7 day Umbwe Route

Umbwe route is the hardest but most spectacular and direct way to reach Uhuru Peak. Extra days can be added to our itinerary to explore or relax along the route or to camp in the Karanga River valley. Accommodation on the mountain is in tents; you will need a sleeping bag and mat. The porters will pitch the tents for you.

Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro Umbwe route is among the hardest but most spectacular and direct way to reach Uhuru Peak. It follows a forested ridge to the moorlands, and then traverses below the Southern Ice-fields to reach the Barafu Route which is followed to the summit. An early start is made on the summit day to reach Stella Point, on the Crater Rim at dawn. Uhuru Peak lies a further 40 minutes along the rim.

1Day 1: Arrival Day
Upon arriving at Kilimanjaro International Airport you will be meeting with our representative. After greetings you will be transferred to Moshi town to a designated accommodation for hot shower and overnight.
2Day 2:
Before the climb starts there is an hour's drive to the start of the trek at 1650 m this is an opportunity to be introduced to the assistant guide, the cook and porters, who will do their best to assist you to get to the summit. From here we walk thorough farms and montane forest to Umbwe cave camp (2850 m – 1200 m of ascent). Now a National Park, Kilimanjaro's lush rainforest, lower slopes are home to many beautiful birds and animals and by walking quietly, we have good chances of spotting black andwhite colobus monkeys as well. Climbing slowly and steadily, we eventually reach Umbwe cave, where the tents are pitched amongst the lichen covered trees.
3Day 3:
Continue the climb through the forest and then emerge into the giant heather zone. You then climb through a rocky area to the camp site near the Barranco hut (3950 m).
4Day 4: Acclimatization day.
This is a rest day at Barranco hut at 3950m. You can take a morning or afternoon walk up hill for 3400 m to assist in the acclimatization – sleeping in your tent at a lower altitude. The camping area is the moorland zone – mixture of rocky outcrops, giant lobelias and scenarios. Birds are common around the camp site – especially the streaky seed eater and alpine chat. You are also likely to see the four striped grass mouse seeking out food scraps.
5Day 5:
The trail climbs up the formidable looking Barranco wall – but like many such trails it looks worse from a distance. Once on the wall care is needed in a few exposed places and here the guides will assist. Mostly however it is a good track, although steep, and you should reach the top of the wall in just over an hour. The trail then undulates towards the south east before dropping steeply to the Karanga valley camp site at 4100 m.
6Day 6:
An undulating route goes from the Karanga valley to the junction of the Mweka route. From here there is a final pull up to the Barafu hut. (Barafu – ice is Swahili). Total ascent 600 m. There is little vegetation here at 4600 m, and the tents are pitched between rocky outcrops. There are however magnificent views of the peak and of Mawenzi in the east. Bird life is restricted to thewhite necked ravens with their echoing croak as they wheel about scavenging for food.
7Day 7:
This is the toughest day of the whole trek – 10 -15 hours walking at high altitude over steep ground. Total ascent 1300m. We set off from Barafu hut at 1.00 a.m with head torches to climb the steep scree slope to Stella Point on the crater rim – 5700 m. We should reach the rim just in time to enjoy the incredible spectacle of sunrise. From Stella Point it is another 1-1 and a half hours along the rim to Uhuru Peak – 5895 m. Snow may be encountered on the scree slope and walking poles are useful for ascent and descent. After the exhilaration of the summit you descend slowly to your overnight camp for a late breakfast and 2 hour rest in your tent. All too soon the guide will be urging you to start the long descent to Mweka hut, via the heather moorland. You reach Mweka hut camping area in late afternoon for a deserved rest.
8Day 8: Mweka camp (3090m) - Mweka Gate (1641m)

Hiking time: 4 to 6 hours
Habitat: Forest
Distance: Approximately 8.5 km

After an early and well-deserved breakfast, it is a short 4 to 6 hour and scenic hike back to the Park gate. Some hikers do experience knee problems which could make the descend longer than planned.

It is strongly recommended not to pay your porters any tips until you and all your gear have reached the gate safely.

At Mweka gate you sign your name and details in a register. This is also where successful climbers receive their summit certificates. Those climbers who reached Stella Point (5739m) are issued with green certificates and those who reached Uhuru Peak (5895m) receive gold certificates.

From the Mweka Gate you will continue down into the Mweka village, normally a muddy 3 km (1 hour) hike. After sign out to the park gate you will be transferred to a hotel in Moshi for hot shower probably dinner and overnight or otherwise in the evening you will be transferred to Kilimanjaro International Airport to connect with your flight back home.

- 2 transfers from Moshi to Umbwe gate – return.

- 3 meals per day while trekking – vegetarian/non-vegetarian.

- 7 days Kilimanjaro climb – Umbwe route.

- 6 nights accommodation in tents while trekking.

- 2 nights hotel accommodation bed & breakfast in Moshi before and after the climb.

- All park entrance fees, and government levies.

- English speaking mountain guide and assistant.

- Porters – Minimum of 3 per client.

- First Aid Kit including Oxygen Kit.

- Camping Equipments including sleeping tents, sleeping mats, dining tent, chairs and table.