9 Days Northern Circuit Route

Day 1: Arrive in Tanzania

After arriving at the Kilimanjaro International Airport, you’ll be transferred to one of the hotels in Arusha town by our tour guide who will also brief you on your upcoming trek and do equipment check to ensure every necessary mountain gear has been covered. This day is set aside for renting any missing gear on this day.

  • Hotel: BB

​​​Note: Check-in starts at 2:00 PM.​

Day 2: LONDOROSSI GATE (2,100 meters) – START POINT 2,360 meters TO MTI MKUBWA CAMP (2,820 meters)

  • Distance: ~5.5km / 3 miles
  • Trekking time: 3-4 hours
  • Zone: Rainforest
  • Meals: BLD

The Northern Cirucit Route begins from the Londorossi Gate which is at an elevation of 2100 meters in the west. It is also the starting point of Lemosho route. The drive to the gate from Moshi will take approximately two hours and longer from Arusha. At the gate, you’ll have to register with the Kilimanjaro National Park authorities and then drive further up the mountain till you reach the trailhead starting point. Lunch is usually served here by most tour companies which is followed by a short trek to Mti Mukbwa at 2820 meters. With some luck, you may be able to spot large wild animals like elephants, buffalos who sometimes emerge out of the dense forest into the trails. Dinner will be served when you reach Mti Mkubwa Camp.

DAYS 3-MTI MKUBWA CAMP (2,820 meters) TO SHIRA CAMP 1 (3,610 meters)

  • Distance:~8km / 5 miles
  • Trekking time: 5-6 hours
  • Zone: Rainforest / Low Alpine Zone
  • Meals: BLD

On day two you will spend the first hour trekking through the last section of rainforest path before entering the low alpine moorland zone which follows up onto the Shira Plateau. The trek is relatively short and gradual, ending at Shira Camp 1 (3,610 meters).

DAY 4 – SHIRA CAMP 1 (3,610 METERS) TO SHIRA CAMP 2 (3,850 meters)

  • Distance: ~7km / 4 miles
  • Trekking time: 3-4 hours
  • Zone: Rainforest / Low Alpine Zone
  • Meals: BLD

On the third day, you’ll cross the Shira Plateau as you trek from the Shira Camp 1 to Shira Camp 2. Trekkers on a 9 day tour usually spend the whole night at Camp 2 where they’re joined by trekkers coming in from the Machame Route. Trekking a little higher up the plateau is well worth it as you’ll be rewarded with a stunning view across the valley belo and Western Breach of Kilimanjaro. As the plateau is exposed, you should be prepared for extreme cold nights with temperatures dropping below zero degrees.

Note: Climbers on an eight day hike will continue east up the Shira Plateau ridge and then on to Lava Tower (4,600 meters) and then back down via the Northern Circuit to Moir Camp (4,200 meters) on a single day.

DAY 5 – SHIRA CAMP 2 (3,850 METERS) TO MOIR CAMP (4,200 meters) Distance: ~14km / 8 miles

  • Trekking time: 5-7 hours
  • Zone: Low alpine zone / High alpine zone
  • Meals: BLD

Fourth day will consist of a long trek heading east and passing through the “Garden of the Senecios” and then through the high alpine desert zone. You’ll spend hte morning trekking all the way up to the Lava Tower and the Shark’s Tooth rock formation located at an elevation of 4,600 meters. Here you’ll have your lunch and later join the Northern Circuit further to Moir Camp at 4,200 meters (as seen on the map). This day holds an important role in your trek journey as you’ll get to a higher altitude and then steep low in the same day which will aid acclimatization.

DAY 6 – MOIR CAMP (4,200 METERS) TO BUFFALO CAMP (4,020 meters) Distance: ~12km / 7 miles

  • Trekking time: 5-7 hours
  • Zone: High alpine zone
  • Meals: BLD

On the sixth day, you’ll experience a moderately steep climb out on the Moir Valley. Trekkers have the option of taking a detour and climb to the summit of Little Lent Hill which is located at an elevation of 4,375 meters before returning back to the Northern Circuit trail. From this point onwards, the route experiences a series of incline and decline, skirt around the northern slopes of Kibo before advancing towards Buffalo Camp (4,020 meters). Excellent vistas on both side of the plains that stretch out to the Kenya-Tanzania border are on offer. Just after midday, you’ll arrive at Buffalo Camp and you’ll be served with lunch after which you can rest for the day.

DAY 7 – BUFFALO CAMP (4,020 METERS) TO RONGAI THIRD CAVE (3,800 meters)

  • Distance: ~8km / 5 miles
  • Trekking time: 5-7 hours
  • Zone: High alpine zone and low alpine zone
  • Meals: BLD

The sixth day starts off with a climb up the Buffalo ridge and then down into the Porfu Camp where lunch will be served. The route then head eastwards around the northern slopes to the Third Cave at Rongai located at an elevation of 3,800 meters. The trek is usually shorter than the day before and by now you should be well acclimatized to the altitude. You will arrive at the Third Cave just around mid-afternoon.

DAY 8 – 3RD CAVE (3,800 METERS) TO SCHOOL HUT (4,800 meters) Distance: ~15km / 8 miles

  • Trekking time: 4-5 hours
  • Zone: High alpine zone and glacial zone
  • Meals: BLD

On the seventh day, the incline will be rather steady and you’ll go over the Saddle perched in between the peaks of Kibo and Mawenzi. Trekkers will then walk southwest up to the School Hut which is located at an altitude of 4,800 meters. After making it to the School Hut, you’ll be served with hot dinner and then go for sleep. Before midnight, you’ll have to wake up to start your summit attempt. You should deliberately prepare all your gears which include warm clothing, insulated water bottles, snacks, headlamp, and camera before you go to bed.

DAY 9 – SCHOOL HUT (4,800 METERS) TO UHURU PEAK (5,895 METERS) AND THEN ONTO MILLENNIUM CAMP (3,950 METERS)​

  • Meals: BLD

You’ll be waking before midnight at around 11:30 and served with hot tea and biscuits before you begin the steep include up the slopes of Kibo. The Hans Meyer Cave will be your first checkpoint where you’ll take a short break. As you walk towards Gilman’s Point at 5,681 meters, the climb gradually steepens. From School Hut, it’ll take about 5 to 6 hours to reach to Gilman’s Point. You should take a moment to enjoy the approaching dawn and incredible view across the Mawenzi Peak. But keep in mind that you still have to trek for 2 hours to reach to Uhuru Peak, so dig deep for the energy. As you head west around the crater rim, the slope flattens which will ease the trekking a bit. You’ll make it to the peak on or before sunrise. After reaching to the top, you’ll stay for a brief period of time and admire the surrounding and click some photos. Descending, you’ll get back to the Stella Point at 5,739 meters. Then you turn south and walk through heavily screed slopes of Kibo till Barafu Camp at 4,680 meters. Most trekkers take a short break here before continuing down to Millennium Camp at 3,950 meters. So in total, you’ll be trekking for 14 to 16 hours on the eighth day. So it is important that you pace your trek properly, remain hydrated, and main your blood sugar level up.

Note: some tour operators return via Gilman’s Point to Horombo Hut using the Marangu Route

Day 10 – Millennium Camp (3,950 meters) to Mweka Gate (1,640 meters) Distance: ~10km / 6.5 miles

  • Trekking time: 3-4 hours
  • Zone: Rainforest zone
  • Meals: BL

The final day consists of a short hike from the Millennium Camp at 3950 meters to Mweka Gat at 1640 meters through the dense montane rainforest. After completing formalities at the park gate with the authorities, you’ll be handed an official certificate. A green certificate for those who make it to the Gilman’s Point and a gold certificate for those who make it to the Uhuru Peak. It is customary to give your guide and porter tips before being driven back to your hotel in Arusha.

Day 11: Departure

  • After breakfast.
  • Transfer to Kilimanjaro International Airport for those returning home.

Note: Hotel check-out is at 10:00 AM. In case you need a late check-out because of an evening flight, there is the option to extend your hotel stay for an extra fee.

*Other add-ons along with safari and Zanzibar are available if you wish to further explore Tanzania.


Rates

1 Pax2 Pax3 Pax4 Pax5 Pax6 Pax +
$ 2,320$ 2,300$ 2,250$ 2,180$ 2,150$ 2,130

Safari Overview

DURATION

9 Days
  • Northern Circuit is the newest of all the routes in Kilimanjaro and also the longest. It begins from the western side of the mountain at the Londorossi Gate and for the first two days follows the same path as the Lemosho route. After you’ve passed the Shira plateau, the trail veers north near the Lava Tower and follows the longer Northern circuit instead of the popular Southern Circuit through the Barranco Valley. The route spirals around the northern slopes on the east side of the mountain. It is comparatively longer than other trails on Kilimanjaro and requires a minimum of eight or nine days to complete. However, nine days is recommended as trekkers on eight day skip the acclimatization day that is usually spent at Shira Camp 2 and directly continue on to Moir Camp.

Mount Kilimanjaro

  • Elevation  5895m
  • Location  Tanzania, Africa
  • Number of Climbers 25,000 Annually

Rates Includes

  • Private transport to and from airport to your accommodation at Arusha.
  •  2 nights at hotel in Arusha
  • Transportation to and from the gate of Kilimanjaro
  • Fees of mountain guides, cook, and porters who are both professional and friendly
  • Hot meals 3 times a day while on the mountain
  • Ample bottled water and filtered drinking water.
  •  Hot water for washing
  • Wages for the mountain crew as fixed by the Kilimanjaro Association of Tour Operators (KIATO) and Kilimanjaro National Park Authority (KINAPA). Kilimanjaro Association of Tour Operators (KIATO)
  •  Government taxes
  •  Portable oxygen tanks & ox meter
  •  Emergency first-aid kit

Rates Excludes

  • Lunch, dinner, or drinks ordered at your hotel before and after the climb
  • International Flights
  • Visa Fees
  • Vaccination
  • Laundry
  • Gear for your climb
  • A portable flush toilet with a toilet tent. It can be rented at $70 for the entire trek.
  • Items of personal nature
  • Additional nights beyond the two standard hotel nights included
  • Tipping fee to mountain crew (money provided to guides, helpers at the end of the tour

https://www.joicatours.com/safari/tips/tipping-guidelines

Destination/s Traveling