Kilimanjaro Climb Through Shira Route

10 Days

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Climbing Summary


The Shira route is a difficult but scenic route on Kilimanjaro. The Shira route begins with a long drive to the Shira ridge, a high starting point. The route crosses the plateau and traverses the southern side of the mountain, before summiting via Barafu. The descent is by Mweka. The Shira route is a beautiful route with a high success rate.  The Shira route measures 30 miles (49 km) in distance and takes 8 days total.

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DAY 1. Arrive anytime in Arusha, Or Moshi  Tanzania

During the arrival

DAY 2.We take a ride to Londorossi National Park 

  • We take a ride to Londorossi National Parkgate to complete the necessary registration formalities.
  • Before driving a short distance on a steep track through farmland and plantations (9,200 ft).
  • We continue climbing steadily on foot through shrub forests and stands of giant heather to reach the rim of Shira Plateau (11,000 ft).
  • The views across the surrounding plains open up as we approach our first camp, Simba Camp(11,600 ft).
    [4-5 hours walking]

DAY 3.Walk to the Summit of Shira Cathedral (12,300 ft)

  • Today is an easy day to help acclimatization and to explore the grassy moorland and volcanic rock formations of the plateau.
  • We walk to the summit of Shira Cathedral(12,300 ft), a huge buttress of rock surrounded by steep spires and pinnacles.
  • There is a tangible sense of wilderness here, especially when the afternoon mists roll in.
  • From our camp nearShira Hut(12,600 ft), we take in the unforgettable views of Mt. Meru as she floats among the clouds.
    [4-5 hours walking]

DAY 4. Moorland of Shira Plateau

  • The morning walk is a steady climb away from the moorland of Shira Plateau to reach the broad upland desert beneath the Lent Hills, with expansive views in all directions.
  • After lunch in our camp close to Moir Hut(13,800 ft), there is the option of a more strenuous afternoon walk to reach the summit of the Lent Hills (15,400 ft).
  • We can explore the area beneath the Northern Icefields, a remote place rarely visited by tourists, with unusual views of Kibo.
  • Few visitors get to this remote corner of Kilimanjaro.
    [3-6 hours walking]

DAY 5.  Walking on Lava Ridges

  • We enjoy a morning of gentle ascent and panoramic views, walking on lava ridges beneath the glaciers of the Western Breach.
  • After lunch at our camp at Lava Tower(14,900 ft), there is a steep but spectacular afternoon walk on the rocky lower slopes of the Western Breach.
  • This afternoon excursion is highly recommended for acclimatisation purposes and for the superb views of hanging glaciers on both sides of the Breach.
    [4-6 hours walking]

DAY 6.  Barranco Valley

  • A steep descent into the bottom of Barranco Valley(12,800 ft) leads us to the famed Barranco Wall and its steep climb.
  • At the top the undulating trail crosses the flanks of Kibo with superb vistas of the Southern Icefields.
  • The terrain is volcanic scree, with pockets of vegetation in sheltered hollows, and a powerful sense of mountain wilderness.
  • Our next camp is at Karanga Camp (13,100 ft), the last water point on the approach to the summit.
    [5-7 hours walking]

DAY 7. Barafu Hut

  • We follow an easy path on compacted scree with wide views that gains altitude unrelentingly to reach Barafu Hut(14,800 ft) for lunch.
  • There is a short acclimatisation hike to the plateau at the bottom of the southeast valley (15,700 ft).
  • The remainder of the day is spent resting in preparation for the early morning final ascent.
    [3-5 hours walking]

DAY 8. Stella Point

  • We start our ascent by torchlight about 1 a.m. so that we can be up on the crater rim by sunrise. The steep climb over loose volcanic scree has some well-graded zig-zags and a slow but steady pace will take us to Stella Point(18,800 ft), in about five or six hours.
  • We will rest there for a short time to enjoy the sunrise over Mawenzi.
  • Those who are still feeling strong can make the two-hour round trip from here along the crater rim to Uhuru Peak(19,345 ft), passing close to the spectacular glaciers and ice cliffs that still occupy most of the summit area.
  • The descent to Barafu is surprisingly fast, and after some refreshments, we continue to descend to reach our final campsite, Millenium Camp(12,500 ft).
    [11-15 hours walking]

DAY 10. Mweka

  • A sustained descent on a well constructed path takes us through a lovely tropical forest alive with birdsong and boasting lush undergrowth with considerable botanical interest.
  • Our route winds down to the Kilimanjaro National Park gate at Mweka(5,400 ft); and on through coffee and banana farms to Mweka village, where we are transferred to Arusha.
    [4-6 hours walking]

DAY 11.  Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO).

  • After breakfast, we can arrange for a private transfer or taxi to Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO).


  1. Great scenery
  2. Great acclimatization profile
  3. High success rate
  4. Moderate foot traffic

NOTE: Please include your itinerary adjustment preference during price quote request


NOTE: Please include your itinerary adjustment preference during price quote request

You can send your enquiry via the form below.

Kilimanjaro Climb Through Shira Route
From $2,420 $2,420
/ Adult

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