7 days (not including air travel)
The Machame route is a scenically beautiful trail considered a difficult route due to the relatively longer walking days and steep climbs. However, it offers good acclimatization and hence greater chances of reaching the summit than some of the other routes. The trail starts from the southwest of Mount Kilimanjaro. Compared with the Marangu route, the Machame route is considered to be more difficult and as such, it’s jokingly called the “Whisky Route” better suited for the more adventurous hikers than the “Coca Cola Route” (Marangu Route). It is now the most popular ascent trail on the Kilimanjaro.
As you trek, the trail opens up to stunning scenery including the Shira Plateau, Lava Tower, and the Great Barranco Wall. Going up the Barranco Wall is a challenge as the steep path will require you to literally use your hands from time to time. Some sections involve a bit of scramble; not too difficult though. The descent is through the Mweka Route. All accommodation is in tents at designated campsites.
Day 1: Arusha-Machame Camp (3,000m)
From Arusha, transfer to Machame Park Gate. Hike for 5-6 hours through the rain forest to Machame camp for overnight.
Day 2: Shira Camp (3,800m)
After breakfast we trek for 5-6 hours to Shira camp.
Day 3: Baranco Camp (3,950m)
Leave after breakfast for an 8-9 hour hike through semi glaciated and sandy areas to Baranco camp.
Day 4: Karanga Valley Camp
Scramble up the steep Barranco wall as we enjoy stunning views from the top. From hrre, it’s an up and down trek to our next camp in Karanga Valley. Today’s is a short 3-4 hour acclimatisation hike.
Day 5: Barafu Camp (4600m)
After breakfast we climb again for 3-4 hours, with a picnic lunch en route. Eventually we arrive at the Barafu camp for dinner and overnight.
Day 6: Barafu – Uhuru Peak (5,896m)-Mweka Camp (3,100m)
Early wake-up call at 0100 Hrs for a light breakfast before starting the final ascent to the summit. The Stella Point is reached in approximately 5-6 hours and a further ascent to the Uhuru Peak in another 45 minutes(approx). We descend to the Gilman’s Point for an hour’s rest and another light breakfast, before our final descent of the day to take dinner and stay overnight at the Mweka camp. Today’s is a very long hike taking 13-15 hours in total.
Day 7: Arusha
Gradually descend for 3-4 hours to Mweka Gate and transfer back to Arusha.