Kilimanjaro Rongai Route 6 Day

6 Days 5 Nights . Tanzania . Multi-Environment Adventure
Zara Tours leads treks up the unique Rongai Route known to be more scenic than the Marangu Route, easier than the Machame Route, and the success rate on the Rongai is very high. Unlike the Marangu Route where you sleep in huts, on the Rongai you sleep in tents (tents are included), and the porters will pitch your tent for you. Meals are served in a dinner tent or on a blanket outside. The Rongai starts on the north side of the mountain just south of the Kenyan border, and is one of the least traveled routes. The Rongai joins the Marangu for the summit climb, then you descend the Marangu Route on the mountain's southeast side, so you see Kilimanjaro from many view points. There are two versions of this trek - a direct 6-day itinerary, and a 7-day itinerary that takes a longer route. The more expedient 6-day itinerary is described below and the longer variation is described in the extra days section.


Day 1

Arrive at the Kilimanjaro  International Airport. You will be met at the airport and transferred to the Springlands Hotel or similar hotel in Moshi for your overnight.

Day 2
After breakfast we willtransfer you to Rongai. The climb begins from the attractive wooden village ofNale Moru (1,950 m.) on a small path that winds through fields of maize andpotatoes before entering pine forest. The track then starts to climbconsistently, but gently through attractive forest that shelters a variety ofwildlife, including the beautiful Kilimanjaro Colobus monkey. These monkeys areblack with a long ‘cape’ of white hair and a flowing white tail. The forestbegins to thin out and the first camp is at the edge of the moorland zone(2,600 m.) with extensive views over the Kenyan plains. [3-4 hours walking]

Day 3
The morning walk is asteady ascent up to the ‘Second Cave’ (3,450 m.) with superb views of Kibo andthe Eastern ice fields on the crater rim. After lunch, we leave the main trailand strike out across the moorland on a smaller path towards the jagged peaksof Mawenzi. Our campsite is in a sheltered valley with giant senecios near KikelewaCaves (3.600 m.) [6-7 hours walking]

Day 4

A short but steep climb up grassy slopes is rewarded by superb all around views and a tangible sense of wilderness. We leave vegetation behind shortly before reaching the next camp at Mawenzi Tarn (4,330 m.), spectacularly situated in a cirque directly beneath the towering spires of Mawenzi. The afternoon will be free to rest or explore the surrounding area as an aid to acclimatization. [3-4 hours walking]

Day 5

We cross the lunar desert of the ‘Saddle’ between Mawenzi and Kibo to reach School campsite (4,750 m.) at the bottom of the Kibo crater wall. The remainder of the day is spent resting in preparation for the final ascent before a very early night! [4-5 hours walking]

Day 6

We will start the final, andby far the steepest and most demanding, part of the climb by torchlight around1 a.m. We plod very slowly in the darkness on a switchback trail through loosevolcanic scree to reach the crater rim at Gillman’s Point (5,685 m.) We willrest there for a short time to enjoy the spectacular sunrise over Mawenzi.Those who are still feeling strong can make the three hour round trip to UhuruPeak (5,896 m.), passing close to the spectacular glaciers and ice cliffs thatstill occupy most of the summit area. The descent to Kibo (4,700 m.) issurprisingly fast and, after some refreshment, we continue the descent to reachour final campsite at Horombo (3,720 m.). [11-15 hours walking] 

A steady descent takes us down through moorland to Mandara Hut (2,700m.), the first stopping path to the National Park gate at Marangu (1,830 m.). [5-6 hours walking. You will be transferred to Springlands Hotel or Alternative Hotel in Moshi for overnight. place at the Marangu route. We then continue descending through lovely lush forest on a good

Departing day – You will beprovided with the transfer to Kilimanjaro International Airport

Important Travel Information

Is This Trip For You?

If you arrive at the Kilimanjaro Airport, you will be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel in Moshi or Arusha. We recommend at least one rest day before starting your trek. If you are transferring from Nairobi, this can act as your rest day. If you have time, enjoy a guided walk through the local rice fields and rainforest, do a little shopping in the town of Moshi, relax at the swimming pool, or get a massage.

Your guide will provide a briefing the evening before your trek, and you must separate one bag for the trek from your other luggage. Rental equipment is available. Extra luggage can be stored in a locked storage room at your Moshi hotel at no charge.

The next morning, enjoy a hearty breakfast before last-minute trip preparations at the trekking office. Depending on the route you take, the drive to the trailhead can take up to one hour and can be very bumpy.

Once you reach the park gate, climbers are requested to make their final preparations for the climb and sign the national park registration book. Porters will be seen arranging their packs containing the food, water, and other equipment. Make sure that you have all your day pack items with you as the porters travel very quickly. Your guide will be pleased to assist with any additional information.

The average hiking day begins between 8-9am and is about 5 to 6 hours, walking very, very slowly. The distances you will hike each day are very moderate so as to acclimate a little at a time. Your guides will repeat over and over, "pole pole" (po-ly, po-ly), which means "go slowly" in Swahili.

The terrain lower down is absolutely gorgeous and fascinating. Higher up, the views are vast. There is little to do at the camps themselves, so take advantage of the slow pace to absorb the scenery and take every photo opportunity.

The hike to the summit starts around midnight depending on your route and speed of your group. You will go as high as you feel fit. Some people stop at the crater rim, and others continue to the very highest point on the mountain. Your guides will then take you down as quickly as possible to minimize any altitude problems. You will continue past your last campsite to the next one for overnight.

You can add an extra day at the Horombo Huts (3,690 m/12,100 ft). You can spend a full day and a second night at Horombo. On this day, you can either rest at the huts or take a stroll up to the Mawenzi basecamp then return to the Horombo Huts. This extra day will help your acclimatization, and further your understanding of the mountain’s weather and altitude. After your pause, you will continue up to the Kibo Huts on your fourth day for your midnight start to the summit.


The local currency is Tanzanian shillings. U.S. dollars, Euros, and credit cards may be accepted by larger stores and hotels, but the exchange rate is better with shillings. ATM's are only available in larger towns like Moshi and Arusha.  Yahoo Currency Converter

Destination Location

Mount Kilimanjaro is located three degrees south of the equator in Northeastern Tanzania. It is the tallest mountain in Africa and is the highest free-standing mountain in the world.  Of the famous highest seven peaks in the world, this is the easiest to get to and the easiest to climb. It requires no technical climbing experience, and any moderately fit person can summit the mountain.

Travel Companions

Groups are limited to 5-7 people. We will combine groups up to this limit if they are starting the same route on the same day. However, we can also arrange for private groups at no extra cost. We will try to add single travelers to a group if at all possible, but we cannot guarantee it. We can accommodate large groups of any size.


A local guide is required to hike Kilimanjaro. We have guides that speak English, Spanish, French and German. Porters will also go on the trip to carry your luggage, food, and other equipment. You will only have to carry a day pack with your daily essentials.


Tips for guides and porters on Kilimanjaro and Mount Meru:

  • You will be given an envelope at the Springlands Hotel after your trek for your tip money. You can use U.S. dollars, Euros, TZ shillings, or a combination of these.  It helps if you have small bills to tip everyone individually. There is no need to take money on the mountain with you.
  • The typical tip is $15/day for guides, $10/day for assistant guides and cooks, $7/day for porters. This is from the whole group, not per hiker.
  • Expect 1 guide per 8 hikers, 1 assistant guide per 3 hikers, and 1 cook per 8 hikers:
  • Expect porters as follows:
    - 2 porters per hiker on the 5-day Marangu Route (minimum of 4 porters)
    - 3 porters per hiker on a 6 or 7-day trek (minimum of 5 porters)
    - 4 porters per hiker on the 8-day Lemosho Route (minimum of 8 porters)
    - Sometimes extra porters are required based on the weight of your luggage.
  • Budget $200 per hiker for tips for a 6-day trek.
  • Gifts: Guides and porters also appreciate your warm clothing, shoes, and packs. You may want to bring some older clothing items for this purpose.
  • Celebration: You are also welcome to invite your guides back to the Springlands Hotel for drinks and/or dinner (on you) as a thank-you in addition to their tip.


With the exception of airfare, all Zara trips include all transportation costs and arrangements within the destination country. This includes all transfers and the equipment for all activities listed.

Recommended Gear List

Kilimanjaro Climber’s Packing List Notes

  • The pack that the porters carry is limited to 15 kg (35 pounds)
    • Overweight or extra luggage will require an extra porter at $5/day
  • Store electronics in sealed water-proof bags (double sealed if possible)
  • Wrap clothing in plastic bags
  • In the day pack, take along water, sunglasses, camera, binoculars, rain pants, and jacket at a minimum.
    Add any other items you might need during the day, since you may not see your porters until the end of the day.
  • Zara Tours is interested in purchasing second-hand gear for rentals.
  • You may want to bring some older items of warm clothing as gifts for your guides and porters or donations to the Mount Kilimanjaro Porters Society.
  • You can leave extra luggage in a locked storage room at the Springlands Hotel for no charge.
  • You can leave valuables in a safe deposit box at the Springlands Hotel for $1/day.
  • See the Zara Equipment list for details on what is provided by Zara Tours.


  • Day pack, for you to carry
  • Large duffel bag or backpack, for porters to carry
  • Plastic bags

Clothing You want your inner layer to be wicking – no cotton
Your next layer should be insulating and warm, and your top layer should be water proof but breathable.
You will need clothes for hiking during the day, lounging in the evening, and for sleeping.
Layers are important as temperatures vary greatly.
Kilimanjaro may be near the equator, but it gets cold up there!

  • Shorts, for first and last day only
  • Pants, for hiking and for lounging in the evenings
  • Short-sleeved or t-shirts
  • Long-sleeved shirts, for hiking and for lounging in the evenings
  • Long underwear
  • Fleece jacket or wool sweater
  • Fleece pants
  • Down jacket or ski parka (for temperatures well below freezing plus wind)
  • Rain jacket, needed in hot rainforest and cold snow
  • Rain pants, needed in hot rainforest and cold snow
  • Underwear
  • Sport bras, for women

Cold Weather Accessories

  • Mittens and/or gloves (waterproof, one thin pair, one thick pair that can be layered)
  • Wool or pile hat
  • Balaclava or neck gaitor
  • Hand and foot warmers (chemical activated)


  • Be sure to break in your shoes before the hike!
  • Trekking shoes for hiking during the day, preferrably warm, waterproof, and with ankle-support – not too light and not too heavy
  • Tennis shoes or sandals for lounging in the evening
  • Gaiters
  • Hiking socks for warmer conditions
  • Wool socks for colder conditions
  • Sock liners to wick away moisture


  • Sleeping bag (Rated -25 degrees C/-10 degrees F or colder is recommended)
  • Sleeping pad and repair kit
  • Tents are supplied by Zara at no charge
  • Foam sleeping pads are provided by Zara at no charge (Thermarest is highly recommended, however)


  • Water bottles and Camelback (2-3)
    • Get 3 liters of bottled water before the trip (available at the Springlands Hotel).
      Your guides will boil water for you along the route, or use steripens for water sanitization.
    • To prevent water from freezing on summit day, keep your water source inside your jacket.
      For Camelbacks, blow air back into the bladder after each sip and drink often.
    • Gatorade or other drink mix helps with taste and minerals.
  • Water filter or iodine purification tablets
  • Sun hat with brim
  • Sunglasses
  • Bandana
  • Money ($400 or more in cash and/or travellers cheques, including some small U.S., Euro, or Tanzanian bills)
  • Ski or trekking poles
  • Headlamp or flashlight
  • Camera, film, tripod
  • Video camera, tapes
  • Batteries
    • Bring extra sets for headlamp/flashlight and camera as cold weather shortens their life
  • Binoculars
  • Notebook, journal, pencil, and pen
  • Pocket knife
  • Electricity adapter
  • Energy bars, hard candy, snacks, and comfort foods
  • Playing cards, games, books, frisbee, football, kite
  • Chocolate or pens for village children, momentos for guides, porters, and other climbers
  • Umbrella, particularly useful in the rainy season, can be purchased in the market for around $2
  • Plastic bags and zip-lock bags for waterproofing
  • Sewing kit
  • Salt, pepper, and spices for bland food
  • Business cards
  • Alarm clock
  • Calculator (for currency conversion)
  • Swim suit for hotel swimming pool


  • Toilet paper (and baggie to carry used paper while on trail)
  • Small towel
  • Soap
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Handi-wipes (moist towelettes for cleaning)
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Lotion
  • Glasses, contacts, solution (take contacts out each night to prevent blurred vision)
  • Comb, mirror


  • Passport
  • Yellow fever certificate
  • Tanzania Visa
  • Medical insurance
  • Address book
  • Vaccination records
  • Airline tickets
  • Cash, travellers cheques, credit cards
  • Maps, guidebooks
  • Make copies of passport, TZ visa, airline tickets/schedule, and travellers cheques numbers.
    Leave a copy with someone at home and put a copy in a separate place in your luggage.

First Aid

  • Ibuprofin, Aceteminophen, or Aspirin
  • Throat losenges
  • Bandaids
  • Moleskin
  • Sunscreen (SPF 15+)
  • Lip balm with sunscreen
  • Insect repellent
  • Disinfectant, Antiseptic cream
  • Bandages and tape
  • Diahrea medicine
  • Antihistemines
  • Ace bandage
  • Melatonin (1-3mg) or other sleep aid
  • Malaria pills (talk to your doctor)
  • Antibiotics (talk to your doctor)
  • Prescription drugs (talk to your doctor)
  • Diamox (talk to your doctor)

Gifts for Guides, Porters, Locals

  • Shoes
  • Any warm clothing
  • T-shirts
  • Hats
  • Nerf football, frisbees
  • Candy
  • Pens

Packing for your flight to Africa

  • U-shaped neck pillow (blow-up)
  • Books/magazines
  • Toiletries
  • Snacks
  • Water
  • Walkman and music
  • Eye shades, ear plugs
  • Melatonin or other sleep aid
Critical climbing gear (in case baggage is delayed)

Meeting/Departures Location

P.O. Box 1990
Tanzania, United Republic of
See Location on a Google Map

Cancellation Information

Cancellation of a booking or failure to join a tour will result in a retention of funds by ZaraTours  Inc. as follows: Upon receipt of written cancellation by any member of the tour indicated on this reservation 30 days or longer prior to departure, 20% of the reservation of the canceling party will be retained by ZaraTours and the balance of the package price refunded. If a cancellation is received at least 14 days and up to 29 days prior to departure, 50% of the package price will be retained by ZaraTours Inc. If a cancellation is received less than 14 days prior to departure, 100% of the total package price will be retained by ZaraTours Inc. and all outstanding payment will become payable immediately. Should the canceling party be able to find a replacement for themselves no less than 14 days prior to departure and the replacement completes this booking form individually, no retention of funds will take place. However, should no replacement be found by 14 days prior to departure, a 100% cancellation penalty will apply to the canceling party. ZaraTours  Inc. and its agents reserve the right to terminate, at their discretion and with immediate effect, the participation of any person on the tour.
November 2015>

Adventure Snapshot

Duration: 6 Days 5 Nights
Skill Level: Intermediate
Category: Hiking-Backpacking
Destination: Tanzania
Theme: Multi-Environment Adventure


Operator: ZaraTours Inc.

Next Departures

11/30/2015 at 8:00 AM

Pickup Location

If you would like us to pick you up, the following locations are available:

Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO)

Nairobi Airport Jomo Kenyatta International

Adventure Matrix

Comfort level


Per Person 1-5 people $1,675.00

We Accept