8 DAY LEMOSHO ROUTE
T he Lemosho Route is considered the prettiest route on Kilimanjaro. It begins at the Lemosho gate and ascends quickly through the lush rainforest. The route continues ascending to the Shira Plateau in the Heather/Moorland zone. Along the way, there is an acclimatization day up the Shira Cathedral with its stunning views of Tanzania below. From there the route continues to the prominent Lava Tower before descending to the breathtaking Barranco Camp. The next day you’ll ascend the daunting Barranco Wall as you continue your adventure toward the Summit. You will have now entered the Alpine zone of Karanga camp and then Barafu Camp, before heading to the Summit.
The total number of days on the mountain is six and a half to the summit and one and a half to the Mweka gate.
We recommend booking your flight to arrive at least the morning before your climb starts or two evenings prior. It is difficult to get a trip briefing and proper rest if you arrive the evening before your climb. Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO) is 45 minutes from your lodging. We will pick you up from JRO (for a fee) and take you to your hotel, or you can take a taxi.
At the trip briefing, we will make sure you have the required equipment, perform your initial health check, and that you have the appropriate mandatory medical coverage and travel insurance.
Kilimanjaro: Day 1
2-3 hours · 2.9 miles elevation: +1,700 ft.
From the hotel, we will drive you to the Londorossi National Park gate for you to be signed onto the park. The porters will also weigh the gear while you eat lunch. From there you’ll continue driving through the cultivation zone to the Lemosho trailhead (7,000 ft). From here, you’ll begin your trek to Lemosho Forest Camp (8,700 ft). You’ll camp there for the night. We will perform a daily health check and give a quick briefing of what the next day will entail including how much water to bring.
Kilimanjaro: Day 2
6-7 hours · 4.9 miles · elevation: +3,000 ft.
Day two the trek continues through the rainforest until the trail turns and suddenly the jungle trees are gone and you are surrounded by the giant heather shrub of the Moorland zone. The trail climbs steadily up rolling hills with expansive views until you reach the Shira Plateau. You will continue along this relatively flat, rock plain toward your camp at Shira I (11,600 ft).
Kilimanjaro: Day 3
4-5 hours · 9.9 miles · elevation: +1,000 ft.
Today is an easier day designed to allow your body to acclimate to the elevation. You’ll start at camp and climb west to the volcanic rock formations of Shira Cathedral (12,800 ft.). You’ll rest a bit here and eat, admiring the stunning views. After lunch, you’ll continue to Shira II camp a bit lower (12,600 ft). This campsite has some of the best views of the summit. The view of Mount Meru floating on the clouds is simply unforgettable.
Kilimanjaro: Day 4
5-7 hours · 6.3 miles · elevation: +200 ft.
From camp, you’ll make your way towards Lava Tower, the highest point for the day. Here you will have views of the treacherous Western Breach and may even witness one of many frequent rock slides. After lunch, you’ll descend into the Barranco Valley to Barranco Camp (12,800 ft), one of the best camps on Kilimanjaro. Barranco Camp sits in the shadow of the infamous Barranco Wall and is situated along a cliff face that allows clouds to swirl up into camp as they journey toward their destination.
Kilimanjaro: Day 5
4-6 hours · 3.2 miles · elevation: +300 ft
Today starts with a lung-burning ascent of the 800 foot Barranco Wall. It is a short ascent to the top where you’ll stop and admire what you just accomplished gazing back down on Barranco Valley. Continuing on, you’ll be treated to the views of Southern Icefield above you until you reach Karanga Camp (13,100 ft). This camp is the last water point on the way to the Summit. After this, our porters will bring water from below.
Kilimanjaro: Day 6
3-5 hours · 3.4 miles · elevation: +1,700 ft
Today you’ll follow an easy trail on scree with far-ranging views of the countryside below. You’ll gain elevation rapidly as you ascend to your next camp—Barafu Hut (14,800 ft). If you are up for it, there is a short acclimatization hike to the plateau at the bottom of the southeast valley. The rest of the day is spent preparing for summit night. You should spend the afternoon resting as much as possible before you head to bed for the evening.
Kilimanjaro: Day 7
11-15 hours · 10.4 miles · elevation: +4,155 ft gain · -9,300 ft loss
Summit Night: You will be woken by the guide around 11 pm and begin your ascent by headlamp. Your goal is to reach the crater rim by sunrise. A slow and steady climb up switchbacks over 5-6 hours will take you to Stella Point (18,800 ft). Here you’ll take a short break before you begin your final push to the Summit. It takes about two hours to make the roundtrip from Stella Point to Uhuru Peak, the Summit of Kilimanjaro (19,341 ft). Along this final leg, you pass close to the Southern Glaciers and be able to gaze down into the dormant crater of Kibo. Once at the Summit you’ll spend about 45 minutes resting, eating, and waiting for your turn to take a photo at the sign. Don’t waste this time.
The descent from here down to Barafu Hut is fairly quick, where you’ll eat then continue down to the final campsite, Mweka Camp (10,000 ft).
Kilimanjaro: Day 8
4-6 hours · 5.14 miles · elevation: -4,800 ft
After breakfast, you’ll begin the remainder of your descent through the rainforest to the Mweka Gate (5,400 ft.). You’ll be entertained by singing birds and crazy primates swinging through the trees saying goodbye to you as you finish your journey. Once your guide has checked you out, you’ll travel through coffee plantations and fields of bananas and avocado as you head back toward your hotel.
After breakfast, you’ll either be driven to JRO or picked up for your safari.
Lemosho Route Map
- All park fees and taxes
- Hotel lodging the night before and the night after the climb (double occupancy)
- Transport to and from the hotel and trailhead
- Tents (double occupancy)
- Sleeping pad
- All meals and water on the mountain
- Support personnel (guides, cooks, and porters)
- Airfare to Tanzania
- Airport pick up and drop off
- Tips for guides and porters
- Sleeping bags and other personal gear
- Rental gear – Sleeping bag, jacket, duffel, private toilet tent, trekking poles
- Travel Insurance
- Drinks and/or snacks
- Lunch and dinner at the hotel