Private Guided Full-Day Hike to Shira Plateau on Mt. Kilimanjaro

Get experiences of Mt. Kilimanjaro trekking without climbing all the way to the top!!!

This tour is special for those who want to experience the thrill of climbing Mount Kilimanjaro without wishing to summit. The Shira Plateau area of Kilimanjaro offers a fantastic opportunity to experience of Africa’s highest peak and to explore a World Heritage Site as a day trip.

Placed on western slopes of Mount Kilimanjaro, the Shira Plateau highlights the remains of an ancient caldera resulted from a volcanic eruption forming out a volcanic crater dated  half a million years ago characterized with boasting deep valleys, ridges and weather-beaten lava flows. These are wonderfully framed near the Kibo Massif, which resembles twisted, modern sculptures.

Our guide will pick you early from your hotel in Arusha/Moshi after an early breakfast then a 2.5-3 hours drive to Kilimanjaro National Park. While on the way before reaching Kilimanjaro National Park Gate at Lemosho you will have an opportunity to observe local agriculture system, from hand-tilled smallholdings to large commercial farms and coffee plantations before reaching the montane forest around Kilimanjaro National Park.

Once at the park gate you will do registration and after all the paperwork while still at the park entrance, you will have an opportunity to watch the porters, guides, cooks and clients prepare for a trek up the mountain.

Then, you will be driven to the western side of the mountain and up through the forests to the Londorossi Gate, at an altitude of 2,100m, where the hike begins. You’ll hike for approximately 2 hours, with little elevation gain, to one of the base camps used by people trekking this world-famous mountain.  The ascent is over 1,000m, moving steadily up through tropical montane forests, home to a variety of animals and birdlife with rich vegetation. With the help of your guide, you may spot tree dancing Colobus monkeys, crested Turacos and more. Every hike promises incredible views of Mt. Kilimanjaro.

Your hike takes you up to the vast Shira Plateau, a 500,000-year-old volcanic caldera that is now a World Heritage Site, at 3,400m that stretches out over 13 kilometers to the west of Kibo. After reaching Shira Plateau, you can stop there and you can have your picnic lunch while watching porters, clients and cooks arrive from a distance. It’s a great spot for photos, too, with views to the top of Mt. Kilimanjaro, or continues on to Shira 1 Camp.

After enjoying the Lunch and the scenery in mid-afternoon, return to the vehicle and bump back down the track and across the plains to Arusha/Moshi, arriving back at the hotel early or late evening.

NB: For those with limited fitness or mobility, it is possible to drive all the way up to Shira Plateau and then gently explore the surrounding areas on foot. Reasonable levels of fitness would be ideal for the longer hike.

What to carry/wear: The walk can be over rough ground in places, so closed shoes are recommended. Due to the altitude, warm clothing and/or waterproofs are also advisable. Your guide will carry a picnic lunch and each hiker needs a small rucksack to carry water, energy bars, warm clothes and waterproofs clothes as the weather can change quickly.

Price including Services: 

  • Gratuities for your driver and mountain guide.
  • Great picnic lunch during the day
  • Bottled drinking water
  • Group medical kit. Wilderness First Responder (WFR).
  • All Mount Kilimanjaro National Park entrance fees
  • Park rescue fees (this is required to enter the park by the Tanzania government)
  • Hotel pickup and drop off and transportation to all locations visited, per itinerary

Not included services:

  • Alcohol and soft drinks
  • Personal trekking equipment such as hiking boots, clothes etc. (available for renting)
  • All personal items for trip such as snacks, laundry
  • Flights
  • Visa fees
  • Tips
  • Personal spending money for souvenirs etc.
  • Travel insurance
  • Laundry Services