Mount Kilimanjaro is the highest mountain in Africa and the tallest freestanding mountain on earth. Crowned with an everlasting snow-cap, this majestic mountain can be found inside the Kilimanjaro National Park of Tanzania, at 005.00 degrees south, 036 degrees east, 5895m a.m.s.l.
Kilimanjaro, by any name, is a metaphor for the compelling beauty of East Africa. When you see it, you understand why. Not only is this the highest peak on the African continent; it is also the tallest free-standing mountain in the world, rising in breathtaking isolation from the surrounding coastal scrubland – elevation around 900 metres – to an imperious 5,895 metres (19,336 feet).
Kilimanjaro is one of the world's most accessible high summits, a beacon for visitors from around the world. Most climbers reach the crater rim with little more than a walking stick, proper clothing and determination. And those who reach Uhuru Point, the actual summit, or Gillman's Point on the lip of the crater, will have earned their climbing certificates. And their memories.
Mt. Meru is located in the heart of Arusha National Park and it is 50 miles west of Mt. Kilimanjaro. Mount Meru is a massive volcano reaching 14,980 feet (4,565 meters). This trek serves as an ideal warm up for Mt. Kilimanjaro due to its altitude acclimatization and hiking distances. This trek is also geared towards hikers that prefer less crowds and a challenging ascent.
Because Mount Meru is located in Arusha National Park, hikers must climb with an armed ranger due to the wide range of wildlife living on the mountain. On the lower slopes of the mountain, hikers are more likely to see elephants, giraffes, and buffalo! As hikers continue their ascents, the trail follows the north rim of the volcano’s crater along a dramatic ridge line. Throughout the climb, hikers sleep in designated huts along the trail. Hikers reach the summit as the sun is rising and they will have spectacular views of Mt. Kilimanjaro and of the Mt. Meru Crater.