Kilimanjaro Climb – Northern Circuit Route

The Northern Circuit is one of the quieter Kilimanjaro routes, including the rarely visited northern slopes of the mountain t- with fantastic views that overlook Kenya. It approaches Kilimanjaro from the west and offers 360 degrees of beautiful scenery. With 8 days trekking on the mountain, it provides excellent acclimatization and a high chance of success!

  • 12-day trip – 8 days trekking
  • Starts in the West
  • The quieter side of the mountain
  • Remote paths & trails
  • Experience the Comic Relief route
  • Great acclimatization
  • Pre & post Challenge hotels
Kilimanjaro Northern Route Map

DAY 1 - Moshi / or Arusha

On arrival, we transfer approximately hotel and meet our team of local guides. In the afternoon there is the chance to relax before the welcome briefing, and kit check. Then we enjoy an evening meal together before an early night.

Meals: L, D


DAY 2 - Mt Mkubwa Camp

We will depart Moshi town after breakfast and head for Londorossi Gate (2,100m) to the West of Mount Kilimanjaro. The transfer will take around 2-3 hours from Moshi. After signing into the National Park, we will continue up by vehicle to the trailhead starting point. Upon arriving, lunch will be served, and then we will begin our trek passing through heather and moorland which leads to our first camp on Mt. Kilimanjaro. There we will enjoy dinner, relax and acclimatize.

Meals: B, L, D


DAY 3 - Shira 1 Camp 

After a good breakfast, we will leave MtiMkubwa Camp on a light trek to Shira 1 Camp. We will spend the first-hour trekking through the last section of the rainforest path before entering the low alpine moorland zone which follows up onto the Shira Plateau. This will be a gentle and gradual day, ensuring we are fully adjusted to the mountain environment. The pace means we can drink in the views of this unique landscape, admiring the flora & fauna which is in abundant on every side. After arriving at Shira 1 Camp, lunch will be served whilst enjoying the spectacular views of Kibo across the plateau.

Meals: B. L, D


DAY 4 - Moir Hut 

Safely acclimatized, today we will walk for longer and go higher. Trekking out from Shira 1 Camp, the morning is spent trekking up to Lava Tower and the iconic Shark’s Tooth rock formation.  This ancient volcanic plug sits at 4600m and is where we will take lunch. This is a significant gain in altitude, so expect to feel the effects of this, before we descend down to Moir Hut at 4161m. This is an important day in our trek as we will get to experience high altitude and then sleep low, which is good for the acclimatization process.

Meals: B, L, D


DAY 5 - Buffalo Camp 

After yesterday’s altitude gain and descent from Lava Tower, today will be much simpler. We will take a steep climb out of the Moir Valley, and skirt the northern slopes of Kilimanjaro. There may be an opportunity here (time and weather permitting) for any members of the group who wish to, to take a small detour and climb to the summit of Little Lent Hill (4,375m) before returning to the Northern Circuit Route. From here, there will be altitude gains and descents skirting around the Northern slopes of Kibo to Buffalo Camp., but no steep changes in altitude. We will come close to the border with Kenya, giving us unique views across the Tsavo & Amboseli Valleys. Arriving into Buffalo Camp, we will settle in for dinner before bed.

Meals: B, L, D


DAY 6 - Rongai Third Cave 

Today starts with a climb up the Buffalo Ridge and down into Pofu Camp where lunch will be served. We will continue our traverse East around Kilimanjaro’s Northern slopes. Here the route we are on converges with the Rongai trail, however as this is no longer the Rongai camp, there are still very few trekkers along the way. Overall, this is a shorter day of trekking, allowing your body to fully adjust to the altitude.

Meals: B, L, D


DAY 7 - School Hut 

Today involves a steady incline up and over the Saddle which sits between the peaks of Kibo and Mawenzi Peak. We then continue trekking south-west, up to School Hut, otherwise known as the Outward Bound Camp. This sits at 4750m and represents the highest point of the trek so far. This is also our last stop before the summit push. Arriving at camp, early dinner will be served, and our guides will encourage us to get plenty of rest and drink plenty of water. After dinner, it will be important to prepare our packs and clothes ready for our summit trek and get some sleep as early as possible. We’ll need as much rest as possible and will be awoken before midnight to set off for our summit attempt.

Meals: B, L, D


DAY 8 - Summit Day 

Expect a midnight wake-up call for our final push to the summit. After ‘breakfast’, we take a long trek up the winding path to crater rim. The slope is steep over loose rocks with some boulders as you near Gilman’s Point (5,712m). Each pair of trekkers will be assigned a personal guide for this part of the trek. The trek from Gilman’s Point at the edge of the crater, to the summit is less demanding, and depending on your pace, you can reach it after a further 1½-2 hours. After a short time at the summit of Kilimanjaro, you have the option, depending on time, to descend to a nearby glacier. Then we hike down to Barafu Camp via a different route for a short two-hour rest, before descending to Millennium Camp at 3820m. Here you will tuck into dinner, and settle in to your tent for a glorious night of rest after a stunning achievement.

Meals: B, L, D


DAY 09 - Final trek & celebration dinner 

After breakfast, there will be plenty of singing and dancing with your team of Kilimanjaro guides and porters, as you make a final descent to Mweka Gate. The final section of hiking is a world away from yesterday’s barren summit of glaciers and cold, and you wind your way through lush rainforest, surrounded by birdsong and the chattering on Blue Monkeys. After signing out at the gate, you will board a waiting vehicle for a private transfer back to the hotel for lunch, showers, and cold drinks. In the evening there will be a memorable celebration dinner, marked with Kilimanjaro medals, certificates, and t-shirts. 

Meals: B, L, D

  • 2 nights hotel accommodation & 7 nights full-service camping
  • Local guides and porters provide trek support
  • 9 breakfasts, 7 lunches & 7 dinners
Not Included
  • International flights

  • Plan with Expert 

With Our Guides, Kilimanjaro climbing is an adventure to remember. We will be very happy to guide you to the highest point of Africa. Also its so lovely when you will go on safari after you Kili Summit. Let Me Help You Plan.


- Tanzania Specialist

  • Get Started

Best Time To Climb

What TO Pack

All Routes