Mount Kilimanjaro is home to three volcanic cones and is the highest mountain peak of Africa. At a height of about 5895 metres, it is a major destination for mountaineering and hiking. It is located in the border between Tanzania and Kenya. It is not a very difficult mountain to climb and is therefore a hot favourite among amateur climbers and tourists alike. Read below for a detailed overview of Mount Kilimanjaro.
Places to see
Apart from the actual mountain itself, there is a lot of wildlife to explore if you are a nature lover. There are many wild monkeys, birds and animals in the region. The place also has many natural waterfalls making it a scenic spot for budding photographers. If you are looking to try your hand at climbing, there are multiple routes for reaching the summit but the most popular is the Marangu Route. The Lemosho route is also very popular among tourists since it provides access to the wildlife that throng the region. You can easily spot buffalos and elephants along the way.
Ensure that you research carefully before you book a tour as the food will be arranged by the tour operator as there are very few habitations along the way. Carry some snacks and dry fruits with you for use along the way as all food is carried physically by porters only. You should also ensure that you have enough water as many climbers can get dehydrated if they are not experienced.
Some tour operators also organise cultural tours restricted to the slopes where you can get an insight into the local culture of the native Chagga tribe.
There are many camp sites where you can rest for the night and Hostel Foot Prince and Arusha Hotel chains are some of the good ones. You will need to pay fees before you can stay at Kilimanjaro. There is no restriction on the number of days as long as you pay the requisite fees. Most camp sites are limited to tents and huts and tents remain the more popular option as they are less cold than the huts.
Altitude sickness is pretty common and it is also advisable to get immunization shots before you plan a trip to Kilimanjaro. Most tour operators will generally organise a slow descent tour going up to five days or more. This helps is better acclimatisation to the altitude and rapid ascent can leave you exhausted and sick.
Planning your visit
You can fly in via Kilimanjaro airport which is the nearest to the mountain. There are many carriers that operate in the region. The cost of visiting Kilimanjaro can be pretty high considering the associated costs of climbing equipments, vaccinations and climbing gear. The place is notorious for malaria outbreaks so do not skip on the vaccines. For climbing the mountain, you need to have a licensed tour guide and pay fees to the rangers based on the number of days that you desire to spend in the region.