Duration
7 Days
Travellers
2+
  • Tour Plan
  • Similar Tours
  • Overview
  • Day 1 - Arusha to Rongai Gate (Nalemoru) to Simba Camp
  • Day 2 - Simba Camp to Second Cave
  • Day 3 - Second Cave to Kikelewa Camp
  • Day 4 - Kikelewa Camp to Mawenzi Turn Hut
  • Day 5 - Mawenzi Turn hut to Kibo Hut
  • Day 6 - Kibo Camp to Summit and Horombo Hut
  • Day 7 - Horombo Hut to Marangu Gate, to Arusha
  • Day 8 - Departure Day
Overview

Rongai route begins in the northern side of Kilimanjaro Mountain, 45km from Moshi town or 69km from Arusha. This is one of Kilimanjaro easiest routes, and it has become an increasingly popular route in recent years. This route is located on the northern side of Mt. Kilimanjaro with a variety of spectacular landscapes together with different plants and animal’s species. The typical duration for this trip is 6 days. However, you can also add an acclimatization day and make it 7 day climb. The Rongai route is more scenic than the Marangu route and easier than other camping route in climbing Kilimanjaro and the success rate on the Rongai route is very high. Unlike the Marangu route where you sleep in huts, on the Rongai route you sleep in tents, the porter will have your tent pitched and waiting for you at the end of each day trek.

This route starts on the north side of the mountain just south of the Kenyan border and is one of the least traveled routes. The route merges with the Marangu for the summit climb. The descend follows the Marangu route on the mountain’s southeast side, so you will be able to Kilimanjaro from many points. There are two versions of this trek- a direct 6 day itinerary and a 7 day itinerary that takes a longer route. You can choose to attempt the summit via Mawezi Tarn Hut or via School Hut which is also referred to as the Outward Bound Hut. The former is longer and more popular. Prior acclimatization is suggested in order to attempt the latter successfully.

Day 1 - Arusha to Rongai Gate (Nalemoru) to Simba Camp

Elevation: 2000m/6560ft to 2650m/8700ft
Distance: 6km/4mi
Hiking Time: 3-4 hours
Habitat: Montane Forest

Drive to the attractive wooden village of Nalemoru (about 4 hours including a stop to get permits at Marangu). After signing in and preparing the porters, you will begin the hike on a wide path that winds through fields of maize and potatoes before entering pine forest. The track then starts to climb consistently but gently through attractive forest that shelters a variety of wildlife. The forest begins to thin out and the first camp is at the edge of the moorland zone with extensive views over the Kenyan plains.

Day 2 - Simba Camp to Second Cave

Elevation: 2650m/8700ft to 3450m/11,300ft
Distance: 6km/4mi
Walking Time: 3-4 hours
Habitat: Moorland

The morning hike is a steady ascent up to the Second Cave with superb views of Kibo and the eastern ice fields on the crater rim.

Day 3 - Second Cave to Kikelewa Camp

Elevation: 3450m/11,300ft to 3600m/11,800ft
Distance: 9km/5mi
Walking Time: 2-3 hours
Habitat: Semi-desert

Head out across the moorland on a smaller path towards the jagged peaks of Mawenzi. The campsite is in a sheltered valley with giant Senecios nearby.

Day 4 - Kikelewa Camp to Mawenzi Turn Hut

Elevation: 3600m/11,800ft to 4330m/14,200ft
Distance: 6km/4mi
Walking Time: 3-4 hours
Habitat: Semi-desert

A short but steep climb up grassy slopes is rewarded by superb views. Leave the vegetation behind shortly before reaching the next camp at Mawenzi Turn, spectacularly situated in a cirque directly beneath the towering spires of Mawenzi. The afternoon will be free to rest or explore the surrounding area as an aid to acclimatization.

If you are spending an extra day on the mountain, you will camp for two nights here. You can hike up and around Mawenzi for your acclimatization hike.

Day 5 - Mawenzi Turn hut to Kibo Hut

Elevation: 4330m/14,200ft to 4750m/15,600ft
Distance: 9km/5mi
Hiking Time: 4-5 hours
Habitat: Alpine Desert

Cross the lunar desert of the ‘Saddle’ between Mawenzi and Kibo to reach Kibo campsite at the bottom of the Kibo crater wall. The remainder of the day is spent resting in preparation for the final ascent very early.

Day 6 - Kibo Camp to Summit and Horombo Hut

Elevation: 4700m/15,500ft to 5895m/19,340ft Down to 3700m/12,200ft
Distance: 6km/4mi up / 15km/9mi down
Hiking Time: 6-8 hours up / 15km/9mi down
Habitat: Alpine Desert

Very early in the morning (midnight about 2am), commence the climb to the summit on steep and heavy scree or snow up to Gilman’s Point located on the crater rim (elevation 5700m). Continuing ascend to Uhuru Peak, which is the highest point in Africa. There are unbelievable views at every turn. Have your picture taken at the summit to show your friends and family. From here we descend, stopping for lunch and a rest at Kibo before continuing on to the Horombo encampment.

The beginning of this climb is done in the dark and requires headlamps or flashlights. It will be very cold until you start descending, so you will need all of your warm layers. This is by far the most difficult part of the trek with many switchbacks. Going slowly “pole pole” and an optimistic attitude will get you there!

Day 7 - Horombo Hut to Marangu Gate, to Arusha

Elevation: 3700m/12,200ft to 1700m/5500ft
Distance: 20km/12.5mi
Hiking Time: 4-5 hours
Habitat: Forest

After breakfast, a steady descent takes us down through moorland to the Mandara Hut. Continue descending through lush forest path to the National Park gate at Marangu. At lower elevations, it can be wet and muddy. Gaiters and trekking poles will help. Shorts and t-shirts will probably be plenty to wear (keep rain gear and warmer clothing handy). Our vehicle will meet you at Marangu gate to drive you back to your Hotel in Arusha.

Day 8 - Departure Day

Our packages include departure day services. Enjoy breakfast and a morning sightseeing in the city or join us for one of our Safari Adventures. If you are returning home our driver will bring you to Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO) to catch your flight home.

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7 Days Rongai Route

Duration
7 Days
Travellers
2+

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