UMBWE ROUTE (6 days/5nights)

The Umbwe Route is a seldom traveled, steeper, more aggressive and challenging route up Kilimanjaro. This route is renowned for its stunning scenery; trekking through the five distinct climatic zones; from tropical rainforest to the glaciered peak. We recommend this route be used only by those with extensive climbing experience and training. Designed for those looking for a challenge, this is the trip for you!

        We will meet you on your arrival at Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO) and transfer you to your overnight hotel which is located near Arusha. 

            Overnight: Ilboru Safari Lodge or similar (Bed & Breakfast)



            This day is designed to give you plenty of time to relax, pack and recoup from the long journey. Your Kilimanjaro climbing team leader and guides will meet you in the late morning for a short pre-climb orientation. During the orientation, you will meet the Trip Leader and the Guides and you will go through the climbing program, discuss about the mountaineering and group expedition ethics, hazards on the mountain, sickness prevention, treatment and evacuation procedures. Our guides will go through our group camping gear and demonstrate the use and operation of all the equipment. They will also show you and demonstrate the use and operation of our safety equipments especially Emergency Supplemental Oxygen Tanks, Pulse Oximeter, Gamow Hyperbaric Chamber and our climbing expedition First Aid Kits. Safety is our first priority on the mountain. The guides will answer any questions you have about the climb. We will do equipment check with each person to be sure that you are fully prepared. 

            Overnight: Ilboru Safari Lodge or similar (Bed & Breakfast)


Day 3: UMBWE CAMP (9,700’) (Day 1 on the mountain)

            The majority of the hike on this first day is through the Montaine Forest. Lush vegetation with very old trees and lilts of ferns and mosses mark this as an area that gets reliable rain year round. The forest abounds with wildlife; small bushbuck & duikers as well as monkeys. There is also rich and varied bird life. The first three hours or so, is on gently rising land before steepening for the last two hours. The camp for the night is in a small clearing on the trail.


Day 4: BARRANCO CAMP (13,000’) (Day 2 on the mountain)

            Shortly after starting the hike the forest gradually gives away to the giant heath. The trail has been following a ridge for some time and as it ascends through the heath land the ridge narrows and sharpens, finally becoming knife edge with steep drops on each side. As the height of the heath reduces there are stunning views of both Kilimanjaro’s southern flank and across the Mount Meru some 50 miles away. Wildlife changes with the vegetation, jackals may be heard barking and the huge Lammergeyer seen circling overhead. The camp is overlooking the Barranco Valley with views up towards Arrow Glacier.


Day 5: ARROW GLACIER (16,000’) (Day 3 on the mountain)

            Today we will hike approximately 3 hours to Lava Tower, a 300 foot high volcanic lava plug that juts out of the side of the mountain. For those interested, we will climb to the top of Lava tower to enjoy the scenery of the surrounding areas and descend down to the base for lunch. Adequately, this will increase your performance by acclimatizing high on top of the tower. This will be our first introduction to the alpine zone, with the only plant life being the hardiest of grasses and lichens. With the Western Breach ascent route in full view, we will spend the next 3 hours climbing to the base of the route where we will camp near Arrow Glacier. We will have a spectacular view of our final ascent route up the Western Breach wall and the Breach Icicle.


Day 6: SUMMIT CRATER CAMP (18,500') (Day 4 on the mountain)

            We will wind our way up the Western Breach non-technical climbing route for about six hours to the crater rim of the main Kilimanjaro summit massif. Those who still have the energy on top can explore the inner crater and the ash pit before moving to our highest camp on the crater floor.  This spectacular high camp is next to the Furtwrangler Glaciers, with stunning views westward towards Mount Meru and the setting African sun. The high altitude of crater camp makes it a physically demanding experience, but the reward is a radical scene of towering glaciers rising from the harsh rock landscapes.


Day 7: SUMMIT DAY and MWEKA CAMP (10,500') (Day 5 on the mountain)

            We will start our ascent to the summit (19,340') early enough in the morning to be on the summit by 9:00am.  This final ascent is only 800 feet and can be undertaken after sunrise and a leisurely breakfast or just early enough to be at the summit during sunrise. This is quite a contrast to the 3,000 feet slog required to summit via all the other ascent routes on Kilimanjaro. The rewards of seeing the summit crater glaciers and standing on Africa’s highest peak are well worth the efforts. After taking in the view from Uhuru Peak we will begin the long descent through Barafu Hut and down to our final camp near Mweka Hut.


Day 8:  HIKE OUT & DRIVE BACK TO ARUSHA (Day 6 on the mountain) Today’s hike will take us about 4 to 5 hours to make the 4,500 feet descent to the park gate. We will check out and receive Kilimanjaro climbing certificate at the park gate office, then eat our lunch and say goodbye to our mountain staff. After lunch we will drive through very beautiful coffee plantations and small villages  of the Chagga people back to Arusha, for a nice hot shower or swimming at the lodge and relax, looking forward to go on safari next day.    

            Overnight: Ilboru Safari Lodge or similar (Bed & Breakfast)