Tanzania and Kilimanjaro – Luggage Factory

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Tanzania and Kilimanjaro

If you’re traveling to Tanzania you’re probably thinking of climbing the elusive Kilimanjaro and you’re an experienced hiker with an awesome Eagle Creek backpack to boot. But there is so much more to Tanzania than the huge mountain. Let’s Explore it together. Before Traveling to Tanzania, you will need Both Passport and Visa. Vaccines for Routine, Typhoid and Malaria. Speak some basic Swahili (just enough to get out of a jam)  and some Tanzanian Shilling.

When Visiting Tanzania, be sure to check out these locations

  • Gombe National Park.
  • Lake Victoria
  • Serengeti adventure
  • Ruaha National Park
  • Udzungwa national park.
  • Dar es Salaam
  • And of course Kilimanjaro
Game Safari season starts January to March or June to September. Kilimanjaro Treks are best done during January and February or September. Birdwatching is best on October-April

Tipping and Culture Warnings

  • Waitstaff Require 5% tip. Bartenders 2K TSH , 20 K TSH for tour guides/Day, 2K TSH for Bag handlers and Taxi drivers round up.
  • Avoid Touching others of the opposite gender in public.
  • If your taxi doesn’t have a meter, agree on a price before the ride.
  • Wash your hands before and after meals.
  • Server yourself, eat and use utensils with your right hand only. Keep your left hand in your lap at all time, stay at the dining area until signaled its time to leave.
  • A right-handed handshake is the standard greeting, but Tanzania woman may simply bow.
  • Close male friends may hold hands while walking, However , being male homosexual activity is illegal.
  • Women should dress modestly, especially in rural areas & Zanzibar. Both Genders should avoid shorts.
  • Haggling is expected at almost all markets. Typically you can reduce the price by up to half.

Food to try

  • Ugali
  • Curried Fish
  • Pilau
  • Mchicha Stew
  • Samasas
  • Fried Plantains
  • Konyagi Spirit
  • Local Beans

Basic Swahili

  • Hello ( hooo-JAHM-Boh)
  • Goodbye ( Kwah-HAIR-eee)
  • Please ( Ta-fah-Dhal-Eee__)
  • Thank you ( Ah-SAH-TEY)
  • You’re Welcomed ( Kah-Reeee-boooo)
  • Pardon Me ( Sah-mah-HAHH-neee)
  • English? ( Keen-Gee-RAY-ZAH)?
  • Yes ( nDEE-oh)
  • No ( Hah-PAHN-ah)
Now that we’ve covered the basics lets tackle that huge mountain.  Mount Kilimanjaro, AKA “The Rooftop of Africa ” is NOT a mountain but a dormant Volcano. In 1889 , German Geographer Hans Meyer and his Austrian companions became the first to climb the mountain. The key Routes to the Mountain Summit are: Lemosho, Shira, Machame, Umbwe, Marangu ( also known as the coca cola route) and Ringali. Its Located near the town of Moshi in Northen Tanzania

When to climb

Before climbing you must choose a good time off year. Its best to do so on December , January or February, decent weather, lodges may cost a little more but they are reasonable. The BEST time though is on September to October. Optimal weather and best prices for traveling.

Choose a route:

  All Routes are very scenic. Route choice is mainly a personal preference. The peak of Kilimanjaro is over 19,343 Fl Tall and over 56,000 people climbed it in 2017. Glaciels on top are expected to be gone in 20 years.
  • Lemosho , Machame and Shira Routes are very similar and take upt to 2 days to cover
  • Rongai Route : Comes from the Northeast and descends to the south East
  • Northern Circuit – the only route that goes around the norhten side of Killimanjaro.
Choose the number of days you want to be on the mountain.  Successful summit greatly depends on your ability to acclimate to the high altitude. Spending more tays on the mountain gives your body more time to get used to the low oxygen environment. 9 Day climbs have a 90% summit success Rate.

Book a Climb

  1. Book with a reputable agent whi specializes in Kilimanjaro climbs such as peak planet. – Group climbs start at around $2000 and go up to $3500 per person.
  2. Airfare from the united states rages from $1400 to $3000 depending on the time of year.
  3. Remember to tip. Tipping is approximately $175 -$250 Per Person
  4. Tanzanian Visa is $100 for US citizens. Can be purchased at the airport.

Book a flight:

From the USA: Fly KLM/Delta to Amsterdam to Kilimanjaro airport ( JRO)  Fly Ethiopian Air form Washington DC. To Addis Ababa to Kilimanjaro Airport ( JRO)

Start Training.

  • Climbing Kilimanjaro is tough mentally and physically.
  • Hike from 2-4 hours 2-3 times a week for 4 months or more
  • No trails nearby? Walk on a treadmill at an incline
  • Wear a 15 LB backpack while training,
  • Walk up and down hills

Summit at the top of Kilimanjaro.

  Summit nights begin at midnight, after a long 7 hour hike in below freezing temp, you will reach a sign that says. Congratulations you are at Uhuru Peak 5895 M. AMSL Tanzania, Africa’s Highest Point.

Training Schedule

  1. Begin training 12-16 weeks before you go. Aim for 45-90 Minutes of cardio 3-4 times per week , include Jogging , cycling swimming and stair climbing
  2. Incorporate intervals 2x Week to help your body ‘s ability to utilize oxygen.
  3. Pair with strength training.
  4. Once a week try to complete a day hike. – Start with a distance of 6-8 miles at an elevation of 2000-3000 Feet and carrying a 30 -50 lb pack.

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