Machame route is popularly known as the “Whiskey” route, begins at Machame Gate, the Mt Kilimanjaro Climb takes 6 days. We continue through the southern base of mountain, within its green, abundant rainforest. We climb to the Shira Plateau, then traverse the mountain beneath Kilimanjaro’s Southern Icefield. Machame is good for people who want to enjoy a scenic trek on a challenging route in the shortest amount of time.
Day 1: Arrive to Arusha
Clients flying into Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO) early today we recommend a private transfer to Arusha where the rest of the day is at leisure. We stay at the Moivaro Coffee Lodge, which is beautifully located on the coffee farm and is a perfect place to prepare for your Kilimanjaro climb.
Day 2: To Machame Hut 6-7 hours climb
The climb starts from machame gate (1800m) after a short walk through the attractive banana and coffee farms of Machame village. The path follows a ridge through dense montane forest. This is the richest forested area on the mountain, and also the zone from where 98% of the water on Kilimanjaro originates. On sunny days, and especially in the dry season is very lush and beautiful; it can also be a very muddy experience, particular if it has rained recently we have lunch at halfway clearing, a small opening in the trees, and continue climbing steadily. The gradient becomes gentler as the forest slowly merges into giant heather close to the next camp near the ruins of Machame Hut (3,000m). We may get our first closer look at the glaciated dome of Kibo if the evening clouds permit. (6-7 hours climb)
Day 3: Machame to Shira Camp 4-5 hours climb
A shorter day that begins by climbing up a steep ridge to reach a small semicircular cliff known as picnic rock. There are excellent views of kibo and the jagged rim of Shira Plateau from here and it is a good rest point too, the trail continues less steeply to reach the Shira Plateau. We camp near Shira Hut (3840m) which has some of the most stunning views on Kilimanjaro; close to the huge volcanic cone of Kibo, the spectacular rock formations of Shira Plateau, and looking across to Mt. Meru floating on the clouds. (4-5 hours walking)
Day 4: Shira to Barranco Camp 4-6 hours climb
A morning of gentle ascent and panoramic views, leaving the moorland plateau behind to walk on lava ridges beneath the glaciers of the Western Breach. After lunch near lava camp (4540m) we descend to the bottom of the Great Barranco Valley (3900m), sheltered by towering cliffs and with extensive views of the plains far below. (4-6 hours walking)
Day 5: Barranco to Barafu Camp 6-7 hours climb
a steep climb up the Barranco wall leads us to an undulating trail on the south-eastern flank of Kibo, with superb vistas of the southern icefields. Lunch is normally taken at camp, the last water point, in a steep valley. After lunch, the terrain changes to scree and we climb steeply to reach the Barafu Hut (4600m.) by mid afternoon. The remainder of the day is spent resting in preparation for the final ascent before a very early night. (6-7 hours walking)
Day 6: To Stella Point, Uhuru Peak and Back to Mweka Camp 11-14 hours climb and retrace
We normally start our ascent by torchlight around midnight so that we can be up on the Crater rim by sunrise. The steeply climb over loose volcanic scree has some graded zigzags and a slow but steady pace will take us to Stella point (5735m.), in about 5-6 hours. We will rest there for a short time to enjoy the sunrise over Mawenzi. Those are still feeling strong can make the 2hours round trip from here along the Crater rim to Uhuru Peak (5895m.), passing close to the spectacular glaciers and ice cliffs that still occupy most of the summit area. The descend to Barafu campsite is surprisingly fast, and after lunch and other refreshments, we continue to descend to reach our final campsite (3100m.) Most of us will be too tired to notice the beauty of the forest surrounding the crowed campsite. (11-14 hours walking)
Day 7: To mweka Gate 4-5 hours retrace
a sustained descend on a well maintained trail through lovely tropical forest alive with birdcalls and boasting lush undergrowth with considerable botanical interest. Our route winds to the National Park Gate at Mweka (1650m.); and on through coffee and banana farms to Mweka village. Where we are transferred to Arusha for dinner and overnight where noted. (4-5 hours walking).