This route is known popularly as the “Whiskey” route. The route starts at Machame Gate and takes 6 days. Its location is in the southern side of the of the mountain and has features of green and abundant rainforest. Here, you will be guided to climb to the Shira Plateau, then traverse the mountain beneath Kilimanjaro’s Southern Icefield, before summiting from Barafu Hut. Machame route is ideal for people who want to enjoy a scenic hike yet on a challenging route in the shortest time.
Day 1: Arrive in Arusha
Arrive at Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO). Our driver &mountain guide will come and meet you at the airport and will transfer you from Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO) to Arusha at a hotel that suits your budget. Spend the rest of the day at leisure. The mountain guide will come at the agreed time at the hotel for a pre-climb briefing and an equipment check. We recommend that this is done on the eve of the climb
Day 2: Arusha to Machame Camp
The climb starts from Machame gate (1800m), enjoy the short walk through some banana and coffee farms of Machame village, the path is through a ridge through dense montane forest. This area boasts of being the richest forested area on the mountain. Even in the dry season the area retains its green beauty. However, gets very muddy during the rainy season. You will have lunch halfway and continue climbing steadily. The gradient becomes gentler as the forest slowly merges into giant heather close to the next camp near the ruins of Machame Hut (3,000m). Evening clouds permitting you may get your first view of the glaciated dome of Kibo. (6-7 hours walking)
Day 3:Machame to Shira Camp
A shorter day that begins by climbing up a steep ridge to reach a small semicircular cliff known as picnic rock. There are excellent views of kibo and the jagged rim of Shira Plateau from here and it is a good rest point too, the trail continues less steeply to reach the Shira Plateau. Camping this day will be near Shira Hut (3840m) which has some of the most stunning views on Kilimanjaro; close to the huge volcanic cone of Kibo, the spectacular rock formations of Shira Plateau, and looking across to Mt. Meru floating on the clouds. (4-5 hours walking)
Day 4: Shira to Barranco Camp.
A morning of gentle ascent and panoramic views, leaving the moorland plateau behind to walk on lava ridges beneath the glaciers of the Western Breach. Have lunch around lava camp (4540m) and descend to the bottom of the Great Barranco Valley (3900m), sheltered by towering cliffs and with extensive views of the plains far below. (4-6 hours walking)
Day 5: Barranco to Barafu Camp.
Following a steep climb up the Barranco wall, it will take you to the south-eastern flank of Kibo, with magnificent views of the southern ice fields. Lunch will be served at the camp, the last water point, in a steep valley. After lunch, the terrain changes to scree and the climb is steep to reach the Barafu Hut (4600m.) by mid afternoon. Spend the rest of the day resting in preparation for the final ascent before a very early night. (6-7 hours walking)
Day 6: Barafu summit to Mweka Camp.
Ascent is best accomplished by torchlight around midnight in order to be up on the Crater rim by sunrise. The steep climb over loose volcanic scree has some graded zigzags and a slow but steady pace that leads to Stella point (5735m.) – about 5-6 hours. Rest there for a short time to enjoy the sunrise over Mawenzi. Another 2 hours here along the Crater rim leads you to Uhuru Peak (5895m.), The spectacular glaciers and ice cliffs that occupy most of the summit area cannot go unnoticed, its simply amazing!. Descending to Barafu campsite is fast, enjoy lunch and refreshments here and continue descending after lunch to reach the final campsite for the day – Barafu (3100m. (11-14 hours walking).
Day 7: Mweka camp to Mweka Gate
Start another day of descending on a well maintained trail through lovely tropical forest, enjoy the birdcalls and lush undergrowth with considerable botanical interest. The route winds to the National Park Gate at Mweka (1650m.) (4-5 hours walking). From Mweka Gate you will be met and transferred to Arusha for dinner and overnight (at the Jacaranda Hotel).
Day 8: Arusha to Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO), transfer is arranged.