This is the standard 6 days Machame Route Itinerary, suitable for persons who are physically fit or have prior experience with Mountain climbing.
The Machame route also known as the whisky route is popular among tourists taking you through the different zonal changes to the Shira Plateau before continuing to the Barafu camp which later takes you to the summit. The Machame Route can still be done for a longer period (7 days) and since the incline is a bit easy, the route has a high summit success rate. The Machame route is considered to be a hard climb taking you through the different zonal changes, it is favored by both hikers and tour operators because it offers excellent acclimatization and almost 35% of the hikers on Mount Kilimanjaro use the Machame route.
Each day spent on the Mount Kilimanjaro while using the Machame Route takes you through a distinct eco-system, it starts from the south west side of Kilimanjaro, taking you around the south east side and has a summit success rate of 85% which has made it popular among hikers. The 6 days itinerary is possible by missing out the trek through the Karanga Valley and hiking straight to the Barafu Camp.
For tourists who have only 6 days to climb Mount Kilimanjaro, the Machame Route is the most recommended because of its acclimatization success. The hardest days are days 4 and 5 where hikers have less sleep as they prepare to get to the summit at midnight. It is a tight schedule but the views of the peak are worth the long hike.
If you have 6 days to climb Mount Kilimanjaro but do not fancy staying in tents at campsites, then you should consider doing our 6 days Kilimanjaro Climb via Marangu Route.
We have day 0, which is your arrival date at the Kilimanjaro International Airport, where you will be picked up and driven to your accommodation in Moshi. We advise that you arrive at least a day before the hike. After getting to the hotel, you will be briefed about the hike by our guide, and this is also when the review of the necessary equipment is done.
Arrival into Kilimanjaro Airport - Transfer to Moshi
You will be picked up from the airport by our guide and driven to your hotel, where you will spend the night. After settling in, the guide will then check the equipment to make sure that it is in place and in good condition, and a briefing for the next day and what to expect during the climb will also be carried out.
Machame Gate to Machame Camp
Duration: 5 to 7 hours
Elevation: 5400 feet to 9400 feet
A 45-minute drive from Moshi to Machame camp will be the start of our first day. We shall go through the village of Machame, and at the gate, registration is done before the real hike starts. We shall go through the muddy rainforests, which are slippery, and this is where the gaiters and walking sticks come in handy. The first night on the mountain will be spent at the Machame camp.
Machame Camp to Shira Camp
Duration: 4 to 6 hours
Elevation: 9400 feet to 12500 feet
The hike on the second day starts immediately after a hefty breakfast, and it will take you through the rainforests to the moorlands the higher you get. You will go through the rocky ridge in the valley, turn west into the river gorge, and then arrive at the Shira camp for the night.
Shira Camp-Lava Tower-Barranco camp
Duration: 6 to 8 hours
Elevation: 12500 feet to 1300 feet
The third day starts from the Shira plateau through the eastern ridge after breakfast, continuing onto the junction that takes you to the semi-desert zone towards the Kibo peak. We shall then head eastwards towards the Lava Tower, which is also known as the shark’s tooth, at an elevation of 15250ft. The third day is all about achieving acclimatization because, if you notice the elevation, it will still be the same as our starting point as we continue to the Arrow glacier through the second junction to Barranco camp. All this is to prepare you for the hike up the summit.
Barranco Camp through Karanga to Barafu Camp
Zone: alpine desert
Duration: 8 to 10 hours
Elevation: 1300 feet to 1500 feet
After breakfast, we shall leave the Barranco camp and head towards the Barranco wall, which is about 13900 feet past the Karanga valley to the spot that connects to the Mweka trail. From the Mweka trail, we shall continue to the Barafu camp, where we will spend a few hours resting as we prepare for the summit hike at midnight. The hike around from the Barranco Wall through Karanga to Barafu past Mweka Trail is known as the southern circuit. The views of the summit are visible from different angles at Barafu camp.
Barafu Camp to the Summit to Mweka
Distance: 12km descent and 5km ascent.
Duration: 7 to 8 hours ascent and 4 to 6 hours descent
Elevation: 15300ft to 19345ft (ascent) and 10,000ft descent
Between midnight and 2:00 am, after a light meal at Barafu camp, we shall continue our hike to the summit at a relatively slow pace to allow each of the participating members to get to the summit. The last trek to the summit around the crater rim at Stella Point is the most challenging part of the hike due to the reduced levels of oxygen and the cold. When you get to Stella Point, hikers rest before continuing the hike to the summit in an hour. The Uhuru Summit is the goal, and once you get there, you will be standing at the highest point on the African continent.
You will have a chance to rest, celebrate, and take photos at the peak, and after that, the descent to Mweka Camp will begin. There is a stopover at the Barafu camp for lunch before continuing to the Mweka camp, where you will have a good night’s sleep making it your last night on the Mountain.
Mweka camp to Mweka gate. Transfer to Moshi / Arusha
Duration: 3 to 4 hours
Elevation: 10,000ft to 5400ft
After breakfast, the descent from Mweka camp to the Machame Park Gate begins. When you get to the gates, you will be issued certificates of successful hiking to the summit after signing out. Note that the rainforest is muddy and slippery, and you will need to at least have gaiters and walking sticks to avoid falling. A safari vehicle will be waiting at the gate to take you back to the hotel in Moshi, where you get to refresh, rest, and be driven to the airport or your next destination the next day.
6 Days Machame Route Itinerary, Prices & Dates