How to get to Mount Kilimanjaro
How to get to Mount Kilimanjaro : Mount Kilimanjaro is the highest free standing mountain in Africa and is located in the northern part of Tanzania.
The different ways to get to Mount Kilimanjaro include flying to Kilimanjaro international airport which is located close to towns such as Moshi and Arusha where hiking excursions on the mountain start. From the towns of Moshi and Arusha, tourists can enjoy views of Mount Kilimanjaro.
When a tourist is already in Arusha, one can drive to the entrance gates of Mount Kilimanjaro and begin their hiking activity. The mountain is at an altitude of 5895 meters and is amount the seven summits of the world.
Mount Kilimanjaro is also a snow capped mountain and therefore during climbing on the mountain, some glaciers can be seen along the way. Apart from this, Mount Kilimanjaro is also a strato volcano which consists of 3 volcanic cones namely Shira, Kibo and Mawenzi. Shira and Mawenzi are extinct while Kibo is dormant and can erupt again.
Before considering the best route for hiking on the mountain, one has to put in mind their health and whether they will be able to manage hiking up to the summit and back to the starting point of the hike since some routes are steep and take more days of hiking.
There are different routes which are used to climb on Mount Kilimanjaro include Lemosho route, Marangu route, Machame route, Rongai route, Umbwe route, Shira route as well as the northern route. These routes get to the mountain from different parts of Mount Kilimanjaro during safaris.
The shortest route which is used for hiking on Mount Kilimanjaro is Marangu route which takes about 5 or 6 days of hiking. The Marangu route is also the only route that has hut accommodation at Kibo hut, Mandara hut and Horombo hut.
A hiking itinerary on Mount Kilimanjaro via the Marangu route starts at the Marangu gate then to Mandara hut, from Mandara hut to Horombo, from Horombo to Kibo hut, from Kibo hut to Uhuru peak and back to Horombo hut and from there continue to Marangu gate.
Mount Kilimanjaro consists of 5 climatic zones which a trekker goes through when hiking on the mountain and they include the bushland zone, rainforest zone, moorland zone, alpine desert zone and also the arctic zone.
Guides, porters and cooks accompany the trekkers during their hiking activity on Mount Kilimanjaro. Mount Kilimanjaro is part of Kilimanjaro national park which is also home to different wildlife and bird species. The national park is managed by Tanzania National Park’s Authority (TANAPA).
Porters help with the luggage and other equipment during hikes on Mount Kilimanjaro of about 15 to 20 kg while the cooks prepare the meals for the hikers while on the mountain.
During hikes on Mount Kilimanjaro the number of days it takes to get to the summit and descend can be about 5 days or more depending on the hiking route which is used during the activity. Tourists also visit the mountain to engage in 1 day excursions on the mountain without getting to the summit.
Along the way during the hike, some of the routes are steep and others are favorable for even tourist with little climbing experience. Some of the days during hiking on Mount Kilimanjaro are used for acclimatization which makes it easier to get used to the altitude changes and to get to the summit.
Getting to the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro whose highest point is the Uhuru peak can sometimes begin as early as midnight inoder to summit by morning and enjoy watching the sunrise form the summit.
For climbing adventures on Mount Kilimanjaro, tour operators can organize these activities for the tourists. This ensures that the hiking experience is successful and the tourists do not have to worry about anything during their trip.
The best time to visit Mount Kilimanjaro is during the months of June to October and also from January to March. During the rainy months of the year, hikers on trips to the mountain are fewer in number.
As you prepare for hiking on Mount Kilimanjaro, some of the requirements include buying or renting necessary equipment, getting necessary vaccinations, a visa, booking flights and also getting in shape before climbing on the mountain.
Some of the equipment which is used for hiking on Mount Kilimanjaro includes sleeping bags. Other items which hikers can pack for the experience include gloves, hiking boots, sunglasses, sunscreen among others.
The success rate of hikes on Mount Kilimanjaro is about 50 % of the hikers make it to the summit of the mountain and back. Some of the reasons which attribute to the percentage failing to make it to the top of the mountain include altitude sickness.
Visit Mount Kilimanjaro and engage in hiking on Africa’s highest mountain as you explore the northern part of Tanzania.