9 days Northern Circuit Route

Tour Overview

9 days Northern Circuit Route

9 days Northern Circuit Route is not just the newest official route to ascend Mount Kilimanjaro; it is also the longest and most beautiful. And remember the longer the route, the higher the chance of overall success.

This extended climb begins with a drive from Moshi to the Londorossi Gate, where you start. From there the Northern Circuit follows the Lemosho route for the first few days, moving through the lush rainforest below the mountain itself, and then ascending the Shira Ridge to cross the high Shira Plateau. When you come near Lava Tower you leave the Lemosho route and turn north to follow the Northern Circuit proper.

This detour allows the trek to circle around to Kilimanjaro northern slopes, crossing them to the east. The northern side of Kilimanjaro is more remote, and so have the benefits of offering less traffic from other climbers, and much more untouched, untrammeled surroundings. The result is a unique climbing experience and a truly fantastic trek.

There are a few options as to the best route to the summit, depending on the season and local conditions at the time. All routes though converge again at Gilman’s Point to approach the summit itself. Descent is via the Mweka route, where you will likely see other trekkers who went up on either the Lemosho, Shira, Umbwe or Machame routes.

The Northern Circuit is the longest and also the most remote route.  The longer itinerary means that it has a good acclimatization profile.  You can naturally “walk high, sleep low” which helps with acclimatization.

Even though you don’t have to climb the Great Barranco Wall on this route, you will still have a tough summit night approaching via Gilman’s Point.

You will be trekking for long periods of time so a good level of fitness is recommended.

Northern Circuit ROUTE ELEVATIONS

Tour Itinerary

Day 1:-Londorossi Gate to Mti Mkubwa

The first day of 9 days Northern Circuit Route. We depart Moshi for Londorossi Gate, which takes about 4 hours, where you will complete entry formalities. Then drive to the Lemosho trailhead. Upon arrival at trailhead, we begin hiking through undisturbed forest which winds to the first camp site.


  • Elevation: 7,742 ft to 9,498 ft
  • Distance: 6 km/4 miles
  • Hiking Time: 3-4 hours
  • Habitat: Rain Forest
Day 2:-Mti Mkubwa to Shira 1 Camp

Second day of our 9 days Northern Circuit Route, We continue on the trail leading out of the rain forest and into a savannah of tall grasses, heather and volcanic rock draped with lichen beards. As we ascend through the lush rolling hills and cross several streams, we reach the Shira Ridge before dropping gently down to Shira 1 Camp. Here we catch our first glimpse of Kibo across the plateau


  • Mti Mkubwa to Shira 1 Camp
  • Elevation: 9,498 ft to 11,500 ft
  • Distance: 8 km/5 miles
  • Hiking Time 5-6 hours
  • Habitat: Heath
Day 3:-Shira 1 Camp to Shira 2 Camp

Third day of 9 days Northern Circuit Route, We explore the Shira Plateau. It is a gentle walk east on moorland meadows towards Shira 2 Camp. The heath zone displays abundant wildflowers and unique Senecio trees.


  • Shira 1 Camp to Shira 2 Camp
  • Elevation: 11,500 ft to 12,500 ft
  • Distance: 7 km/4 miles
  • Hiking Time: 3-4 hours
  • Habitat: Heath
Day 4:-Shira 2 Camp to Lava Tower

Forth day of 9 days Northern Circuit Route, We continue to the east up a ridge and then head southeast towards the Lava Tower – a 300 ft tall volcanic rock formation. Then we divert from the main trail to Moir Hut, a little used site on the base of Lent Hills. A variety of walks are available on Lent Hills making this an excellent acclimatization opportunity. Shira Plateau is one of the highest plateaus on earth.


  • (Shira 2 Camp to Lava Tower) Elevation: 12,500 ft to 15,190 ft
  • (Shira 2 Camp to Lava Tower) Distance: 7 km/4 miles
  • (Shira 2 Camp to Lava Tower) Hiking Time: 3-4 hours
  • (Shira 2 Camp to Lava Tower) Habitat: Alpine Desert
  • (Lava Tower to Moir Hut) Elevation: 15,190 ft to 13,580 ft
  • (Lava Tower to Moir Hut) Distance: 7 km/4 miles
  • (Lava Tower to Moir Hut) Hiking Time: 2-3 hours
  • (Lava Tower to Moir Hut) Habitat: Alpine Desert
Day 5:-Moir Hut to Buffalo Camp

Firth day of our 9 days Northern Circuit Route, We trek out of Moir Valley with a moderately steep climb, then hike to the summit of Lent Hills before returning to the main trail. The path crosses a rock field and gently undulates before reaching Buffalo Camp. This section of the trail offers great views across the plains that lie north of Kilimanjaro and stretch out to the Kenyan/Tanzanian border.


  • Elevation: 13,580 ft to 13,200 ft
  • Distance: 12 km/7 miles
  • Hiking Time: 5-7 hours
  • Habitat: Alpine Desert
Day 6:-Buffalo Camp to Third Cave

Sixth day of 9 days Northern Circuit Route, As we head up Buffalo Ridge, the terrain becomes increasingly sparse. This route is rarely travelled and we will enjoy its mountain wilderness feel. We trek through remote valleys on to the northern slopes of Kilimanjaro until we arrive at Third Cave.


  • Elevation: 13,200 ft to 12,700 ft
  • Distance: 8 km/5 miles
  • Hiking Time: 5-7 hours
  • Habitat: Heath
Day 7:-Third Cave to School Hut

Seventh day of 9 days Northern Circuit Route, We climb steadily up and over the “Saddle,” which sits between Kibo and Mawenzi. We continue on to our camp, School Hut. Once here we rest, enjoy an early dinner to prepare for the summit day.


  • Elevation: 12,700 ft to 15,600 ft
  • Distance: 5 km/3 miles
  • Hiking Time: 4-5 hours
  • Habitat: Alpine Desert
Day 8:- School Hut to Uhuru Peak

the eight day of 9 days Northern Circuit Route, Very early in the morning (around midnight), we begin our push to the summit. This is the most mentally and physically challenging portion of the trek. The wind and cold at this elevation and time of day can be extreme. We ascend in the darkness for several hours while taking frequent, but short, breaks. At Gilman’s point (18,600 ft), you will be rewarded with the most magnificent sunrise you are ever likely to see coming over Mawenzi Peak. Finally, we arrive at Uhuru Peak- the highest point on Mount Kilimanjaro and the continent of Africa.

From the summit, we now make our descent continuing straight down to the Mweka Hut camp site, stopping at Barafu for lunch. The trail is very rocky and can be quite hard on the knees; trekking poles are helpful. Mweka Camp is situated in the upper forest and mist or rain can be expected in the late afternoon. Later in the evening, we enjoy our last dinner on the mountain and a well-earned sleep.


  • (School Hut to Uhuru Peak) Elevation: 15,600 ft to 19,341 ft
  • (School Hut to Uhuru Peak) Distance: 6 km/4 miles
  • (School Hut to Uhuru Peak) Hiking Time: 6-8 hours
  • (Uhuru Peak to Mweka Camp) Elevation: 19,341 ft to 10,065
  • (Uhuru Peak to Mweka Camp) Distance: 12 km/7 miles
  • (Uhuru Peak to Mweka Camp) Hiking Time: 4-6 hours
  • (Uhuru Peak to Mweka Camp) Habitat: Artic
Day 9:-Mweka Camp to Mweka Gate

On our last day, we continue the descent to Mweka Gate and collect the summit certificates. At lower elevations, it can be wet and muddy. From the gate, we continue another hour to Mweka Village. A vehicle will meet us at Mweka Village to drive us back to the hotel in Moshi. End of 9 days Northern Circuit Route


  • Elevation: 10,065 ft to 5,380 ft
  • Distance: 10 km/6 miles
  • Hiking Time: 3-4 hours
  • Habitat: Rain Forest

Itinerary Map

KILIMANJARO CLIMBING PRICE

GROUP EXPEDITIONS

The price per person for group expeditions are fixed based on a group size. However, we have optional arrangements for individual private and tailor-made preferences best suited for you, your family and friends.

SEE GROUP BOOKING DISCOUNT

9 days Northern circuit (Joining group price 2080$)

Number of PeoplePrice Per Person
12,410
22,241
32,125
42,111
52,103
62,098
72,093
82,090
92,077
10+2,074

Includes

  • Private transport to & from Kilimanjaro International Airport to your Accommodations in Moshi.
  • 2 nights of accommodation Parkview Inn in Moshi
  • Transportation to & from the Kilimanjaro gate
  • Park entry fees,
  • Camping fees
  • Team Kilimanjaro Rescue fees
  • Oxygen cylinder
  • 18% VAT on tour fees & services
  • 4 Season mountain tents
  • 3 hot meals daily while on the mountain
  • Enough treated & filtered drinking water throughout the trek
  • Friendly and professional mountain guides, cook and porters
  • Hot water for washing
  • Fair wages for the mountain crew as approved by the Kilimanjaro National Park Authority (KINAPA), Kilimanjaro Association of Tour Operators (KIATO)
  • Government taxes
  • Ox meter
  • Emergency first-aid kit

Excludes

  • Lunches, dinners and drinks at your hotel before and after climb.
  • Travel insurance
  • Flights
  • Laundry (Available at hotel)
  • Personal items and toiletries
  • Tips for guides, porters and cook

traveler photos from this trip

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Joseph H
Joseph H
2022-10-09
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Unbelievable 3 Day Safari My wife and I recently completed a 3 day Safari with Tanzania Joy Tours and it far exceeded our expectations. From the first contact they were very quick to respond and handled some last minute changes we requested with no problem. The most wonderful part of the safari was our guide Elly. Elly is a very experienced, professional and highly personable guide. He was very knowledgeable about the plant and animal life as well as the local culture. He was especially good at spotting animals and knowing where to find hard to see animals before the other guides. Do not underestimate the importance of having a good guide on safari. Elly was wonderful in every way and we highly recommend Tanzania Joy Tours. Make sure to request Elly as your guide
devimuk
devimuk
2022-10-03
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キリマンジャロ登山+サファリ! 7日間マチャメルートに3日間のサファリを追加したツアーにカスタムしてくれるなど要望に柔軟に対応してもらいました。 ・キリマンジャロ登山 ガイドのRingoはとても経験豊富で頼もしい方でした。私が高山病で苦しんでいるときに何度も助けてくれました。 彼がいなかったら私は頂上までたどり着けなかったでしょう。とても感謝しています。 他のポーターの方々もよい人たちばかりでとても楽しい登山でした。 ・サファリ 3日間のサファリでは、私たちが見たかった豹を見られるようにセレンゲティ国立公園内を周ってもらい見ることができました。 サファリ中に写真撮影のために細かい車の移動にも対応してもらえたおかげでよい写真が取れました。 キャンプサイトではロッジ泊ではなくテント泊にしましたが、ハイエナの鳴き声がする中で寝るのはとてもスリルがありました。 ・食事 登山中とサファリ中の食事は、わりと日本人の口に合う味付けでした。 高山病で食欲がないとき食欲が出るように酸味のある食事を提供してくれてうれしかったです。 とても良い旅でした。また機会があれば彼らと一緒に登山やサファリをしたいです。
seafine
seafine
2022-10-02
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What an amazing experience! What an amazing experience with Tanzania Joy Tours! Before the travel, we actually compared more than 10 companies for Mt. Kilimanjaro and safari tours, and end up choosing Joy due to its responsiveness, efforts to meet various requests and affordability. We are very glad we chose them and all experiences were beyond our expectations. In the mountain, the chief tour guide Ringo and his crew members were not only professional but also very reliable and kind, providing us all supports they could (including delicious meals) so that we could reach to the summit in the end. During safari, thanks to the guide Praygod's expertise, we were able to see all Big 5 and many other animals in limited time and enjoyed awesome safari camping with tasty foods. Due to our flight schedule, we could not go for a default tour, but the company was flexible enough to adjust the tour itinerary to our schedule and provide all transfers to/from airports in time (The driver Calvin provided an airport transfer even at 1am midnight). All of the splendid tour arrangements were done by Iris, who was such a nice and trustworthy person from the beginning. The experience by Tanzania Joy was one of the best we've had and we would definitely like to go with them again when we visit Tanzania next time!
Nassim El Hormi
Nassim El Hormi
2022-09-22
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Le combo parfait : Ascension Kilimanjaro + Safari Ascension du Kilimanjaro via la route Machame en 6 jours avec des paysages à coupé le souffle tout le long... À la fin la cerise sur le gateau 3 jours de Safari dans le parc Serengeti et Ngorongoro, un rêve éveillé quand on a grandit avec le Roi Lion !
Frauke S
Frauke S
2022-09-21
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Amazing Experience with Tanzania Joy We booked a private 8 days Lemosho route and safari with Tanzania Joy. We had so many questions in advance which Emmanuel has always answered very quickly. We are very happy that we chose Joy. We were overwhelmed by what good food we received on the mountain. Our guide Kelvin with his team were fabulous hosts Especially in the Summit night we felt very comfortable that 3 Joy employees are with us on the summit and motivated us again and again During our trip we had some new requests to Emmanuel. He was always very friendly. It was important to him that we have a good time in Tanzania. We were especially pleased that the Joy team celebrated birthday with our “birthday boy” Our safari was also super. Elli, our driver has a very broad knowledge. We would choose Joy again anytime.
William G
William G
2022-09-07
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Un sans faute pour le combo Kili par le Northern circuit en 7 jours suivi de 4 jours de safari Ascension du Kilimandjaro par le "Northern circuit" en 7 jours. Fantastique expérience qui s'est déroulée à merveille grâce à la bienveillance et gentillesse des guides et porteurs. Une équipe jeune, dynamique et attentionnée qui a su tous nous emmener au sommet en sécurité. Merci à Kelvin et à son équipe. PS: Kelvin a déjà fait l'aller-retour Mweka gate-sommet-Mweka gate en 11h seulement, vous pouvez lui faire confiance :) Nous avons ensuite fait un magnifique Safari sur 4 jours guidés par Praygod, un guide réellement passionné et très instructif. Un sans faute du début à la fin.
Amelie
Amelie
2022-08-21
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DREAM TEAM Amazing experience! The guides are super nice and welcoming and the porters have so much energy, they are incredible. The food is really good as well, honestly you have a portion for two person in my opinion, so you’re never hungry. They also really follow your paces, i have a friend who took twice the time and they never let her feel like she was too slow. They really are there for you and respond to anything you need. HAKUNA MATATA
Roel S
Roel S
2022-08-09
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Machame 7 days - Ringo ⭐️ We had a great experience climbing Mount Kilimanjaro. We booked the 7 day Machame route with Tanzania Joy Tours and were informed very well by Emmanuel! When we arrived at the airport we got picked up by the driver and drove to the hotel where we got all the information needed! We got to meet our guide Ringo who was very helpful. The hotel was very good. The next day we got picked up at the hotel by the whole team and went to the gate for the start of the climb. The food during the climb was very good (and surely enough!). Our guide Ringo and his assistent Herman were very helpful and friendly. Especially the climb to the summit they where very helpful and thanks to them we managed to reach the summit! Thanks Tanzania Joy Tours, Ringo and the team for the wonderful experience
Gijs R
Gijs R
2022-07-28
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Amazing trip The trip was amazing. Our main guide was Patrick, who was very helpful the entire trip, especially during the summit push. He knew what to do and say to keep us pushing and going and at 06:24 we summited, exactly at sunrise. This is no coincidence as Patrick knew what pace to maintain in order to see the beautiful sunrise at the summit. Also I must say that the food was very good and the cook knew what to make in order to keep is strong. All in all I sincerely recommend Tanzania Joy Tours!
Jolanda
Jolanda
2022-07-28
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Wonderful lemosho route experience What a great experience!! We booked the 7 day lemosho route with tanzania joy tours and were informed very well by Emmanuel! When we arrived at the airport we got picked up by the driver and drove to the office were we got all the information needed! We got to meet our guide Patric who was very helpful and answered all our questions. The next day we went to the rent shop to get the gear we were missing and got a wonderful lunch at a local place on the way to the lemosho gate. The climb was amazing, the food was delicious and plenty and the guides were very helpful and motivating! I felt very confident with Patric and the rest of the dream team 😄 The summit was though but with all the good food and the preparation we managed to get to Uhuru peak!! Thanks Tanzania Joy Tours, Patric and the dream team for the wonderful experience

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