Why Marangu?

This is the traditional and most straightforward route on the mountain. It is also the busiest and best equipped. If you accept that there will be others around, there are the advantages of good huts, good views of Mawenzi and, of course, others to walk with. If you are travelling by yourself, this is the only route on which you can easily join a group.




Upon arrival at Kilimanjaro airport you will be met by our representative and taken to Keys Hotel Travel and Tours. It is a family run hotel located on the slopes of Mount Kilimanjaro, with comfortable accommodation, variety of meals, clean swimming pool and friendly services. Located just ten minutes walking distance to Moshi town center, palatable meal and luxurious accommodation; Keys Hotel is the most spectacular place one will always wish to stay, Keys Hotel Travel and Tours - 2700 ft (BB).

MARANGU GATE (1,843 M/6,046 FT) – MANDARA HUT (2,700M/8,860 FT)

Walking distance:    8 km/5 miles

Walking time:           3-4 hours

Altitude gain:            857 m/2,814 ft

After breakfast you will be transferred to the Marangu Gate at Kilimanjaro National Park. Today, we will walk through the beautiful rainforest with dense vegetation, often on a muddy trail. The trekking pace is slow and very comfortable, ensuring you have enough time to enjoy the natural surroundings, taking photos and nibble on your packed lunch that we provide.

You will reach Mandara Hut (2 700m) after +- 4 hrs of hiking from the Park Gate. There is a detour on this route to waterfalls in the rain forest, which is well worth following – discuss with your guide before you set off. All meals are included during the climb, and your guide/porters will prepare these for you.

Your accommodation is in dormitory style chalets. There are no shower/bath facilities while doing the climb and toilets will be long drops. You will be provided with bowls of warm water each morning, on request, to wash with.

MANDARA HUT (2,700M/8,860 FT) – HOROMBO HUT (3,700 M / 12,140 FT)

Walking distance:    12 km/7.2 miles

Walking time:           5-7 hours

Altitude gain:            1,000 m/3,280 ft

Continue the hike up to Horombo Hut, (3,700m). A steep is sometimes wet, 20 min walk through the upper part of the rainforest, followed by a 2km section of tall giant heather interspersed with large clumps of tussock grass, around 15km or 5 hrs from Mandara Hut. The vegetation changes to stunted clumps of heather with ‘everlasting’ flowers and short tussock grasses. Lobelia and groundsels occupy the wetter areas.

HOROMBO HUT (3,700 M/12,140 FT) – KIBO HUT (4,700 M/15,420 FT)

Walking distance:    9.5 km/5.7 miles

Walking time:           5-7 hours

Altitude gain:            1,000 m/3,280 ft

After breakfast we will set out on a path that traverses west, before turning northwards towards Middle Red Hill and the Triplets and head to the west for the final 3km to Kibo Hut (4,700m). This alpine desert is littered with rocks and leaves you feeling as if you are walking on the moon. The view towards Mawenzi Peak to the east is most spectacular.

KIBO HUT (4,700 M/15,420 FT)- SUMMIT VIA GILMAN’S POINT (5,690M /18,668 FT) TO UHURU PEAK (5,895 M/19,340 FT) AND DESCENT TO HOROMBO HUT (3,700 M/12,140 FT)

Walking distance:    5.5 km/3.5 miles ascent + 15 km/9.5 miles descent

Walking time:           5-6 hrs + 1-2 hours up, 5-6 hours down (the overall walking time may vary between10 – 16 hours)

Altitude gain:            990 m/ 3,248 ft (Gilman’s Point) or 1,195 m/3,920 ft (Uhuru Peak)

Descent:                     2,195 m/7,200 ft

You will be required to wake up very early to have a quick bite to eat and something warm to drink before setting out in darkness. The hike to Gilman’s Point is a very slow steep walk on volcanic scree for about 5-6 hours. The headlamps on the trail towards the summit almost look like fireflies flying in a long row. As you approach the crater rim you will enjoy the most memorable sunrise you may ever experience – the golden sunrise over Africa! Often you see the curving of the earth at this high altitude and the sunrise on the horizon just accentuates it. Keep your camera ready at all times as there are plenty of photographing opportunities along the summit. Once you reach Gilman’s Point on top of the crater rim you are within reach of Uhuru Peak. Hike along fairly flat terrain for about 1.5 hour to reach Uhuru Peak. Spend a few minutes at the top and get that photos of your choice next to the sign marking the summit.

Descend from Uhuru Peak in high spirits as you have just achieved your goal. The trail down from Gilman’s Point on the Marangu route is often enjoyed by hikers sliding down the scree slope, which entails skidding down the loose gravel with big steps and some sideway moves. Try it, it is fun! With every step going down your body enjoys having more oxygen to breathe in. Depending on how you feel, you may enjoy a short rest at Kibo Hut before descending down to Horombo Hut.

HOROMBO HUT (3,700 M/12,140 FT) – MARANGU GATE (1,843 M /6,046 FT)

Walking distance:    20 km/12.5 miles

Walking time:           5 hours

Descent:                     1,857 m/6,094 ft

Enjoy a slow hike through the rainforest to Marangu Gate. Take time to enjoy the lush vegetation with the Old Man’s Beard (tree moss) growing on the giant trees as well as some Giant Ferns towering high over the forest bed. The path has many steps leading you down to Marangu Gate. You will be transferred back to Keys Hotels Travel & Tours for hot shower and overnight rest. (BB)


End of Services