Kilimanjaro Shira Route 6 Days
6 DAYS 5 NIGHTS TANZANIA MULTI-ENVIRONMENT ADVENTURE
Njema safaris leads treks up the Shira route. The Shira Route traverses the large Shira Plateau to join the Machame Route. The Shira Plateau west of Kibo is the remains of Kilimanjaro's first volcano. Mawenzi erupted second, and finally, supported by its neighbors, Kibo rose to its great height between Shira and Mawenzi. Older and more eroded than Mawenzi, the Shira Plateau's ridges and moorland comprise one of Kilimanjaro's most scenic areas. The drive to Shira offers magnificent views of the Great Rift Valley, Mount Meru, and Longido, and the plateau's parasitic cones extend north of the road, rising from from plain to plateau. The vegetation changes along the route are striking. The plateau is grassland, heath, and moor, with senecios up to 10 meters high in valleys near the cone. You can see Elands on the plateau, and you may see signs of buffaloes, leopards, and other animals. The Shira Cone rises 200 meters above the plateau, and west of the cone is Shira Ridge, a steep rough rise reaching almost 400 meters above the plateau. The southern ridge of the Shira Plateau has two dramatic peaks called Cathedral and the Needle. The road to Shira is only accessible by 4-wheel-drive vehicles and can become impassable during wet periods. The Shira Route traverses the plateau to join the Machame Route.
- Two nights accommodation at the Springlands Hotel in Moshi double or triple occupancy (before and after the climb)
- First night includes breakfast
- Last night includes dinner & breakfast
- Qualified guides with mountain crew
- National park fees
- Hut/camping fees and tents
- Tents foam sleeping pads, cooking equipment, and (Cutlery / Crockery) eating utensils.
- Rescue fees (required by the National Park)
- Pulse oximeters
- First aid kit
- Guides, porters, cook, waiter salaries
- Boiled water on the mountain
- Airport transfers (JRO – Kilimanjaro International Airports)
- All meals on the mountain (breakfast, lunch & dinner)
- Guides, porters, waiter, cook accommodation and entry fees on the mountain
- Single rooms supplement at Springlands Hotel.
- Guides, Porters, Cook & Waiters tips
- Meals and drinks not specified
- Mountain equipment (eg sleeping bags)
- Gear for your climb, Some equipment is available for rent. See our rental price list.
- Car Supplement USD$145 per car for clients who go through Lemosho/Rongai/Shira Routes
- Items of personal nature (expenses)
- Emergency Oxygen
- Additional nights beyond the two standard hotel nights included
- Extra activities (waterfall tour, cultural village visit).
- Visa fees & travel insurance.
- Flight tickets.
Arrive at the Kilimanjaro International Airport. You will be met at the airport and transferred to the Springlands Hotel for your overnight dinner and Breakfast.
After breakfast and a briefing from your guide, leave Moshi and drive for several hours to the Shira Gate on the western side of Kilimanjaro, register with the national park. Begin hiking, and enter the rain forest immediately. Your walk through the rainforest is on a winding muddy trail up a ridge. At these lower elevations, it can be wet and muddy, so gaiters and trekking poles will help. Stop halfway for lunch, and reach the Shira Camp in the afternoon. Unpack, rest, and have some tea or coffee. Dinner is served during the early evening at 7 PM.
After breakfast, you will hike east up a steepening path above the highest vegetation toward Kilimanjaro’s looming mass. After several hours, you walk through a rocky landscape to reach the prominent landmark called Lava Tower at 4,630 m/15,190 ft. This chunky remnant of Kilimanjaro’s earlier volcanic activity is several hundred feet high, and the trail passes right below it. For extra credit, the sure-footed can scramble to the top of the tower. After a lunch stop near Lava Tower, descend for 2 hours below the lower cliffs of the Western Breach and Breach Wall to Barranco Camp at 3,950 m/12,960 ft. There are numerous photo opportunities on this hike, especially if the walls are festooned with ice. Barranco Camp is in a valley below the Breach and Great Barranco Walls, which should provide you with a memorable sunset while you wait for your dinner. On this day, be careful to notice any signs of altitude sickness.
After breakfast, we continue up a steep ridge to the great Barranco Wall, then you climb this imposing obstacle, which turns out to be easier than it looks. Topping out just below the Heim Glacier, you can now appreciate just how beautiful Kilimanjaro really is. With Kibo’s glaciers soaring overhead, you descend into the lush Karanga valley to the Karanga Valley campsite. From the camp, you can look east and see the jagged peaks of Mawenzi jutting into the African sky. After a hot lunch in camp, your afternoon is at leisure for resting or exploring. After two long days, this short day is very important for your acclimatization, since your summit push is about to start.
In the morning, you hike east over intervening ridges and valleys to join the Mweka Route, which will be your descent route. Turn left toward the mountain and hike up the ridge through a sparse landscape for another hour to the Barafu Hut where you will receive a hot lunch. The last water on the route is in the Karanga Valley; there is no water at Barafu Camp, even though Barafu is the Swahili word for “ice.” The famous snows of Kilimanjaro are far above Barafu Camp near the summit of the mountain. Your tent will be pitched on a narrow, stony, wind-swept ridge, so make sure that you familiarize yourself with the terrain before dark to avoid any accidents. Prepare your equipment and warm clothing for your summit climb, and drink a lot of fluids. After an early dinner, go to bed for a few hours of precious sleep.
You will rise around 11:30 PM, and after some steaming tea and biscuits, you shuffle off into the night. Your 6-hour climb northwest up through heavy scree between the Rebmann and Ratzel glaciers to Stella Point on the crater rim is the most challenging part of the route for most climbers. At Stella Point (5,685 m/18,650 ft) you stop for a short rest and a chance to see a supremely sanguine sunrise. At Stella Point, you join the top part of the Marangu Route but do not stop here too long, as it will be extremely difficult to start again due to cold and fatigue. Depending on the season and recent storms, you may encounter snow on your remaining hike along the rim to Uhuru Peak. On the summit, you can enjoy your accomplishment and know that you are creating a day that you will remember for the rest of your life. After your 3-hour descent from the summit back to Barafu Camp, you will have a well-earned but short rest, collect your gear, and hike down a rock and scree path into the moorland and eventually into the forest to Mweka Camp (3,100 m/10,170 ft). This camp is in the upper forest, so you can expect mist or rain in the late afternoon. Dinner and washing water will be prepared, and the camp office sells drinking water, soft drinks, chocolates, and beer!
After a well-deserved breakfast, it is a short, scenic, 3-hour hike back to the park gate. Don’t give your porters any tips until you and all your gear have reached the gate safely, but do remember to tip your staff at the gate. At Mweka Gate, you can sign your name and add details to a register. This is also where successful climbers receive their summit certificates. Climbers who reached Stella Point are issued green certificates and those who reached Uhuru Peak receive gold certificates. From the Mweka Gate, you will continue down to the Mweka Village, possibly a muddy, 3 km, 1-hour hike if the road is too muddy for vehicles. In the Mweka Village, you will be served a delicious hot lunch after which you are driven back to Moshi for an overdue hot shower and comfortable night in our Springlands Hotel.
Mount Kilimanjaro climbing check list/Tips Guidelines:
- For Chief Guide: US$15 – US$20 PER DAY x number of days on Mountain.
- Assistant Guide: US$10 – US$12 PER DAY x number of days on Mountain.
- Cook: US$ 5 – US$8 PER DAY x number of days on Mountain.
- Porters: 6 – 10 PER DAY x number of days on Mountain.
Another option: Each person can give 10% of the price he or she paid for the tour booked.
PLEASE NOTE THAT THESE GUIDLINES AND TIPS CAN BE GIVEN ACCORDING TO SERVICES GIVEN TO CLIENTS/CUSTOMERS BY STAFFS.
TIPPING GUIDELINES (Aprox):US$ 200 per person.
“TIPS IS HIGHLY APPRECIATED AT THE END OF THE TRIP!!”
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
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.
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 trips include all transportation costs and arrangements within the destination country. This includes all transfers and the equipment for all activities listed.
RECCOMENDED 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.
- You may want to bring some older items of warm clothing as gifts for your guides and porters or donations.
- 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.
- 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
- 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
- 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 at no charge
- Foam sleeping pads are provided 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.
- Get 3 liters of bottled water before the trip (available at the Springlands Hotel).
- Water filter or iodine purification tablets
- Sun hat with brim
- 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
- Bring extra sets for headlamp/flashlight and camera as cold weather shortens their life
- 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
- Toothbrush and toothpaste
- Handi-wipes (moist towelettes for cleaning)
- Hand sanitizer
- Glasses, contacts, solution (take contacts out each night to prevent blurred vision)
- Comb, mirror
- 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.
- Ibuprofin, Aceteminophen, or Aspirin
- Throat losenges
- Sunscreen (SPF 15+)
- Lip balm with sunscreen
- Insect repellent
- Disinfectant, Antiseptic cream
- Bandages and tape
- Diahrea medicine
- 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
- Any warm clothing
- Nerf football, frisbees
Packing for your flight to Africa
- U-shaped neck pillow (blow-up)
- Walkman and music
- Eye shades, ear plugs
- Melatonin or other sleep aid
- Critical climbing gear (in case baggage is delayed)
Cancellation of a booking or failure to join a tour will result in a retention of funds by Njema Safaris Ltd as follows: Upon receipt of written cancellation by any member of the tour indicated on this reservation 30 days or longer prior to departure, 30% of the reservation of the canceling party will be retained by Njema Safaris 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, 65% of the package price will be retained by Njema Safaris Ltd. If a cancellation is received less than 14 days prior to departure, 100% of the total package price will be retained by Njema Safaris Ltd 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. Njema Safaris Ltd reserve the right to terminate, at our discretion and with immediate effect, the participation of any person on the tour.
- A 20% deposit is due at time of reservation.
- Final payment is due 60 days prior to arrival.
- We accept Visa, AMEX, and Mastercard.
- You can also wire transfer your money directly to our bank.
- Please review our Cancellation Policy.
- Price increases are permitted when an itinerary is changed at the request of customer(s)
- Prices will remain quoted unless otherwise add-ons and or other changes are requested and availed by customer(s) and such requests are provided by Njema Safaris Ltd.
Forms and Other Documents Required by all Passengers:
- VISA (as detailed below)
- All passengers must sign the waiver form and return to us.
- Your passport must be valid for six months.
- Entry to another country may be refused even if the required information and or travel documents are complete
- Visas can be obtained upon arrival at Dar es Salaam International Airport, Kilimanjaro International Airport, Zanzibar International Airport and the border posts of Namanga, Tunduma, Taveta and Holili.
- All Canadian Citizen who hold Canadian Passports are required to pay US$50.00 for the purpose of obtaining an ordinary VISA.
- All United States Passport holders are required to pay US$100.00 for the purpose of obtaining an ordinary VISA.
- All Passport holders with EU Citizenship are required to pay US$50.00 or €50.00 for the purpose of obtaining an ordinary VISA.
- Living Standards and practices at the destination and the standards and conditions with respect to the provision of utilities, services and accommodation may differ from those found universally.
- Njema Safaris Ltd Cancellation policy applies to the package offered, upon payment of deposit and confirmation of reservation.
Cancellation of booking or failure to join a tour will result in retention of funds by Njema Safaris Ltd as described below:
- 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 cancelling party will be retained by Njema Safaris Ltd 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 Njema Safaris Ltd.
- If a cancellation is received less than 14 days prior to departure, 100% of the total package price will be retained by Njema Safaris Ltd and all outstanding payment will become payable immediately.
- Should the cancelling 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 cancelling party.
- Njema Safaris Ltd reserve the right to terminate, at the discretion and with immediate effect, the participation of any person on the tour.
Refund Processing Fee:
- While processing a refund, a 3% credit card fee is charged to the client’s Visa, AMEX, or MasterCard.
- When a refund is processed using a Bank Wire payment, bank charges apply.
Disclaimer of Liability:
Kindly check the details of your trip. Please contact us directly for any questions you may have at [email protected] or at +254 724 422 905.
Thank you for choosing Njema Safaris Ltd and you are most welcome again to adventure with us!