Climbing Kilimanjaro is an incredible experience. The sunsets, the views and the wild and ever changing landscape make it one of the best treks on earth.
What many people don’t know is that on the final day of ascent, you actually trek through the night to reach the summit near dawn. A great option then is to make sure you trek when there is a full moon that night. This makes the trek just that little bit more special as the magnificent glaciers light up under the full moon to create a simply stunning landscape!
There is also a practical reason in trekking under a full moon – it illuminates your path. Normally you would be forced to wear a head torch on summit night, however, under a full moon on a clear night you could get away without using a head torch (we still recommend you bring a head torch just in case conditions aren’t perfect).
The only negative side of trekking under a full moon is that the stars are obscured by the brightness. If you’re a passionate star gazer then you would be best to trek under a new moon when the whole of Kilimanjaro lies under a blanket of beautiful stars.
In order to summit on a full moon date, you’ll need to time your climb right. This means that if you are trekking a 7 day route you should depart 5 day prior to the full moon and if you are trekking a 6 day route you should depart 4 days before the full moon.
Remember though, full moon dates are by far the most popular climbs and if you would prefer a less crowded trek, then avoiding the full moon is probably wisest.
Below we have provided a complete list of the Kilimanjaro full moon dates for 2018, 2019, 2020 and 2021. Underneath this we have also included the dates for the new moon.
* Partial Lunar Eclipse (July 17, 2019)
** Super Full Moon (January 2, 2018; January 21, 2019; February 19, 2019; March 9, 2020; and April 8, 2020) (full moon at its perigee, or closest point of its orbit to Earth, where it will look bigger than normal)
*** Total Lunar Eclipse (July 27, 2018)
Kilimanjaro full moon dates
Kilimanjaro new moon dates (under the stars)