Can Beginners Climb Mt Kilimanjaro? 

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Mountaineering is an exhilarating sport that is accessible to many. Although each peak presents its unique set of challenges, conquering some of the world's largest mountains is a distinct thrill. Kilimanjaro, the tallest mountain on the African continent and the sixth tallest globally stands at 19,341 feet (5,895 meters). It is one of the seven highest summits on the seven continents and the highest lone-standing peak on the planet. Tempting, isn't it? 

As with any undertaking of this scale, it’s important not to underestimate or overestimate the challenge. The guidance and support of professional tour operators like Altezza Travel can help you avoid common rookie errors. But the lingering question remains: Is it a worthwhile endeavor for beginners? It's time to find out. 

Kilimanjaro Tours for Beginners 

Several routes would be suitable for novice climbers, balancing the budget with the requirement for a more manageable challenge. Opting for longer, less steep paths with extended itineraries generally offers better acclimatization and a more enjoyable experience. Here are a few Kilimanjaro routes that work well for beginners: 


  • The Lemosho Route is often recommended for its beautiful scenery and effective acclimatization profile, spanning 42 miles (68 kilometers) and typically taking seven to eight days. It boasts a high success rate due to its gradual ascent. 

  • The Rongai Route, covering 45 miles (73 kilometers), is another suitable choice for beginners, requiring six to seven days on average. Its low traffic and gentle slopes make it less demanding for first-time climbers. 

  • For those seeking a balanced challenge, the Marangu and Machame Routes are excellent options. These routes offer distinct experiences, with Marangu providing hut accommodations and Machame featuring camping. 

It’s important to remember that the majority of routes on Kilimanjaro are good for beginners, as long as you spend enough days on the mountain to properly get used to the altitude. Typically, 7 days or above is the gold standard for beginner tours. 

Equipment and Gear: What to Pack 

You won't need professional mountaineering tools like ice axes for Kilimanjaro, but it’s important to prepare the right gear. Here are some of those essential items: 

  • It’s important to purchase trekking boots of high quality that offer good support and fit well. They will help to prevent fatigue and injuries. 

  • Trekking poles will help maintain your balance and reduce stress on your joints. This is especially important on the way down to protect the knees. 

  • Energy bars, snacks, and plenty of water are essential. The food that you eat on the mountain is of high importance also. Luckily, you tour operator will take care of all the meals so you don’t need to worry about it. 

  • Don’t forget mountaineering sunglasses. A four-season sleeping bag is also a must due to fluctuating mountain weather. 

See your climbing Mount Kilimanjaro company’s website for a more detailed list of gear. Additionally, it’s often possible to rent missing items. 

Climbing Kilimanjaro Secrets: Preventing and Treating Altitude Sickness 

If it’s your first time at such an altitude, be prepared with strategies for managing altitude sickness. Always communicate with your guides about any symptoms like headaches or general discomfort. They will monitor your oxygen saturation and assess your readiness to continue hiking Kilimanjaro without risking your health. Professional operators like Altezza Travel have extensive oxygen systems and detailed health and safety protocols that will ensure that the risks are minimized. 

Taking paths that allow proper acclimatization, choosing non-steep routes, and supporting your body with sufficient calories and hydration are key to minimizing symptoms like sleep disturbances, fatigue, dizziness, vomiting, and nausea as altitude increases. 

Final Thoughts 

A Kilimanjaro trip to Tanzania to climb the proud Roof of Africa is truly memorable and surprisingly accessible for beginners. Unlike more technical climbs, Kilimanjaro requires no in-depth mountaineering knowledge. With the right mindset and preparation for both emotional and physical challenges, you’ll fully enjoy your Kilimanjaro trip. Thanks to carefully planned excursions with Altezza Travel and their experienced local guides, reaching the summit of Kilimanjaro can be a remarkable achievement in your life. 

JL Staff

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