RONGAI ROUTE

Take the path less traveled and enjoy its serenity!

HOW DIFFICULT IS IT TO CLIMB THE RONGAI ROUTE?

The Rongai Route starts in Nalemoru, located at the remote, northern side of Kilimanjaro, near the Kenyan border.

 

The hike begins in lush rainforest and continues through a true wilderness area towards the jagged Mawenzi Peak, then crosses the barren desert saddle, before summiting up Kibo’s eastern crater wall.

 

The Rongai Route exits via Marangu Gate on the south-east side of Kilimanjaro.

 

The climb via the Rongai Route is considered to be one of the easier climbs, because it is both gradual and steady. As such it does not have a great 'walk high, sleep low' profile which makes it potentially more difficult than the Machame or Lemosho routes in terms of acclimatization.

 

There are no parts on the route that require any technical climbing skills and thousands of climbers safely travel this route each year.

The total Rongai Route distance is approximately 72 kilometers from gate to gate.

If you are concerned about climbing the Great Barranco Wall then this is the route for you!

RONGAI ROUTE DISTANCE AND ELEVATION 
Rongai Route Altitude Profile.jpg
KILIMANJARO CLIMATE ZONES
All Kilimanjaro climbers will pass thru 5 climate zones en-route to Uhuru Peak. Graphic of climate zones on Kilimanjaro.
YOUR CLIMB YOUR CHOICE

We offer customized Kilimanjaro climbs which include a choice of climb only, airport pick up-drop off, one night of backpackers, budget, mid-range and 4-star accomodations before and after the climb, and many more personal preferences.

Climbers experiencing a long flight and major time change also have the option of adding extra nights in the hotel to allow their bodies to recuperate and adjust.

6 DAY AND 7 DAY RONGAI ROUTE ITINERARY COMPARISON

RONGAI ROUTE

Mount Kilimanjaro Rongai Route Map
Detailed Itinerary:
6 Day Rongai Route
 
DAY 1- NALE MORU ENTRANCE TO SIMBA CAMP

After breakfast, meet your porters, complete registration formalities at the Ranger’s Office, hike begins from Nale Moru (1950m) through farmland and maize fields, then rainforest, home to a variety of wildlife. The path climbs steadily; the forest thins out and turns into moorland zone with great views of the Kenyan Plains before arriving at Simba Camp (2700m).

  • Trekking distance: 8 kilometers

  • Trek time: Around 4 hours

  • Environment: Montane forest

  • Elevation: From 1950 meters to 2700 meters

 

DAY 2 - FROM SIMBA CAMP TO KIKELELWA CAMP

Leaving Simba Camp the trail leads westwards going steadily upwards thru heath and moorland zone. Lunch stop is at Second Cave (3450m) After lunch the path continues gently upwards past a canyon, dry river beds and slowly decreasing vegetation until Kikelelwa Camp (3600m) appears in the distance. The tents are situated on a hill. On a clear day you will find the mighty Kibo towering behind you, and have beautiful views of the Kenya Plains and villages, 3600m below.

  • Trekking distance: 9 kilometers

  • Trek time: 6 to 7 hours

  • Environment: Moorland

  • Elevation: From 2700 meters to 3600 meters

 

DAY 3 - FROM KIKELELWA CAMP TO MAWENZI TARN HUT

Today is a fairly short, although steep day. Occasionally steep enough for a possible hand scramble, rewarding you with excellent views along the way.. The landscape slowly changes from moorland vegetation of long grasses and heath to everlastings and other robust plant species. After 3-4 hours of hiking, you will reach Mawenzi Tarn Hut (4330m) your surroundings now being a rocky, craggy and misty mountainscape.

  • Trekking distance: 6 kilometers

  • Trek time: Around 4 hours

  • Environment: Moorland

  • Elevation: From 3600 meters to 4330 meters

DAY 4 - MAWENZI TARN HUT TO KIBO HUT

The hike will start of steep, and begins to flatten as you walk across the saddle between Mawenzi and Kibo Hut (4750m). Slowly the landscape begins to resemble more of a moonscape as all vegetation, with the exception of a few Everlastings clinging on to life, has completely disappeared. Kibo Hut will be your final camp before your summit bid starts around 0100 in the morning.

  • Trekking distance: 9 kilometers

  • Trek time: Around 5-6 hours

  • Environment: Alpine desert

  • Elevation from 4330 meters to 4750 meters

 
DAY 5 - KIBO HUT TO UHURU PEAK TO HOROMBO HUT

Starting around midnight – 0100 in the morning, the path leading to the crater rim starts directly behind Kibo Hut, reaching Hans Meyer Cave (5151m) about 2.5 hours later. Here it starts to zigzag across volcanic scree up the crater rim until reaching Gilman's Point (5680m), then continuing past stunning glaciers and ice cliffs alongside the crater rim, leading to Stella Point (5752m) followed by Uhuru Peak (5895m). From here you decent for lunch at Kibo Hut, then continue descending to Horombo Hut, where you will spend your last night on the mountain.

  • Trekking distance: 22 kilometers (6 kilometers ascent / 16 kilometers descent)

  • Trek time: 10 to 13 hours (6 to 8 hours ascent / 4 to 5 hours descent)

  • Environment: Stone scree and ice-capped summit.

  • Elevation: From 4750 meters to 5895 meters (Uhuru Peak) to 3720 meters

 
DAY 6 - FROM HOROMBO HUT TO MARANGU GATE

The descent from Horombo is gentle in comparison to the previous day and you get to enjoy beautiful scenery, from Dendrosenecio kilimanjari trees, heath and moorland, tussock grasses and heathers, to rainforest, once more. Mandara Hut (2700m) will be your lunch stop before reaching Marangu Gate, where your golden certificate awaits you, about 1½ to 2 hours later.

  • Trekking distance: 18 kilometers

  • Trek time: 5-6 hours

  • Environment: Montane forest

  • Elevation: From 3720 meters to 1980 meters

 

Climbers crossing the saddle between Mawenzi and Kibo, Mt. Kilimanjaro
Detailed Itinerary:
7 Day Rongai Route
DAY 1 - NALE MORU ENTRANCE TO SIMBA CAMP

After breakfast, meet your porters, complete registration formalities at the Ranger’s Office, hike begins from Nale Moru (1950m) through farmland and maize fields, then rainforest, home to a variety of wildlife. The path climbs steadily; the forest thins out and turns into moorland zone with great views of the Kenyan Plains before arriving at Simba Camp (2700m).

  • Trekking distance: 8 kilometers

  • Trek time: Around 4 hours

  • Environment: Montane forest

  • Elevation: From 1950 meters to 2700 meters

 

DAY 2 - FROM SIMBA CAMP TO KIKELELWA CAMP

Leaving Simba Camp the trail leads westwards going steadily upwards thru heath and moorland zone. Lunch stop is at Second Cave (3450m) After lunch the path continues gently upwards past a canyon, dry river beds and slowly decreasing vegetation until Kikelelwa Camp (3600m) appears in the distance. The tents are situated on a hill. On a clear day you will find the mighty Kibo towering behind you, and have beautiful views of the Kenya Plains and villages, 3600m below.

  • Trekking distance: 9 kilometers

  • Trek time: 6 to 7 hours

  • Environment: Moorland

  • Elevation: From 2700 meters to 3600 meters

 

DAY 3 - FROM KIKELELWA CAMP TO MAWENZI TARN HUT

Today is a fairly short, although steep day. Occasionally steep enough for a possible hand scramble, rewarding you with excellent views along the way.. The landscape slowly changes from moorland vegetation of long grasses and heath to everlastings and other robust plant species. After 3-4 hours of hiking, you will reach Mawenzi Tarn Hut (4330m) your surroundings now being a rocky, craggy and misty mountainscape.

  • Trekking distance: 6 kilometers

  • Trek time: Around 4 hours

  • Environment: Moorland

  • Elevation: From 3600 meters to 4330 meters

 
DAY 4 - ACCLIMATIZATION DAY AT MAWENZI TARN HUT 

We will spend a full day at and around Mawenzi Tarn Hut. A mid-day acclimatization hike, exploring the area, will briefly take you to higher altitude, before returning to Mawenzi Tarn Hut. “Climb high, sleep lower” is part of the acclimatization process.

  • Environment: Moorland

  • Elevation: 4330 meters

 

DAY 5 - MAWENZI TARN HUT TO KIBO HUT

Today’s hike will start of steep, and begins to flatten as you walk across the saddle between Mawenzi and Kibo Hut (4750m). Slowly the landscape begins to resemble more of a moonscape as all vegetation, with the exception of a few Everlastings clinging on to life, has completely disappeared. Kibo Hut will be your final camp before your summit bid starts around 0100 in the morning.

  • Trekking distance: 9 kilometers

  • Trek time: Around 5-6 hours

  • Environment: Alpine desert

  • Elevation from 4330 meters to 4750 meters

 
DAY 6 - KIBO HUT TO UHURU PEAK TO HOROMBO HUT

Starting around midnight – 0100 in the morning, the path leading to the crater rim starts directly behind Kibo Hut, reaching Hans Meyer Cave (5151m) about 2.5 hours later. Here it starts to zigzag across volcanic scree up the crater rim until reaching Gilman's Point (5680m), then continuing past stunning glaciers and ice cliffs alongside the crater rim, leading to Stella Point (5752m) followed by Uhuru Peak (5895m). From here you decent for lunch at Kibo Hut, then continue descending to Horombo Hut, where you will spend your last night on the mountain.

  • Trekking distance: 22 kilometers (6 kilometers ascent / 16 kilometers descent)

  • Trek time: 10 to 13 hours (6 to 8 hours ascent / 4 to 5 hours descent)

  • Environment: Stone scree and ice-capped summit.

  • Elevation: From 4750 meters to 5895 meters (Uhuru Peak) to 3720 meters

 
DAY 7 - FROM HOROMBO HUT TO MARANGU GATE

The descent from Horombo is gentle in comparison to the previous day and you get to enjoy beautiful scenery, from Dendrosenecio kilimanjari trees, heath and moorland, tussock grasses and heathers, to the rainforest once more. Mandara Hut (2700m) will be your lunch stop before reaching Marangu Gate, where your golden certificate awaits you, about 1½ to 2 hours later.

  • Trekking distance: 18 kilometers

  • Trek time: 5-6 hours

  • Environment: Montane forest

  • Elevation: From 3720 meters to 1980 meters

 

Happy people jumping in the air on Mt. Kilimanjaro
Serengeti Sunrise Balloon Silhouette

LOCAL MOSHI

ADVENTURES

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Moshi, Kilimanjaro

info@localmoshi.com

Tel: +255-782-985-005

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