The Kilimanjaro Marangu Route

The Marangu route is the original Kilimanjaro route. It’s the only route where you don’t camp, but instead stay in communal A-frame huts. It’s not a tough route, but it has a low success rate because you’re not given much time to acclimatise.

The Marangu route is one of the oldest and most popular Kilimanjaro route. It’s sometimes called the Coca-Cola route because you stay in huts and can buy a Coke en route.

The Marangu route approaches the summit from the southeast of the mountain. Overall it’s a relatively easy route, having very few steep climbs.

That said, The Marangu route’s acclimatisation profile is mediocre, as it doesn’t allow much time for acclimatisation. Fewer people therefore make it to the top when you look at its summit success rate compared with those of the other routes.

Quick facts about the Marangu route

Our Opinion of the Marangu Route

During your research you may have heard that the Marangu route is the cheapest, easiest and most popular route up Kilimanjaro. This is, in fact, an outdated view, and we feel quite the opposite. The Marangu route is probably one of our least favourite Kilimanjaro climb routes. Whilst offering rewarding views from the Saddle (a high-altitude desert), it’s less scenic than other Kilimanjaro routes because you ascend and descend via the same trail.

The Marangu route is the only Kilimanjaro route to offer hut accommodation. On all other routes you must camp. On the Marangu route you sleep in dormitory-like huts that provide mattresses and other basic amenities. This makes the Marangu route a popular choice for budget operators that don’t have camping equipment. We only recommend choosing this Marangu route if you really don’t want to camp.

Marangu route overview:

  • Climbing Mt Kilimanjaro through Marangu Route
  • It is the Oldest route on Mount Kilimanjaro, another names are Tourist Route and Coca Cola Route for Marangu Route.
  • Many say Marangu route is the  cheapest, easiest and most popular route.”
  • Not true, Marangu route is only the cheapest route but not the easiest and most popular route. The easiest Rongai route and most popular is machame route.
  • The statement “Marangu Route” is the easiest is misleading. Its easiest trip to organise, have the widest, most comfortable path to walk on and offer hut accommodation, but Of all climbing routes on Kilimanjaro, the Marangu route has the lowest summit success rate!
  • Marangu route makes altitude acclimatization very difficult and its less scenic because the ascent and descent are along the same path.
  • Marangu Route offer hut accommodation in dormitory style But sleeping bag is required.
  • The Marangu route is distinguished by unusually beautiful landscapes with a view of the Mawenzi peaks and the possibility of observing animals.
  • Climbing Kilimanjaro, the  top of Africa, along the Marangu route is a time-tested classic. Most tourists choose this particular route. It is perfect for experienced travelers who have mountain hikes, ascents, good high-altitude acclimatization.
  • During the climb accommodation is taken care of in well maintained wooden huts that afford spectacular views of Kilimanjaro rising above the clouds. You will sleep on a comfortable mattress in a strong mountain Camp. The staff ensure that you are well looked after and you are provided with cold drinks, freshly prepared meals, soap, towels and safari toilets. The cuisine is first class, with full breakfasts, a delicious layout for lunches and 3 course meals in the evenings.

Marangu Route Highlights

Considerations

Marangu Route Tours

kilimanjaro marangu Route

Kilimanjaro Marangu route 5/6 Days

What is the Marangu route scenery like?

The Marangu route is less scenic than the other Kilimanjaro routes because you ascend and descend along the same path. That said, the scenery is still very beautiful; you pass through rainforest, moorland, high-altitude desert, and an arctic summit. It's just worth noting that other routes offer more variety in the way of scenery because their ascent and descent routes differ.

How hard is the Marangu route?

The Marangu route has a reputation for being an 'easy' climb, but this perception is actually misleading. Yes, it offers amenities like hut accommodation and, yes, it's a comparatively shorter route. But it demands you ascend quickly and so many people climbing this route suffer from poor acclimatisation and don't make it to the top. The Marangu route actually has the lowest success rate of all the seven Kilimanjaro routes. This just goes to show that you shouldn't fall for the promise of 'easy'!

All that being said, while we wouldn't necessarily recommend the Marangu route, it is definitely still achievable with the right Kilimanjaro preparation, which includes an awareness of the risks.

If you are physically fit, choose a good mountain crew to assist you in your climb, and can accept the risks, you should be able to achieve the summit via the Marangu route.

What is the Marangu route's success rate?

The Marangu route is one of the shortest Kilimanjaro routes, which gives it a relatively poor acclimatisation profile. Summit success is low. Whilst there are no official statistics, the average success rate across all Kilimanjaro operators for the five day route is 50%. That means your chances of reaching the summit of Kilimanjaro when using the Marangu route aren't fantastic.

How busy is the Marangu route?

The Marangu route is a popular choice among the seven Kilimanjaro routes because it's seen as an easier climb, given its gradual slope and direct path. It's therefore a busy route and can get crowded. If you want to avoid the crowds, this Kilimanjaro route is not for you.

What is the accommodation like?

The Marangu route is the only route to offer hut accommodation. There are 60 bunk beds at both Mandara and Kibo Huts, and 120 bunk beds at Horombo Hut. You must bring your own sleeping bags, but you're supplied with mattresses and pillows at the various huts. Check to see if your chosen tour operator has sleeping bags you can use. The huts themselves have communal dining halls and washrooms. The latter range in quality: you can expect running water and flushing toilets at the lower huts, and buckets of water and long drops at Kibo Hut.

How many days is the Marangu route ?

The Marangu route is usually completed in five to six days. We would always recommend the six-day itinerary. We find that the low success rate of the Marangu route is mainly the result of unprofessional tour operators taking people up the mountain on the short five-day itinerary. A five-day climb simply doesn't give you enough time to acclimatise. Furthermore, climbing Kilimanjaro is not a race. Take your time and soak in the views and experience!

What is the Marangu route cost?

KIAfrika Adventure offers the Marangu route as a six-day group or private climb for $ 1.650 per person (based on double occupancy). This package fee includes six days on the mountain and one day either side at our beautiful parter lodge in the town of Moshi. For more information on the inclusions and exclusions, as well as more details about the trip, please head to our Kilimanjaro climb page.