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We are ‘blue’ local travel experts located on slops of Mount Kilimanjaro, arranging Mount Kilimanjaro hiking tours; the World’s highest free Standing Mountain, other fascinating treks including Mt.Meru, Oldoinyo Lengai, Maasai treks in Loliondo and Ngorongoro highlands. We also arrange Adventure Safari in Tanzania Cycling Challenges and Beach Holidays in the coast Tanzania and Zanzibar.

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8 Days Kilimanjaro Northern Circuit Route – Kiliblue Adventures
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8 Days Kilimanjaro Northern Circuit Route

Kiliblue Adventures / 8 Days Kilimanjaro Northern Circuit Route

8 Days Kilimanjaro Northern Circuit Route

per person

The Northern Circuit route is one of the best routes on Kilimanjaro, offering nearly 360 degrees of beautiful scenery including the quiet, rarely visited northern slopes.

Tour Overview

The Northern Circuit route is one of the best routes on Kilimanjaro, offering nearly 360 degrees of beautiful scenery including the quiet, rarely visited northern slopes. As the longest route on Kilimanjaro, the Northern Circuit allows for the best acclimatization time and the highest summit success rate, therefore this route is highly recommended.

The route approaches Mount Kilimanjaro from the west, beginning with a long drive from Moshi to Londorossi Gate. From there, the first two days are spent trekking through the rainforest to Shira Ridge, before crossing the Shira Plateau. The route then heads north and circles clockwise from Moir Hut to Buffalo Camp to School Hut, before summiting from the east.

  • Duration: 9 or 10 days
  • Difficulty: Medium
  • Scenery: Excellent
  • Traffic: Low

Upon arrival to Kilimanjaro International Airport, you will be met and transferred for overnight accommodation at Kilimanjaro Wonders Hotel 4 stars B&B. Your head guide will meet you for your briefing, gear check and arrange for you to hire any equipment you may need.

Tour Includes:

  • Park fees, camping fees, Hut fees & rescue fees
  • Twice a day medical health checkup, monitoring with pulse-oximeter and stethoscope with basic first kit
  • Oxygen Cylinder
  • Orientation meeting in Moshi and gear check as well.
  • 18% Value Added Tax on tour fees & services
  • Camping equipment (tents, sleeping mat, camp chairs, camp tables, mess tent & cutlery for meals) and 3 Season mountain tents
  • Airport pick up and drop off
  • Transportation to & from the mountain gate
  • Medically qualified mountain guides, cooks and porters
  • 3 Meals while on the mountain + evening tea with popcorn or peanuts.
  • Hot water for washing up daily and treated water for drink while climbing.
  • Pre & Post Trek accommodation in Moshi. Bed & Breakfast Basis with storage facilities for excess luggage during hikes.
  • Fair wages for the mountain crew as approved by the Kilimanjaro National Park Authority (KINAPA), Kilimanjaro Association of Tour Operators (KIATO)
  • 3-4 porters per climber, which includes porters to carry up to 30 lbs of your personal gear.
  • Kilimanjaro certificate for your successful summit attempt.

Tour Exclude:

  • Flights ( International)
  • Flights
  • Visa fees
  • Travel or Medical Insurance  is required and you should ask for Recommendation
  • Gamow Bag
  • Medication
  • Tips for porters and mountain crew (20% Industry Standard Recommended)
  • Personal spending money for souvenirs etc.
  • Energy food & beverages, alcoholic and soft drinks
  • Personal hire gear such as trekking poles, sleeping bags, etc.
  • Additional lodge nights if early descent from the mountain $150 per room
  • Departure
    Moshi, Kilimanjaro - Airport (Kilimanjaro International Airport)
  • Departure Time
    After Breakfasst at 08:00 AM for a prompt departure at 09:00 AM.
  • Include
    Gate Transfers
    Complimentary Oxygen Cylinder
    Fair and Sustainable Salary Crew Wages
    All National Park & Hut Fees, Crew Permits and VAT
    Pre and Post accommodations (2 nights Bed and Breakfast)
    Proper Ration of Mountain crew (Cook & Porters)
    Professional, English-speaking Wilderness First Responder & CPR certified Guide
    Kilimanjaro trekking according to the itinerary
    Government Taxes
    1.5 liter Drinking mineral water per person per day
    Meals as per itinerary
    Pickup from airport or hotel in Arusha / Moshi
    All accommodations as per itinerary
  • Not Included
    Personal hire gear such as trekking poles, sleeping bags, etc.
    Tips for porters and mountain crew
    Travel or Medical Insurance is required and you should ask for Recommendation
    Domestic & Shared Charter Flights
    Transportation in a 4×4 safari vehicle
    Extra activities
    Soda and Alcoholic beverages
    Extra Personal items
    Travel insurance
    Flights costs/fares
    Tip for the guide
    Park entrance fees
    Ground Safari Vehicle and fees
    Professional Cook, if Camping
    Professional Guide/s
1

DAY 1: LONDOROSSI GATE (2,100 METERS) STARING POINT (2,389/7838FT ) MTI MKUBWA CAMP(2,785/9137FT)

Altitude gained: 396m

Distance: ~4.8km / 3 miles

Trekking time: 3-4 hours

Zone: Rainforest

The Northern Circuit Route begins at Londorossi Gate (2,100 meters) in the West, the same start point as the Lemosho Route. The drive to Londorossi Gate takes approximately two hours from Moshi and considerably longer from Arusha. Registration with the Kilimanjaro National Park authorities occurs at the gate and then you will be driven further up the mountain to the trailhead starting point. Most tour operators serve lunch here before the short first-day trek to MtiMkubwa Camp (2,785 meters) begins. You may get lucky and spot large wildlife like elephant and buffalo that sometimes emerge from the rainforest onto the path as you trek towards your first camp. Dinner will be served when you reach MtiMkubwa Camp.

2

DAY 2: MTI MKUBWA CAMP (2785M/ 9137FT )- SHIRA I CAMP (3504M/ 11496FT)

Altitude gained: 719m

You will spend the first-hour trekking through the last section of rainforest path before entering the low alpine moorland zone which follows up onto the Shira Plateau. The trek is relatively short and gradual, ending at Shira Camp 1 (3,504 meters).

Distance: ~7.9km / 5 miles

Trekking time: 5-6 hours

Zone: Rainforest / Low Alpine Zone

3

DAY 3: SHIRA 1 (3504M/11496FT) TO MOIR HUT (4161M/13651FT)

Altitude gained: 657m

A long trek heading east which passes through the ‘Garden of the Senecios’ and then enters the high alpine desert zone. The morning is spent trekking up to Lava Tower and the iconic Shark’s Tooth rock formation at 4,600 meters, where you will have lunch. After lunch, you will join the northern circuit heading down to Moir Camp at 4,161 meters (see map above). This is an important day in your trek as you will get to experience high altitude and then sleep low, which is good for the acclimatization process.

Distance: ~ 9.8km / 6.1 miles

Trekking time: 5-7 hours

Zone: Low alpine zone / High alpine zone

4

DAY 4: MOIR CAMP (4,155M/13,632FT) TO BUFFALO CAMP (4,033M/13,232FT)

Altitude loss: 122m

Today it involves a moderately steep climb out of Moir Valley. Trekkers can take a small detour here to climb the summit of Little Lent Hill at 4,375 meters before returning to the Northern Circuit trail. From here the route follows a series of inclines and declines, skirting around the northern slopes of Kibo to Buffalo Camp (4,033 meters). The trek gives great vistas out across the plains that lie north of Kilimanjaro and stretch out to the Kenyan / Tanzanian border. You will arrive at Buffalo Camp just after midday, where you will have lunch and have time to rest after a long day hiking.

Distance: ~9.2km / 5.8miles

Trekking time: 5-7 hours

Zone: High alpine zone

5

DAY 5: BUFFALO CAMP (4033M/13,232FT) – RONGAI 3RD CAVE (3,936M/12,193FT)

Altitude lost: 97m

Starts with a climb up the Buffalo Ridge and down into Pofu Camp where lunch is usually served. The route then continues east around the northern slopes to the Rongai Third Cave at 3,936 meters. The trek is shorter than the day before and by now you should be feeling well acclimatized to the altitude. You will arrive at the Third Cave just around mid-afternoon.

Distance: ~6.8km / 4.3miles

Trekking time: 5-7 hours

Zone: High alpine zone and low alpine zone

6

DAY 6: RONGAI 3RD CAVE (3936M/12913FT) – SCHOOL HUT (4717M/15,476FT)

Altitude gained: 781m

Today it involves a steady incline up and over the Saddle which sits between the peaks of Kibo and Mawenzi Peak. Trekkers then continue walking south-west up to School Hut (4,800 meters). After arriving at School Hut you will be served an early dinner and then you should get some shut-eye as you will be awoken before midnight to start your summit attempt. Remember to prepare all your gear, including warm clothes, insulated water bottles, snacks, headlamp, and camera before going to bed.

Distance: ~4.8km / 3miles

Trekking time: 4-5 hours

Zone: High alpine zone and glacial zone

7

DAY 7: SCHOOL HUT (4717M/15476FT) – SUMMIT ( 5,895 M/19341FT) – MILLENIUM CAMP (3,827 M/12556FT)

Altitude gained: 1178m

Altitude lost: 2068m (descent)

You will be awoken around 11:30 with hot tea and biscuits and will then begin the steep incline up to the slopes of Kibo under the cover of darkness. Your first check-point is Hans Meyer Cave where you will take a short break. The climb steepens as you approach Gilman’s Point (5,681 meters), which will be around 5-6 hours after departing School Hut. Take a moment to enjoy the approaching dawn and incredible view out and across to Mawenzi Peak, but remember you still have 2 hours trekking to reach Uhuru Peak so dig deep for the energy. The slope flattens as you head west around the crater rim and you should arrive at the summit at or just after sunrise. Your stay here will be brief so get as many pictures as you can of the incredible views and surrounding glaciers. You will then retrace your steps back around the crater rim to Stella Point (5,739 meters) where you will turn south and head down the heavily screed slopes of Kibo to Barafu Camp (4,680 meters). Most trekkers take a short break here before continuing down to Millennium Camp (3,950 meters) for your final night on the mountain. In total, you will be trekking for 14-16 hours on day eight so it is important to pace yourself, remain hydrated and keep your blood sugar levels up. Note: some tour operators return via Gilman’s Point to Horombo Hut using the Marangu Route.

You will be awoken around 11:30 with hot tea and biscuits and will then begin the steep incline up to the slopes of Kibo under the cover of darkness. Your first check-point is Hans Meyer Cave where you will take a short break. The climb steepens as you approach Gilman’s Point (5,681 meters)

Distance: ~5.9km / 3.7 miles ascent and 8.4km / 5.2 mile descent

Trekking time: 6-8 hours ascent and then 4-6 hour descent

Zone: Glacial zone and all preceding zones

8

DAY 8: MILLENIUM CAMP 3827M/12,556FT – MWEKA GATE 1633M/5358FT – MOSHI 970M

Altitude lost: 2194m

After breakfast and a heartfelt ceremony of appreciation and team bonding with your crew, it’s time to say goodbye. We continue the descent down to the Mweka Park Gate to receive your summit certificates. As the weather is drastically warmer, the terrain is wet, muddy and steep and we highly recommend Gaiters and trekking poles.

From the gate, a vehicle will meet you at Mweka village to drive you back to your hotel in Moshi (about 30 minutes). Enjoy a long overdue hot shower, dinner and celebrations!!

Distance: ~12.2km / 7.6 miles

Trekking time: 3-4 hours

Zone: Rainforest zone

Overnight Kilimanjaro Wonders Hotel 4 stars B&B. before being transferred to your journey home, safari or a relaxing trip to Zanzibar.

CERTIFIED ETHICAL CLIMBING:

We believe the tourism industry has an obligation and a great opportunity to protect the world’s natural habitats, cultural heritage sites, and communities. We actively promote environmental sustainability and social responsibility.