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Kilimanjaro Machame Route

Climb Africa’s highest mountain via the ever popular Machame Route supported by some of the most experienced guides on the mountain. Machame is generally perceived to have the best acclimatisation and most attractive scenery. The only drawback is its popularity, but with solid prospects of reaching the summit that is a sacrifice worth making.

Small Group 6 days

'From Price' is the average price per person for ground arrangements for two people sharing.

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Itinerary

Overview

Kilimanjaro rises out of the African plains to the majestic height of 5,895m. There are several routes up Kili and Machame recently overtook Marangu (Coca-Cola route) as the most popular. Starting at Machame Gate, the trek passes through striking rainforest, mountain desert and afro-alpine terrain before tackling the summit via Stella Point. The Machame route offers great scenery, arguably the best altitude acclimatisation of any and is available all year round. There are no huts on the Machame route, evenings are spent at the designated camp sites.

The Machame Route starts in the forest zone and heads North for two days until reaching the Shira Plateau at 3900m. Shira Camp offers incredible sunset views over the jagged peaks forming the southern edge of the Shira Plateau. The route really comes into its own from Lava Rock onwards with fantastic scenery, a varied trail and incredible Afro-Alpine vegetation between Barranco and Barafu. This trek includes airport transfers and a night’s accommodation either end of the trek in Arusha.

Adventurous trekkers can choose the outstanding Excel crater camp option, which includes an extra night after summiting, camping in the crater. It will be cold and the effects of altitude are strong, but the reward is a once in a lifetime experience in a truly alien environment of glaciers, ash-pits and wilderness. Details and photos from crater camp are available here.

Day-by-day

The standard option. High level of support with plenty of fresh fruits, vegetables and meat. Mess tents will be used and three course hot lunches will be served most days. (NOTE: This is a 6 day trek, but encompasses 7 nights including the nights before and after in Arusha)

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This is a very exciting series that spends the night with a small lightweight support team in the crater at 5729m after summitting Kilimanjaro. The following morning we launch excursions to a number of fascinating and rarely seen features within the crater from the Reusch Ash Pit at the crater's centre, to the rapidly retreating edges of the northern and eastern ice fields, where health and strength permit.

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Details

Getting there

This trek includes airport transfers to and from Kilimanjaro Airport.

It is not possible to fly direct from London to Kilimanjaro. KLM is the only major international airline to fly directly into Kilimanjaro. Flights are from Amsterdam which has connections from most major International Airports (including Heathrow). This would always be our first recommendation availability allowing.

The next best option is usually to fly Kenya Airways to Nairobi and then on to Kilimanjaro (the second leg by Kenya Airways subsidiary Precision Air on a small prop plane). British Airways and Ethiopia Airlines also offer this route.

The cheapest available fares from the UK vary throughout the year from £590 - £800

For those short of time it is possible to arrive on the KLM flight landing 2045 in Kilimanjaro and start your trek the very next day, you can then depart on an evening flight on the last day of your trek (with a day room in a hotel convenient for the airport to freshen up)

Price includes

The following are therefore our all-inclusive package prices. These cover the following:
- Pick up at Kilimanjaro Airport and transfer to your hotel in Arusha
- A night’s accommodation both before and after your climb*
- All climb costs, salaries, food, fees, etc (excluding tips)
- All transfers to the mountain and back to your Arusha hotel again
- Transfers back to Kilimanjaro Airport for your return flights
*Accommodation is on B&B basis in our standard range hotels, ie either at the Outpost Lodge, Arusha Naaz Hotel, or Le Jacaranda. If you wish to upgrade to either a mid-range or luxury option a surcharge is payable.

Significant additional cost considerations are as follows:
- Flights or overland transfers to Kilimanjaro International Airport or Arusha town if approaching from Nairobi
- Visas
- Tips to the mountain staff (guideline aprox $200-$250 per person for the whole crew)
- Meals other than breakfast while in Arusha
additional nights beyond the two standard hotel nights included
- Hotel upgrade costs if you decide to request an alternative hotel to the standard
- Items considered to be non-essential, such as alcohol, beverages, cigarettes, snacks, etc

When is best?

There are no black-out dates on Kilimanjaro and you can pretty much trek any time of the year. Most people do avoid the rainy season (April, May and November) for good reason but these months aren’t without their advantages. The remainder of the year is all fair game:
*****December – March is typically dry, with clear skies (great views) but colder with a higher chance of snow on the mountain. The 2 weeks around Christmas and New Year can be the busiest of the year on Kilimanjaro.
** April – May suffer from the long rains. Expect to encounter rain, cloud and mist as you climb Kilimanjaro. Trails will be muddy and only the Machame and Marangu gates are accessible. The upside though is a mountain devoid of crowds with beautiful snow cover on the peak.
**** June – October is dry but the months of July and August tend to be busy (coinciding with the Western school holidays). June is a great month to trek, whilst October is similarly quiet it can suffer from low lying cloud cover (which effects your views of the scenery around Kilimanjaro).
** November is the short rain season. As with the long rains from April to May, expect to encounter rain, cloud and mist as you climb. Trails will be muddy and only the Machame and Marangu gates are accessible. The upside though is a mountain devoid of crowds with beautiful snow cover on the peak.

Is it for me?

Machame is a good safe bet on Kilimanjaro and the usual rules that apply to Kilimanjaro apply similarly to Machame. See our advice on health requirements for Kilimanjaro. For those who value mountain wilderness and solitude, then Machame is probably not a good idea during the peak season. Instead, Lemosho or TK Rongai (LINK) are good bets.

Although Machame is sometimes offered as a 7 day trek, we tend to encourage trekkers go for the 6 day Machame trek (with an extra night in Crater Camp as an option) as it offers sufficient acclimatisation for most fit trekkers.

Safety

For the latest travel advice from the Foreign and Commonwealth office check www.gov.uk/travelaware

What customers are saying after travelling with Tourdust

Average Rating

based on 612 reviews

(4.94/5)

  • Everything worked perfectly! We all found our trekking experience to be the best part of our adventures in Morocco. We were particularly pleased with our guide, Hussain; he did a brilliant job. He is thoughtful, knowledgable, and sweet. He represents you well.

    MissingJacob Moffat reviewing Atlas Valleys & Villages Comfort Treks on 09 March 2017

  • Thanks for organising an excellent holiday for us. It's my first time using Tourdust and I've been really impressed and will certainly be recommending you to friends and family. You provided an excellent level of service all the way through, and the bespoke nature of the trip was fantastic whilst being really good value for money.
    Key highlights:
    - Le Kasbah de Toubkal blew us away - one not to miss!
    - The trek was amazing and my kids loved it. The camping was really fun, the food was excellent, and I'd particularly call out our guide Rashid who was fantastic show especially with my kids.
    - Riad Adore was outstanding - far exceeding my expectations - it was beautiful and we were very well looked after
    - Le Doux Tour was luxurious and a nice relaxing way to end the holiday.
    - Logistics were great and our main driver Mustapha was brilliant

    If there was one build / thing I would change, it's a very small one but some candles / lanterns to use in the evening whilst camping would have made it easier to stay outside for a bit longer.

    MissingMark Dilley reviewing Boutique Marrakech & Atlas Mountains on 07 June 2016

  • Truly another world. The sky was enormous and the summits snow covered. Blue irises, wild herbs and fruit trees flowered on the slopes. Even as I toiled up the dry river bed I gazed in admiration.

    Without exception, everyone was courteous and welcoming. Food was good ( and far too plentiful); accommodation clean. Above all-everything worked! A pick-up was promised for 9.00am. At 8.55 the doorbell rang. Impeccable.

    No praise is too high for the organisation and staff. I am definitely going back.

    MissingTerence Humphreys reviewing Classic Atlas Valleys & Villages Trek on 16 May 2016

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Alternative Itineraries

Our itineraries are carefully designed by our experienced travel designers based on years of experience and customer feedback. For a custom itinerary tailored to you, please enquire giving as much detail as possible on your brief.

A holiday of two halves; summit the challenging but majestic Kilimanjaro before relaxing on the white Zanzibar beaches at a laid back beach lodge.

Tailor-made Adventure 2 weeks

Adults from $3,554 pp plus flights

'From Price' is the average per person price for ground arrangements for two people sharing.

Flights are typically an additional $1,344 per person economy class from London

Climb Kilimanjaro via the exclusive Rongai route, with fewer crowds and the best summit success chances.

Small Group 1 week

Adults from $2,867 pp plus flights

'From Price' is the average per person price for ground arrangements for two people sharing.

Climb Kilimanjaro via the wilderness of this pioneering Lemosho route. TK Lemosho offers great wildlife, wilderness and acclimatisation.

Small Group 1 week

Adults from $2,886 pp plus flights

'From Price' is the average per person price for ground arrangements for two people sharing.

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