Nairobi to Marangu
16 days
From $6,855
Tour code: YKXCC

Highlights

  • Shop for local wares and interact with townsfolk at the Mwigobero Market on the edge of Lake Victoria
  • Explore the Serengeti National Park in depth, with two early-morning and two late-afternoon game drives through this spectacular wildlife arena
  • Learn about the Great Rift Valley where the annual migration of some two million wildebeest plays out
  • Take a mind-blowing safari across the floor of the Ngorongoro Crater in an open-roof 4X4 for a chance to see the endangered black rhinoceros
  • Hike with a group of experienced guides and porters with 1 guide for every 2 passengers
  • Spy hiding monkeys and colourful bird species flitting through the rainforest
  • Spend a night camped out on the Shira plateau
  • Marvel at the Hiem, Kersten and Rebmann glaciers
  • Catch a dazzling sunrise on your way to summit Africa's highest mountain peak
  • We are an official partner of IMEC’s Kilimanjaro Porters Assistance Project (KPAP). This means all of our climbs have been assessed and scored based on a number of criteria, all of which are designed to ensure the proper treatment of porters on the Mountain. Read more here: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/au/theme/walking/kilimanjaro-trek

Travel to Africa and experience some of Kenya and Tanzania's most famous natural wonders on this Active trip for those with a passion for the outdoors. The vast Serengeti plains evoke a sense of wonder and deep respect for the animal kingdom, while the imposing peaks of Mt Kilimanjaro inspire awe and rouse a spirit of adventure. Safari through the savanna in search of stealthy predators and try to spot other game in the gigantic Ngorongoro Crater. Rise to the challenge and conquer Africa's highest peak on a difficult trek to the summit of Mt Kilimanjaro. This is a trip that will reward those with an appetite for excitement and an appreciation for nature – get ready for thrills, challenges and discovery on this amazing trip to Africa!

What's included?

Meals

15 breakfasts, 13 lunches, 14 dinners

Transport

Overland vehicle , minibus , 4x4 Safari Vehicle

Accommodation

Camping (with facilities) (3 nights), Camping (with basic facilities) (8 nights), Cottage (1 night), Hotel (3 nights)

Included activities

  • Kisii - Soapstone carving cooperative
  • Serengeti National Park - Overland Vehicle Game Drive
  • Serengeti National Park - Overland Vehicle Game Drive
  • Serengeti National Park - Overland Vehicle Game Drive
  • Ngorongoro Crater - 4x4 Game Drive
  • Mto Wa Mbu - Village walk & market visit
  • Mount Kilimanjaro - Trek Briefing
  • Mount Kilimanjaro - Complimentary equipment hire (sleeping bag and walking poles) - must be requested at time of booking
  • Fully catered trek including National Park entrance fees, climbing fee, tented camps & rescue services (7 days)
  • Mount Kilimanjaro - Porterage of 1 bag (9kg/20lb max)
  • Mount Kilimanjaro - Return transfers from hotel to park gate
  • Mount Kilimanjaro - Emergency oxygen and comprehensive first aid kits

Itinerary

Day 1
Nairobi
Jambo! Welcome to Kenya. Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6 pm. You can arrive at any time as there are no activities planned until this important meeting. Please ask the hotel reception where it will take place. If you can't arrange a flight that will arrive in time for this, consider arriving a day early so you are able to attend. If you are going to be late, please inform the hotel reception. We'll be collecting your insurance details and next of kin information at this meeting. If you arrive early, perhaps head out and explore the National Museum of Kenya, the Karen Blixen Museum or the highly recommended Bomas of Kenya where traditional homesteads of several Kenyan tribes are displayed in an outdoor village. Notes: Petty theft is common in Nairobi. As a general rule, the safest place for your valuables is on your person in a neck wallet or money belt, though your hotel room or reception may have a safe in which to store things. If you do decide to go exploring, make sure you get local advice on where it is and isn't safe to walk – particularly for later in the day. Be careful not to leave bags unattended on chairs or floors when in bars or restaurants. Without being paranoid, appearing vigilant is a great deterrence to would-be thieves. Also, make scans of important travel documents and email them to yourself – this will save you hours of paperwork if anything does happen.

Optional activities:

  • Nairobi - National Museum ($10)
  • Nairobi - Karen Blixen museum ($14)
  • Nairobi - Bomas of Kenya ($12)
  • Nairobi - National Park safari walk ($30)
  • Nairobi - Giraffe Center ($12)
Day 2
Kisii
Board your safari truck and travel west (approximately 8–9 hours). Today’s destination is near the hilltop town of Kisii, which will be the last chance to stock up on supplies before heading into Tanzania. Crossing the incredibly scenic Great Rift Valley on your way to the tea-growing highlands is a fantastic introduction to the landscapes of Kenya. You will pass through the ancient homeland of the Maasai. Keep a look out for these tall tribesmen dressed in distinctive scarlet robes as they tend to their prized herds of cattle. The roads on the way are pretty rough, but there will be chances to stop and stretch your legs, including a local homestead lunch in the town of Kericho. You will be accommodated in either very simple shared rooms (with bedding provided) or in a camp which will be set up for the night. There is no WiFi available at the camp.

Meals: breakfastlunchdinner

Day 3
Lake Victoria
Travel towards the Kenya-Tanzania border and to the shores of Lake Victoria (approximately 7–8 hours). This is not only Africa's largest lake – it's the largest tropical lake in the world. Its shores are shared by Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda. The guided bike excursion is a great activity to stretch the legs, learn about the town, visit an African marketplace and meet some locals (you'll need to bring your own helmet if you want to wear one). Or you can simply chill out on the lakeside sand with a cold drink. Make the most of the ATM and local market to stock up for your next three days of adventuring in the wilderness. You will camp on the shores of the lake tonight, at one of its least visited campgrounds, on the outskirts of a small town called Musoma. Depending on availability, you might be able to upgrade to a room. No WiFi is available tonight.

Included activities: Kisii - Soapstone carving cooperative

Meals: breakfastlunchdinner

Day 4
Serengeti National Park
Travel from Lake Victoria to the gate of Serengeti National Park on a smooth road (approximately 3 hours). Enter the Serengeti and take a game drive en route to your campsite. The wide open plains of the Serengeti – green after the rains, brown and burnt in the dry season – are home to thousands of hoofed animals and fierce predators. Flat and rolling, with long grass and acacia trees, these plains get their name from the Maasai word Siringet – 'The place where the land moves on forever'. Enjoy a picnic lunch on your way to camp within the awesome surrounds of the National Park. Your campsite is right in the action, within the park itself, so listen out for the sounds of nocturnal animals as you drift off to sleep. The camp is basic with limited running water and no upgrades or WiFi available.

Included activities: Serengeti National Park - Overland Vehicle Game Drive

Meals: breakfastlunchdinner

Day 5
Serengeti National Park
Start the day with a game drive at dawn. You will head out while the animals are at their most active, then head back to camp for brunch at around 11 am. After spending the warmer part of the day relaxing, as the animals do, depart again at dusk for another adventure through the wild. You'll return in time for dinner. There's also the option of a balloon ride over the park today. If you have pre-booked this activity (please see the 'Important Notes' section) you will be picked up before dawn and driven to the launch site. After a safety briefing, you will glide through the dawn, sometimes at tree height, which provides amazing photo opportunities. Sometimes you will ascend, getting an overview of the enormity of the plains and the early morning movements of the teeming herds. After landing, you'll be treated to a five-star bush breakfast, then be returned to your camp. Notes: The balloon ride is offered as a pre-booked service which will guarantee you a place. If you would rather wait and try to get a better price by booking this locally on the ground, you are welcome to, but keep in mind that this is a popular activity and places are limited.

Included activities: Serengeti National Park - Overland Vehicle Game Drive

Meals: breakfastlunchdinner

Day 6
Ngorongoro Crater
Enjoy a leisurely game drive and picnic lunch on your way out of the park today. Soak up final views of the animals and landscapes that make the national park such an incredible spot before entering the Ngorongoro Conservation area. Your destination today is the rim of the crater about 3 hours away. Your campsite overlooks jagged volcanic peaks and rolling grasslands thousands of feet below – you can be sure that there are few campsites in the world with a better view than this! The campsite has flush toilets and hot showers available, but no WiFi or optional upgrades. It can get very cold on the crater rim, particularly during the winter months (June to August) when temperatures drop below zero. Even in the summer months it can be surprisingly chilly at night, so be sure to bring some warm clothes. Notes: You will notice some Maasai villages in the region of the Ngorongoro crater offering a cultural experience. Intrepid recommends avoiding these villages, as they can impact negatively on the Maasai culture and travellers' perceptions of it by selling an artificial experience.

Included activities: Serengeti National Park - Overland Vehicle Game Drive

Meals: breakfastlunchdinner

Day 7
Ngorongoro Crater / Mto Wa Mbu
A gigantic, perfectly intact volcanic crater, Ngorongoro is home to some 30,000 animals. Among these are endangered black rhinos, lions, leopards, elephants, impalas, zebras and hippos. The crater floor offers excellent game viewing all year round, and the photo opportunities here are unrivalled. Later, join the local community for an guided afternoon stroll around the farming areas, milling machine and local homes before enjoying a traditional meal. Your campsite this evening is located in Mto Wa Mbu.

Included activities:

  • Ngorongoro Crater - 4x4 Game Drive
  • Mto Wa Mbu - Village walk & market visit

Meals: breakfastlunchdinner

Day 8
Marangu
Bidding farewell to your truck and crew, this morning we make our way back to Arusha where will catch a morning shuttle bus from Arusha to Marangu in the foothills (1,300 m/4,500 ft) of Mt Kilimanjaro (approx 4 hours). This section of the trip is unaccompanied by a leader. The shuttle departs from the Impala hotel at around 9am once your group drops you off. In the early evening there is a full briefing and kit inspection by an experienced Kilimanjaro climber. This will take place before dinner. Your insurance details and next of kin information will also be collected.

Included activities:

  • Mount Kilimanjaro - Trek Briefing
  • Mount Kilimanjaro - Complimentary equipment hire (sleeping bag and walking poles) - must be requested at time of booking

Meals: breakfastdinner

Day 9
Machame Camp
We meet our guides and porters after breakfast and sort out all our gear before we set off for our 1-hour transfer by road to the South Western side of Kilimanjaro and the Machame Gate at the entrance to the Mt Kilimanjaro National Park. Each person has a personal porter and there are extra porters for the food, etc. Please read your trip notes on for further information about your guides and porters and a detailed packing list. We begin our walk around lunch time, starting with a pleasant stroll through the rainforest. In the forest, there are many species of brightly coloured birds and different types of monkey can be seen and heard. Beneath the leafy canopy it can be wet and muddy but it is not very cold. We arrive mid-afternoon at the Machame Huts where we make camp. The huts fell into disrepair some years ago, so with the help of our porters, we set up tents for the night. Enjoy an evening meal prepared by the porters and savour the first night of sleeping outdoors. From Kibo Hotel to Machame Huts, we ascend to 3,000 m (9,800 ft) and walk for 15 km (approximately 6-8 hours).

Included activities:

  • Fully catered trek including National Park entrance fees, climbing fee, tented camps & rescue services (7 days)
  • Mount Kilimanjaro - Porterage of 1 bag (9kg/20lb max)
  • Mount Kilimanjaro - Return transfers from hotel to park gate
  • Mount Kilimanjaro - Emergency oxygen and comprehensive first aid kits

Meals: breakfastlunchdinner

Day 10
Shira Camp
Our second day on the mountain takes us out of the rainforest and up a steep ridge into moor land. You'll notice the vegetation getting more sparse as we ascend and several distinct species, including the giant groundsel and lobelia, will soon be the only plants dominating the harsh landscape. We camp on the edge of Shira plateau where there are excellent views of the snow-dusted Kibo peaks. From Machame Camp to Shira Camp, we ascend to 3,840 m (12,600 ft), covering 12 km (approximately 5-7 hours).

Meals: breakfastlunchdinner

Day 11
Barranco Camp
Today is a great day's walk with many ups and downs as we traverse river valleys. The undulating landscape offers a great chance to acclimatise and as we ascend to the more rugged areas of the mountain, there are great views of the Kibo Massif and its magnificent surrounds. Tonight is spent at Barranco Camp. From Shira Camp to Barranco Camp, we ascend to 3,900 m (12,800 ft) and cover 12 km (approximately 5-7 hours).

Meals: breakfastlunchdinner

Day 12
Karanga Valley
Today is an important acclimatisation day as you are going to be walking for the morning only. Climb the Barranco Wall (not a technical climb) and then follow the Kibo South Circuit. If the weather is clear you can expect to have some magnificent views of Kibo's southern glaciers. Arriving at your camp at around lunchtime you can enjoy great views by the river in the Karanga Valley. From Barranco Camp to Karanga Valley Camp Camp, we descend to 4,200 m (13,780 ft) and cover 7 km (approximately 4 hours).

Meals: breakfastlunchdinner

Day 13
Barafu Camp / Uhuru Peak
From Karanga you head up to the intersection of the South Circuit and the Mweka route where you’ll start climbing up a ridge to Barrafu Hut. Barrafu is Swahili for ‘ice’ – it can be very cold here at night! You should arrive at Barrafu around late lunchtime, allowing plenty of time to rest before the final summit attempt. From Karanga Camp to Barafu Camp, we ascend to 4,600 m (15,100 ft) and cover 3.5 km (approximately 4 hours).

Meals: breakfastlunchdinner

Day 14
Uhuru Peak / Millennium camp or Mweka camp
At around midnight we are woken by our guides and hot tea and biscuits are served to give us energy before the long, difficult ascent up scree, and sometimes snow, to Stella Point (5,780 m). We pass the giant Rebmann Glacier en route and hopefully arrive at Stella Point in time for sunrise and superb views of the crater, the glacier glistening in the morning sun, and maybe even of the world around. From Stella it is a further 1-hour hike along the rim of the crater to Uhuru Peak (5,896 m), the highest point in Africa. From the summit, take in unforgettable views of the crater, the ice fields and the vast and distant East African plains below. After photos and back-patting we begin our descent. Back at Barafu Camp, enjoy a well-earned lunch and much thicker air. After lunch, we continue on to Mweka Camp for the night and have a well-deserved rest. From Barafu Camp to the Uhuru Peak summit, we ascend 1296 m and cover about 4 km (approximately 8 hours). The descent takes approximately 3 hours.

Meals: breakfastlunchdinner

Day 15
Marangu
Today we continue to descend the mountain, traversing alpine meadows and rainforest to the Mweka park gate. From Mweka Camp to the Mweka gate, we trek for 10 km (approximately 3-4 hours) descending a total of 1,300 m (4,300 ft). Here we have lunch after checking out of the park and then the transport sent to meet us returns us back to the hotel for a relaxing shower - a real treat after the physical exertions of the last few days! Relive and share our experiences of the past six days on the mountain with fellow travellers.

Meals: breakfastlunchdinner

Day 16
Marangu
You are free to depart at any time on the final day of your trip. Transfers to Kilimanjaro Airport or a shuttle to Nairobi can be arranged locally. Please speak to your leader at the welcome meeting.

Meals: breakfast

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