The Marangu Route is the oldest on Kilimanjaro and is also one of the most popular – mainly because it is the only route on the mountain that has huts provided for hikers. There are 60 bunk beds each at Mandara and Kibo Huts, and 120 bunk beds at Horombo Hut.
Typically tour operators provide mattresses and pillows for climbers (sleeping bags however, need to be brought separately by trekkers).
The Marangu route can be completed in 5 days; however, it is recommended that climbers take an extra day to acclimatise at Horombo Hut.
The main setback on the Marangu Route is that the ascent is exactly the same as the descent and therefore there is not as much variety in settings compared to other routes. It also means that the route can get very crowded.
The Marangu Route success rate also tends to be low as it is usually chosen by inexperienced and unprepared trekkers who are misled to believe it is the easiest route..
Day 1: Kilimanjaro National Park Gate to Mandara (Hut 2720 Mts)
After breakfast and briefing, we will drive to the Kilimanjaro Park Gate (about 45 minutes), after we arrive at the Gate, you will do registration before we start our trekking tout. Soon after we finish registration we will start walking through the rainforest to the Mandara Campsite. Later in the everning you will have a short walk to Maundi Crater here is a good to see the surroundings including Northern Tanzania and part of Kenya. In the rainforest, look for towering Eucalyptus foliage trees, bird life, and rare Colobus monkeys. 5,500 ft / 1,700 m to 9,000 ft / 2,740 m | 7 km | 4-5 hours | Montane Forest
Day 2: Mandara Hut to Horombo Hut (3720 Mts)
This day you will use 6 to 7 hours. So make sure you have enough water to drink on the way, not less than 3 liters of water. You leave the glades of the rainforest and follow an ascending trail on the open moorlands to the Horombo camp. Views of Mawenzi and the summit of Kibo are amazing. Look for giant lobelias and groundsels. You may begin to feel the effects of the altitude. 9,000 ft / 2,700 m to 12,100 ft / 3,700 m | 11 km | 6-8 hours | Heath land
Day 3: Horombo Hut
Rest day at Horombo Hut with optional hike by Mawenzi. Your Guide will take you to Zebra Rocks then you will proceed with your walk to Mawenzi.
Day 4: Horombo Hut to Kibo Hut (4700 Mts)
Ascending, we now pass the last watering point, walking onto the saddle of Kilimanjaro between the peaks of Kibo and Mawenzi. Vegetation begins with upper heathland but then disappears into “moonscape”. Dinner, rest, and prepare for summit kilimanjaro. 12,100 ft / 3,700 m to 15,400 ft / 4,700 m | 10 km | 6-8 hours | Alpine Desert
Day 5: Kibo Camp to Summit then Horombo Hut (3720 Mts)
Early in the morning (midnight to 2am), commence the climb to the summit on steep and heavy scree or snow up to Gilman’s point located on the crater rim. Continuing, we now 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! 15,400 ft / 4,700 m to 19,300 ft / 5,895 m | 19,300 ft / 5,895 m to 12,100 ft / 3,700 m | 4 km up / 14 km down | 10-15 hours | Alpine Desert
Day 6: Horombo Hut to Marangu Gate.
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 driver will meet you at Marangu village/gate and drive you back to your hotel in Moshi 12,100 ft / 3,700 m to 5,500 ft / 1,700 m | 18km | 5-7 hours