Rongai Route: 9 Days

Rongai Route: 9 Days



The Rongai Route is one of the least crowded routes on Kilimanjaro and is thought to have the best chance of viewing wildlife

Tanzania Holiday Guide

My name is Idda – I’m your Adventure Planner.

Idda Oakes

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If you have any questions or enquiries, please contact me on + 44 1242 906 571 or alternatively you can use the contact form. 

    Day 1: Arrival – Moshi
    Arrive at Kilimanjaro International airport. Meet Massawe Adventures at Kilimanjaro International Airport and transfer to Moshi Lodge. Overnight Massawe Adventure Lodge.

    Day 2: Local Tour
    After breakfast, you will be met by Massawe Adventures staff with a private vehicle and taken to the beautiful Materuni waterfalls. You will then explore the indigenous Chagga culture and village. Followed by a coffee production tour. Afterwards, you will be driven back to the Moshi Lodge. Overnight Massawe Adventure Lodge.

    Day 3: Rongai Gate (1,800m/5,900ft) to First Cave Camp (2,600m/8,400ft)
    Elevation Gain: 800 metres / 2,500 feet.
    This morning you will drive for approximately 2 hours to the Rongai Gate near the Kenyan border. After registering at the gate, begin your climb to Uhuru Peak, the roof of Africa. During the first day, you will hike through forests where you may see and hear wildlife. Eat lunch on the trail before continuing to the first campsite. Rongai ascends via the less forested northern side of the mountain. The Rongai Route is one of the least crowded routes on Kilimanjaro and is thought to have the best chance of viewing wildlife.

    Day 4: First Cave Camp (2,600m/8,400ft) to Kikelewa Camp (3,600m/11,800ft)
    Elevation Gain: 1,000 metres / 3,400 feet
    Day two takes you through Kilimanjaro’s moorland. During this day, view Mawenzi Peak ahead. The morning hike is steep and here you may begin to feel the altitude. You can stop to rest and explore at the First Cave Camp and lunch is often eaten close to the Second Cave. The afternoon is gentler as you contour across the moorland to camp in a sheltered valley at Kikelewa or the Third Cave. This is a long day with a trekking time of 6-7 hours.

    Day 5: Kikelewa Camp (3,600m/11,800ft) to Mawenzi Tarn (4,330m/14,200ft)
    Elevation Gain: 730 metres / 2,400 feet
    This day is an acclimatisation day, allowing you to hike in the morning and rest in the afternoon and evening. The hike is relatively short but steep, but you are rewarded with superb all-round views and a tangible sense of wilderness. Mawenzi Tarn campsite is situated below Mawenzi Peak and offers stunning views of both Mawenzi and Kibo.

    Day 6: Mawenzi Tarn (4,330m/14,200ft) to Kibo Camp (4,700m/15,400ft)
    Elevation Gain: 370 metres / 1,200 feet
    Cross the lunar-style landscape of the saddle between the peaks on this day to arrive at the high camp, visiting the site of a plane crash en route. Kibo Camp is situated directly below the summit cone, giving spectacular views over the Kenyan plains and Mawenzi and upwards to the climb that lies ahead. After lunch, spend your time resting in preparation for your summit attempt.

    Day 7: Kibo Camp (4,700m/15,400ft) to Uhuru Peak (5,895m/19,340ft) to Horombo Hut (3,720m/12,200ft)
    Elevation Gain: 1,195 metres /, 3,940 feet
    Elevation Loss: 2,175 metres / 7,140 feet
    Around midnight, begin the final ascent to Uhuru Peak, the highest point in Africa. For the next six hours, hike by the light of your flashlight. The ascent to the crater rim is the most challenging part of the entire trek. The trail is very steep until you reach the crater rim at Gilman’s Point. The hike from Gilman’s Point to Uhuru Peak is a gradual climb and, as far as hikes go, not very difficult. The altitude however makes the hike long and tiring. After summit celebrations, you will descend to Kibo Huts. You will eat here before continuing your descent to Horombo Huts. This will seem surprisingly fast. The total time spent walking on this day is around 14 hours, so be prepared for a very tough day. Later in the evening enjoy your last dinner on the mountain and a well-earned sleep.

    Day 8: Horombo Hut (3,720m/12,200ft) to Marangu Gate (1,830m/6,000ft)
    Elevation Loss: 1,890 metres / 6,200 feet
    After breakfast, finish the trek with a descent to Marangu Gate. Your last hike on Kilimanjaro is a beautiful one, passing through Kilimanjaro’s cloud forest. Watch your step during the descent, as the trail can be slippery. This trek will take approximately 5-6 hours. At the gate, you will be met and transferred back to Moshi.

    Day 9: Departure – Moshi
    Optional exploration of the town/souvenir shopping trip and other experiences are available depending on the client’s areas of interest.
    Massawe Adventures will ensure the client is transported to Kilimanjaro International airport in time for departure.

    Additional Costs:
    The Hiring of clothing, sleeping mats, sleeping bags, walking poles etc.Tipping to your guides, cook and porters
    The standard recommendation for this is USD$20 per day to the head guide, $15 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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