Exploring Kilimanjaro: A Guide to the Marangu Route

Kilimanjaro is one of the most iconic African mountain ranges and is a popular destination for hikers and mountaineers alike. Whether you are experienced or a beginner, the Marangu route is the most popular and well-known route to summit Kilimanjaro. In this guide, we will explore the Marangu route and provide tips for successfully completing this beautiful and challenging trek.

Introduction to Kilimanjaro & Marangu Route

Kilimanjaro is one of the world’s highest mountains and is located in Tanzania. It is a popular destination for hikers and mountaineers due to its stunning views, diverse wildlife, and challenging terrain. The Marangu route is the most popular of the six routes up Kilimanjaro, and it offers a unique experience for beginner and experienced climbers alike. It is known as the “Coca-Cola route” as they famously provide you with a coke in each hut and stop at this original route of hiking Kilimanjaro.  it is the easiest and most popular route to the summit. The Marangu route takes five to seven days to complete, depending on the pace of the group.

The Marangu route has been around since the late 19th century and is the oldest and most established route on the mountain. It was first used by the local Chagga people to transport bananas and coffee from the highland villages to the lowland markets. The Marangu route is the only route that provides lodging in the form of mountain huts as well.

Exploring the Marangu Route

The Marangu route is arguably the most popular and well-known route to summit Kilimanjaro. It is a five to seven-day hike and is considered the easiest and most comfortable way to climb the mountain. The Marangu route is considered a “Tourist Route” because it is the most popular and most traveled route up the mountain for foreigners.

The Marangu route begins at the Marangu Gate, located at the base of the mountain. From here, you will ascend to Mandara Hut, which is situated at an elevation of 2,700 meters. The next stop is Horombo Hut, located at 3,720 meters. The final stop is Kibo Hut, located at 4,700 meters, which is the base camp for the summit.

Is the Marangu route hard?

The Marangu Route is a popular choice for those looking to summit Mt. Kilimanjaro, but it’s not without its challenges. This route is considered to be one of the easier ones, but it can still be quite hard. The Marangu Route is a five-day to seven-day trek as we said before, so it requires a good level of physical fitness. It is a bit steeper than other routes, and it does have some longer days with more elevation gain. There is also less time for acclimatization along the Marangu Route, so proper planning and preparation are key. Altitude sickness is a real risk at this high elevation, so it’s important to take the necessary precautions. All in all, the Marangu Route is definitely possible for fit and prepared climbers, but it is still a challenging one.

The Pros and Cons of the Marangu Route

As you probably already know, The Marangu route is the most used and well-traveled route up Kilimanjaro, and it does offer some advantages. One of the most significant advantages is that it is the most comfortable and easiest route to summit the mountain. It also has the advantage of offering hut accommodation, which is a welcome respite from tent camping. Additionally, the route is well-trodden and easy to follow, with well-defined trails and paths.

On the downside, the Marangu route is the busiest and most crowded route up the mountain, and it can be difficult to find solitude on the trail. Additionally, the Marangu route is the slowest route to the summit, and it can be difficult to acclimatize due to the gradual ascent.

The Marangu Route Success Rate

The Marangu route is the most commonly used route up Kilimanjaro, but it has a relatively low success rate. The success rate for the Marangu route is estimated to be around 60%, which is lower than most other routes on the mountain. This is due to the fact that while it is arguably the easiest and most comfortable route, some unprofessional local guides take you through to the top through a 5-day hike. Marangu Route is also the most well-trodden and easy-to-follow route, but that doesn’t seem to matter as five-day hikes approximately calculate a low success rate of 50%. Keep in mind, this isn’t based on the landscape or weather, and more on other external issues.

The Marangu Route Huts

The Marangu route is the only route that offers hut accommodation, which is a welcome respite from tent camping. The huts are basic but comfortable, and they are spaced at regular intervals along the trail. The first hut is Mandara Hut, located at an elevation of 2,700 meters. The next stop is Horombo Hut, located at 3,720 meters. The final stop is Kibo Hut, located at 4,700 meters, which is the base camp for the summit.

Horombo Hut Kilimanjaro

Horombo Hut is the second hut along the Marangu route and is located at an elevation of 3,720 meters. It is the largest and most popular hut on the mountain, and it is a great place to spend the night and acclimatize before continuing the ascent. The hut is made of stone and has a kitchen, dining area, sleeping quarters, and a medical station. There are also showers and toilets, and the hut has a capacity of 100 people.

How long is the Marangu route?

The route is well-known for its shorter length and relative ease of hiking. But just how long is the Marangu route exactly?

The Marangu route is approximately 72 km (45 miles) in length, making it the shortest route to the summit of Kilimanjaro. This route follows a circular path that starts and ends at the Marangu Gate. The route is divided into five days of hiking, with the summit being reached on the fifth day. The total ascent for the route is approximately 4,200 m (13,780 ft).

The Marangu route is a great option for those looking for a shorter trek and a more straightforward path up the mountain. However, it should be noted that the route is the least scenic of Kilimanjaro’s six major routes, and the ascent is more gradual, making the summit climb a more difficult challenge. Nevertheless, the Marangu route is still a fantastic option for those looking to conquer the world’s highest freestanding mountain.

Which Kilimanjaro route has the highest success rate?

The Kilimanjaro route that has the highest success rate is The Northern Circuit Route though. At 9 days, this is the longest route up the mountain, which gives climbers more time to acclimatize and adjust to the altitude. Plus, with its gradual ascent, it’s considered to be the most scenic and rewarding route for those looking for a true Kilimanjaro experience. With a 95% plus success rate, it’s also the most successful route to the summit. The drawback, however, is that it’s the most expensive route and it does require some technical climbing skills. So, it may not be the best option for those on a tight budget or for those who are less experienced climbers. But for those who are looking for the highest success rate and the most rewarding experience, the Northern Circuit is definitely the way to go.

What is the most scenic route on Kilimanjaro?

Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro is an incredible feat, and the most scenic route & easiest route is the Marangu Route. The Marangu Route, also known as the tourist route & the coca cola route, is a five-day climb, and it’s considered the best route for those who want a more comfortable climb. As you ascend, you’ll pass through five distinct climate zones and experience stunning views of glaciers and the surrounding countryside. The Marangu Route also passes through a variety of landscapes, including forests, moorlands, and alpine deserts. And, of course, you won’t be able to miss the iconic summit of Kilimanjaro, Uhuru Peak. It’s an incredible sight to behold! The Marangu Route is a great choice for those who want to experience the beauty of Kilimanjaro without having to deal with the more technical aspects of the climb. It also has huts along the way so If camping isn’t your thing, there is the luxury of huts as well. With experienced guides and well-maintained trails, you can explore the mountain with confidence. So, if you’re looking for the most scenic route on Kilimanjaro, the Marangu Route is an excellent choice.

Preparing for the Marangu Route Kilimanjaro

Climbing Kilimanjaro is no easy feat, and it requires a great deal of preparation. Here are some tips for preparing for the Marangu route to Kilimanjaro:

What to Pack

The key to a successful Kilimanjaro climb is to pack the right clothing and gear. It is important to pack lightweight, comfortable clothing that is suitable for the climate. Additionally, it is important to pack the right gear, such as a good sleeping bag, trekking poles, and a first aid kit. It is also important to pack the right food and snacks to keep you well-fueled throughout the climb.

Physical Preparation

It is important to prepare physically for the Marangu route to Kilimanjaro. It is recommended that you begin an exercise regimen several months prior to the climb. This can include running, hiking, swimming, or any other type of aerobic exercise. Additionally, it is important to begin walking and hiking with a backpack to build up your strength and endurance.

Mental Preparation

Climbing Kilimanjaro is a physically and mentally demanding endeavor, and it is important to prepare mentally as well. It is important to set realistic goals and expectations and to establish an achievable timeline. It is also important to stay positive and stay focused on the task at hand. Finally, it is important to stay motivated and determined throughout the climb.

Tips for Climbing the Marangu Route Kilimanjaro

Climbing Kilimanjaro is no easy feat, and it requires a great deal of preparation and determination. Here are some tips for successfully completing the Marangu route in Kilimanjaro:

1.     Begin an exercise regimen several months prior to the climb to build strength and endurance.

2.     Pack the right clothing and gear, including a good sleeping bag, trekking poles, and a first aid kit.

3.     Pace yourself throughout the climb and take regular breaks.

4.     Stay hydrated and eat regularly to keep your energy levels up.

5.     Set realistic goals and expectations and stay positive throughout the climb.

6.     Use sunscreen and a hat to protect yourself from the sun.

7.     Listen to your body and take regular breaks to acclimatize.

8.     Be aware of the altitude and the symptoms of altitude sickness.

9.     Hire a guide to provide advice and support throughout the climb.

10.  Make sure to enjoy the stunning views and take plenty of photos!

Conclusion

Exploring Kilimanjaro is an unforgettable experience and the Marangu route is the most popular and well-traveled route up the mountain. The Marangu route is the easiest and most comfortable way to summit Kilimanjaro, and it offers hut accommodation and well-defined trails. It is important to prepare physically and mentally for the climb, and it is recommended that you hire a guide. With the right preparation and determination, you can successfully summit Kilimanjaro via the Marangu route.

Climbing Kilimanjaro is a challenge, but it is also an incredible experience that you will never forget. So don’t wait, start planning your Marangu route Kilimanjaro climb today!

Translate »