Kilimanjaro Climb Machame Route: 6 days/5nights

Tour Overview

Machame Route

We usually recommend the Machame Route because it has a high success rate for reaching the summit. This route is excellent for acclimatization and incredibly scenic, passing through all the mountain’s diverse ecosystems. As a general rule, longer routes offer a higher chance of success. Therefore, we recommend more days if your time and budget allow. This is because you’ll have more time to acclimatize by climbing high and then descending to sleep each night. Additionally, there are more opportunities for rest with shorter walking days before the summit push.


Day 0: Arrival in Arusha (1,400m/4,593ft)

  • Relax at your hotel in Arusha after arriving at Kilimanjaro International Airport.
  • Meet your Safari Consultant for a briefing about the upcoming trek.

Day 1: Lemosho Trailhead (2,000m/6,600ft) to Big Tree Camp (2,800m/9,100ft)

  • Drive from Moshi to Londorossi Gate for park entry formalities.
  • Take a 4WD track to the Lemosho Trailhead.
  • Enjoy lunch before starting your trek through lush forest.
  • Look for Colobus monkeys as you ascend a sometimes-steep path.
  • Reach your first campsite, Big Tree Camp, after 3-4 hours of trekking.

Day 2: Big Tree Camp (2,800m/9,100ft) to Shira 2 Camp (3,800m/12,500ft)

  • The trek transitions from forest to a landscape of giant heather and volcanic rock.
  • Steadily ascend through rolling hills below the Shira Plateau.
  • Reach Shira 2 Camp, your destination, after a challenging full day of hiking (7-8 hours).

Day 3: Shira 2 Camp (3,800m/12,500ft) to Barranco Camp (3,850m/12,650ft) via Lava Tower (4,550m/14,900ft)

  • Experience contrasting landscapes on your climb.
  • Ascend over expansive ridgelines to Lava Tower (optional scramble to the top for views).
  • Descend steeply into the Barranco Valley, passing scenecios (large flowering plants).
  • This acclimatization trek ends at Barranco Camp, nestled in a sheltered valley.

Day 4: Barranco Camp (3,850m/12,650ft) to Karanga Camp (3,950m/13,000ft) via Barranco Wall (4,200m/13,800ft)

  • Tackle the exciting scramble up the impressive Barranco Wall.
  • Enjoy fantastic views and witness the skilled porters climbing the wall.
  • Follow an undulating path along the mountainside with spectacular views of Kibo.
  • Reach Karanga Camp, your next campsite, after approximately 3-4 hours of walking.

Day 5: Karanga Camp (3,950m/13,000ft) to Barafu Camp (4,600m/15,100ft)

  • Enjoy a steady climb towards Barafu Camp, which translates to “ice” in Swahili.
  • This camp sits on a ridge below the summit cone, marking your completion of the South Circuit.
  • The trek takes roughly 3 hours, allowing you to arrive for rest and an early dinner before the summit push.
  • Admire the twin peaks of Mawenzi and Kibo from this vantage point.

Day 6: Barafu Camp (4,600m/15,100ft) to Uhuru Peak (5,895m/19,300ft) then descending to Mweka Camp (3,110m/10,200ft)

  • Begin your pre-dawn ascent to the summit of Uhuru Peak, the highest point in Africa.
  • This challenging climb can take 6-8 hours, requiring layered clothing for extreme temperature variations.
  • Witness a breathtaking sunrise painting the sky red over Mawenzi as darkness gives way to light.
  • Reach Stella Point (5,750m/18,865ft), where you join the crater rim before the gradual climb to Uhuru Peak.
  • Descend directly to Mweka Camp for lunch, followed by a well-deserved night’s sleep.

Day 7: Mweka Camp (3,110m/10,200ft) to Mweka Gate (1,830m/6,000ft)

  • Descend through lush forest for 2-3 hours, keeping an eye out for monkeys.
  • Upon reaching Mweka Village, you’ll be transferred back to Arusha.

Day 8: Departure

  • Relax at your hotel in Arusha before being transferred to Kilimanjaro International Airport for your departure flight. This marks the end of your Kilimanjaro adventure.


Park fees
• Camping fees
• Rescue fees
• Head guide
• Assistant guides
• Cook, & porters salaries
• All food during safari except in Arusha booked on bed and breakfast
• Drinking water
• Pre and post accommodations
• Tents
• All transfers


Additional Costs:
• Hiring of clothing, sleeping mats, sleeping bags, walking poles etc.
• Tipping to your guides, cook and porters. The standard recommendation for this is USD$25 per day to the head guide, $20 per day to the assistant guide, $15 per day to the cook and $10 per day per porter. These costs are split between everyone doing the climb.

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