At 5895m, Mount Kilimanjaro is the world’s highest free-standing mountain. The trek to the summit is challenging but enormously rewarding. Climbing Kilimanjaro is a unique experience and from its summit, over four kilometres above the surrounding plains, it’s even possible to see the curvature of the earth.
Kilimanjaro might be the highest mountain in Africa - and one of the toughest trekking challenges in the world - but we believe you can conquer it! We have two specialist treks to the 5895m summit, using the two most beautiful and quietest routes - Lemosho and Rongai. Our treks include a generous amount of acclimatisation time, giving you the best possible chance of reaching the summit at Uhuru Peak.
There’s no getting round it: climbing Kilimanjaro is tough, but since January 2012 no less than 95% of our trekkers have successfully made it to the top. No other trekking companies can offer you a better chance of success.
Kilimanjaro Summit Video
Watch Explore staff member Tim, as he summits Kilimanjaro - and tries to describe how he feels!
10 Reasons to climb Kilimanjaro with Explore
Our Kilimanjaro ascent rates are slow and safe, resulting in a much higher than average summit success rate of 95%
The safety of our treks on Kilimanjaro has been assessed by independent medical specialists
Unlike many other tour operators on Kilimanjaro, our rate of ascent complies with Wilderness Medicine Society (WMS) guidelines
All of our guides and trek leaders on Kilimanjaro are first aid trained
Oxygen cylinders and Gamow bags are carried on all treks for emergency use
We actively support our trek crew through the Kilimanjaro Porters Assistance Project (KPAP) www.kiliporters.org
Our local partner is a long established and reputable Kilimanjaro specialist
All Explore trekking staff are from the local area – revenues from our treks benefit the local economy
We carry portable toilets on all treks to avoid degrading the mountain
Unlike some tour operators, we include the US$600 plus Kilimanjaro park fees in the price. There are no hidden extras with Explore.
Kilimanjaro with Explore – SAFE, RESPONSIBLE, HONEST
Explore currently has a 95% summit success rate!
A day on trek
Your day begins at sunrise to give us enough time to trek slowly and reach the next camp with daylight to spare. Our porters prepare a cooked breakfast and hot drinks. You carry your daypack on the trek, with essentials for the day – water, camera, waterproofs, extra layers and a packed lunch. Walking at an easy pace to aid acclimatisation, we trek together with guides at the front and rear. We stop at midday for lunch, and then press on to our next camp, which will be set up in advance by our crew. There is often a chance for a further, short acclimatisation walk in the afternoon, as well as time to rest and relax. Dinners consist of hearty mountain fare such as stews and pasta dishes.
We use two of the wildest, most varied and least trodden routes on Kilimanjaro: Lemosho and Rongai.
The Lemosho Route tackles the mountain from the west and uses different ascent and descent paths, allowing you to experience a wider range of spectacular views along the way. The trek begins in the Lemosho Glades at 2100m and climbs the mountain over seven days (climbing on average 540m per day) – a slow enough ascent to give you the best possible chance of acclimatising and reaching the summit. The trek is eight days in total, including summit day and the descent.
We also trek on the Rongai Route. Like Lemosho, this is a little-used trail with spectacular scenery and different ascent and descent paths. Beginning at Nale Moru (1950m) on the northern side of Kilimanjaro, we make our ascent over five days - climbing on average 790m per day. The trek is six days in total, including the descent. Our Rongai ascent is shorter than Lemosho because we have already completed a four-day acclimatisation trek on 4562m Mount Meru beforehand, enabling a safe ascent of Kilimanjaro over just five days.
Extend your Trek All of our Kilimanjaro treks can be combined with a four day visit to Zanzibar. Blessed with an idyllic year round climate and surrounded by some of the Indian Ocean’s finest beaches, you can swim, snorkel and unwind after your trek.
Mount Kilimanjaro rises dramatically from the surrounding plains. Unlike the Himalayas, there are no foothills or approach treks to allow you to acclimatise gently over several days. Height is gained rapidly from your first day on the mountain until you reach the summit. This is part of the mountain’s appeal but also its biggest danger: it’s all too easy to rush it and put yourself at risk from altitude sickness.
The secret to our very high summit success rates on Kilimanjaro is simple: we don’t rush it. Our ascents are relatively slow and we allow a generous amount of time for acclimatisation. A slow ascent significantly increases your chances of reaching the summit and reduces the risk of altitude sickness.
Many companies offer treks that spend only six or even five days on the mountain. If you climb Kilimanjaro this fast you are likely to feel unwell and altitude sickness may prevent you from summiting. A longer trek is safer, more likely to end in success and (importantly!) more enjoyable – the more slowly you acclimatise the better you feel during the trek.
If you have the time, probably the best option of all is to acclimatise on Mount Meru beforehand, allowing the Kilimanjaro ascent to take just six days.
You are probably only going to climb Kilimanjaro once: our advice is to take the extra time - to increase your enjoyment and maximise your chance of reaching the summit!
Our Porter Team
The hard work, enthusiasm and efficiency of the porters, who provide full support on your trek, is central to the success of you climb. Here at Explore we work closely with our local partner based in Moshi to ensure their fair treatment, pay and work conditions. Our partner is recognised by the Kilimanjaro Porters Assistance Project as being committed to promoting proper porter treatment and we continue to work with them to set the benchmark in responsible behaviour.
What are my chances of reaching the top of Kilimanjaro with Explore?
Very good. We trek up Kilimanjaro at a very slow place and follow carefully planned routes to ensure that our groups have plenty of time to acclimatise. Our tours are typically a day longer than those offered by other operators, and as a result we have achieved the best summit success rate in the industry.
But what is Explore's summit success rate?
We are proud to have achieved the highest summit success rate in the industry. Last year, a staggering 95% of our customers made it to the summit of Kilimanjaro, and this is thanks to our fantastic support crew, slow paced treks and carefully planned routes. With ample time to reach the summit, the vast majority of our customers can achieve their lifelong goal.
How is the success rate so high?
We have been operating treks up Kilimanjaro for over 20 years – so every group that travels with us benefits from our experience and expert knowledge.
Our tour leaders, trekking guides and support team are considered the best in the industry.
We have carefully chosen routes and durations that maximise our customers chances of acclimatising to the altitude