Kilimanjaro FAQ

The average temperature at the foot of the mountain is 25° to 30° C. On the summit, it can range from -12° to 10° C but is usually below freezing. At 3000m (above the tree line), the day temperatures range from 5° to 15° C and then cool off significantly at night. As you work your way up the mountain, you will traverse through many different climates that vary in temperature and precipitation. Light rain is fairly consistent in the lower rainforest section while the upper parts of the mountain often experience passing snowstorms.

If you’re looking to break the record, the smallest age to reach the summit of mountain Kilimanjaro was 9 years old, and the oldest person who reached the summit of Kilimanjaro was 87 years old!

Swahili is widely spoken in Tanzania as well in Kenya, Uganda, Eastern Zaire and Rwanda. Your guide will speak excellent English as well Swahili and usually also a native language. Some porters know English while others may have just picked up a few words here and there.

Absolutely.  East Africa has some of the world’s most wonderful safaris to offer. You can very easily do a multi-day safari before or after your climb.

The average temperature at the foot of the mountain is 25° to 30° C. On the summit, it can range from -12° to 10° C but is usually below freezing. At 3000m (above the tree line), the day temperatures range from 5° to 15° C and then cool off significantly at night. As you work your way up the mountain, you will traverse through many different climates that vary in temperature and precipitation. Light rain is fairly consistent in the lower rainforest section while the upper parts of the mountain often experience passing snowstorms.

The number of hours you hike each day varies from 3 hours (minimum) to 7 hours (maximum), depending on the intensity of the slope and difficulty of the climb.

Kilimanjaro may be climbed at any time throughout a year, in the bimodal regime the March-May rains are referred as the long rains, whereas the October-December rains are generally known as short rains. January to May is very good with mild temperature.

Kilimanjaro is easily accessible. However you should not underestimate this mountain. There is no technical mountaineering skills required, but only general fitness.

If necessary you can do some physical exercises prior to the trek (optional).

This is common concern; there is no need to worry about.  By walking slowly, your body will acclimatize itself to the high altitude. The guide will permanently remind you about this (“pole pole’-which means “slowly slowly’).

You will carry your own daypack, you do not need to carry your personal backpack/duffel pack” It will be carried by a porter. During a day you need to carry some water, snacks, camera, waterproof layers, hat and basic First Aid Kit. These will depend on your priorities.

On Marangu route you will sleep in the hut. All other routes you will sleep in the tent-two people each and single supplement. The tent is set-up, broken down and carried by our porters. Water for bathing is provided for each person every morning if possible (no showers).

Your Kilimanjaro price includes park entry fees, camping fees, rescue fees, transport to/from the park entry gate, head guide, assistant guides, cook, porters and tents. 3 meals every day (breakfast, lunch and dinner). All of our guides cook and porters are paid a proper salary in accordance to the Porters Association requirements.

Additional costs include tipping to your guides, porters & cooks and hiring of clothing equipment if you do not have. The recommended tipping is US $ 20 per day to the head guide, US $15 per day per assistant guide, US $15 per day to the cook, US $10 per day per porter.  This is split between everyone climbing.

Upon booking we provide an equipment hire list.  This covers things like clothing, walking poles, sleeping bags etc.  This list includes hiring prices therefore anything you choose not to bring from home can be hired once you arrive.

To enter Tanzania territory you must have a tourist Visa.

The best Ideal is to obtain a Visa from the Tanzanian Embassy in your country.

To avoid potential loss of passports in the mail or delays in visa processing, Ascend Tanzania recommends that US citizens obtain their visas upon arrival, at Kilimanjaro International Airport. It is an easy and simple process. The cost of a Tanzanian visa for US citizens is $100.

There are post offices, you can buy and send postcards, Internet cafe is a hit and price is cheap, Telecommunication is good, you can send International fax, and use your standard GSM mobile phone in Tanzania.

The passport is to be presented to the Immigration Control Officer at any entry point: border station, airport, and harbor. The passport must be presented along with one of the following:

  • A valid visa Resident permit
  • A passport
  • A visitor must also present an onward or return ticket together with proof that the visitor has sufficient funds to support himself or herself while in Tanzania.

All foreigners from non-Commonwealth countries are required to have a valid visa unless their countries have agreements with Tanzania under which the visa requirement is waived. Exemptions: Citizens of Commonwealth countries are not required to obtain visas unless they are citizens of the United Kingdom, Canada, Nigeria, or India. The visa is permission granted to a foreigner who intends to travel to Tanzania on business, for a holiday, to study or conduct research, or for other approved activities. When entering Tanzania, the visitor with a visa may then obtain from the immigration control officer, a pass or any other authority to enter the country.

Our safari vehicles are traditional safari Toyota Land Cruisers.  The removable roof allows you to stand up and take photos and enjoy the serenity and wildlife of Africa.  They are fitted with radios therefore allowing the driver to communicate with other vehicles and therefore giving you the best opportunity to find animals.  The vehicles are extremely comfortable.

This section covers what gear you need to bring, physical training, Tanzania entry requirements (passport & visa), immunizations and vaccinations, and travel insurance.

Please read carefully equipment page and make sure you have gathered everything before you depart on your trip.

Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro is a physical undertaking, so you should prepare yourself accordingly with a Kilimanjaro training program. Being in good shape is important in many respects. Obviously, strong, conditioned legs make it easier to walk uphill and downhill for sustained periods of time. General aerobic fitness allows the body to function efficiently with less oxygen. And a fit body is more likely to withstand the stress of consecutive days of hiking and camping. Finally, a positive mental attitude can work wonders for you when fatigue and doubts arise.

All climbers should have a medical check prior to attempting the mountain. Ask your doctor if high altitude trekking is permissible for your age, fitness level and health condition. Ask if you have any preexisting medical conditions that can cause problems on the climb. Ask if any of your medications can affect altitude acclimatization. Ask whether Diamox can be taken with your existing prescription medicines.

Our climbs originate in Moshi, is a short drive from the Kilimanjaro International Airport (airport code: JRO). If you fly into Kilimanjaro International Airport, you should communicate your flight information to us, and we can arrange for transport from the airport to the hotel for a small fare.

Absolutely.  Climbers are strongly advised to obtain travel insurance immediately after booking their trip. Trip deposits are non-refundable and balance payments are only partially refundable. Therefore, it is prudent for you to protect your investment against trip cancellation, interruption, delays and unforeseeable expenses. Travel insurance covers expenses such as: trip cancellation, interruption or delays emergency accident and sickness, lost, damaged, stolen or delayed baggage 24-hour emergency medical assistance.