at night, make sure you have adequate and proper warm clothes in your backpack. If possible avail an extra day at this site to enable better acclimitization for the arduous trek ahead.

Day 3: Horombo Hut to Kibo Hut

Your ascend will continue after breakfast. From this site, you have two options to reach the Saddle, between Mawenzi and Kibo. We recommend forsaking the upper route which is rocky and tough for the lower route which is relatively easier and is en route the “Last Water Point” (4,200 m). Fill up your camelbacks and enjoy a picnic lunch at the water point before resuming your trek to the Kibo hut (4,700 m), nestled in the alpine desert. The night accommodation at Kibo huts consists of 60 bunk beds in blockhouses built with stones. Platform toilets are also available to save you the trouble of relieving yourself in stark barren surroundings.

Day 4: Summit Attempt: Kibo Hut to Uhuru peak to Horombo Hut

Walking distance: approximately 6 km ascent and 21 km descent

Duration: 8 hours to Uhuru and 6 hours to Horombo Hut

Altitudes: Kibo Hut (4,700 m) – Uhuru peak (5,895 m) – Horombo Hut (3,720 m)

Vegetation zones: rocky, ice-capped summit

The ascent to the summit begins at midnight. So you will have an early dinner and turn in early by 7 pm. Make sure your gear is in order. ski sticks, trekking poles, thermal clothing, headlamps et al and importantly hydrate yourself well. After some and biscuits you will embark in what is the most challenging trek of the journey so far. The first part is a steep challenging trek and after 90 minutes of trekking, you will pass Williams Point (5,000 m). As you continue the trek you would reach Hans Meyer Cave (5,150 m). Your pre-summit goal of Gillman’s Point is now just about an hour of a trek away. The trek to the Gilman point is a tricky one as it’s a steep and zigzag ascent negotiating large rocks. From Gilman’s point, it’s just about an hour and a half to reach the summit at Uhuru peak. Along the way, you will also pass Stella point (5,752 m), the site where the other route converges. The trail to the Uhuru is laden with snow and scree along the crater’s rim. Once you summit at Uhuru pull out your camera to capture the breathtaking vistas that open up to you and also capture photos with your team to mark a personal milestone. Bask in the glory of your achievement for a few moments and then make your descent towards Kibo hut (4,700 m) where you will have your lunch. From Kibo hut, it is just another there hour descent to reach Horombo hut (3,720 m) where you will have your dinner. Overnight accommodation will be in the Horombo Hut.

Day 5: Horombo Hut to Marangu gate

Walking distance: approximately 27 km Duration: 6 hours

Altitudes: Horombo Hut (3,720 m) – Marangu gate (1,980 m)

Vegetation zones: low alpine zone (heather and moorland), montane forest

This is your last day on Kilimanjaro and after breakfast you will continue your descent from Horombo Hut passing through Mandara hut (2,700 m) where you will have a brief halt for lunch. After that, you will resume your descent till you reach the Marangu gate where you will receive your summit certificates(green certificate – Gilman’s Point and gold certificate – Uhuru Peak) from the park office as a recognition of your efforts. After that, you will sign the register book and mark the end of your climb.

We recommend that you tip the porters when you and all your equipment reaches the gate. At the gate a driver will be waiting for you to transport you back to your hotel.

Trip Details

  • Included
    All meals on the safari
    All Park entrance fees
    All prices are quoted in US Dollars
    Camping equipment if applicable (tents
    sleeping bags
    table and chairs)
    Flying Doctors rescue insurance for the time of the tour with Shadows of Africa.
  • Not Included
    Any sightseeing
    excursions and optional activities other than those specified
    Entry visas
    International flights
    Tips and gratuities to safari crew – recommended: 15-20 USD per day to safari driver
    10 – 15 USD per day to safari cook
    Travel insurance
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