Climbing Kilimanjaro on a budget

lemosho route kilimanjaro

High park fees and logistical costs mean there is no such thing as a cheap Kilimanjaro climb. The best way to keep down costs is to form or join a group of four or more like-minded hikers, and to stick to the Marangu Route, which is more popular and busy than the other options, but also less logistically complicated. Even so, a Kilimanjaro climb is likely to seem pretty expensive by my standards. Worthy of consideration as a more budget-friendly alternative, nearby Mount Meru, protected within Arusha National Park, is Africa’s fifth-highest massif, and the three-day hike to its 4,566m summit is not only far cheaper bit it is also far less crowded, offers superior wildlife-viewing, comes with a lower risk of altitude-related sickness, and includes spectacular view to snow-capped Kilimanjaro.


Our Recommended Itinerary

Kilimanjaro climb, Machame route - 7 days on the mountain (EA 9 days)

day 1

Moshi, arrival
  • Kilimanjaro climb, Machame route - 7 days on the mountain (EA 9 days)
  • Kilimanjaro climb, Machame route - 7 days on the mountain (EA 9 days)
  • Kilimanjaro climb, Machame route - 7 days on the mountain (EA 9 days)
  • Kilimanjaro climb, Machame route - 7 days on the mountain (EA 9 days)

day 2

Find your feet to Machame Camp
  • Kilimanjaro climb, Machame route - 7 days on the mountain (EA 9 days)
  • Kilimanjaro climb, Machame route - 7 days on the mountain (EA 9 days)
  • Kilimanjaro climb, Machame route - 7 days on the mountain (EA 9 days)

day 3

A nice day to New Shira Camp
  • Kilimanjaro climb, Machame route - 7 days on the mountain (EA 9 days)
  • Kilimanjaro climb, Machame route - 7 days on the mountain (EA 9 days)
  • Kilimanjaro climb, Machame route - 7 days on the mountain (EA 9 days)
  • Kilimanjaro climb, Machame route - 7 days on the mountain (EA 9 days)

day 4

Up to Lava Tower and down to Barranco Camp
  • Kilimanjaro climb, Machame route - 7 days on the mountain (EA 9 days)
  • Kilimanjaro climb, Machame route - 7 days on the mountain (EA 9 days)

day 5

Over the great Barranco wall to Karanga Valley
  • Kilimanjaro climb, Machame route - 7 days on the mountain (EA 9 days)
  • Kilimanjaro climb, Machame route - 7 days on the mountain (EA 9 days)

day 6

To Barafu for a few hours rest
  • Kilimanjaro climb, Machame route - 7 days on the mountain (EA 9 days)
  • Kilimanjaro climb, Machame route - 7 days on the mountain (EA 9 days)
  • Kilimanjaro climb, Machame route - 7 days on the mountain (EA 9 days)


day 8

Celebrations
  • Kilimanjaro climb, Machame route - 7 days on the mountain (EA 9 days)
  • Kilimanjaro climb, Machame route - 7 days on the mountain (EA 9 days)
  • Kilimanjaro climb, Machame route - 7 days on the mountain (EA 9 days)
  • Kilimanjaro climb, Machame route - 7 days on the mountain (EA 9 days)

day 9

Fly Home

View Full Itinerary

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The world’s tallest individual mountain and literal highpoint of the African continent, 5,895m-high Mount Kilimanjaro straddles the border of Kenya and Tanzania. For those who just want to admire the view of its snow-capped summit, this can be done from either country, with Kenya’s Amboseli National Park being perhaps the most popular option thanks to its prolific plains wildlife. For…

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Best time to climb Kilimanjaro

As might be expected of an isolated massif of its immense magnitude, Kilimanjaro supports a microclimate - indeed, several different altitude- and rainfall-related microclimates - that bears little resemblance to conditions on the surrounding plains. Precipitation is largely associated with moist trade winds that blow inland from the Indian Ocean towards Kilimanjaro’s southeastern…

Climbing Kilimanjaro on a budget

High park fees and logistical costs mean there is no such thing as a cheap Kilimanjaro climb. The best way to keep down costs is to form or join a group of four or more like-minded hikers, and to stick to the Marangu Route, which is more popular and busy than the other options, but also less logistically complicated. Even so, a Kilimanjaro climb is likely to seem pretty expensive by my…

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These popular itineraries can be customised to match your budget and travel dates

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Summit two of Tanzania's iconic mountain ranges in under two weeks...

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