KILIMANJARO INT'L WOMEN'S DAY 2019
TREK THE 7 DAY RONGAI ROUTE + REACH THE ROOF OF AFRICA ON INTERNATIONAL WOMEN'S DAY
MARCH 2 - 10, 2019
MARCH 2 - 12, 2019 with 2 DAY SAFARI
max group size: 20
Climbing Africa's tallest mountain is a once in a lifetime journey, and reaching the summit with other body positive women from around the world on International Women's Day makes it that much more special and meaningful. Join us in trekking up to 5,895 meters, through five beautiful and unique climate zones along the Rongai Route, to the Roof of Africa on International Women’s Day. What a way to show the world what women's strength and power can accomplish together! Experience the support, safety and smiles that make all our adventures such a success (and be sure to WATCH OUR DANCE VIDEOS for a taste of all the excitement that's in store)!
KILIMANJARO?! THIS SOUNDS KILLER! TELL ME MORE!
THE DAILY BREAKDOWN*
MARCH 2 // JAMBO, Karibu
Arrive at Kilimanjaro airport (JRO) in Moshi by noon at the latest (we’ll meet you there to give you a warm Tanzanian welcome)! After everyone arrives, we'll have a welcome lunch and briefing where we'll meet one another and get briefed on all that lies ahead! After that, we'll pack up and head out to spend the evening in the village of Nale Moru which is right near the starting place for our trek, the Rongai Gate.
PLEASE NOTE: We highly recommend our adventurers to arrive at least one day early if possible! This will give you time to settle in, do your gear check, and have a buffer in case of flight delays. We can help make your additional hotel reservations at one of our partner lodges, just make sure you let us know your dates ASAP in our Pre-Adventure HUB.
MARCH 3 // TWENDE (AKA LET’S GO)
Rongai Gate to Simba Camp (Elevation: 2,000 - 2,650 m)
Hiking Time: 4 - 5 hours (Distance: 6 km)
Rise and shine! After breakfast, we’ll ride to the Rongai gate, aka Nale Moru, where the Rongai route and our epic journey begins! We’ll start our trek in the morning going pole pole on a winding trail through fields of corn and potatoes before entering a pine forest. The terrain then starts to climb gently through the scenic Montane Forest, that is home to a variety of wildlife. The forest begins to thin out as we approach our first camp at the edge of the Moorland zone with extensive views over the Kenyan plains. In the evening, we’ll have time to relax, enjoy the sunset, and calm our minds after our first full day of trekking.
MARCH 4 // POLE, POLE...
Simba Camp to Second Cave (Elevation: 2,650 m - 3,450 m)
Hiking Time: 4 - 5 hours (Distance: 6 km)
After breakfast, we’ll start a slow and steady ascent through the Moorland up to the Second Cave for some incredible views of Kibo and the Eastern ice fields on the crater rim. The Moorland is characterized by its everlasting flowers and mossy low trees, which you’ll be able to enjoy from several beautiful overlooks. In the evening, we'll settle in at the Second Cave Camp and have a relaxing dinner with beautiful views surrounding us!
MARCH 5 // IT’S ALL ABOUT ACCLIMATIZING
Second Cave to Kikelewa Camp (Elevation: 3,450 - 3,600m)
Hiking Time: 3 - 4 hours (Distance: 9 km)
After breakfast, we'll head out across the Moorland on a smaller path towards the jagged Mawenzi Peak as we take our time trekking to the the Kikelewa Camp. Our camp for the evening is in a sheltered valley close to giant Senecios, majestic trees that look like they came straight out of Dr. Seuss’ imagination!
MARCH 6 // TAKE IT EASY
Kikelewa Camp to Mawenzi Tarn (Elevation: 3,600 - 4,330 m)
Hiking Time: 4 - 5 hours (Distance: 6 km)
In the morning, we'll take a short but steep climb up grassy slopes that will be rewarded by superb views of the Kilimanjaro region. We'll begin to leave the vegetation behind us as we approach the Alpine Desert and our next camp, Mawenzi Tarn, which is spectacularly situated directly beneath the towering spires of Mawenzi Peak. We'll have the afternoon free to rest, explore the surrounding area, and to take an acclimatization hike to help further prepare us for the summit.
MARCH 7 // SADDLE UP
Mawenzi Tarn to Kibo Hut (Elevation: 4,330 - 4750 m)
Hiking Time: 4 - 5 hours (Distance: 9 km)
We'll start our day at a nice and slow pace by crossing the lunar desert of the 'saddle' between Mawenzi and Kibo. We’ll get to camp in the early afternoon, after a gradual approach along the bottom of the Kibo crater, just in time to eat, rest up, and gather our collective courage...because tonight is the big night we’ve been preparing for!
MARCH 8 // SUMMIT SISTERS, UNITE!
Kibo Camp to Summit to Horombo Hut (Elevation: 4,700 - 5,895 - 3,700 m)
Hiking Time: 7 - 9 hours ascent / 5 - 6 hours descent (Distance: 6 km ascent / 15 km descent)
Around 11pm, we’ll put on our head lamps and pole pole start our ascent to the summit under thousands of twinkling stars. It’s a steep, long night, and the most mentally and physically challenging part of the trek, however, the energy of our group, and the rhythm of our guides’ Swahili chants will help you keep going! This is the time when we will all dig deep and remember why we are doing this together on such a symbolic day, International Women's Day. After walking on the skree field for a few hours, we will reach Gilman's Point and head towards Stella Point just as the sun is rising over Mawenzi Peak. From there, it’s a slight incline and a 1.5 hour ascent along the extraordinary Furtwängler Glacier to the highest point in Africa- UHURU PEAK! After taking in the views (and getting your picture in front of the iconic summit sign), we’ll make our way back down the skree to our camp for lunch. In the afternoon, after some rest, we’ll head back through the Alpine Desert and Moorland to our camp nestled in the Heath.
MARCH 9 // BOOGIE DOWN
Horombo Hut to Marangu Gate to Moshi (Elevation: 3,700 - 1,700 m)
Hiking Time: 7 - 8 hours (Distance: 20 km)
After our last breakfast (and dance party) with our new mountain family, we’ll start our final descent down through lush Rainforest to the Marangu Gate. At the Gate, we’ll have a special lunch, complete with some celebratory food and drinks, before taking the 1 hour drive back to our hotel in Moshi for much deserved warm showers. At night, we’ll continue the celebration at dinner and reflect on the amazing experience we shared together (and what great things are to come in the future)!
MARCH 10 // SHARE THE LOVE**
At WHOA, we believe an important part of taking adventures is giving back, and that every travel experience is more special and meaningful if you immerse yourself and connect with locals and their culture. It's something that we weave into every aspect of our trips, but especially on this last morning, as we wrap up our time together. Today, we'll take time to reflect on our epic shared journey and celebrate how special and powerful women coming together is. We'll spend time with one of our local partners that is changing the lives of women and children in the region in positive and sustainable ways. Whether it's learning and laughing with children at a local village school or supporting and sharing with a women-run social enterprise that empowers disenfranchised women in the community, connecting in this way is always heart warming and eye opening, and gives more depth to our entire Tanzanian adventure!
In the evening, you can catch your plane back home if you need to go, OR get ready for a once in a lifetime safari to the region's stunning national parks! Our safari car will depart in the afternoon for Arusha (~2 hour drive), where we'll stay at another one of our favorite lodges and enjoy dinner together.
MARCH 11 // THE ELEPHANT OF SURPRISE
We'll set off bright and early on a ~3 hour drive from Arusha to Tarangire National Park, a beautiful reserve that is famous for its vast herds of elephants roaming around giant baobab trees. After a full day of game viewing in the park, we'll head to our exotic safari lodge for dinner and some much deserved R&R.
MARCH 12 // ZEBRAS AND HIPPOS AND LIONS! OH MY!
Be ready for an early wake up call as we head to the grand finale of our safari, the Ngorongoro Crater. This natural wonder is a cradle for wildlife, and is home to zebras, lions, elephants, flamingos, hippos, cheetahs, antelopes, ostriches, warthogs, hyenas...you get the idea! After another beautiful day of game viewing, we'll head out on the 5-6 hour drive to Moshi. If you're flying this evening, it's important that you DO NOT schedule a flight before 8:30pm, in fact, it's common for people to book their flights out the next day to enjoy a little more down time in town before getting on a plane. After safari, we recommend continuing on to Zanzibar for some sun, sand and turquoise blue waters if you can! We don't have a group itinerary for this special, historic Tanzanian island, but are happy to help you put together exactly what you are looking for, so just ask.
*Itinerary subject to change based on availability and unforeseen conditions, but that's part of the adventure! Even when things change, trust you'll be well taken care of with WHOA quality, professionalism, and TLC!
** It’s of the utmost importance to us that any giving back we do is sustainable and fills a need that is of value to our partners. For that reason, our visits and partnerships can and do vary depending on the season, the organization's needs, and the abilities and desires of our group. Bottom line, in each case, we do due diligence to seek out local partners that are doing great, sustainable work, and we work closely with them to understand their needs to create an experience that will truly be of value to them and you!