12 Days Kilimanjaro & Big 5 Animals

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12 Days 11 Nights
Availability : Jan 16’ - Dec 16’
Tanzania
Tanzania
Min Age : 10+
Max People : 34
Tour Details
  • Watch the sunrise from the roof of Africa as you summit Mount Kilimanjaro, the highest walkable mountain in the world
  • Explore the varied and unique climactic zones of Kilimanjaro, as you climb the mountain on a five-day journey
  • Descend to the floor of the Ngorongoro Crater, a lush natural enclosure for Africa’s ‘Big Five’
  • Drive across the Serengeti in search of close encounters with the continent’s most famous wildlife including giraffe, lion, leopard and elephant
  • Visit an active Masai village, learning about the customs, beliefs and traditions of this famous and decorated African tribe

Price Includes

  • 11 Nights Hotel Accomodation
  • Tour Guide
  • Entrance Fees
  • All transportation in destination location

Price Excludes

  • Any Private Expenses
  • Room Service Fees
  • Air Tickets
  • Visa
Itinerary

Day 1Arrival in Moshi and Final Preparations for Kilimanjaro Hike

On this day you will fly into the city of Moshi in central Tanzania, which thrives in the shadow of Mount Kilimanjaro. After a long international flight, today will be spent relaxing and adjusting to the time difference. Spend time around the lodge in Moshi. Camping at Mandara Camp.

Day 2Begin to Ascend the Rain forested Slopes of Kilimanjaro

After breakfast at your hotel later your journey to Kilimanjaro begins. Arriving at the Marangu Gate in the early morning, we will complete a few final pieces of paperwork before setting off into the lush rainforested slopes. Climb will gently weave and wander alongside rivers and waterfalls as we cover eight kilometers over three to four hours on well-trodden paths. You will stop frequently to admire this stunning jungle, often said to be the most beautiful of all the forest routes on Kilimanjaro. Pick the perfect place for your first African picnic, and keep an eye out for colobus monkeys and prolific birdlife.
As the forest thins and lichen becomes more prevalent, you will know you are reaching the end of the day. Tonight we will camp at the ever-popular Mandara Huts (1,860 meters), where you will have the option of camping or staying in a small cabin. You will enjoy a fire-cooked dinner prepared by our expert chefs, while porters organize logistics for the coming days. Camping at Mandara Camp

Day 3Hike Through Heather and Moorland on Route to Horombo Hut

This morning after breakfast, porters will pack up camp as you begin the hike through the second climactic zone: the alpine moorland. Shockingly different from the jungle below, this landscape is fringed with lichen, heather, lobelias and giant senecios. Vast open spaces, with plants that grow over three meters high, makes for a prehistoric looking landscape that is fascinating to both hike through and learn about. As you climb along the rocky trail, you will catch your first glimpse of Kili’s second volcanic peak, Kibo. The view of this second summit only builds further excitement for the moment when you will finally lay eyes on Uhuru, the third peak and your ultimate goal.
In the late afternoon, you will reach the Horombo Huts (3,720 meters). If you reach the huts on a clear afternoon, you may be lucky enough to see right down to the town of Moshi below. Tonight you will again have the choice of a tent or hut on this mountain campsite. Gather round the fire tonight with fellow hikers to exchange stories. Horombo is a destination for both those ascending and descending, giving you a taste of the wonder that lies ahead.

Day 4Hike into the Alpine Desert as you Near the Peak of Kilimanjaro

Breakfast later continue the hike to Kili, today’s hike will carry you out of the moorland and into the alpine desert, located on the saddle between Kibo and Mwenzi peaks. Temperatures drop and winds intensify at this high altitude – a sure sign that the summit is near. The hike often takes between five and seven hours, covering a total of nine and a half kilometers. Water is increasingly sporadic at this high altitude, and in the late afternoon, you will pass an exciting landmark: the final water source before the summit! From here, hikers traverse the dramatic and blustery saddle between the peaks, ultimately finding refuge at the Kibo Huts. From here, you will catch your first perfect view of Uhuru, which you will summit in only a few short hours. Tonight you will head to bed as early as possible, since the journey to the peak begins roughly around midnight.

Day 5Summit Uhuru Peak, soaking in the Best Sunrise Before Descending Halfway Down

Just after midnight, your guides will lure you out of your tent with hot tea and snacks. You and your team will join the procession of flashlights beginning the ascent towards the summit, in anticipation of catching the best sunrise on the continent. Excitement courses through the hikers as you follow a rocky path towards Hans Meyer Cave and Gillman’s Point. Snow begins to appear on the ground around you as you approach the glacial summit, and the first glimpses of daylight begin to appear. Pause atop Uhuru Peak as the sun reveals the landscape below, before beginning your descent to the base of the mountain.
Running off the elation of having summited the highest peak in Africa, you will descend quickly back to the Kibo Huts. Here, a warm breakfast awaits you that will fuel you back down to Horombo.

Day 6Descend to the Base of Kilimanjaro and Return to Moshi - Relaxation

This morning you will wake up to descend back through the moorland and jungle, retracing steps from the days earlier. This final 20-kilometer stretch takes a mere five to six hours to cover, eventually leading you back to the main gate. Here, you will be presented with a certificate for having summited the mountain. You will then return to Moshi.

Day 7Drive from Moshi to Arusha

Given the challenges and adrenaline of the previous days, today will be a relaxing and easy trip from Moshi to the neighboring city of Arusha. You will drive out from the shadow of Mount Kilimanjaro, and towards Tanzania’s third highest peak, Mount Meru.
Enjoy a day of leisure on the lodge grounds since tomorrow, the second portion of the adventure kicks off!

Day 8Drive to Lake Manyara National Park and Search for Tree-Climbing Lions

Pick up at your hotel after breakfast then begin explorations through the African bush. This portion starts in the tranquil and serene Lake Manyara National Park. You will drive to the park from Arusha over the course of the morning, arriving in time for lunch, followed by an afternoon game drive.
The park itself revolves around a sparkling alkaline lake, which is frequently coated by pink flamingos. These soda lakes are characteristic of the Great Rift Valley, and attract phenomenal populations of both resident and migratory birds. The woodlands that surround the lake are also fascinating, largely because they house a population of rare tree-climbing lions. Found in only a handful of parks in Africa, these nimble lions are often seen swinging their tails from the branches of a tree. Drive along the escarpments and valleys, tracing the Tarangire River that feeds into this lake.

Day 9Drive to the Serengeti via Olduvai Gorge, the ‘Cradle of Mankind’

This morning, depart Lake Manyara and begin your journey towards the Serengeti. This region is significant for much more than solely its wildlife, which will become apparent over the coming days. We will first detour through the town of Mto Wa Mbu, where a number of Tanzanian tribes assimilate. Dominated by Masai warriors, this community has organized a cultural tourism program that shares the rich and varied local cultures with visitors. Take a tour through an authentic Masai homestead, or stop to peruse the crafts and beadwork made by local women.
Proceed the journey you will also detour past the Olduvai Gorge, one of the world’s most important paleoanthropological sites. It was here that Mary and Louis Leaky discovered some of the oldest known hominid remains in the 1960s. These Zinjanthropus bosei remains date back over 1.75 million years, while fossilized footprints date back over three million years. Few areas provide greater insight into human evolution than this particular gorge. Swing past the visitor’s center for additional information, before continue on westwards towards the Serengeti.

Day 10Spend a Full Day Traversing the Serengeti in Search for the unseen Wildlife

Rise early and hop in your vehicle with a packed picnic breakfast to explore the wilderness while it is at its most active. Venture out across the plains with your local guide, who will spend the day helping you locate the coveted cast of the Big Five. Watch as elephants tear leaves off acacia trees, while giraffes look onward from above the treetops. Seek out a lion lazing quietly in the shade, while rambunctious cubs circle the pride. You will undoubtedly find yourself perpetually surrounded by herds of ungulates, including countless zebra, gazelle and buffalo. If timed correctly, you may even be lucky enough to drive through the epicenter of the Great Wildebeest Migration. Spend time along rivers and beside watering holes, observing the species that come by for a drink. Keep your eyes peeled for crocodiles and hippos, which are often found lazily bobbing and lounging along the shore.
Spend the entire day exploring as much of the park as possible, or, return midday for some indulgence and relaxation at the lodge property.

Day 11Drive to the Ngorongoro Crater, Exploring the Plateaus of the Collapsed Volcano

Rise before the sun in order to squeeze in a final safari before you depart the Serengeti. Spend a few final hours traversing the plains in search of your favorite species, and those yet to be seen. For those craving a new perspective on the terrain, this may be the perfect opportunity to embark on a romantic and luxurious hot air balloon ride over the savanna, complete with a champagne picnic breakfast as you descend(Optional). Floating high above the plains is one of the few ways to truly grasp the expansiveness of the area – and to experience the total tranquility of it all.
In the mid-morning, drive back through the Ngorongoro Crater, stop at a lodge perched on the edge of the crater, with phenomenal views of the crater floor below. Ngorongoro was formed an estimated two to three million years ago, when an ancient volcano collapsed in on itself, creating this expansive caldera. Today, it is the largest inactive caldera worldwide and is home to vibrant populations of wildlife. The crater floor is often stippled with ungulates grazing on the lush grasses, while one of the world’s densest populations of lions looks onward.

Day 12Explore the Floor of the Ngorongoro Crater before Returning to Arusha

This morning you will rise early in order to explore the floor of the Ngorongoro Crater. Weave down the rainforest lined slopes of the caldera, peering through the tangled trees for signs of leopards. Unsurprisingly, these fertile fields seasonally attract large herds of zebra, wildebeest and impala as part of the Great Migration.

As the day wears on, begin your journey back up the opposing slopes to the surrounding highlands. Here, you will have impressive views of this volcanic landscape, with Mount Lengai looming off in the distance.

Afternoon head to Arusha for your departure flight back home. END OF SERVICE!

Photos
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