7 Days Kilimanjaro Climbing Machame Route is highly recommended for scenic value and has a medium to high success rate. 7 Days Kilimanjaro Climbing Machame Route is a good Kilimanjaro route for acclimatization as it has a climb high, sleep low opportunity for trekkers on day three. Here trekkers climb from Shira Camp 2 to Lava Tower at 4,600 meters, where they have lunch and then hike back down to Barranco Camp (3,900 meters) to sleep.  The Machame route approaches Mount Kilimanjaro from the south, commencing with short drive from Moshi to Machame Gate. The path leads hikers through the rain forest to Shira Plateau.

Known as the “Whiskey” route, the Machame route is now the most popular route on the mountain. Compared with Marangu, the days on Machame are longer and the walks are steeper. The Machame route is considered a difficult route, and is better suited for more adventurous folks and those with some hiking or backpacking experience. Machame route is our most popular and successful route leading to the summit of Kilimanjaro. Hikers sleep in tents which are carried up the mountain by porters.

The Machame route is a very scenic and beautiful route, which can be completed in 6 days, though we recommend hiking the route in 7 days, allowing for more time to acclimatize. The key to the success of the Machame route is its topography, allowing hikers to climb high and sleep low, helping towards better acclimatization.
Owing to its high success rate, the Machame route can be busy, but we ‘ll start early to avoid the crowds.

We also ensure that our porter team arrives into the designated campsites early so that your tent will be set up and ready for your arrival, together with a nice hot drink prepared by our team cook. Please get in touch with me and let’s discuss your wishes for your Kilimanjaro adventure. I will be happy to guide you to the summit of the highest mountain in Africa! Of course, we can combine this program with some other great adventures including safari, beach stays and more.

7 Days Kilimanjaro Climbing Machame Route

DEPARTURE/RETURN LOCATION Kilimanjaro International Airport or from the Hotel
DEPARTURE TIME Please be ready by 7:30 AM for a prompt departure at 8:00 AM.
RETURN TIME Approximately 5:30 PM.
WEAR Comfortable athletic clothing, hiking boots, hat, jacket and sunscreen.
INCLUDED
Professional instructor Meals
1 hour of free time Transportation in mini-coach
NOT INCLUDED
Drinks
Instructor gratuity

7 Days Kilimanjaro Climbing Machame Route

Like all Kilimanjaro routes, the Machame is a challenging trek with stunning scenery through four diverse climatic zones. There is a good opportunity to split pre-summit day climb by adding an extra rest day at Karanga Camp (only available to seven day trekkers) to leave hikers well rested before summiting. The route has however got very popular over the past few years which means it can get busy, especially at Barranco where climbers join up with trekkers from the Lemosho, Shira and Umbwe routes.

Machame route is one of the highest summit success rates given the topography and nature of the route which allows climbers to “trek high & sleep low” hence making it a more favorable route for acclimatization. This route offers some of the most spectacular scenery while on the mountain. The Machame route starts in the south west side of the mountain and proceeds steeply north, traversing the Shira plateau and eventually joining the Shira and Lemosho routes just after the Shira cave camp. The Machame route can be done in minimum 6 days but a 7 day trek is recommended to allow climbers been well rested and acclimatized before making the final ascent to the summit.

What to bring on trekking either Kilimanjaro?

Waterproof rucksack with day pack Sleeping bag (covering at least 3 seasons) Roll mats and insulation pads, Comfortable hiking boots, light walking trainers thongs (flip – flops) Gaiters (useful when encountering snow) Wooden walking stick / ski pole Sunglasses or snow – goggles, sun hat, balaclava or woolen hat Warm scarf, gloves, mittens and thermal underwear Sweaters / jumpers, anorak / raincoat, water and windproof pants, jackets, t-shirt, several pairs of socks Long sleeved shirt with collar, small towel, toiletries and toilet paper Sunscreen and lip salve Flash light (head mounted preferable) and spare batteries Water bottle

Safari Price excludes:

  • Drinks
  • Tipping
  • Personal effects
  • Visas

Cost does not include:

  • Drinks
  • Tipping
  • Cultural visits to Masai villages
  • Sleeping bags
  • Personal effects

Africa Mountain Climbing Safari Packages

Mount Kilimanjaro Trekking Hiking Climbing

7 Days Kilimanjaro Climbing Machame Route

Day 1 – Machame Gate (1,640 meters) to Machame Camp (2,835 meters)

Distance: ~11km / 7 miles,
Trekking time: 5-7 hours
Zone: Rainforest

The first day trekking begins at Machame Gate (1,640 meters). Typically, you will drive from the town of Moshi or Arusha to the gate, which takes approximately an hour for the former and two hours for the latter.

On the way you will get to see subsistence farming and the town of Machame. At the Gate you will meet your trekking crew – your guide, porters and cook. There will be a flurry of activity as porters assemble gear for the trek; weighing packs to ensure they don’t exceed 20 kilograms. You, your guide and climbing team will in the meantime begin the ascent through the stunning rainforest that covers the South-West of the mountain. The first day trek on the Machame Route is a long one (~11km / 7miles) and takes approximately 5-7 hours to complete.

From here on porters will collect water from mountain streams. The day’s trekking ends at Machame Camp (2,835 meters) which sits near the border of the rainforest zone and the low alpine zone. By the time you arrive your porters will have already setup your camp and tents, and dinner will be served.

Day 2 – Machame Camp (2,835 meters) to Shira Camp 2 (3,850 meters)

Distance: ~5km / 3 miles
Trekking time: 4-6 hours
Zone: Rainforest / Low Alpine Zone

On day two you will rise early, pack your gear and prepare for the trek from Machame Camp to Shira Camp 2 (3,850 meters). The trek is relatively steep as you enter the low alpine zone which is characterized by moorlands and grasslands.

Shira Camp 2 sits on a plateau which provides you with the first views of Kibo in the North-West and Mount Meru in the East. Day two takes approximately 4-6 hours and covers a distance of 5km / 3miles.

Day 3 – Shira Camp 2 (3,850 meters) to Lava Tower (4,600 meters) and then Barranco Camp (3,900 meters)

Distance: ~11km / 7 miles
Trekking time: 5-7 hours
Zone: Low alpine zone / High alpine zone

Day three is a long and tough trek East off the Shira Plateau through the ‘Garden of the Senecios’, up to Lava Tower and the Shark’s Tooth rock formation at 4,600 meters and then back down via the Southern Circuit (see map above) to Barranco Camp (3,900 meters). The route is approximately 11km / 7 miles in length and takes 5-7 hours to complete.

Although you end the day at a very similar elevation to when you started from Shira Camp, it is arguably one of the most important days on your trek as it gives you a chance to climb high and sleep low which is important for proper acclimatization.

Day 4 – Barranco Camp (3,900 meters) to Karanga Camp (3,960 meters)

Distance: ~7km / 5 miles
Trekking time: 7 hours
Zone: High alpine zone

Day four on the Machame Route begins with a steep traverse up the Barranco Wall; a 257 meter rock face that requires basic scrambling skills to the top of the Karanga Valley. The path then follows a series of inclines and declines to Karanga Camp (3,960 meters). Trekkers on the seven-day route spend the night at Karanga Camp before continuing on to Barafu on day 5. This additional day is beneficial in terms of acclimatization.

If you are on a six-day trek you will stop for lunch at Karanga Camp and then continue on along the Southern Circuit until it joins the Mweka Trail up to Barafu Camp (4,680 meters). For six day trekkers, day 4 takes approximately 8-10 hours to complete and covers 9.5km / 6 miles. When you arrive at Barafu around mid-afternoon you will be served an early dinner and encouraged to get some shut-eye as the summit trek commences around 24:00 that night.

Day 5 – Karanga Camp (3,960 meters) to Barafu Camp (4,680m)

Distance: ~6km / 4 miles
Trekking time: 3 hours
Zone: High alpine zone

Day five is a short and easy day. The trail starts at Karanga Camp and joins the Mweka trail up to base camp, Barafu at 4,680m. We recommend you use the easy hiking to relax and prepare for the summit push.

Day 6 – Barafu Camp (4,680 meters) to Uhuru Peak (5,895 meters) and then Mweka Camp (3,100 meters)

4.5km / 3 miles ascent and then 11km / 7 mile descent
6-8 hours to the summit and then 5-8 hours to Mweka
Glacial zone and the all preceding zones

Day six is summit night (and day)! You will be awoken around 23:30 with hot tea and biscuits. Hopefully you have managed to get a few hours’ sleep; don’t worry if you haven’t as most people struggle to sleep before summit night. Do however make sure that all your kit, including warm clothes, headlamp, insulated water reserves and snacks are ready for a sharp departure at 24:00. The trek up Kibo is steep and slow. The trick is to keep your momentum moving forward, one step at a time. It takes about 6-8 hours to reach the top of the crater rim where you will see the sign for Stella Point (5,739 meters).

This is not the summit of Kilimanjaro. You still have another 156 meters of altitude to walk around the crater rim to Uhuru Peak (5,895 meters). We recommend resting briefly at Stella Point and potentially having some hot tea or hot chocolate. Dawn should be approaching. Take a moment to savour where you have got to and then dig deep for the energy to push for the summit. Over 60% of climbers stop at Stella Point but most can make it to the summit if they muster the metal strength to push through. Obviously if you are experiencing severe AMS symptoms you should descend immediately.

After reaching the summit of Kilimanjaro, a 4.5km / 3-mile ascent, you still have an 11km / 7-mile descent to Mweka Camp (3,100 meters)! The descent can be very grueling on your joints. It is recommending you use trekking poles and potentially wear gaiters to avoid fine glacial scree getting into your boots. Mweka is situated in the upper part of the rainforest zone. The richness of oxygen and moisture in the air will be a very welcome surprise.

Day 7 – Mweka Camp (3,100 meters) to Mweka Gate (1,640 meters)

Distance: ~9km / 5.5 miles
Trekking time: 3-5 hours
Zone: Rainforest

Day seven is the final day of trekking on the Machame Route. By now you will be exhausted and probably only thinking about a hot shower. The trek is a pleasant one through the lower rain-forested slopes and down to Mweka Gate (1,640 meters).

Although you cover 9km / 5.5 miles, the trek only takes 3-4 hours. Assuming you successfully reach Stella Point or Uhuru Peak you will be presented with official certificates – a green certificate for the former and a gold certificate for the latter.

7 Days Kilimanjaro Climbing Machame Route
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