Explorers Connect

Powering the Adventure Revolution

Kilimanjaro Expedition
Friday 21st - Sunday 30th September 2018

See the sunrise from the rooftop of Africa as you ascend one of the most famous mountains in the world during this stunning 10-day expedition. Take an unforgettable trek through jungle, forests, moorland, rocky lunar landscapes and summit on an ice cap - don't miss this holiday of a lifetime! 

OVERVIEW

As one of the "Seven Summits", Kilimanjaro is world-famous as the highest mountain (and dormant volcano) in Africa, standing at a hefty 5,895 metres above sea level on the border of Kenya and Tanzania. The mountain was first summited in 1889 by Hans Meyer and Ludwig Purtscheller, and since then the Kilimanjaro National Park has become an iconic climbing and trekking destination.

There are seven official trekking routes by which to ascend and descend Mount Kilimanjaro: Lemosho, Machame, Marangu, Mweka, Rongai, Shira, and Umbwe. We'll be taking the popular Marangu route - the only route where camping is not needed as the mountain huts along the way provide a comfortable shelter from the elements. The 35 kilometre uphill route is direct, well-maintained and offers trekking through a big variety of landscapes, including moorland, jungle, forest and dry alpine zones through to the ice cap at the top where you will get some unbelievable panoramic views.

EC adventures are informal, friendly and great fun! They're made up of singles, couples and small sets of friends with ages typically ranging from mid 20s to mid 40s but anyone over 18 years old and young at heart is welcome. Whether it's your first time exploring the outdoors or you're an adventure professional, EC adventures are a great way to meet like-minded people in a safe, welcoming and fun environment. 

If you are keen for a real mountain summit challenge, have a good level of fitness and an appetite for adventure - this expedition is for you!

ITINERARY

Friday 21st September: Departure from the UK - you'll fly to Kilimanjaro airport, Tanzania, via Nairobi or Doha. Depending on the airline and flight time the total journey is around 14 hours, with a small stopover.

Saturday 22nd September: Arrival day in Tanzania. You will be picked up from Kilimanjaro Airport and taken to your hotel in Arusha. We will stay overnight there, where you will have a full trek briefing, go through the final arrangements, get your kit packed up and spend the evening getting to know the rest of the group.

Sunday 23rd September: Trekking day from Marangu Gate to Mandara Forest Hut (2,743m), around 4-6 hours hiking. You'll be transported to Marangu Gate and then you'll begin the walk to the Mandara encampment. You'll pass through a thick rainforest zone, where there is a high chance of rain in the afternoon and potential to see two different species of monkey - bring your binoculars! You'll spend the night at Mandara Forest Hut ready for another trekking day tomorrow. 

Monday 24th September: Trekking from Mandara Hut to Horombo Hut (3,720m), around 6 hours hiking. You'll continue the ascent through some beautiful temperate forest before reaching the heather and moorland zone at roughly 3,000m up. You'll start to see some amazing views of the mountain peaks at this altitude before you settle down for the night at Horombo Hut. 

Tuesday 25th September: Acclimatisation day. It is important to have an acclimatisation day at this point so that you can get used to the altitude and the thin air. There will be a short hike up to Zebra rocks (4,010m) to help with acclimatisation. Then you'll come back down to lower altitude to spend the day relaxing and sleeping on your second night in Horombo Hut.

Wednesday 26th September: Trekking day from Horombo Hut to Kibo Hut (4,703m), around 6 hours hiking. Today you'll continue past the final watering point, and ascend onto the saddle of Kilimanjaro between the peaks of Kibo and Mwenzi and entering into the desert-like alpine zone (approximately 4,000m) - you'll notice the land around you looks like the surface of the moon! Tonight you'll sleep at Kibo Hut which also has some incredible views of the National Park and its mountains. 

Thursday 27th September: Kilimanjaro summit night (5,895m), around 4-5 hours hiking. You start at midnight, hopefully with a moon behind you, making your way up the outer crater - it can be steep in places so you'll feel more tired - but as you reach the crater rim at Gilman's Point you'll see the sun rise over the African plains in front of you! After marvelling at this spectacle you'll trek for another 1.5 hours along the crater rim towards Uhuru Peak (5,895m), the highest point in Africa! From here we will descend immediately to Horombo Hut again to rest, have a meal and celebrate your achievement! 

Friday 28th September: Downhill trekking day from Horombo Hut to Marangu Gate and ending at our hotel, around 5 hours hiking time. When you get back to Marangu Gate you'll have time for a drink and you can collect your well earned certificate. Then you'll take a short coach journey back to your hotel, with time for a shower before a celebratory dinner together.

Saturday 29th September: Departure day, flying from Kilimanjaro back to the UK. Depending on your flight time, you will have time to buy some presents and souvenirs and there will be a group transfer back to the airport if you are on the same flight. 

Sunday 30th September: Arrive back in the UK.

EXPERIENCE

You'll need a good level of fitness for this trip as it is a tough trek! The route is one of the shortest routes and less steep than the others so you should need less time to adjust, but the altitude makes it much harder than your average day out hill-walking in the UK. Although you don’t have to be an Olympic athlete to climb Kilimanjaro, to fully enjoy the trip and maximise the chance of reaching the summit we strongly advise:

  • A clean bill of health
  • A good level of fitness
  • Experience of hill walking

Basically the fitter you are the more you will enjoy the days of trekking, the less tired you will be, and the faster your body will recover. The best training possible is getting out on the hills, but any exercise will be of benefit and there are lots of free training plans on the internet (for example see a range here). Generally, we would recommend that you focus on improving your cardiovascular fitness and lower body strength - you can get fitter simply by going for long walks or running a few kilometres a couple of times a week. If you’re into your running we would say if you can run continuously for around 10 - 13 miles you’ll be in great shape to tackle this mountain.

You might also experience some altitude sickness, as we're going above 2,800 metres when it is common for people to feel effects of high altitude. We will acclimatise you slowly and you will be taking the walk at a manageable pace, but we recommend you bring some altitude sickness medication, protect yourself from the elements and drink plenty of water throughout the expedition to minimise any effects of altitude on your body. If you do experience acute mountain sickness you will need to come down off the mountain but you will be accompanied by a guide at all times.

WHAT'S INCLUDED 

  • Qualified, Western and English-speaking Expedition Leader Mark, who has many years of experience leading treks to Kilimanjaro and other international mountains including Everest
  • Group transfer to/from Kilimanjaro airport to the hotel
  • Two nights' hotel accommodation on the first and last night of the trip (twin share with breakfast included)
  • A full group briefing about the trek at the hotel
  • Group transport to Marangu Gate, the start point of the expedition
  • All accommodation in mountain huts throughout the expedition
  • Group Kilimanjaro access permits 
  • Full guiding service throughout the expedition, with a ratio of one guide per two guests
  • Full porter service for transport of guest equipment throughout the expedition
  • All meals and water provided on the mountain
  • Group transport from Marangu Gate back to the hotel
  • Certificate of completion at the end of the expedition
  • Mandatory tourist tax imposed by Tanzanian Government (around £150 per person)

WHAT'S NOT INCLUDED

  • International personal travel insurance
  • International return flights from the UK to Tanzania
  • Tanzanian Tourist Visa (£40 for a single-entry tourist visa). If you'd like to do this beforehand please see the Tanzanian High Commission website for further information on how to apply. You can also get a visa on arrival at Kilimanjaro airport - all you need are two passport photos and $50 US Dollars in cash.
  • First night's meal, soft drinks and alcoholic drinks at the hotel
  • Celebration dinner on the last night at the hotel
  • Tips for the porters and guides

KIT LIST

You can download our recommended kit list HERE.

FLIGHTS & TRANSFERS

There are many different flight options and you can book the ones that are most convenient for you, but you'll need to arrive at Kilimanjaro airport by 1pm on Saturday 22nd September. You'll be leaving on Saturday 29th September and the group transfer will take everyone back to Kilimanjaro airport at 1pm. If you arrive or leave after these times you'll have to arrange your own transport to/from the airport.

PAYMENT

  • Discounted earlybird price for EC CLUB Members - £2,049 (if deposit is paid before 21st February 2018)
  • Discounted earlybird price for non EC CLUB Members - £2,099 (if deposit is paid before 21st February 2018)
  • Standard price for EC CLUB Members - £2,099
  • Standard price for non EC CLUB Members - £2,149

You'll need to pay a £450 deposit on booking with the remaining balance due by 21st May 2018.

We are only running this expedition once in 2018 and there are ONLY 12 SPACES  - book now to avoid disappointment!

JOIN EC CLUB TODAY! EC CLUB Members enjoy great discounts on our weekends as well as lots of other adventure related deals. You'll also get exclusive access to local events and trips only open to EC CLUB Members. Find out more ...

*Please note for this trip to run there needs to be a minimum of 11 bookings. If this number is not reached by 1st March 2018 we will cancel the trip and refund all monies paid. We would advise that you do not book flights until this date unless you have insurance to cover cancellations.

QUESTIONS?

If you'd like to know more about this weekend or have a particular question about this or any of our adventures, please email enquiries@explorersconnect.com or call the office on 0117 405 7497 during normal office hours and we'll do our best to help you.