Mount Kilimanjaro

A visit to the highest mountain of Africa and exploring the flora and fauna of this region should be a must on your cards if you are looking forward to a visit to Tanzania in the near future. There is an amazing quality of wildlife and flora in this region and a trek to Mount Kilimanjaro can be one of those precious moments of your life, which you would never like to forget.

Situated in the North Tanzania between Moshi River and Kenyan border Kilimanjaro National Park covers entire region of the Mount Kilimanjaro. The park region includes the moorland and highland zones, Kibo, Mawenzi peaks and Shira Plateau. The park is situated close to Indian Ocean and influences the climate of this region immensely by its size and height.

Trek to the peak of Mount Kilimanjaro, experience the amazing world of wildlife in the National Park and appreciate the natural beauty of the region that is still untouched despite all the interference we have created

The German colonial government declared Mt. Kilimanjaro and the park as a game reserve in the early part of this century. In 1921, the area was further gazetted as a forest reserve. After 52 years, in 1973, a government notice reclassified the area as a National Park. The park was opened for public viewing in 1977 and from then onwards there has been a regular flow of travellers and trekker into this region. In 1989, UNESCO declared the National Park as a World Heritage property. Today, Mt. Kilimanjaro and National Park is one of the most visited places in Africa by the tourists who wants to test their energy and enthusiasm against the challenge that is it.

The best time to visit Kilimanajaro National Park is from July to October and from December to March. From March to June is the season of long rains in Tanzania while from November to January is the period of short rains. Long rains are much severe and it is difficult to achieve anything by going there in that season.

Flora
Entire park region in itself is an attraction and it is difficult to decide what to mention first. Montane forest, moorland, upland moor, alpine desert, and alpine bogs represent the vegetation of the park. Major plants and trees present in the park are health/scrub plants, grasses like Cyperacease, two distinct forms of giant groundsel on the upper Mount Kilimanjaro, Senecio, giant lobelia, Podocarpus specie, camphorwood, and understorey of ferns.

Fauna
Inside the park, a number of mammal species have been recorded above the treeline. Some of them are elephants (Loxodonta African (v)), several species of rodents, grey duiker Sylvicapra grimmia and eland Taurotragus oryx, bushbuck Tragelaphus scriptus, red duiker Cephalophus natalensis, and buffalo Syncerus caffer. Bird species like lammergeier Gypaetus barbatus, hill chat Cercomela sordida, Hunter’s cisticola Cisticola hunteri, and scarlet-tufted malachite sunbird Nectarinia johnstoni have also been found but most of them are few in numbers.

Mt. Kilimanjaro
Mount Kilimanjaro is the highest mountain in Africa and one of the few freestanding mountains in the world. It is a challenge for every trekker and mountaineer to climb summit. Being home to some of the most uncommon wildlife and vegetation types in the world gives Mt. Kilimanjaro a personality of its own. John Rebmann, a German, was the first person to sight the peak in 1949, but geographer Hans Ludwig Meyer was the first person who could reach the summit. Major points that can be climbed are Mawenzi and Kibo.

Olduvai Gorge
Olduvai Gorge is famous for being the site where remains of the earliest human being have been found. Though the skull Australopithecus- Zinjanthropus Boisei was found only in 1911, the secret behind these could be uncovered only in 1959 when it was established that the remains are the earliest example of human settlement in any part of the world

There are lodges and camps that provide decent accommodation for the travellers. Mandara, Horombo, and Kibo have the tourist complexes where you can get the lodging and food arrangements. Camping and hut fees in the park area is $40 per day per person. Moshi is the nearest large city at a distance of around 38 km and some good accommodation options are available there.

Kilimanjaro International Airport is situated at a distance of around 90 km from the park gate. You can hire taxis or cars to reach the park from the airport. There are several trekking routes to reach the summit and most of them traverse through a landscape that is unforgettable and a wildlife that is amazing. Major routes are Marangu route, Mweka route, Machame route, and Shira route.