The Machame route is also known as the Whiskey route, given its reputation for being a tough climb. The climbers on Machame hike steeper trails, for longer distances, while sleeping in tents. The Machame Route climb can be done in a minimum of six days on the mountain. However, it is most often tackled over seven days, for a better altitude acclimatization schedule leading to a higher success rate. The trek begins at Machame Gate, located in the southern base of mountain, within its lush, fertile rain forest. The route heads towards the Shira Plateau, before circling along the southern circuit halfway around the mountain, exposing the climber to great views from all angles. The approach to the summit is made from the east, and the descent follows the Mweka trail.
Arrive at Kilimanjaro International Airport
After arriving at the Airport, you will be picked up by a Nafika tours representative and transferred to your hotel in Moshi. Later on, you will enjoy dinner with your group before being briefed on the trek followed by an equipment check to make sure you have all the necessary mountain gear. We can organize the rental of any missing equipment should it be needed.
Day 1: Machame Gate (1800 m) to Machame Camp (2835 m)
After breakfast, you will be picked up at the hotel around 8:00 am and transferred to Machame gate. On the way, you will see coffee and banana plantations grown by Chagga people, the cultivation zone, the first of the five zones of the mountain. After arriving at Machame gate, Nafika tours will handle all pre-hike formalities and once complete you will start your Kilimanjaro climb at the Machame gate. Your first day hike is through a tropical rain forest up to Machame camp (2835 m), be on the lookout for the blue monkey that can be found high up in the trees. On the route, you will have a picnic lunch, before continuing to Machame camp where you will stay your first night.
Day 2: Machame Camp (2835 m) to Shira Cave Camp (3750 m)
Wake up is early, but who would want to sleep in with the first view of the mountain. After a hearty breakfast, you will start hiking around 8:00 am. You will climb roughly an hour to the top of the forest and then before reaching a gentler gradient through the moorland zone. After a short lunch (snacks) and break, you continue up a rocky ridge, the Shira plateau. At this point you will be able to see the western breach with its stunning glacier. Overnight at Shira Campsite (3750 m).
Day 3: Shira Cave Camp (3750 m) to Baranco Camp (3900 m)
To take advantage of acclimatization, we will hike to a higher altitude and then descend back down to camp to sleep for the night. The trek will take us into the alpine desert and up to Lava Tower(4600 m) before descending to Baranco Camp (3900 m). The descent to Baranco Camp takes about 3 hours and offers great opportunities to take some beautiful pictures of the Western Breach and Baranco wall. The campsite is situated in a valley below the Barranco wall, which should provide you a memorable sunset while waiting for dinner before retiring to your tent for the evening.
Day 4: Barranco Camp (3900 m) to Karanga Camp (4000m)
After breakfast, we continue up a steep ridge to the great Barranco wall, there you climb the imposing obstacle, which actually turns out to be easier than it looks. Passing underneath the Heim and Kersten glaciers, we head towards the Karanga valley. With Kibo glaciers soaring overhead, the descent is truly beautiful. From the camp, you can look east and see the jugged peaks of Mawenzi. After a hot lunch in camp, the afternoon is your own but we recommended trying to rest and taking a quick nap. This short day is very important for your acclimatization since your summit push is about to start. For those feeling strong we will go for a mid-afternoon acclimatization trek up to around 4200m before descending back to camp for the night.
Day 5: Karanga Camp (4000 m) to Barafu Camp (4640m)
After breakfast, you will start hiking to Barafu Camp (4640 m). On the way be ready for the beautiful views of the Kibo and Mawenzi peaks. After arriving at the campsite, lunch will be provided, take advantage of a quiet afternoon by heading to your tent to catch some of that much need sleep to prepare for the long journey ahead. Dinner will be early and then it is back to your tent to get some sleep, alarms will be set around midnight to start the moment you have been preparing for; the climb to the summit
Day 6:Barafu Camp (4673 m) to UHURU PEAK (5895m) then down to Millennium Camp (3950 m)
As the new day starts you will be awoken at midnight with some light tea and breakfast. After final preparations, we will being our 4 to 5 hour climb gaining incredible height over a very short distance. The view is spectacular as the sun begins to rise. We should be on the crater rim at Stella point (5756 m) as the first rays of the sun hit us. Then it will take us 1-hour from Stella point to Uhuru peak (5895 m). Once at Uhuru point, you need to celebrate your accomplishment, you made it. Photos will be taken to show to all of your friends and family back home and after admiring the views we will start the descent to Barafu Camp for lunch and some rest. The day is not yet over, early afternoon we will descent down to Millennium Camp (3950 m) where you can enjoy dinner and reflect on your successful summit of Kilimanjaro, before retiring to your tent for some much needed rest.
Day 7: Millennium Camp (3950m) to Mweka Gate (1630m)
After breakfast, the final descent beings, it is a couple of hour walk from the Millennium Campsite to Mweka Gate, where you will collect your certificates and can finally enjoy a nice cold beverage. After saying goodbye to your mountain guides, a private car will then take you back to your hotel where you can enjoy the warm shower you have been craving. It’s definitely time to celebrate!
Approx. hiking time: 5 hours
Distance covered: 14 km
Habitat: Montane Fores
Meal: breakfast and lunch included
7 DAYS MACHAME ROUTE
Prices (quoted in USD/per person)
10 & above
Included in the price: