Marangu Budget Climb
Reaching Uhuru Peak may be your end goal. But it’s everything along the way that makes climbing the historic Marangu Route a life-changing, unforgettable experience. You’ll be in the same league as the first climbers who forged this path in the 1880s, climbing through lush rainforest and letting the awe-inspiring panoramic views fulfill your primal need to explore.
Meet climbers from around the word. Sleep in cozy mountain huts for the perfect restful recharge. Enjoy meals prepared with local ingredients designed to fuel your body, mind, and soul. Trek confidently with Kilimanjaro’s expert guiding team of medically trained High Altitude First Responders. Trek with the assurance of our 47 years on Kilimanjaro.
Marangu Route Huts
During your hike on the Marangu route, you’ll sleep in permanent mountain huts positioned along the trail. This arrangement allows you to ascend to the summit and descend using the same path, ensuring a convenient and manageable journey.
The three mountain hut sites resemble small mountain villages, each offering its own set of facilities. The huts are simple equipped with basic bunks, mattress pads, and pillows to provide a place for you to recharge after a challenging day of hiking.
You’ll need to bring your own sleeping bag to ensure a comfortable night’s sleep. At Kibo hut, the accommodations are more akin to dormitories, capable of accommodating up to 20 climbers simultaneously.
Day 1 – MOSHI
3,000-ft/914-m • Meet Your Guides
The flight to Kilimanjaro sends a surge of adrenaline through your veins as you anticipate the epic adventure ahead. After arriving in the morning, your driver whisks you away to the Park View Inn, in Moshi, a bustling town at the base of the great mountain.
As you meet your Tusker Mountain Guides, the anticipation builds. This is the moment you’ve been dreaming of – the start of an awe-inspiring journey. Meeting with your guides and fellow climber, preparing your equipment, and discussing the climb fills you with a sense of wonder and excitement that is electrifying.
Day 2 – MANDARA HUT
8,875-ft/2,705-m • 4.3 miles/7 km • 4-5 hours
Driving to the National Park gate, we sign in and prepare to embark on an epic adventure up Kilimanjaro. The hike begins, winding through the lush montane forest for 4-5 hours until we reach Mandara Hut. Scanning the tree canopy, we’re greeted by the sight of the excitable black and white colobus monkeys.
The A-frame huts in the forest clearing provide a welcome respite, and we share meals with fellow climbers from all corners of the globe in the common dining area. Amidst the camaraderie and thrill of our climb, we take comfort in the modern amenities of running water and public toilets.
Day 3 – HOROMBO HUT
12,340-ft/3,761-m • 7.14 miles/11.5 km • 6 hours
As we leave the lush rain-forest behind, we enter the rugged terrain of the heath and moorland zone, the mountainside slowly revealing its secrets. The majestic peaks of Mawenzi and Kibo loom in the distance, beckoning us closer.
Our journey brings us to Horombo Hut, a sanctuary amidst the rugged beauty of the mountain. Here, we bask in the awe-inspiring scenery while our Tusker chefs work their culinary magic. Taking two nights to acclimatize to the altitude, we prepare ourselves for the challenges that lie ahead, knowing that the next leg of our journey will test our strength and resolve to the limit.
Day 4 – HOROMBO HUT
Our journey to the summit of Kilimanjaro demands not only strength and perseverance, but also careful acclimatization to the thinning air at high elevations. So we take an extra day here at Horombo, allowing our bodies to adjust to the altitude.
With a morning hike to a higher elevation, we gradually introduce our lungs to the reduced oxygen levels, preparing ourselves for the challenges ahead. Returning to Horombo for a hearty lunch and an afternoon of leisure, we take the time to appreciate the rugged beauty of the mountain.
Day 5 – KIBO HUT
5,446-ft/4,708-m • 7.5 miles/12 km • 6 hours
The alpine desert is a place of extremes, where the rugged beauty of the mountain is laid bare. Our trek leads us across the barren Kibo Saddle, nestled between Mawenzi and Kibo Peaks, as we make our way to Kibo Hut on the slopes of Kibo Peak.
With a clear sky above, we can make out the distant landmark of Gilman’s Point on the crater rim, a beacon drawing us ever closer to our ultimate goal. After arriving at Kibo mid-afternoon, we take the time to rest and recharge, preparing ourselves for the epic climb to come, beginning at midnight. With our hearts racing and our spirits high, we savor the anticipation of what lies ahead.
Day 6 – UHURU PEAK – HOROMBO HUT
Summit: 19,341-ft/5,895-m • 4.2 miles/6.7 km • 7-8 hours
Horombo Hut: 12,340-ft/3,761-m • 12.7 miles/20.5 km • 6-7 hours
As midnight strikes, our guide wakes us with steaming tea and nourishing snacks. The toughest day lies ahead, with breathtaking sunrise vistas of Mawenzi, the Kibo Saddle, and the rolling plains below. We traverse rocky outcrops and scree, winding our way to the crater rim at Gilman’s Point.
With the hardest part behind us, we press on towards the summit at Uhuru Peak, where an awe-inspiring view awaits. Our victory is sweet, and we celebrate before descending to Horombo for a well-earned night’s rest. This journey has tested our resolve and strength, but we emerge stronger and more alive than ever before.
Day 7 – MARANGU GATE – MOSHI
Gate: 6,102-ft/1,859-m • 12.3 miles/19.8 km • 6 hours
Moshi: 3,000-ft/914-m • 50 minute drive
After a hearty breakfast, we embark on the final leg of our journey, hiking down past Mandara Hut towards the national park gate and our hotel in Moshi. The lush rain-forest near Mandara provides a verdant backdrop to our trek, its serene beauty a fitting end to an epic adventure.
Our vehicles meet us at the gate, whisking us away to our hotel for a well-deserved shower and a final celebration of our climb. As we reflect on the trials and triumphs of the past days, we’re filled with a sense of gratitude and accomplishment that will stay with us forever.
Day 8 – Join an exciting SAFARI and explore ZANZIBAR – or fly home.
Get ready to venture out on an unforgettable adventure as you explore some of the world’s most spectacular animal reserves on a Wildlife Safari. From the Serengeti to Ngorongoro Crater, Lake Manyara to Tarangire National Parks, you’ll encounter a stunning array of wildlife in their natural habitats.
Once you’ve conquered Kilimanjaro, it’s time to embark on an equally enchanting adventure – a journey back in time to the magical island of Zanzibar in the Indian Ocean. Lose yourself in the historical maze of ancient alleyways and indulge in the beauty of the most pristine beaches on earth.
Your Marangu Guides
The triumph of your Kilimanjaro summit challenge rests upon the expertise of your world-class guides, the heart and soul of your journey. With a foundation rooted in Tusker founding guide, Eddie Frank’s training of the US Army’s Special Forces, your elite guides are trained to the same exacting standards of skill and leadership. With almost five decades of guiding experience, our exclusive team has successfully led tens of thousands of triumphant Tusker climbers to the summit.
Your Climbing Crew
The backbone of your Kilimanjaro adventure is your climbing crew. Our fiercely loyal team of porters and chefs at Tusker Trail ensure that your gear and food arrive at each new location on the route. For decades, they’ve been part of the Tusker Trail family, providing an invaluable window into Tanzanian culture.
Their “mountain music” will inspire you to keep pushing forward, step by step. Together, you and your crew are part of a big family, all united in the common goal of reaching the summit. With their support and camaraderie, your climb to the top of Africa will be an experience you’ll never forget.
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