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 Machame Route

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Machame Route

Also known as the Whiskey Route, Machame Route is by far the most popular and our personal favorite among the Kilimanjaro Climbing Routes. Almost half the climbers use this route each year for their Kilimanjaro expedition. It approaches the mountain from the south and leads up the southern slope, and then follows the Mweka descent route.

The Mount Kilimanjaro Machame Route also has one of the most scenic trails. You’ll traverse five different climatic zones and stunning natural features like the volcanic plug called the Lava Tower. The route also has stops at locations that offer some of the best sunrises and sunsets. The Machame Route Distance is 62 km and it can be completed in six days. Though, we recommend going for the Without the Whiskey itinerary which includes an extra day. This 7 Days Machame Route package gives you more time to acclimatize. which results in a great acclimatization profile and further boosts the route’s success rate. The Machame Route Success Rate ranges from medium to high.

The best time to climb Machame Route is during the dry seasons of January to March and June to October. This is when the weather conditions are more favorable for a successful ascent. The Kilimanjaro Machame Route stands as a thrilling pathway to the summit of Africa's highest peak. Comprising adventure and stunning vistas the Machame Route signals an enticing option for those ready to take on the Mount Kilimanjaro Climbing challenge.


  • Varied landscapes and terrain
  • Good Acclimatization Profile
  • A High rate of success
  • Beautiful Sceneries


  • Can get more crowded due to its popularity
  • Some areas are a challenge to climb

Camps On The Machame Route

The following are the different campsites that are present on the Machame Route and their location:

Machame Camp 2,850 m 9,350 ft.
Shira 2 Camp 3,810 m 12,500 ft.
Barranco Camp 3,976 m 13,044 ft.
Karanga Camp 3,995 m 13,106 ft.
Barafu Camp 4,673 m 15,331 ft.

Discover The Thrill Of Kili’s Whiskey Route

Conquer Kilimanjaro’s summit using the Machame Route and forge everlasting memories!

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Machame Route Cost

Below is the Machame Route Cost for both the 6 and 7-day itinerary:

  • Machame Route 6 Days Price – From $2,599, per person (for a private climb)
  • Machame Route 7 Days Price – From $2,799, per person (for a private climb), and $2,699, per person (for a group climb)

Machame Route Is Where Nature Inspires Summit Success!

Even though the trail of the Machame Route is moderately difficult, it’s still very doable. The blend of shorter duration, good acclimatization profile, and wonderful surroundings make this one of the best Kilimanjaro Routes.

With its captivating beauty and proper acclimatization, the Machame Route presents an impressive experience for those seeking the ultimate mountaineering challenge.

Step Into The World Of Kilimanjaro’s Machame Route

Release your inner explorer and conquer Kilimanjaro's Machame Route, a path of triumph and self-discovery.

Begin your Ascent

Without The Whiskey

Most Beautiful Route On Kilimanjaro

Arrival & Briefing

Upon arrival at Kilimanjaro International Airport you will be transferred to your accommodation where your guide will meet you for a full briefing and equipment check.

Overnight Ameg Lodge (Classic) or Kaliwa Lodge (Premium)

Trek Day 1

Machame Gate (1,800m/5,900ft) to Machame Camp (3,000m/9,800ft)

Elevation Gain: 1,200 metres / 3,900 feet

Your head guide will meet you for the drive from Moshi to the Machame Gate (approximately 45min). After registration, begin climbing along a winding trail through beautiful and lush forest. Since this is the zone which experiences the most rainfall on the mountain you should be prepared for afternoon showers. These can make the trail slippery at times! The climb is steady, gradually easing as you approach camp at Machame Hut (9,800ft). The camp is located on the edge of the forest and giant heather zones. Approximately 6-7 hours of walking today.

Trek Day 2

Machame Camp (3,000m/9,800ft) to Shira Camp (3,840m/12,600ft)

Elevation Gain: 840 metres / 2,800 feet

Today is a little shorter, beginning by climbing a steep ridge to reach a small semicircular cliff known as Picnic Rock. There are excellent views of Kibo, the summit cone of Kilimanjaro, and the jagged rim of the Shira Plateau. Shira is the third of Kilimanjaro’s volcanic cones. It is filled with the lava flow from Kibo and its rim has eroded and been blasted away by weather and volcanic action. Once on the plateau the trail becomes gentler as you continue your climb to Shira Camp. On a clear day the views from here are spectacular. Approximately 5-6 hours of walking.

Trek Day 3

Shira Camp (3,840m/12,600ft) to Barranco Camp (3,850m/12,650ft) via Lava Tower (4,550m/14,900ft)

Elevation Gain: 710 metres / 2,300 feet

Elevation Gain: 700 metres / 2,250 feet

Your climb today will take you steadily up and over the expansive ridgelines of high desert to Lava Tower. The trek to the base of Lava Tower is about 4 hours. This tower is a 300 foot high volcanic plug. If time and energy allow, you can scramble to the top of Lava Tower for fabulous panoramic views. From Lava Tower we begin our steep descent into the Barranco Valley, passing large flowering plants which actually look like trees, the scenecios. This is good practice for your descent from the summit in a few days time and will take 1-2 hours. Although you will end your day at almost the same elevation as you started, today is very important for acclimatisation and will help your body prepare for summit day. Barranco Camp is in a beautiful, sheltered valley below the imposing Barranco Wall.

Trek Day 4

Barranco Camp (3,850m/12,600ft) to Karranga Camp (3,950m/13,000ft) via the Barranco Wall (4,200m/13,800ft)

Elevation Gain: 350 metres / 1,150 feet

Elevation Loss: 250 metres / 820 feet

After breakfast, we leave Barranco Camp and begin our climb up the Barranco Wall. This is an impressive scramble where you will be rewarded with fantastic views back towards camp. The porters climbing the wall are also an impressive sight. From the top, at 4,200m, you will follow an undulating path around the mountain side. On a clear day there are spectacular views of Kibo to your left and Mount Meru to your right. After descending into the Karranga Valley your climb takes you up a short steep path to Karranga Camp. Walking time approximately 3-4 hours.

Trek Day 5

Karranga Camp (3,950m/13,000ft) to Barafu Camp (4,600m/15,100ft)

Elevation Gain: 650 metres / 2,150 feet

Today you will spend the morning climbing steadily on to Barafu, which is Swahili for ice! This camp is located on the ridge below the summit cone. You have now completed the South Circuit, which offers views of the summit from many different angles. This walk will take around 3 hours meaning that you will arrive at Barafu in time to spend the afternoon resting and enjoy an early dinner in preparation for the summit climb. The two peaks of Mawenzi and Kibo can be seen from this position.

Trek Day 6

Barafu Camp (4,600m/15,100ft) to Uhuru Peak (5,895m/19,300ft) then descending to Mweka Camp (3,110m/10,200ft)

Elevation Gain: 1,295 metres / 4,200 feet

Elevation Loss: 2,785 metres / 9,100 feet

In the early hours of the morning you will begin your final ascent to the summit of Uhuru Peak. This part of the climb takes approximately 6-8 hours. It can be very cold at night at these elevations, but it will be quite warm by the end of the hiking day and therefore you will want clothing for both extremes. Just when you think you’ve had enough of climbing in the dark the sun will rise and you will be rewarded with a rich red sky framing Mawenzi. At Stella Point (5,750m) you join the crater rim. From here, climb gently to Uhuru Peak which is the highest point on Mount Kilimanjaro and the continent of Africa. From the summit the descent will take you straight down to Mweka Hut, with lunch served on the way. This part of the descent takes about 6 hours. Later in the evening enjoy your last dinner on the mountain and a well-earned sleep.

Trek Day 7

Mweka Camp (3,110m/10,200ft) to Mweka Gate (1,830m/6,000ft)

Elevation Gain:  1,280 metres / 4,220 feet

Descend straight to the gate through lush forest (2-3 hours), looking for monkeys along the way. Return to Moshi from Mweka Village.

Trek Day 8

Mweka Camp (3,110m/10,200ft) to Mweka Gate (1,830m/6,000ft)

Elevation Loss: 1,280m/4,200ft

Descend to the gate through the lush forest (2-3 hours), looking for monkeys along the way. You will be collected from Mweka Village and taken to your hotel in Moshi.

Overnight Ameg Lodge (Classic) or Pink Flamingo Boutique Hotel (Premium)

Departure or Onwards Travel

Today you will be transferred to Kilimanjaro Airport in time for your flight, or if you’ve decided to extend your Tanzanian adventure, begin the next part of your journey!

Frequently Asked Questions

The Machame Route typically takes around 6 to 7 days to complete, allowing for proper acclimatization and increasing the chances of a successful summit.

The Machame Route is considered to be moderately difficult. It involves steep ascents, challenging terrain, and long hiking days. Proper physical fitness and mental preparedness are recommended.

The Machame Route Success Rate is relatively high, averaging around 85% to 90%. This is primarily due to the longer duration of the route, allowing for better acclimatization and increased chances of successful summiting.

Yes, the Machame Route is known for its scenic beauty. It offers diverse landscapes, including lush rainforests, moorlands, and stunning alpine deserts. The route provides breathtaking views throughout the journey, enhancing the overall experience.

The average daily trekking distance on the Machame Route ranges from 10 to 12 kilometres (6 to 7.5 miles) per day, with some variations depending on the itinerary and pace of the group.

The Machame Route is relatively popular, but it is less crowded compared to routes like the Marangu Route. It offers a good balance between a reasonable number of climbers and maintaining a sense of wilderness.

While prior hiking experience is beneficial, specific training for the Machame Route is not mandatory. However, it is highly recommended to engage in regular cardio exercises, endurance training, and hill walking to prepare physically for the demands of the climb.

The best time to climb Kilimanjaro via the Machame Route is during the dry seasons of January to March and June to October. These periods offer more stable weather conditions, with clear skies and lower chances of rainfall, increasing the chances of a successful and enjoyable climb.

The Machame Route Kilimanjaro typically includes overnight stays at four camps: Machame Camp, Shira Camp, Barranco Camp, and Barafu Camp. These camps provide resting points and necessary facilities for climbers to replenish their energy and prepare for the next day's trek.

Some of the attractions of the Machame Route Kilimanjaro include passing through the lush and enchanting rainforest, the striking Barranco Wall, which offers an exhilarating climb, and the stunning views from the summit of Kilimanjaro, providing a sense of accomplishment and awe-inspiring landscapes.

More Kilimanjaro Climbing Routes

What is the best route up Mount Kilimanjaro?

Machame Route

Machame Route

Machame route is one of the most popular paths among all 7 Kilimanjaro Climbing routes.

Northern Circuit Route

Northern Circuit Route

It is the longest Kilimanjaro Climbing Route. Hence, you get to Climb Kilimanjaro via the crowd-free

Rongai Route

Rongai Route

Rongai Route is the only Kilimanjaro Climbing Route approaching from the northern side of the mountain

Don’t take our word for it – believe our clients!

The following are the opinions of our satisfied clients who visited Tanzania and had the time of their life.

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