Kilimanjaro Crater Camp 12-day tour

Kilimanjaro Climbing Tours via Kilimanjaro Crater Camp 

Kilimanjaro Crater Camp is by far the highest campsite on Kilimanjaro. Very few people stay there, but for some it’s an exciting addition to their Kilimanjaro climb itinerary. We introduce you to Crater Camp and discuss the pros and cons of overnighting there.

Where is Kilimanjaro Crater Camp?

The simplest answer is that Crater Camp sits within the depression that exists at the top of Kilimanjaro’s highest volcanic cone. The campsite is a little lower than Uhuru Peak, the highest point on Kilimanjaro.

Three concentric craters

Kibo is not a neat cone, as a volcanic eruption long ago blasted off its top. What now exists at the top of Kibo are three concentric craters:

The innermost crater is called Reusch Crater and contains the Ash Pit.

Encircling Reusch Crater is the Inner Cone.

The outermost crater – Kibo Crater – is about 2.5 km wide and its on this crater’s rim that you find Uhuru Peak, the tallest point on the entire mountain.

Tour Starts & Ends

Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO)

No. Persons Limit

Minimum 2 passengers to operate. Maximum 7 passengers in each group.

Departure Dates

On request (the tour starts at any time if the participants are ready)

Cost of Addtional Services

Extra cost such as tips, oxygen tanks, foods in hotels  $ $ $

How high is Kilimanjaro Crater Camp?

Crater Camp is 5,750 m (18,865 ft) above sea level. For comparison, Uhuru Peak – the mountain’s summit – is 5,895 m (19,340 ft). So you really don’t descend much before setting up camp.

Another height comparison is Everest Base Camp, which sits noticeably lower at 5,364 m (17,598 ft).

How far from Uhuru Peak is Crater Camp?

Kilimanjaro Crater Camp is only 1 km (0.6 mi) northeast of Uhuru Peak. It takes up to an hour to hike there.

Which route must I climb for Crater Camp?

We offer to take clients climbing the Lemosho or Northern Circuit to Crater Camp. These routes offer good acclimatisation, which is needed for a stay at Crater Camp.

What’s special about Kilimanjaro Crater Camp?

The main appeal of Crater Camp is the chance to explore the crater during the day. Temperatures can be quite pleasant in the daytime, and you get to explore the crater at your leisure, with almost nobody else around.

Those visiting Kibo Crater get to enjoy being close up and personal with features that many will never see, like Furtwangler Glacier reaching towards the sky, and the steep sides of the menacing Ash Pit. In addition, the next morning when you awake you have an easy walk to the crater rim for a sublime and unparalleled sunrise!

Kibo Crater is completely desolate; to set up camp in such a space is to make a home – for just a little while – of a truly inhospitable place.

Lunar landscape

The lunar-like landscape of Kibo Crater is mesmerising. When not covered in snow, you walk across grey-brown ash, scree and rocks. In winter, a thin blanket of snow can soften the scene and belie its otherworldly nature.

When not covered in snow, the crater floor is a dusty, dry and desolate place

Ice fields

The snow on the top of Kilimanjaro comes and goes with the seasons, but the ice fields and isolated glaciers are constant. That said, they’re sadly shrinking: between 1912 and now they’ve lost about 80% of their mass.

Furtwangler Glacier

Furtwangler Glacier is one of the most famous Kilimanjaro glaciers. One reason for this is its proximity to Uhuru Peak. Most trekkers, however, don’t get close to it. Those who descend to Crater Camp, on the other hand, have the treat of walking right up to it.

Furtwangler Glacier is shrinking, so for those who want to see it – now is the time

Standing at the base of Furtwangler gives you a sense of its immense scale, which is denied to those who just see it from far away and above. You also get to truly appreciate its icy blue-and-white beauty, and see up close the repeating patterns wrought upon it by endless exposure to fierce cold and winds.

The Ash Pit

The Ash Pit refers to the mountain’s vent in Reusch Crater and is something to behold. The steep drop is a heady sight, and the pit is a potent reminder of Kilimanjaro’s volcanic history.

Reusch Crater is the innermost of three concentric craters on Kibo and contains the Ash Pit

Those staying at Kilimanjaro Crater Camp who are feeling strong can take on the two- to three-hour roundtrip hike from Crater Camp that lets them visit Reusch Crater and the Ash Pit. It has to be one of the most epic photo ops on offer!

Expect a rough night

Those staying at  Kilimanjaro Crater Camp should expect a difficult night. The two main challenges are the cold and the extreme altitude.

A very cold night

At night the temperature in Kibo Crater can easily drop below -10°C (14°F), sometimes even reaching around -20°C (-4°F). Snow is also a possibility. December and January are the coldest months, with the greatest likelihood of snowfall. Snowfall can obscure your view of the landscape, so this is something to bear in mind. When choosing a month to climb, we definitely recommend reading Best time to climb Kilimanjaro.

Effects of altitude

And then there’s the effects of the altitude. Everyone staying at Crater Camp experiences some symptoms of altitude sickness, like dizziness, nausea, headaches, shortness of breath and poor sleep. Headaches are particularly common at Crater Camp, and can be pretty bad.

You can expect to only get around 10% of your usual amount of sleep at Crater Camp. You can also expect headaches and nausea.

Who should stay at Kilimanjaro Crater Camp?

The better candidates for a Crater Camp stay are those who have trekked and slept at high altitude before. These folks have better insight into what their bodies can and cannot handle. People who already live at high altitude also have an advantage.

We don’t feel it’s for us to either encourage or discourage you from including a Crater Camp sleepover. Everyone is different, and for some the views and experience of staying a night in Crater Camp will outweigh the discomforts associated with it. For others, the almost guaranteed headaches, nausea and sleeplessness will be too much and they’d do better to leave this option alone. Only you know you best.

Additinal Information

  1. Discounted Group Rates: Available on Request
  2. Departure dates: on request (the tour starts at any time if the participants are ready)
  3. PLEASE NOTE: The tour can be upgraded to a higher standard accommodation at an extra cost. It can also be cheaper if less expensive (but still good quality) accommodation is used. The final cost of the tour depends on your budget and preference.
  4. Please note:The climb / Safari / zanzibar beach can also be booked on private / individual basis departing daily


  1. Prices are per adult when sharing accommodations with another adult.
  2. * The final price for your package will vary depending on how many people are in your travel group and also the specific dates of your trip. 
  3. *We make a big effort to offer the best possible prices, which depend upon many factors like the constantly changing prices of gas and park fees, etc. 
  4. Single Supplement Applies To Any Client In A Single Room Or Tent: 




Africa safari is much more fun if you are going with a friend or family! And we would like to make it easier for you! If you are travelling with a friend or family – we would like to offer you a 5% discount to each of you from the price of the program. Are you with 10 people? Then 10% discount. Are you with 12 or more – then 15% discount to each of you! The conditions of receiving the discount are the following – you should let us know with whom are you travelling and we will calculate a discount for you. Discount will be deducted from the second half of the payment that you are supposed to do upon arrival.

If you Gilmans Point (green certificate) or Uhuru Peak (gold certificate) have passed, then you get to the entrance / exit a certificate with the message that you have reached the highest point in Africa.


Trek Schedule