Rongai route ascents Kilimanjaro from the north-eastern side of the mountain, along the border between Tanzania and Kenya. This route retains a sense of unspoilt wilderness and offers a different perspective on Kilimanjaro by approaching it from the north.
Rongai route’s premier advantage is that it is one of the quietest routes on the mountain. A disadvantage is the long travel time to the starting point of the route. The route also becomes busier when it connects with the Marangu route just before reaching Kibo hut.
Rongai route descends along the Marangu route as well, however you still sleep in tents, and do not use huts of the Marangu route.
Rongai 6 Days Itinerary
Day 1 Rongai Gate – First Cave Camp
After an early breakfast in your Hotel in Moshi or Arusha drive about 3 hours from Moshi and Arusha 4hours to the Rongai Gate near Kenya border.
After registration at the entrance gate your hiking will begin through forests where you may see or hear wildlife.
You lunch will be save on the way up before reaching destination of the day.
The rongai route is one of the least crowded routes on Kilimanjaro because of the long drive to the Rongai Gate (1,800m/5,900ft) to First Cave Camp (2,600m/8,400ft); Elevation Gain: 760 meters, 2,000 feet; Hiking time: 4 – 6 hours. Dinner overnight Simba Camp (first Cave)
Day 2 First Cave Camp – Kikelewa Camp
First Cave Camp (2,600m/8,400ft) to Kikelewa Camp (3,600m/11,810ft); Elevation Gain: 1,000 meters, 3,280 feet; hiking time: 4 – 6 hours;
After Breakfast Walk through giant heathers and moor lands to Campsite at Kikelewa campsite – near Kikelewa Cave (5-6h, 3650m) 11862Ft) this is relatively short day during the hike you have a great view of Mwawenzi in the blue sky day dinner overnight.
Day 3 Kikelewa Camp – Mawenzi Tarn Camp
Kikelewa Camp (3,600m/11,810ft) to Mawenzi Tarn Camp (4,330m/14,200ft); Elevation Gain: 730 meters, 2,390 feet; hiking time: 4 – 6 hours. Hiking time: 4 – 6 hours.
This is leisure day with more acclimatization activities in the morning and late noon day starts with a morning hike followed by a rest in the afternoon and evening. The hike is relatively short but steep.
Mawenzi Tarn campsite is situated below Mawenzi Peak and offers stunning views of both Mawenzi and Kibo. Dinner overnight.
Day 4 Mawenzi Tarn Camp – Kibo Camp
Mawenzi Tarn Camp (4,330m/14,200ft) to Kibo Camp (4,750m/15,580ft); Elevation Gain: 420 meters/1380 feet; Hiking time: 4 – 6 hours.
This is a fairly gradual walk as it mainly follows the saddle, and it is also possible to go from Mawenzi Tarn hut to school hut 4750Mt across the lunar landscape of the saddle to the final destination( 15438Ft) and from there to Uhuru peak, Gain the Saddle and walk across this desert of screen to a camp not far from Kibo hut (3-4h, 4730m). Dinner overnight.
Day 5 Kibo Camp – Uhuru Peak – Horombo Hut
School hut or Kibo Camp (4,750m/15,580ft) to Uhuru Peak (5,895m/19,340ft) to Horombo Hut (3,720m/12,200ft); Elevation Gain: 1,145 meters, 3,760 feet; Elevation Loss:
2,175 meters, 7,140 feet; Hiking time: 6 hours to the rim, 1.5 hours to Uhuru, 4 hours to Kibo, 4 hours to Horombo.
At midnight, begin the final ascent to Uhuru Peak, the highest point in Africa. Hike by the light of your flashlight for the next six hours.
The ascent to the crater rim is the most challenging part of the entire trek. The trail is very steep until you reach the crater rim at Gilman’s Point.
The hike from Gilman’s to Uhuru Peak is a gradual climb and, as far as hikes go, not very difficult. The altitude, however, makes the hike long and tiring.
From crater rim it takes about two hours. Upon reaching Uhuru, capture picture for memory of your life time at the peak before beginning the descent to Horombo Hut.
Distance: 5Km Down to Kibo from the summit, 10km down to Horombo hut.
Time: 3hrs down to Kibo hut down, Horombo Hut 3-4 hrs while you are increase Oxygen dinner overnight Horombo Hut.
Day 6 _ Horombo Hut – Marangu Gate
Horombo Hut (3,720m/12,200ft) to Marangu Gate (1,800m/5,905ft); Elevation Loss: 1,920 meters, 6,295 feet; hiking time: 6 – 8 hours.
This is by easiest day as it is downhill and the oxygen supply increase as you go down, you will reach Mandara Hut at about lunch time where your hot lunch will be save after lunch at Mandara hut complete your descent to Marangu Gate where the driver will pick you –up at the park gate to the hotel in Moshi or Arusha (B&B).