Machame Route


Day 1-Moshi (2,550 ft)

The starting point: We spend the first two nights at the Keys Hotel in Moshi.

Day 2-Machame Gate to Machame Camp
(6,000-9,750 ft.)

After checking in at the gate, we start our climb. The track narrows, and then leads us uphill for about 4-5 hours through the tropical rain forest to Machame Camp. Most people can make it to Machame Camp in about 4-5 hours, but you should plan on using up the entire day to get there. Your guides will have set up your tent in the forest. Just move in and enjoy the beauty and solitude.

Day 3- Machame Camp to Shira Plateau
(9,750-12,480 ft. )

We leave the last glades of the rain forest behind. On a clear day you can see your first close-up of Kibo Peak-from 20 miles away. Passing the fields of heather, the mountainside gradually opens up. You now begin to feel the effects of the altitude, and should walk slowly. After a couple of hours you pass the first giant lobelia, protea and senecia, and reach Shira Plateau in 5 hours. On a cloudy day we’re now above the clouds.

Day 6-Karanga Valley to Barafu Camp
(13,00-14,950 ft.)

We make a steep hike out of the Karanga Valley. At the top of the ridge, the view that meets your eyes is truly spectacular. The air starts getting quite thin, and you will be running short of breath. All day it’s a tough, but rewarding uphill climb to the rocky, craggy slopes at Barafu camp. Barafu means, ice in Swahili, and it is extremely cold at this altitude. But the excitement that grips you in anticipation of the final summit attempt will keep your mind off the temperature.

Day 7- Barafu Camp to Kibo Peak (19,340 ft.)
then to Rau Camp (9,550 ft.)

We start climbing around midnight, on the steepest and most demanding part of the mountain. The moon, if out, will provide enough light. After a 7-hour hike, at sunrise, we’ll reach the Crater rim and welcome a new dawn. From the Crater rim, rugged Mawenzi Peak is a thrilling sight, with the Kibo saddle still in darkness beneath you, and the crater’s ice-walls looming ahead. We now continue to Uhuru Peak (1-2hrs), the highest point in Africa, and the world’s highest solitary peak (19,340 ft). It’s the best view in Africa! The descent is invigorating. It’s a good idea to have a little rest once in awhile as you continue down back to Barafu Camp (4 hours), and then down the Kidia route to Rau camp ( 5 hours). This is where we spend our last night on the mountain.

Day 8-Rau Camp to Kidia Gate to Moshi

In the morning we have a 2-hour walk down to the road-head. After a welcome lunch it’s time to say “Kwaheri” to the porters. We then get a lift back to the hotel and a well-deserved beer with our guides. 

Keys hotel:

The Keys Hotel is a small modern, family run hotel and coordinator of Zerf Challenge team expedition. They arrange our safari and climb so you enjoy and explore the beautiful, breathtaking beauty and serenity of unspoiled game parks and nature reserves and climb the towering peaks of Kilimanjaro.

The hotel has many years of experience in organizing itineraries to meet individual and team preferences. The keys hotel make the Zerf Challenge Team trip truly memorable and enjoyable. Experienced guides and friendly staff are there to help you all the way. The key hotel is on Uru Road, P.O. Box 933 Moshi, Tanzania. website:



Raise $2,000 and get our non commercial page for $3, 500 all inclusive, climb, airfare, visa, hotels transportation, food, This package deal only apply to ZerfChallenge participants.

Day 4- Shira Plateau to Baranco Camp
(12,480-12,675 ft.)

We pass the Lava Tower, around the southern flank of Kibo Peak, and slowly descend to Baranco, our most spectacular campsite, at the foot of Kibo Peak, looming above us. Our camp is only 465 feet higher in altitude than where we were last night, but we will have arrived at just over the 14,000 feet level. This is one of our most important days for acclimatization.


Day 5-Baranco to Karanga Valley
(12,675-13,000 ft. )

The air starts to get quite thin, and you will be running short of breath. Our first obstacle is to breach the Baranco Wall, a 600-foot lava flow. Its sounds a lot worse than it is. Once on the top of the wall, the climb becomes easier and features fantastic views of the crags and crevasses of the jagged peaks on your left. Then we descend to the Karanga Valley. Most Climbers only stop here for lunch, and continue straight on to Barafu Camp. We spend the extra night here as it enables you to acclimatize to the altitude.

Australian with the guides and porters.