Mount Kilimanjaro Routes

MARANGU ROUTE also known as Coca cola route is the easiest and the most popular. A trek on this route is typically sold as a five day, four night return package, although at least one extra night is highly recommended to help acclimatization, especially if you just flown in to Tanzania or arrived from the lowlands. Other route on kill usually takes six days (which cost more, but helps acclimatization) and pass through a wide range of scenic areas than the marangu route although trekkers must use tent.

UMBWE ROUTE is the much steeper with a more direct way to the temptation to gain altitude too quickly. Unfortunately some trekking companies now push attractively priced five day four night option on the umbwe route in an effort to attract business. Although the route is direct the top, very steep section up the western breach is often covered in ice or snow which makes it impassable or extremely dangerous. Many trekkers who attempt it without proper acclimatization are forced to turn back. An indication of its seriousness is that until fairly recently the western breach was considered a technical mountaineering route. It has only gained in popularity recently because of intense competition for business and crowding on other route. The bottom line is that you should only consider this route if you’re experienced and properly equipped and travelling with a reputable operator. Reliable operators will suggest an extra night for acclimatization.

Another thing to watch to watch out for is operators who try to sell a short version of the machame route, which ascends the machame route for the first few stages, but then switches near the top to the final section of the umbwe route and summits via the western breach. This version is a day shorter (and thus less expensive) than the standard machame route, but the same consideration outline in the preceding paragraph apply here and you should only consider this combination if youre experienced, acclimatized and properly equipped.

The increasingly popular has a gradual ascent, including a spectacular day contouring the southern slopes before approaching the summit via the top section of the mweka route.

Also become increasingly popular in recent years start near the Kenyan border and goes up the northern side of the mountain. It’s possible to do this in five days but six is better. The attractive shira plateau route (also called the londorosi route) iis somewhat longer than the others but good for acclimatization if you start trekkinf from londoroosi gate (rather than driving all the way too shira track road head) or if you take an extra day at shira hut.
Trekkers on the machame and umbwe route descend via marangu route or the mweka route which is for descent only. Some marangu treks also descent on the mweka route.