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Marangu route 6 Days Itenerary

Day by day Activities

Elevation (m): 1800m to 2700m, Distance: 7km, Time: 3 hours. Habitat: Montane Forest.

You will begin your 6 day Marangu route itinerary by proceeding to the Marangu Gate from the hotel. When you arrive at the park gate, check-in at the office and make final preparations to begin the climb. We now exit the park gate and rise through the jungle on a cleared ridge track. The forest, which is shrouded in mist and dripping with moss beards, is also home to the majority of Kilimanjaro’s species. Our first night will be spent at Mandara Hut, a collection of wooden A-frame houses nestled in a woodland clearing. Water is pumped in from springs above the camp, and flush facilities are located behind the main cabin.

Elevation (m): 2700m to 3720m, Distance: 12km, Time: 6 hours. Habitat: Moorland.

The route from Mandara Hut runs through a brief section of woodland before emerging onto the transition zone between rain forest and moorland, near the foot of the Maundi Crater. We’ll arrive at the Horombo Hut, where we’ll spend the night, after around 6 hours. Take use of the hot washing water that is provided.

Elevation (m): 3720m to 4700m, Distance: 9.5km, Time: 5 hours. Habitat: Alpine desert.

We continue our climb into the Alpine dry zone, passing the final source of water at 4130 meters. We’ll fill our water bottles to the brim with enough water to last us till we return to Horombo Hut in two nights. The summit is currently only 1195 meters away from Kibo Hut. We’ll start our summit ascent tonight, so we’ll go to bed around 18:30 p.m. and try to get as much sleep as we can.

Elevation (m): 3720m to 4700m, Distance: 9.5km, Time: 5 hours. Habitat: Alpine desert.

After breakfast, continue ascending into the Alpine desert ecosystem, passing the final water station at 4130 meters. You must fill your water bottles with all of the water you will require till you return to Horombo hut in two nights (unless you are willing to buy Mineral water at Kibo hut). The top is now 1195 meters away, and you’ll finish the climb that night. Go to bed at around 18:30 p.m. and get as much rest and sleep as you can.

Elevation (m): 4700m to 5895m, Distance: 21 km, Time: 6-7 hours ascent, 3 hours descent. Habitat: Stone screed and ice-capped summit

You’ll wake up at 23:30 p.m., and after a cup of tea and some energy-giving snacks provided, you’ll stroll off into the darkness, when the going becomes very difficult as you make the final push to the summit of Kilimanjaro. The hike begins with a rough road that leads to Hans Meyer Point (5250m), which is also a nice resting location. The trail then ascends in a zigzag pattern to Gillman’s point (5 681m), which is situated on the crater rim. This portion is quite steep, with a lot of stone screed, and it takes a lot of physical and mental work to complete.

Snow is usually encountered all the way up to Uhuru peak (5895m), Africa’s highest point, from Gillman’s Point. The weather on the summit will influence how much time you have to spend photographing before the three-hour descent back to Kibo hut.

After a brief pause, you gather all of the gear you left behind on the ascent and descend (3 hours) to Horombo hut for the night. Later that evening, you have your final meal on the mountain and a restful night’s sleep, full with memories and stirring emotions.

Elevation (m): 3720m to 1980m, Distance: 18 km, Time: 6 hours, Habitat: Montane Forest.

On the last day of our 6 day Marangu route tour, we continue our descent (6 hours) to the Marangu Gate, where we will exit. This is also where our summit certificates will be given out. At Marangu Gate, a van will be waiting to take you back to your hotel or the airport.

Price Range

$ 2100
Per person Sharing
Can be Customized

During your research you may have heard that the Marangu route is the cheapest, easiest and most popular route up Kilimanjaro. This is, in fact, an outdated view, and we feel quite the opposite. The Marangu route is probably one of our least favourite Kilimanjaro climb routes. Whilst offering rewarding views from the Saddle (a high-altitude desert), it’s less scenic than other Kilimanjaro routes because you ascend and descend via the same trail.

The Marangu route is the only Kilimanjaro route to offer hut accommodation. On all other routes you must camp. On the Marangu route you sleep in dormitory-like huts that provide mattresses and other basic amenities. This makes the route a popular choice for budget operators that don’t have camping equipment. We only recommend choosing this route if you really don’t want to camp.


✓ Hut accommodation

✓ Enjoy panoramic views

✓ Varied terrain


– Shorter acclimatisation period

– Low summit success rate

– Less scenic than other routes

The Marangu route is less scenic than the other Kilimanjaro routes because you ascend and descend along the same path. That said, the scenery is still very beautiful; you pass through rainforest, moorland, high-altitude desert, and an arctic summit. It’s just worth noting that other routes offer more variety in the way of scenery because their ascent and descent routes differ.

The Marangu route has a reputation for being an ‘easy’ climb, but this perception is actually misleading. Yes, it offers amenities like hut accommodation and, yes, it’s a comparatively shorter route. But it demands you ascend quickly and so many people climbing this route suffer from poor acclimatisation and don’t make it to the top. The Marangu route actually has the lowest success rate of all the seven Kilimanjaro routes. This just goes to show that you shouldn’t fall for the promise of ‘easy’!

All that being said, while we wouldn’t necessarily recommend the Marangu route, it is definitely still achievable with the right Kilimanjaro preparation, which includes an awareness of the risks. 

If you are physically fit, choose a good mountain crew to assist you in your climb, and can accept the risks, you should be able to achieve the summit via the Marangu route.

Marangu route elevation profile

The graphs below show the Marangu route in profile – first in metres, then in feet.

Marangu route elevation in metres
Marangu route elevation in feet

The Marangu route is one of the shortest Kilimanjaro routes, which gives it a relatively poor acclimatisation profile. Summit success is low. Whilst there are no official statistics, the average success rate across all Kilimanjaro operators for the five day route is 50%. That means your chances of reaching the summit of Kilimanjaro when using the Marangu route aren’t fantastic. (We usually recommend opting for the Lemosho route or one of the other Kilimanjaro routes with a better acclimatisation profile.)

The Marangu route is a popular choice among the seven Kilimanjaro routes because it’s seen as an easier climb, given its gradual slope and direct path. It’s therefore a busy route and can get crowded. If you want to avoid the crowds, this Kilimanjaro route is not for you.

The Marangu route is the only route to offer hut accommodation. There are 60 bunk beds at both Mandara and Kibo Huts, and 120 bunk beds at Horombo Hut. You must bring your own sleeping bags, but you’re supplied with mattresses and pillows at the various huts. Check to see if your chosen tour operator has sleeping bags you can use.

The huts themselves have communal dining halls and washrooms. The latter range in quality: you can expect running water and flushing toilets at the lower huts, and buckets of water and long drops at Kibo Hut.

The Marangu route is usually completed in five to six days. We would always recommend the six-day itinerary. We find that the low success rate of the Marangu route is mainly the result of unprofessional tour operators taking people up the mountain on the short five-day itinerary. A five-day climb simply doesn’t give you enough time to acclimatise. Furthermore, climbing Kilimanjaro is not a race. Take your time and soak in the views and experience!

Marangu route as a six-day group or private climb for $2,285 per person (based on double occupancy). This package fee includes six days on the mountain and one day either side at our beautiful parter lodge in the town of Moshi. For more information on the inclusions and exclusions, as well as more details about the trip, please head to our Kilimanjaro climb page.

The Kilimanjaro National Park authority has declared all the travelers above ten years can go for a successful Kilimanjaro Climb.


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