This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Learn more

Skip to main content

Talk to an expert 1-800-242-2434 Lines now closed

User menu
Day Hike on Mount Kilimanjaro

Day Hike on Mount Kilimanjaro

Overview: Day Hike on Mount Kilimanjaro

Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro is on many a bucket list, however we haven't yet had a chance at Expert Africa to explore all the routes to the summit so we don't offer multi-day guided ascents of the mountain. However, for a flavour of Kilimanjaro, how about adding a day hike to your safari itinerary? Kili, which is the highest mountain in Africa at 5,985m, can take around a week to climb to the summit, but if you head to the less visited western side of the mountain you can do a one-day excursion, which incorporates some hiking on the high moorland.

What to expect on a hike on Mount Kilimanjaro

From your accommodation in Arusha, depart with your guide after an early breakfast for the drive to Kilimanjaro National Park. Depending on the location of your hotel, the journey will take 1½–2½ hours.

You will be driven to the western side of the mountain and up through the forests to the Londorossi Gate, at an altitude of 2,100m, where the hike begins. The ascent you will be tackling is more than 1,000m, as you hike steadily up through tropical montane forests, home to a variety of animals and birdlife. With the help of your guide, you may spot colobus monkeys, crested turacos and more. As well as being the less visited side of the mountain, these western regions are known to be frequented by big game from Kenya’s Amboseli National Park, which neighbours Kilimanjaro National Park. It is not uncommon to hear elephants rumbling through the forest and you may even catch sight of them through the trees.

Your hike takes you up to the Shira Plateau, at 3,400m, a 500,000-year-old volcanic caldera that is now a World Heritage Site. You can stop for lunch here, or continue on to Shira 1 Camp, Lion Gorge and the foothills of the Shira Pinnacles. Kilimanjaro’s iconic snow-covered table top, Kibo Peak, should be visible from here, as well as neighbouring glaciers.

Then, at the end of the day, walkers are driven back to their accommodation, allowing you to make the most of your time on the mountain.

For those with limited fitness or mobility: It is possible to drive all the way up to the Shira Plateau and then gently explore the surrounding areas on foot. Reasonable levels of fitness would be ideal for the longer hike.

What to wear: The walk can be over uneven ground in places, so closed shoes are recommended. Due to the altitude, warm clothing and/or waterproofs are also advisable.

Please note: Expert Africa only books excursions as a part of a full, Expert Africa itinerary.

Start location
Any of Expert Africa's lodges or hotels in Arusha
End location
Back at your lodge or hotel
Meals included
Packed lunch, incl water
Duration
Full day
Maximum group size
Usually six people

Kilimanjaro Day Hike: gallery

What to look forward to.


1 of 2
The first photo shows the hike up through the forests on the lower slopes of Kilimanjaro...
2 of 2
...towards the Shira Plateau above the clouds.

The first photo shows the hike up through the forests on the lower slopes of Kilimanjaro...

...towards the Shira Plateau above the clouds.

Ideas for holidays which can include Day Hike on Mount Kilimanjaro

Add this experience to these trip ideas or contact us to start planning your own tailor-made safari to Tanzania.


Itinerary image

Chimpanzee Fly-in Safari

8 days • 3 locations
KILIMANJARO AIRPORT TO KILIMANJARO AIRPORT

Combining two of the remotest parks in Tanzania, this safari can deliver extraordinary wildlife viewing in Katavi, and East Africa's best chimp treks, on the shores of Lake Tanganyika.

US$8,450 - US$11,770 per person

Itinerary image

Honeyguide Fly-in Safari

7 days • 4 locations
KILIMANJARO AIRPORT TO KILIMANJARO AIRPORT

Four contrastingly styled lodges offer fast access to some of Northern Tanzania’s most notable safari destinations. With a range of available activities from luxurious accommodation, the safari includes relaxation and indulgence as well as traditional safari pursuits.

US$7,660 - US$8,550 per person

Itinerary image

Secretary Bird Fly-in Safari

8 days • 4 locations
KILIMANJARO AIRPORT TO KILIMANJARO AIRPORT

Chosen for comfort and relaxation as much as for its range of activities, this safari makes for a leisurely trip featuring stunning accommodation and swift access to many of northern Tanzania’s best wildlife regions.

US$10,100 - US$13,300 per person

Inspire me

Need inspiration?

Let our trip chooser narrow down the options for you

Inspire me

Other excursions in Tanzania

Inspiration and great ideas for other experiences in Tanzania to include in your safari.


Safari in Ngorongoro Crater

Safari in Ngorongoro Crater

Typically a full day

To drive into the Ngorongoro Crater is to immerse yourself in a renowned wildlife park. Prides of lion and clans of hyena patrol amongst herds of zebra, wildebeest and Thomson’s gazelle, whilst flocks of crowned cranes keep out the way of jackals. Come for elephants with big tusks, too. And then there are the rhino…

More about Ngorongoro Crater safari
95% (37 reviews)
Lake Manyara Safari

Lake Manyara Safari

Half-day or full-day

Set against the spectacular backdrop of the Rift Valley escarpment, Lake Manyara National Park makes a great safari destination. Here, along with elephant herds and plains game, you’ll find jungle-like forests that are home to blue monkeys, a soda lake tinged pink by flamingos and some of Tanzania’s best birding.

More about Lake Manyara Safari
90% (31 reviews)
Balloon Safari over the Serengeti

Balloon Safari over the Serengeti

Three hours - approx. one hour flight

As the sun rises over the Serengeti National Park in Northern Tanzania, climb aboard for an extraordinary adventure. For an hour you’ll float in a hot air balloon over beautiful savannah and woodland and a diversity of plains wildlife.

More about Balloon Safari
100% (9 reviews)
Olduvai Gorge visit

Olduvai Gorge visit

One - two hours

See for yourself the renowned archaeological site of Olduvai (or Oldupai) Gorge, which lies en route between the Ngorongoro Crater and the Serengeti National Park. Famed for the discoveries of early hominin remains as well as the Laetoli Footprints, the site offers beautiful views, an engaging museum and potentially the opportunity to visit an active dig.

More about Olduvai Gorge visit
95% (8 reviews)
Safari in Arusha National Park

Safari in Arusha National Park

Half day or full day

Arusha National Park offers some lovely walking in the foothills of Mount Meru and canoeing on the Momela Lakes, plus gentle game drives.

More about Safari in Arusha NP
77% (6 reviews)
Mto Wa Mbu Village Walk

Mto Wa Mbu Village Walk

Two to three hours

Discover the intricacies of day-to-day life in the large Tanzanian village of Mto Wa Mbu with a knowledgeable local guide. This is not a village set up for tourists; Mto Wa Mbu is a real community and offers a chance to see a side of the country that many visitors pass by.

More about Village Walk
Lake Manyara Treetop Walkway

Lake Manyara Treetop Walkway

Usually one hour

Experience the forest of Lake Manyara National Park from a whole new perspective – high up in the trees. The first suspended walkway in Tanzania, it stretches underneath the canopy for 370m between the mahogany and fig trees, giving intrepid visitors a unique view of the surrounding flora and fauna.

More about Manyara Treetop Walk
60% (1 reviews)
Maasai Village Visit

Maasai Village Visit

Two to three hours - afternoon activity

Gain an authentic insight into Maasai life, visiting one of the villages in the highland areas of the Ngorongoro Crater. Far from being a commercialised, contrived experience, this is a genuine opportunity to visit a real village, and to be welcomed by the villagers.

More about Maasai Village Visit
Chimpanzee habituation experience

Chimpanzee habituation experience

One or two days

A chance to catch a glimpse of a unique group of chimpanzees that are in the process of being habituated on Rubondo Island. Trek, in search of these remarkably human-like creatures, follow their calls, and with luck spend some time watching them in their natural environment.

More about Chimpanzee experience
100% (1 reviews)
Empakaai Crater Hike

Empakaai Crater Hike

Half day, two - three hour walk

Spend a half day hiking through the Empakaai Crater, in the Highlands area of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area (NCA), led by an experienced guide and accompanied by a ranger.

More about Empakaai Crater Hike
Crater Rim Walk

Crater Rim Walk

Half day - two hour walk

For some fantastic views, and the chance to see flora and fauna up close, take a walk along the rim of the magnificent Ngorongoro Crater. Led by an experienced safari guide and accompanied by an armed ranger, you will be able to take in the scale and beauty of the landscape from a different perspective.

More about Crater Rim Walk
Balloon Safari over Ruaha

Balloon Safari over Ruaha

Three hours - one hour flight

Varied and scenically stunning, Ruaha National Park features rolling hills, woodlands, open plains and two wide meandering rivers: the Ruaha and the Mwagusi. What better way to view it than from the air, at sunrise? A balloon safari offers just this, the landscape unfolding below your basket as you float almost silently above.

More about Ballooning in Ruaha
Olmoti Crater walk

Olmoti Crater walk

Half day - two to three hour walk

Follow an ancient Maasai cattle trail on this private hike up the Olmoti Crater, led by an experienced guide and accompanied by an armed ranger. The crater may not compete in size with the neighbouring Ngorongoro Crater, but the birding is good, the mountain views wonderful, and the array of ferns is a botanist’s dream.

More about Olmoti Crater walk

Tanzania fact file

Useful information to help you prepare for your trip in Tanzania


Login to Expert Africa

Sign in with password

Sign in with email link


New to Expert Africa? Create an account

Forgotten your details?

It's free & quick to set up

  • Order a brochure
  • Save your wish-list
  • Send us an enquiry
  • Pay online for your trip
  • Subscribe to our newsletter
  • Give us feedback on your trip
  • Full site benefits of the site

Need some help? Talk to our team