The Marangu route is also referred to as the "Coca-Cola" route, as it is considered to be the easiest path on the mountain, given its gradual slope and direct path. It is the oldest and the most well established route on the Kilimanjaro. This is the only route which offers sleeping huts in dormitory style. Guests are supplied with mattresses and pillows, but sleeping bags are still required. The huts have communal dining halls, basic washrooms and toilet. Short time frame of the route makes altitude acclimatization fairly difficult. The route approaches Mount Kilimanjaro from the southeast. Marangu is unfortunately less scenic than the other routes because the ascent and descent are along the same path. It is also the most crowded route for that reason.
After breakfast and briefing, drive to the Kilimanjaro National Park Gate (45 minutes), register and commence the climb. Walk through the rainforest to the Mandara encampment. A side trip to Maundi Crater is a good way to see the surroundings including Northern Tanzania and Kenya. In the rainforest, look for towering Eucalyptus trees, bird life, and Colobus monkeys.
The second day on the mountain starts just after breakfast with a steep climb through the last swathe of rainforest, though this soon gives way to rolling alpine meadow dotted with giant heather. Once you leave the forest sunshade, Kilimanjaro’s two peaks snow covered Kibo and rocky Mawenzi – lie straight ahead overlooking the skyline.Further on you cross a zone of open moorland with diminutive vegetation, today you gain roughly 1,000m altitude; the walk can take five to seven hours depending on your pace but always POLE POLE. Tonight for Dinner and overstay at Horombo Huts.
A day here provides an opportunity for you to acclimatize step by step to the altitude, Information show that an acclimatization day effectively doubles the chance of succession to reach the summit, thus the time is well spent! The day is not precisely wasted as there is several walks you can take just in the locality of the hut, but we will take the most famous walk of which most people take for acclimatization which leads you to the base of Mawenzi Peak the dramatic eastern summit of Kilimanjaro. The walk takes 4-5 hours a round trip and will go till to an altitude of 4,600Mts then you will return back to Horombo Hut for Dinner and Overnight this walk will put you in good shape later on.
The scenery turn out to be more rocky and rough as you leave behind kibo ,everlasting flower and other bizarre alpine plants Massive groundsels and lobelias appear in the sparse moorland. The trail up to Kibo will take between five and seven hours. Skirting Mawenzi Peak ass you pass the Last Water point then you cross a stark, almost lunar landscape to the Saddle which is a wide tundra desert between the two peaks of Mawenzi and Kibo. Here you will start getting fantastic views of the upper ranges of the mountain before arriving at Kibo Hut (4,705m), a dry-stone-walled hut with dorms and limited facilities. Tonight you prepare for tomorrow’s final assault – THE SUMMIT – re-packing to leave any non-essential items with the porters; you need to summon all your energy to get to the summit so there’s absolutely no point in carrying anything you don’t need! An early night is imperative as you must make a midnight start in order to reach the summit in the morning before the cloud cover settles, and then have time to get back down to the hut. Overnight stay at Kibo Hut for 1 night (Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner)
This is a long and demanding day! The guides wake you soon after midnight and you start out in darkness, zigzagging up a long scree slope by the light of your torch in the extreme cold. At this time of day the scree is still frozen – which makes it easier to walk on! After roughly two hours you should reach Hans Meyer’s Cave – named after the German geologist who made the first successful ascent in 1889 – where he found the remains of a frozen leopard. The gradient gets steeper and three hours on (this is the hardest stretch of the climb! you should reach the crater rim at Johanne’s Notch. From here it’s a short scramble to Gillman’s Point (5,685m) in time for dawn. Your reward is the dramatic spectacle of the sun rising over the ice fields and craggy peaks of Mawenzi – the profusion of colors and shapes make all the suffering seem worthwhile! For those who still have the energy and drive, it takes another couple of hours along the crater rim to reach Uhuru (Freedom) Peak (5,896m). Your descent (approx. 3 hours) retraces the route back down past Kibo Hut to Horombo Hut for a well-deserved rest. Overnight stay at Horombo Hut for 1 night (Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner)
The pace quickens as you continue your triumphant way back down across alpine meadow and past Mandara Hut through the rainforest to Marangu Gate where you board the vehicle for the journey back to Moshi.