Kilimanjaro V Everest Base Camp


Hoping for some advice from anyone lucky enough to have done do they compare?

I've been to Kili twice.  The first time (Rongai) i turned back c. 5400m and last time (Lemosho) I got to the summit but it was harder than I could ever have imagined.    I note that Kilimanjaro is listed as Challenging/Tough and EBC ‘merely’ Challenging.....but wondered if there was anyone who has done both and can give me an idea how the experiences compare.   Is it slightly easier because you are not camping?  or is it the rate of ascent?  Grateful for any advice anyone wants to impart whether they've done both or not!

 Thank you!

I went to Everest Base Camp in Oct 2000, and summited Kili (Shira Route) in Sept/Oct 2009.  EBC is definately easier in terms of ascent - it's a longer trip so you can acclimatise better, and although some of the sections can be full day walks it's relatively easy walking. The climb up to Namche Bazaar is pretty steep and tough because you start to feel the altitude, but the sherpas stop you going too quickly.  I found the trails on EBC pretty busy - I suspect they are even busier nowadays. It's not all uphill, which is a definate plus wrt Kili - and my trip's journey from Gorak Shep to EBC wasn't overnight, unlike the Kili summit push.  I would definately recommend doing a trip to EBC - the lure of the highest mountain on earth cannot be matched IMO. Go for it, you won't be disappointed.

Staff member

I have previously guidede both for Exodus before moving inot an office based role. I'm happy to talk through the differences and provide advice on the phone (0208 772 3914), but a brief summary is included below.

1 Grade

The tough section of Kili's grade refers to summit day and the speed of ascent to high altitudes. Although trekking days on EBC are often longer than on Rongai or Lemosho (previously Shira) the ascent in a day is usually lower and stops at teahouses, etc more frequent on the lower days. Teahouses versus camping does play a part in influencing grade, but isn't teh be all and end all as many people will sleep better in the tent (see 4 below).

2. Tough section on EBC

As Einstein mentions, the climb to Namche is steep and tiring, but once there you have time to rest and acclimatise. You don't have to turn round and walk back to Mweke or Horombo! The other tough days are generally when you get above Gorak Shep - either heading to Base Camp or the climb of Kala Pattar. As you've spent longer acclimatising, you generally don't suffer as much from altitude but you have also spent longer walking to get there and are often more fatigued.

3. Scenery

Very differnt - EBC you are surrounded by snow capped Peaks and you are always looking up, while Kili is a sole volcano (or 3 volcanoes if being picky). generally those used to walking in the Lakes, Highliands, Snowdonia prefer the scenery of teh high Khumbu around Everest.

4. Accommodation

Tea houses are generally comfortable with twin rooms and good communal dining areas. Some have solar power and (hot) showers versus a bowl of 'washy washy'. Neither tents or tea housese are sound proof - twin rooms often have thin walls - so ear plus are usful for a good nights sleep. Tea house rooms canm also be cold at higher altituides. Communal areas in tea houses are often siomilar to teh dining tent, but witha  choice of local or international meals. Snacks are available at most locatiosn en route to EMC and you definietly spend a lot more on trek.

5. Porters

Porterage and support are very similar in both locations with the Sherpa being just as friendly and helpful as the Chagge in Tanzania.

There are plenty more simialraities, and differences but quite simply if you enjoyed one - you'll love the other!


Thank you for the summary.  That helps loads.

roll on payday!

I climbed Kili last year, summited via Rongai route. Summit day was the biggest challenge but made it up and down again :-) I also loved every second I was out on the mountain.  I leave for EBC next Friday and have been apprehensive about the differences between the two, so thanks Exodus and Einstein for the posts! Think I'll just try and enjoy my last week of rest before the trip and stop worrying so much!


Hi Andrea,  

Have a fabulous couple of weeks.  Can you review your trip when you return?  I'll keep an eye out for a post by you and bear in mind your previous Kili experience!

 thank you!

No problem I'll review when I get back

No problem I'll review when I get back

If you want a harder trek to the Everest area try the three high passes.  EBC itself is straightforward.

Thanks so much for this info - did Kili in Sept this year Rongai and made it to the top and am just considering EBC for 2013 This has helped a great deal


I climbed Kili last Sept -Rongai route and summited - I am planning EBC for next year so thank you all for your observations - anyone with any other thoughts on this please post as it really helps

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