Current as of: July 23, 2024 - 18:16

Kilimanjaro Climb Rongai Route

Kilimanjaro Climb Rongai Route Trip Notes

  • Ways to Travel: Guided Group, Private Group Adventures
  • Destination: Tanzania
  • Programmes: Walking & Trekking
  • Activity Level:

    6 out of 7 - Challenging & Tough

  • 10 Days: Flight Inclusive
  • 8 Days: Land Only
  • Ages: 18+
  • Trip Code: TYW
  • Carbon Footprint: 11kg CO2e

Trip Overview

Trek the highest mountain in Africa on a route much less crowded than the Marangu and Machame trails

With a gentle gradient and sense of untouched wilderness, the Rongai Route approaches Kilimanjaro from the north and is less crowded than the most popular trails. We trek through farmlands, forest and alpine moorlands as we approach the beautiful summit cone. This route allows an extra day for acclimatisation under the imposing spires of Mawenzi before the arduous final ascent. The last climb begins in darkness but our reward is an incomparable dawn vista over the sweeping East African plains.

At a Glance

  • Five nights full-service camping in three-person tents (for twin-share and single supplement bookings), private toilet tent provided for group, two nights in comfortable hotels
  • Six days’ trekking with steep ascents and descents
  • Full porterage throughout
  • Altitude maximum: 19,340ft (5,895m); average: 13,125ft (4,000m)
  • Full moon, new moon and female crew departures available (see Dates & Prices)
  • Zanzibar and safari extensions available
  • Exodus is a member of the Kilimanjaro Porters Assistance Project (KPAP)

Highlights

  • Stand on top of a continent for an unforgettable experience
  • Rongai is less crowded than other routes on the mountain
  • Enjoy a carefully paced, six-day trek in remote wilderness
  • An extra acclimatisation day increasing the chances of summit success
  • We use one guide for every two clients
  • Exodus has one of the highest summit success rates of any operator on Kilimanjaro

Is This Trip for You?

This trip is rated Activity Level 6 (Challenging & Tough). For more information on our trip gradings please visit the Activity Level Guidelines page. If you have any queries about the difficulty of the trip please do not hesitate to contact us.

The summit day is graded Activity Level 7 (Tough) because of the high altitude and the level of physical effort needed. Please be aware many people find this day on Kilimanjaro the toughest physical challenge of their life. The rest of the trek is graded Activity Level 5 (Challenging), more as a consequence of the high altitude and extended wilderness camping than the difficulty of walking; hence the overall grading of this trek as Activity Level 6 (Challenging/Tough).

Walking conditions: This is a hard trek, which reaches an altitude of 19,340ft (5,895m). Even if you consider yourself fit, you might still find the climb very hard, depending on how well your body acclimatises to high altitude. There is no scientific way to determine how easily you acclimatise and the acclimatisation process can differ from climb to climb. Please note, walking hours stated are given as approximates only. Timings stated in the itinerary include lunch and photo stops and will vary depending on the pace of your group.

Route: We avoid the more crowded Marangu and Machame routes, preferring to approach the mountain from the north by the Rongai (Nale Moru) Route, which is considered to be an easier ascent than the main trails. We also add an extra day to the standard five-day itinerary to ensure maximum acclimatisation and to give ourselves the best possible chance of enjoying the magnificent scenery. Recent statistics indicate that the chance of reaching the summit increases by at least 20 percent if an extra day is spent acclimatising.

Last year, our groups on the Rongai Route demonstrated that this is the best six-day route on Kilimanjaro for reaching the summit. During that time, 88 percent of our clients reached Gilman’s Point and 79 percent reached Uhuru Peak, the true summit of Kilimanjaro.

Trails: Most are well defined and good quality but some forest sections can be slippery and moorland paths can become very wet in poor weather conditions. The final ascent to Uhuru Peak is almost exclusively on scree and loose rock without permanent footpaths but no technical skills are required.

Conditions: We spend time at both high and low altitude, experiencing extremely cold and quite hot conditions. You should be prepared for an early start every day on Kilimanjaro.

Group

A licenced Kilimanjaro Chief Guide is your leader. They will meet you upon arrival and give a briefing at the hotel on Day 1. During the climb, the leader is joined by assistant guides, cooks and porters. Exodus has a high guiding ratio on the mountain: one guide for every two clients. This is especially important on summit day where you may be feeling very tired. The guides are extremely experienced and are well trained in spotting the effects of altitude. Their guidance is often key to maximising your chances of reaching the summit.

Please note in the unlikely event this trip runs on one or two, we reserve the right to offer a free transfer to another date or to join a group on the same date made up of international clients from other companies.

Adult min age: 18

Min group size: 4

Max group size: 16

Itinerary

TYW Map

Land Only

  • Start City: Marangu
  • End City: Marangu

Flight Inclusive

  • Start City: London
  • End City: London

Land Only Itinerary

Day 1
Start Marangu

The adventure starts at our hotel in Marangu. There will be a trip briefing this afternoon/evening. Please bring your passport, insurance and air ticket details. The briefing will cover all aspects of your trip and will include the distribution of any equipment you have booked.

Accommodation: Kilimanjaro Mountain Resort or similar

Day 2
Begin ascent through Rongai Forest

After completing the necessary registration formalities, we transfer by road to Nale Moru (6,400ft/1,950m) to begin our climb on this seemingly untouched wilderness route. We start with a half-day walk on a small path that winds through farmland and pine plantations. It is a consistent but gentle climb through forest that shelters a variety of wildlife. We reach our first overnight stop by late afternoon at the edge of the moorland zone (8,530ft/2,600m).

Accommodation: Full-service camping

Distance covered: 4mi (7km)

Activity hours: 3-4

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 3
Climb to Kikelewa moorland

The morning walk is a steady ascent up to Second Cave (11,320ft/3,450m) with superb views of the eastern icefields on the rim of Kibo, the youngest and highest of the three volcanoes that form the entire mountain. After lunch, we leave the main trail and strike out across the moorland on a smaller path towards the jagged peaks of Mawenzi, the second of Kilimanjaro’s volcanoes. Our campsite, which we reach in late afternoon, is in a sheltered valley near Kikelewa Caves (11,810ft/3,600m).

Accommodation: Full-service camping

Distance covered: 9mi (15km)

Activity hours: 6-7

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4
Steady ascent beneath Mawenzi; afternoon acclimatisation

A steep climb up grassy slopes is rewarded by superb panoramas of the Kenyan plains to the north. We leave vegetation behind close to Mawenzi Tarn (14,200ft/4,330m), spectacularly situated in a cirque beneath the towering cliffs of Mawenzi. The afternoon will be free to rest or to explore the area as an aid to acclimatisation.

Accommodation: Full-service camping

Distance covered: 5mi (8km)

Activity hours: 3-4

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 5
Cross lunar desert of the Saddle to Kibo, at the bottom of summit cone

We leave our attractive campsite to cross the lunar desert of the Saddle between Mawenzi and Kibo to reach Kibo campsite (15,420ft/4,700m) at the bottom of the Kibo crater wall by early afternoon. The remainder of the day is spent resting in preparation for the final ascent before a very early night.

Accommodation: Full-service camping

Distance covered: 6mi (10km)

Activity hours: 5-6

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 6
Early start to reach Gillman's Point in time for sunrise over the crater rim; on to Uhuru Peak, the highest point in Africa. Descend to Horombo

We start the final (and by far the steepest and most demanding) part of the climb by torchlight at around midnight. It will be extremely cold as we walk very slowly in darkness on a switchback trail through loose volcanic scree to reach the crater rim at Gillman’s Point (18,650ft/5,685m). We rest for a short time to enjoy the spectacular sunrise over Mawenzi. Those who are still feeling strong can make the three-hour round trip along the snow-covered rim to the true summit of Kilimanjaro, Uhuru Peak (19,340ft/5,895m), passing close to the spectacular glaciers and ice cliffs that still occupy most of the summit area. The descent to Kibo Hut (15,420ft/4,700m) is surprisingly fast and, after refreshments and rest, we continue descending to reach our final campsite at Horombo (12,200ft/3,720m). This is an extremely long and hard day with between 11 and 15 hours of walking at high altitude.

Accommodation: Full-service camping

Distance covered: 6mi (10km)

Activity hours: 11-15

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 7
Continue descent to Mandara and Marangu

A sustained descent with wide views across the moorland takes us into the lovely forest around Mandara (8,860ft/2,700m), the first stopping place on the Marangu route. The trail continues through semi-tropical vegetation to the national park gate at Marangu (6,000ft/1,830m). We leave the local staff to return to our hotel in Marangu by mid-afternoon for a well-earned, shower and beer.

Accommodation: Kilimanjaro Mountain Resort or similar

Distance covered: 14mi (22km)

Activity hours: 5-6

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 8
End Marangu

Depending on the time of your return flight, the day can be spent resting at the hotel or exploring the village for souvenirs. If you’d like the adventure to continue, speak to your sales representative about joining our safari extension, which takes in three national parks over three days, or a chilled post-climb escape to Zanzibar.

Meals included: Breakfast

Extend Your Trip

Safari Extension

This extension is the perfect introduction to the wildlife of Africa, taking in three unique national parks over three days. The Ngorongoro Conservation Area is as breath-taking for its landscapes as it is attractive for its animals. The walls of the crater provide a home for an abundance of animals, acting like a giant enclosure. As a result, only a few of the vast numbers of animals actually migrate out of the crater. Tarangire National Park has the largest number of elephants in the northern part of Tanzania and is dotted with baobab trees. Finally, Lake Manyara National Park is small but supports a high density of mammals including tree-climbing lions. The detailed itinerary can be found here.

Please ask your sales representative for more details.

 

Price per person

£ 200


Mandatory Single Supplement

£ 560

Zanzibar

If you are keen to end your trip on a (very) relaxed note, Zanzibar is a place to walk on the beach, explore the colourful offshore reef, or simply soak up the sun. You can choose to add as many extra nights to your trip as you wish; your time on the island will be at leisure. We transfer to Nairobi Airport and fly to Zanzibar; on arrival we transfer to the southwest coast of the island. The accommodation used, Fumba Beach Lodge, is far from other developments, the peace is all encompassing and there is a long strip of private beach, pool, spa, diving centre and spacious rooms. Please note, on Zanzibar you will be met and transferred between the airport and hotel but you are not escorted or guided. If you choose to take advantage of this opportunity then we can arrange flights for you to Zanzibar and book the hotel on half board and include all the transfers needed. We can provide you with a price once we know your requirements.

We can also book other hotels for you on the island including Kichanga Lodge and Tembo Hotel.

Please contact your sales representative for details.

Altitude warning

This trip includes one or more nights over 11,480ft (3,500m) above sea level, where there is a genuine risk of being affected by acute mountain sickness (AMS). If left untreated, AMS can be life-threatening. We expect most clients to experience some mild symptoms of altitude sickness, such as headaches, shortness of breath while walking or sleeplessness. Our leaders are trained to identify symptoms of severe AMS and if a client requires extra care, arrangements such as rapid descent, will be made immediately.

On some days, this trip climbs faster than commonly published ascent-rate recommendations. Based upon an assessment by our external safety and medical advisors and our risk-assessment process, we consider the ascent rate acceptable due to the additional safety measures in place for our customers. All our trips operating at high altitude meet our internal altitude-safety standards, which minimise the risk of serious incidents occurring while travelling at altitude.

Several medical conditions or medications can reduce your body’s ability to acclimatise. This may affect your performance and make you more susceptible to AMS. If you are worried about any pre-existing conditions, such as heart conditions, or your overall physical ability, you must seek medical advice prior to booking. The drug Diamox (also known as acetazolamide and normally only available on prescription) has been shown to aid acclimatisation in some individuals, and therefore may reduce the risk of AMS. Clients considering using Diamox should speak to their doctor about the drug, its side-effects and a prescription. While we endeavour to assist all our clients in achieving their goals, there may be times when your leader decides to delay or stop your ascent based on your overall condition or the onset of AMS.

If you are not taking out Exodus Travel Insurance, make sure your policy covers you up to the maximum altitude on this trip (if trekking in the Himalaya your policy should also cover the use of a helicopter for emergency medical evacuation).

Accommodation

Kilimanjaro Mountain Resort and Kilimanjaro camps

Kilimanjaro Climb Rongai Route

On this adventure, we spend five nights camping in three-person tents and two nights in a comfortable hotel.

Marangu: Kilimanjaro Mountain Resort (nights 1 and 7)

Kilimanjaro Climb Rongai Route

Before and after the trek, we stay at the comfortable Kilimanjaro Mountain Resort. Close to Kilimanjaro National Park, it is tucked deep in the banana and coffee plantations of Kyalla village. It has two restaurants, plus a bar serving the refreshing Kilimanjaro Lager and banana wine. There is also a swimming pool to enjoy when you return from Kilimanjaro.

Kilimanjaro: Full-service camping (nights 2-6)

Kilimanjaro Climb Rongai Route

Although conditions are basic on the mountain, the camping we experience is one of the best available on the Rongai Route. We sleep in Vango Halo Pro 300 tents regardless of whether you have made a twin-share or single supplement booking. These are spacious three-person tents that are ideal for the conditions on Kilimanjaro. Our camp life is about as comfortable as it gets on Kili, with a communal mess tent, where we gather as a group and eat breakfast and dinner, and a private toilet tent. We also ensure there is a bowl of hot washing water for you in the morning and again after the walk at an agreed time in the afternoon. The only exception is the highest camp where there is no water source.

Worth knowing

  • The campsites on Kilimanjaro are designated by the national park and are mainly stone/dirt. They are not all level and can be crowded in peak season.
  • We always ensure there is a bowl of hot washing water for you in the morning and again after the walk at an agreed time in the afternoon. The only exception is the highest camp where there is no water source.
  • Handwashing water, treated with Dettol, is available along with soap before all meals, and everyone is strongly advised to make use of it.
  • The toilet tent has toilet paper within it, but we recommend you bring your own toilet paper and wet wipes.
  • All camping equipment is provided except for sleeping bags, sleeping mats and pillows.

Single supplement from £ 310

Food & Drink

All breakfasts, six lunches and five dinners are included. All meals during the climb are included. Please allow about 153,500 Tanzanian shillings (US$65) for the meals not included.

On trek, the emphasis is on a varied and well-balanced diet with a greater amount of fresh fruit and soup to maximise the daily intake of fluids.

Vegetarians are well catered for but please inform us before departure of any special dietary requests. Please note that in Tanzania the availability of certain specialised products for restricted diets (eg gluten-free or dairy-free) is minimal or non-existent and we strongly recommend you bring these specialised dietary items from home.

The menu has a high liquid and carbohydrate content; the two important elements for successful climbing. At higher altitudes, stimulants (such as coffee) and less digestible foods (such as meat) are not recommended. Our evening meal at the highest camp on Kilimanjaro is a meatless stew as our experience shows this to be the ideal preparation for the summit day. At mealtimes a selection of hot drinks is available. Soup is served twice daily.

Daily meals

  • Bed tea: Tea or coffee served in your tent.
  • Breakfast: Seasonal fresh fruit (mango/banana/watermelon), porridge, cooked eggs, sausage, bacon and toast.
  • Energy snacks, such as bananas and chocolate bars, are provided for the daily walk.
  • Lunch: Either a packed lunch on longer days or, more usually, a hot lunch served in camp by a small team who have raced ahead of the group. A hot lunch typically consists of soup, bread or pancakes, cheese, tuna, jam, peanut butter, pasta salad and cake.
  • Afternoon tea: Served in late afternoon. It is an opportunity to drink lots of hot drinks and snack on peanuts or popcorn.
  • Dinner: The main meal of the day and always three courses: soup and bread; followed by the main dish, which could be rice, potatoes or pasta with fish, meat or vegetables; and dessert, often of fruit.
  • Summit snacks: While we provide enough food for the climb, we recommend you bring some of your favourite snacks and keep them for the summit day. This is because the summit day is a long and tough climb and having your favourite snacks can give you a very welcome boost.

Water

While the water we provide on Kilimanjaro is suitable for drinking, you may wish to be extra safe and treat it with your own water purification tablets.

Transport

Journeys are by private bus or 4×4 vehicles, depending on the number of people in the group.

Weather & Seasonality

Kilimanjaro can be climbed at any time of the year but it is usually very wet in the rainforest in April and May. January and February are the warmest months. Above the cloud line the days are warm and pleasant, with temperatures in sunlight often above 20C (68F), but the nights can get very cold. It is possible for temperatures to drop as low as -20C (-4F) at Kibo campsite, our highest overnight stop. The daily weather pattern on the mountain tends to be clear mornings with an afternoon cloud build-up that often clears before sunset. In the European summer, the weather is usually cloudy at lower altitudes and often sunny above 11,480ft (3,500m). Please note, mountain weather conditions are never totally predictable and we may meet wet and snowy conditions at any time.

Joining Instructions

Key information

Recommended arrival time: You can arrive at any time today, check-in is typically from 3pm. There will be a welcome briefing in the afternoon/evening, but if you miss it the leader will update you separately
Airport: Kilimanjaro Airport (JRO)

Getting to the start hotel

Your options for this journey are:

Take an Exodus transfer
Exodus provides one group arrival transfer from the airport, which is timed to coincide with the arrival of a chosen flight from London, UK. You may join this transfer at no extra cost, provided you can be at the airport before the transfer leaves. Speak to your sales representative for the group arrival transfer times or to arrange a private transfer.

Make your own way
You can reach the start hotel relatively easily using taxis or public transport. A cab from the airport costs approximately US$100. On arrival at the hotel please make the reception staff aware that you are part of an Exodus group and they will have more details on meeting with your leader and group

If you would like further information on joining this trip, please speak to your sales representative.

Catching your return flight

There’s a group departure transfer to the airport for customers who Exodus booked onto a chosen flight to London, UK. Please speak to your sales representative if you wish to join. If the group departure transfer does not suit your flight time, speak to your sales representative to arrange an alternative transfer.

Full joining instructions including local emergency numbers will be sent to you as part of our Final Joining Instructions. If you do not receive these at least a week before departure, or require them earlier please contact our office or your travel agent.

Location start: Marangu
Location end: Marangu

What To Take

Essential Equipment

All camping equipment is provided except for your own personal equipment.

  • Four/five-season sleeping bag
  • Sleeping mat
  • Good quality boots well worn-in (leather recommended)
  • Four/five-season duvet jacket
  • Walking poles
  • Fleece jacket or equivalent, warm sweater(s)
  • Thermal underwear
  • Two large water bottles
  • Waterproof jacket and trousers (pants)
  • Two pairs of gloves
  • Warm hat or balaclava
  • Sunglasses
  • Sunhat
  • High-factor (at least 30+) sunscreen for the twin exposure to high altitude and equatorial sun
  • Thick socks
  • Head torch (headlamp) with spare batteries – possible freezing temperatures at altitude can impact your batteries, so we recommend a couple of spare sets
  • 30 litre or 40 litre daypack
  • Summit snacks (see food section above)

While climbing Kilimanjaro, clean clothes and other items can be left at the start hotel in Marangu.

A first-aid kit is carried on each trek, but you should bring you own with diarrhoea treatment, painkillers, rehydration sachets, insect repellent (with DEET), plasters (band-aids) and a blister-treatment kit.

All luggage for the Kilimanjaro climb should be packed in a soft kitbag or duffel bag. The weight limit on trek is 26lb (12kg). This does not include your daypack.

VERY IMPORTANT: In case of lost luggage, it is vital you take essential climbing equipment such as boots and clothes in your daypack and travel with this as hand luggage. Should this kit go missing en route to Kilimanjaro it will seriously affect your trip.

Please note: Tanzania and Zanzibar have banned the use of plastic carrier bags and certain other plastic bags. Included in the ban are the following items that travellers might carry:

  • Duty-free carrier bags
  • General shopping bags
  • Bin/trash can liners (sometimes used to protect luggage during rain)
  • Dry-cleaning bags (commonly wrapped around clothing)
  • Ziplock bags

Travellers arriving into Tanzania and Zanzibar via airports, sea ports or land borders will be required to leave any bags deemed to be on the banned list at the point of entry and risk facing heavy fines.

Equipment Hire

Duvet jackets and sleeping bags are available for hire from Trek Hire UK. Trek Hire UK can also provide a range of trekking essentials and accessories, from rucksacks to trekking poles. Please note that supplies are limited, and it is advisable to reserve any equipment as early as possible. For trips to Kilimanjaro, Nepal and Peru, certain items such as duvet jackets, sleeping bags and thick mattresses (mattresses not available in Nepal) can be hired through our local agents. For Kilimanjaro and Nepal trips these must be pre-booked through the Exodus office to ensure availability. For trips to Peru there is no need to pre-book these as they can be arranged locally through your tour leader in Cuzco. Please call for details.

Exodus kitbag: If you book this trip, we provide a free Exodus kitbag to pack your luggage in while on trek. Once you have booked, you will be sent instructions on how to claim your bag (they are not sent automatically). Please note, if you book less than three weeks before the departure date, we cannot guarantee your kitbag will arrive before your trip starts. If this is the case, please contact us on customerops@exodus.co.uk (or customeroperations@exodustravels.com if you’re based in the US or Canada). See www.exodus.co.uk/kitbags for full T&Cs.

Optional Equipment

  • Walking poles
  • Book, playing cards for the evenings in the mess tent
  • Lip balm
  • Portable charger
  • Drying line

Reading List

Maps

West Col productions have printed an excellent map and guide to Mount Kilimanjaro (1:75 000). There is also a good Bartholomew East Africa map.

Practical Information

Visa

Tanzania

Travellers from the UK, US and EU normally need a visa to enter Tanzania. Please note, visa requirements often change and it is your responsibility to obtain any required visas for this trip. Therefore, we recommend that you check with the nearest embassy or consulate of your chosen destination(s), including any countries you may be transiting or transferring through.

Some local governments provide guidance on what visas their citizens need. To help, we’ve gathered a selection of useful links below.

Please note, it is possible to get the visa online (from US$50), but this can take between 10 days and three weeks. For more information and to apply for the visa, please visit www.visa.immigration.go.tz. If you are flying into Kilimanjaro Airport, we recommend arranging the visa in advance as the visa-on-arrival process has become more complicated and can now take longer.

Vaccinations and Health

Tanzania

There are no required vaccinations. However, you may want to consider vaccinations for hepatitis A, tetanus, typhoid, cholera, hepatitis B, meningococcal disease, rabies, tuberculosis and yellow fever. Protection against malaria is essential. Please seek advice from your doctor or travel clinic on the best course of action for all the above. Additionally, dengue fever, a tropical viral disease spread by daytime biting mosquitoes, is a known risk. There is currently no vaccine or prophylaxis available, so we recommend you take the usual precautions to avoid mosquito bites.

You may also be required to show a yellow fever vaccination certificate (or an exemption certificate) if you’re coming from (or transiting for more than 12 hours through) a country with risk of yellow fever transmission. If you’re visiting Zanzibar from mainland Tanzania, border officials have been known to demand proof of yellow fever vaccination or an exemption certificate.

Malaria prophylaxis is essential on this trip, and we suggest that you seek advice from your GP or travel health clinic about which malaria tablets to take.

Dengue fever and/or Chikungunya are known risks in places visited on this trip. Both are tropical viral diseases spread by daytime biting mosquitoes. There is currently no vaccine or prophylaxis available for either, and therefore the best form of prevention is to avoid being bitten. We recommend you take the usual precautions to avoid mosquito bites.

Local Time

Tanzania's time zone: Africa/Dar_es_Salaam (UTC +03:00)

Electricity

230V 50Hz. Power cuts are a frequent occurrence so you should be prepared for this at the lodges in Tanzania.

There are no facilities to recharge batteries while on trek.

Kilimanjaro Climb Rongai Route

Money

Tanzania's currency: Tanzanian shilling (TZS). However, we recommend you take most of your money in US dollars issued from 2009 or after with the big head design. Please note, Tanzanian shillings may not be imported or exported. There is no restriction on the import of foreign currency provided it is declared on arrival. On leaving Tanzania, you may convert any amount of shillings into hard currency provided you have a currency exchange receipt.

ATM Availability

There is an ATM in Marangu but, as there are regular power cuts, it cannot always be relied upon. The hotel in Marangu accepts credit cards. Please do not bring travellers cheques as these have become increasingly difficult and time consuming to change. They also attract commission.

Extra Expenses & Spending Money

Luggage to be carried by porters on the Kilimanjaro trek is limited to 26lb (12kg) per person. Any traveller wishing to take extra luggage should allow about US$140 per porter, which is payable in cash (US dollars) to our local agent at the commencement of the climb. It is impossible to spend much money on the mountain climb but both alcohol and souvenirs are readily available in Marangu.

Kindly ensure you have US dollars or Tanzanian shillings; other currencies, such as euros, are not much use here.

If anyone needs to leave the group at any point during the trip (for reasons such as an early descent from Kilimanjaro due to altitude sickness), all expenses incurred until rejoining the group on the itinerary described in these Trip Notes are the responsibility of the individual(s) concerned and should be paid to our local operator before leaving Tanzania.

Oxygen system

An Altox Personal Oxygen System costs £367 (subject to change) and needs to be pre‐ordered before travel. It is designed to help close the altitude gap between the top camp and the summit.

The pack includes:

  • One x oxygen cylinder (each cylinder gives 12 hours’ endurance)
  • One x oxygen regulator
  • One x pulse dose delivery system
  • One x silicone nasal cannula
  • One x personal backpack
  • An additional porter to carry the system

The complete system is supplied in a protective Pelicase and backpack, carried by your porter.

Guides are all fully trained in the use of the system. For more, visit www.summitoxygen.com/kilimanjaro/

Tipping

Our local staff are paid well and fairly for their work but tipping has become customary in Tanzania with the increase in tourism.

Tipping kitty: The tour leader will suggest to the group that they donate between US$155 and US$180 per person for all the staff on Kilimanjaro. This money is then used to tip guides, the cook and tour leader. How the tips are distributed will be explained in the pre-trip briefing. This method is the smoothest way to ensure all crew on the mountain receive the right amount. In addition, it is also normal to give small tips in restaurants and to luggage porters and drivers.

If there are trainee guides on your departure, please note that their tips are being covered by the Exodus Travels Foundation and so they will not be included in the group tip.

Kindly ensure you have US dollars to contribute, other currencies such as euros are not much use in Tanzania and trying to calculate and split the tips will be a lengthy process, delaying the end of the trip.

 

 

People, Places & Planet

We work hard to create trips that have a positive impact on the people and places we visit and look after the planet we explore. Learn more about our sustainable travel ethos and practice here and find out about the work of the Exodus Travels Foundation here.

Some sustainable travel highlights of this trip include:

People

How this trip helps improve life for local communities.

  • Local guides keep you well informed about local traditions and cultural-social sensitivities.
  • Human porterage is an essential part of the Kilimanjaro Climb and we understand the importance to adhere to the strictest guidelines for the porters’ welfare on the mountain. Exodus is a member of the Kilimanjaro Porters Assistance Project (KPAP), which has a clear mission to improve the working conditions of porters on Kilimanjaro by advocating for fair wages, providing educational opportunities, and ensuring companies uphold a responsible treatment practice. Read more about the porters project here.
  • Since 2020 we have funded scholarships for 30 women to train at the College of African Wildlife Management to become guides. 28 have now qualified and they are our ‘Mountain Lionesses’. Over the next 3 years we are funding five more women to train as guides each year and are supporting a follow-up training programme ‘Becoming even better’ to provide advanced guiding and language skills for the women.
  • On your trek, there might be female trainee guides who are sponsored by The Exodus Travels Foundation. The trainees are women who have undertaken the Mountain Lioness Scholarship, a training programme for ambitious women to qualify as Mountain Guides. Our Exodus Travels Foundation are funding additional training climbs to further develop their skills and progress their careers as guide on Kilimanjaro. We’re also pleased to include at least 4 female crew on every departure, which will support their professional development and provide more opportunities for women working on the Mountain.
  • This trip brings income and opportunity to the destination community through the inclusion of locally owned hotels, restaurants, and other enterprises, and by championing locally produced food wherever possible.
  • Where the group has time, they visit markets, which supports local economies.

Places

How this trip helps protect and conserve local landscapes and nature.

  • By travelling in a small group, we ‘tread lightly’ to minimise our impact on local resources and the environment.
  • We work with our partners on the ground to proactively reduce waste; this includes eliminating all single-use plastic water bottles by providing refills for reusable bottles.
  • The payment of entrance fees to natural reserves generates income is used to upkeep and develop these important sites. We visit Kilimanjaro National Park.
  • Our trips adhere to ABTA’s industry-leading animal welfare guidelines to ensure the best possible practices regarding working animals and wildlife viewing. Our animal welfare policy can be found here.
  • Our local partner holds an environmental certification from Leave No Trace (LNT) and their staff are trained in this approach to environmental protection.
  • With our partners, Rewilding Apennines, we rewild 100 square meters (1,075 sqft) of land per passenger who travels with us.
  • Read about our commitment to nature protection and restoration here, including our rewilding commitment for every customer who travels with us.

Planet

How we seek to keep the carbon footprint of this trip low.

  • Accommodation and restaurants in the itinerary use locally sourced food which has not been transported long distances.
  • Walking trips like this have very little detrimental impact on the environment and the locals, as it is a quiet, low-impact activity requiring comparatively few resources to support.
  • Read about our climate action here, including our carbon reduction and compensation commitments.

Tips for sustainable travel on this trip

  • Leave no trace: We do all we can to ensure we leave no rubbish in the wild and beautiful places we visit; we ask that you do the same. If there are no recycling facilities in-country, consider bringing recyclable materials home with you.
  • Plastic waste reduction: Please bring a reusable water bottle on this trip, also consider avoiding single-use hotel toiletries, which generate a large amount of plastic waste.

Important Information

Water safety

This trip includes time by a lake, river or sea, where there may be opportunities to swim. You should always seek local advice before deciding whether to swim. Open-water or wild swim spots should be treated with extreme caution. Information on how to keep yourself safe while swimming is shown here.

You will need to provide Exodus with a scan of a recent passport photo at least 14 days before departure as this is required by Kilimanjaro National Park for their reservation system.

Full Moon Departures: Several dates throughout the year coincide with a full moon. We schedule them in line with flights and the best time of year to climb. The complete full moon may take place a few days before or after summit day and this can vary across the departures. It means the final ascent will be lit up by the moon’s glow on a clear night, giving a superb view of the surroundings.

New Moon Departures: A number of departures also coincide with the new moon. This may take place a few days before or after summit day. Without the light of the moon, Kilimanjaro is an excellent site for stargazing.

Female Crew Departures: On these dates, our crews typically consist of one or two female guides, a female cook and 10-20 female porters. Please note that male crew are also present on these departures. To learn more about how we support female porters, please follow this link: www.exodus.co.uk/mountain-lioness-scholarship.  In addition to this, we include a minimum of four female crew on every other departure.

Important Information

Your safe participation 

When booking this trip, you should be confident in your ability to participate in all activities described in these Trip Notes. If you have any doubt about your suitability, please call the Exodus office and ask to speak to one of the experts on this itinerary. 

Although our leaders are well trained to deal with different capabilities, if they have any concerns about someone’s ability to safely take part in an activity, or their impact on other people’s enjoyment, we authorise them to take necessary action which, in some circumstances, may involve asking someone to miss that activity. 

By booking this trip you agree to our Booking Conditions which clearly state that our leaders have the authority to do this. In these rare instances we will ensure anyone sitting out is safely provided for and offered alternative options where possible. Refunds will not be provided for activities missed and customers may be liable for additional costs incurred. 

How to Book

  1. Check availability: Go online to check availability, or contact us by phone or email.
  2. Secure your place: You can provisionally hold a place on this trip, usually for between three and seven days.
  3. Complete your booking and payment

When you’re ready to book, go to our website for online bookings, book over the phone or you can complete a booking form (available online or on request by calling us). We accept all major credit and debit cards, or you can pay be cheque.

After booking

You will receive your booking confirmation letter and invoice, which includes extra information and guidance about your travel arrangements.

Full joining instructions, including local emergency numbers and details of how to reach the start point, will be sent to you approximately two to three weeks prior to departure. If you do not receive these at least a week before departure, or require them earlier, please contact our office or your travel agent.

Trip Note validity

These Trip Notes are valid from the “Current as” date on page one. They will occasionally be updated after booking and before departure; if there are any updates that significantly impact the inclusions or itinerary, customers will be written to separately. They will also receive a link to the most up-to-date Trip Notes with their Final Joining Instructions before travelling.

The information in these Trip Notes is given in good faith. Where differences exist between the Trip Notes and our current brochure or website, the Trip Notes supersede the brochure and website. All holidays can be subject to unexpected changes; to enjoy them you should be prepared to be flexible where necessary. Occasionally, it may not be possible to follow the itinerary as planned. This may be for a variety of reasons – climatic, political, physical or other. In these circumstances we will make the best-possible alternative arrangements that maintain the integrity of the original itinerary.

Licensing

Exodus is fully licensed and bonded as a tour operator. We hold Air Traffic Organisers Licence (ATOL) number 2582, issued and bonded with the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA). We are also bonded to the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and we are members of the Federation of Tour Operators (FTO) and ABTA – The Travel Association. This means you can book your Exodus holiday with confidence, as all money paid to us for your trip is fully protected.