Trek to Africa’s highest peak with the summiting experts, followed by a classic Tanzanian safari
Our trek to the “roof of Africa” combines smart scheduling with spectacular beauty, following a famous but rarely used variation route that offers maximum acclimatization time. MTS was the first U.S. company to lead commercial treks up Kilimanjaro nearly 40 years ago. Our highly experienced guides and well-paced itinerary have given us the highest summiting success rate in the business—nearly 98%!
Beginning the rainforest at 6,400 feet, we’ll climb through magnificent alpine scenery, gazing at the mountain’s southern glaciers from the hauntingly beautiful Great Barranco Valley, made famous by the IMAX film Kilimanjaro (but not featured on any other operator’s itinerary). We’ll get an extra day to acclimatize and spend a night in the inner crater, giving us a chance to explore the glaciers. Then it’s on to the summit at 19,340 feet—every adventurer’s dream come true. And since no trip to Africa is complete without seeing its celebrated wildlife, we include a classic safari to the Eden-like Ngorongoro Crater and the legendary plains of Serengeti National Park. We'll also meet the fascinating Maasai, pastoralists who have lived in harmony with nature for centuries.
9 days strenuous hiking at high elevation (maximum 19,340'); game viewing by 4-wheel-drive vehicle
- Climb Kilimanjaro with the summiting experts—we have a 98% summiting rate, the highest on the mountain!
- Take our exclusive trek along the little-used Great Barranco Valley/Western Breach, the most scenic route on the mountain, made famous by the IMAX film Kilimanjaro
- Get an extra full day to acclimatize at the mountain’s highest-elevation camp at Arrow Glacier
- After the climb, celebrate your efforts with a classic luxury camping safari in the iconic Ngorongoro Crater and the legendary Serengeti plains
- Visit an authentic Maasai boma (homestead), and experience their traditional way of life
Duration: 15 days Start Location: Arusha, Tanzania End Location: Arusha, TanzaniaDownload Detailed Itinerary
Day 1 : Arrive at Kilimanjaro International Airport – Arusha National Park
Meet in Arusha, Tanzania, and transfer to a deluxe private camp in Arusha National Park.
Day 2 : Mount Meru
Hike in the cedar and podocarpus forests on the lower slopes of Mount Meru.
Day 3 : Begin trek on Kilimanjaro
Drive to the trailhead and begin your climb through Kilimanjaro's lush rainforest lowlands. Our route on the mountain for the duration of the climb is a scenic route that encompasses five ecological zones.
Day 4 : Shira Camp
Climb above the Shira Plateau, through the rarely visited Barranco Valley, with its rare and unusual plants and along the glaciated slopes of Kilimanjaro's south face to a camp at 15,300'. We include a layover day at a high camp near the Arrow Glacier for acclimatization, giving you the best chance of making it to the summit.
Day 5 : Barranco Camp
Trek eastward toward the Kibo Massif, diverting at Lava Tower to descend and camp in the Barranco Valley.
Day 6 : Arrow Glacier Camp
Leave the Machame Route and continue our push toward the summit on the Western Breach route, camping at Arrow Glacier (15,300') at the base of the Great Western Breach itself.
Day 7 : Arrow Glacier Camp
Layover day to acclimatize at Arrow Glacier, with short hike along a portion of the Western Breach ascent route.
Day 8 : Crater Camp
Ascend the Great Western Breach, a 2,500-foot ascent into Kilimanjaro's inner crater. Camp at 18,300' amidst a radical scene of towering glaciers rising from the harsh rock landscape.
Day 9 : Summit day!
Rise with the sun for our push to the summit and surreal views of the African plains nearly three miles below you. Descend to a camp at 10,200'.
Day 10 : End trek – “Climb Only” participants depart
End trek and drive to Arusha.
Day 11 : Ngorongoro Crater Highlands
Enjoy the pleasures of safari life as you view the plentiful wildlife of Ngorongoro Crater and Serengeti National Park, among the "must-see" spots of Africa. Take part in daily Maasai life, including a visit to a boma (homestead) and participation in an Ol Pul (meat feast) festival.
Day 12 : Ngorongoro Crater
Explore the wildlife paradise of the Ngorongoro Crater, where we'll likely spot lions, hyenas, elephants, hippos, and a host of other African game (perhaps even one of the world's few remaining black rhinos!)
Day 13 : Oldupai Gorge – Serengeti
Travel from the Ngorongoro Highlands to the vast plains of the Serengeti, stopping at Oldupai Gorge en route.
Day 14 : In the Serengeti
Explore the Serengeti, endeavoring to catch sight of the great herds of the legendary Serengeti migration.
Day 15 : Arusha – Depart
Drive to Arusha and depart for home, or join one of our extensions in East Africa.
DATES: Best time to go: January - March, June - December Departures: Jul 13 - 27, 2013 Aug 10 - 24, 2013 SOLD OUT Sep 14 - 28, 2013 Dec 20, 2013 - Jan 3, 2014 Migration departure for post-climb safari
Dik-Dik HotelArusha, Tanzania
At the base of Mt. Meru, surrounded by 20 acres of tropical gardens and forested grounds, the Dik-Dik serves as an excellent 'base camp' for expeditions up Mt. Meru and Mt. Kilimanjaro. Bungalows are equipped with modern comforts, and the restaurant features produce grown in the hotel's own garden, and a fine collection of South African wines.
Properties shown are representative of the accommodations we use on this trip, may not be inclusive of all accommodations we use, and are subject to change.
Expert leadership is the key to an exciting, unforgettable experience. Our trips feature gifted leaders for whom leading trips is a true vocation. Besides showing you wonders you’d never find on your own, they make sure everything runs smoothly and safely without a hitch. They are knowledgeable about all aspects of your trip, and take great pleasure in sharing their insights with you. More than just guides, they positively elevate your experience by being teachers, companions, and the best of friends. You’ll be in good hands with them every step of the way. Some of our top Kilimanjaro guides include:
Elias Msemo is a keen outdoorsman who fell in love with the natural beauty of Tanzania at an early age. In addition to being an accomplished climber, he is also a graduate of wildlife studies at the College of African Wildlife Management in Tanzania. Upon his graduation, he decided to pursue a career as a mountain guide and has now led countless climbs up Kilimanjaro. Elias currently resides in Arusha with his family and is very much looking forward to hosting you in Tanzania.
Samia was born and raised on the south west slopes of Mt. Kilimanjaro. He now lives in Arusha with his wife and three children. Samia is extensively trained in mountaineering with over 15 years of experience, summiting Mt Kilimanjaro over 200 times via all routes. In 1999, he won the first prize in the Mt Kilimanjaro race- 18 hours running from the trail head at Lemosho at 7,500ft to the summit at 19,340ft and down to the Mweka gate at 5,600ft . Samia has taken various Wilderness First Responder courses and two NOLS-sponsored (National Outdoor Leadership School) Advanced Mountaineering courses conducted on Mount Kenya, which included instruction in rock climbing, ice climbing, advanced navigation skills, and crisis management. Since 2000, he has been participating in a program teaching first aid skills to Tanzania National Parks Rangers and other companies’ guides.