8 Days Mount Kilimanjaro Hike via Lemosho route

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8 Days Mount Kilimanjaro Hike via Lemosho route

8 Days Mount Kilimanjaro Hike via Lemosho route

The Lemosho route is considered the most scenic trail on Kilimanjaro, granting panoramic vistas on various sides of the mountain. As one of the newer routes, Lemosho is a superb choice for your climb. It is our preferred route due to its ideal balance of low crowds, beautiful scenery, and a high summit success rate. Wilderness explorers Africa specializes in guiding on the Lemosho route. Most of our clients climb Kilimanjaro using this route and they consistently report that they loved it. Thus, Lemosho is highly recommended.

The route approaches Mount Kilimanjaro from the west, beginning with a long drive from Moshi to Londorossi Gate. From there, the first two days are spent trekking through the rain forest to Shira Ridge. The Lemosho route crosses the entire Shira Plateau from west to east in a pleasant, relatively flat hike. Crowds are low until the route joins the Machame route near Lava Tower. Then the route traverses underneath Kilimanjaro’s Southern Ice Field on a path known as the Southern Circuit before summiting from Barafu. Descent is made via the Mweka route.

Safari highlights

Detailed safari itinerary

Day 1: Arrival in Arusha Tanzania

Arrive at Kilimanjaro International Airport where you are met by our representative and Transferred to Ngare Sero Mountain Lodge and have a comprehensive briefing and equipment check with your climbing manager and your guide. Overnight at Ngare Sero Mountain Lodge.

Day 2: Explore Mount Meru on a Day trip

Acclimatize during a day at Arusha National Park the foothills of Mount Meru (the Second highest peak in Tanzania). Spot wildlife on foot as you warm up for your climb accompanied by an armed ranger.

Day 3: Depart Arusha for Mount Kilimanjaro

7,742 ft. to 9,498 ft., 4 miles, approx. 3-4 hours

From Arusha, set out in vehicles for the long drive to the starting point of the Lemosho Trail, the Londorossi Gate. Approaching the mountain from the west, the Lemosho Route starts in the Afromontane Rainforest, which is the first of four ecological zones you encounter on Kilimanjaro. Here you meet the rest of your crew and set off at a leisurely pace while keeping your eyes peeled for wildlife. Lunch is taken on the trail and camp is reached mid-afternoon.

Day 2: Hiking to Shira 1 camp

9,498 ft. to 11,500 ft., 5 miles, approx. 5-6 hours

From the forested slopes of Lemosho, you ascend through a podocarpus and juniper forest and then break out onto a zone of heather and lichen-draped volcanic rock and the Shira Plateau, which used to be Kilimanjaro’s third peak before it collapsed. Lunch is taken on the trail and you arrive in camp mid-afternoon. The view of Kibo (the peak of Kilimanjaro) is breathtaking from this vantage point.

Day 3: Hiking from Shira 1camp to Moir Hut

11,500 ft. to 13,800 ft., 7 miles, 5-7 hours

Crossing the Shira Plateau – one of the highest plateaus on Earth – is one of the most scenic parts of this trip during your 3-4 hour hike across moorland meadows to the lunch point. After lunch you ascend to Moir camp, arriving in the mid-afternoon. If you have the energy, a hike in the late afternoon is possible in the surrounding Lent Hills, which makes this an excellent acclimatization opportunity.

Day 4: Hiking from Moir Hut Camp to Barranco Camp

13,800 ft. to 15,223 ft. (Lava Tower), down to 13,044 ft., 7km, 4-6 hours

From Moir you traverse the slopes of Kibo. Here relatively little flora or fauna can survive the extreme temperature ranges and conditions that typify this zone. Lunch is normally taken close to a volcanic rock formation known as the Lava Tower. If you feel very strong there is an optional ascent of the 300-foot-tall Lava Tower before descending down to Barranco camp in the afternoon, passing through the strange yet beautiful ‘Garden of the Senecios’ (giant groundsel) which also features many giant lobelias. The Barranco Valley is one of the prettiest areas of the entire trail.

Day 5: Hiking from Barranco Camp to Karanga Camp

13,044 ft. to 13,123 ft., 3 miles, 4-5 hours

You now have a relatively short day to reach Karanga Camp, after conquering the intimidating Barranco Wall. Be prepared to use all four limbs as you traverse the wall to the top of the Karanga Valley. From here, follow a path that sojourns through many inclines and declines to Karanga Camp, arriving in the late afternoon. Our selection of Karanga Camp is strategic – significant time at altitude is essential for safe acclimatization. Sunsets here are particularly spectacular with views of the southern glacial valleys and ice fields towering over 3000 feet above you.

Day 6: Hiking from Karanga Camp to Barafu Camp

15,288 ft. to 19,341 ft. to 12,467 ft., 3 miles ascent, 7 miles descent, 7-8 hours ascent, 4-6 hours descent.

Today is another half day ascending to Barafu Camp; Once again lunch is taken in this high camp, allowing plenty of time to relax before the summit bid. Desolate alpine desert and, at times, strong winds rip over this camp, yet in the evenings’ splendid views of Mawenzi peak are the norm. A relatively early dinner is taken before resting for the evening.

Day 7: Hiking from Barafu to the Summit to Mweka Camp

12,467 ft. to 5,380 ft., 6 miles, 3-4 hours

Depart just before midnight for the final summit bid. Patience and persistence is the name of game to reach the summit, and this is the coldest, windiest section of your adventure. Most likely by dawn, as the first rays of light start to appear across the Tanzanian landscape, you arrive near the rim at Stella Point, at an altitude of 18,652ft. Here, you are rewarded with the most glorious sunrise you are ever likely to see, appearing over Mawenzi Peak. Ascending via Stella Point affords a relatively short final section to Uhuru Peak, the Roof of Africa! Take as many pictures as you can! After a short celebration at the summit, begin the ebullient trek down. Go slowly and enjoy the wonderful rainforest scenery as you head towards Mweka Camp, arriving before dusk. With every step, the air has more and more oxygen so although your legs will be jelly your heart will be light. Overnight Mweka Camp.

Day 8: Hiking from Mweka Camp to the base and after transfer to Arusha

After breakfast, you descend once again through montane forest and at around midday, after saying farewell to your crew, you are picked up and transferred back to your hotel for a well-deserved shower and a celebratory dinner!

End of Expedition

Trip includes

  • Trekking permits
  • Hiking crew
  • All transfers
  • Park entrance fees
  • pre and post-safari accommodation
  • Food and beverages for the entire hike
  • Overnight in camps during the hike
  • Trip Excludes
  • International flights
  • Insurance
  • Tanzania tourist Visa
  • Personal porter
When to book this safari package

We recommend booking this package 6 months to 1 year in advance.

Best time to hike Mount Kilimanjaro Tanzania

We generally advise that the best time to climb Kilimanjaro is during the warmest and driest times of the year, from December to mid-March and mid-June to the end of October. However, although these are considered to be the best times to climb the mountain in terms of weather, they are also the busiest months so sometimes it calls for earlier booking.