9-Day Northern Circuit Trail Itinerary

(2 Reviews)
Kilimanjaro Hike - 95% Success Rate
Kilimanjaro Group Climbs
  • Kilimanjaro Group ClimbsOpen Group TrekStart Time: 08:00Available: 25 seats
  • Kilimanjaro Private ToursPrivate TrekStart Time: 09:00Available: 25 seats
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9 Days
Availability : Jan - Dec
Kilimanjaro International Airport
Kilimanjaro National Park
Min Age : 6+
Max People : 25

Compare Kilimanjaro’s Northern Circuit route tours & realize a 95% Kilimanjaro summit guarantee when you hike this 9 day Northern Circuit route itinerary. This especially applies if you’re 40+ years of age and have no experience hiking at high altitudes.

The Northern Circuit route is the longest trail on Kilimanjaro in terms of distance and number of days traveled. This is the only trail that approaches Mt. Kilimanjaro from the north and gives hikers a 360-degree view of the mountain. Trekkers should expect incredible scenery, low traffic and a very high success rate.

If this is your first-time hiking at high elevations (above 3,000m/9,900ft), you should know that the most effective way to reach the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro is to properly acclimatize during your hike. Long and gradual routes like the 9-day Northern Circuit route are great for acclimatization systems to be utilized. See, on Kilimanjaro, there are 2 systems that prevent altitude sickness:

  • The first method, Pole Pole (Slow-Slow in English), requires you to be on the mountain long enough for your body to acclimate to various altitudes.
  • The second method, Trek-High & Sleep-Low, calls for trails to have gradual inclines in order for you to trek to high elevations and sleep at lower altitudes. This method conditions your body to anticipate elevation changes while helping you adjust during your sleep.

Hiking the 9 day Northern Circuit route will give you ample time to adjust to elevation changes and will make for a much better hiking experience. If you’re below 40 years of age, consider hiking the 8-day Lemosho program. The route performs extremely well with hikers that are under 40 years of age.

Highlights From This Long-Distance Trail

  • Performs exceptionally well with first-time hikers that are 40 years of age and above
  • Offers views of the entire 360-degree Kilimnajaro surrounding
  • Has great acclimatization landscapes
  • Has a 95% summit success rate
  • Less crowded
9 Days Northern Circuit Route Mount Kilimanjaro Hike Distance And Elevation Gains

Best Time To Hike The Northern Circuit Route

  •  January through Mid-March
  •  Mid-June through October
  • December

Dietary Food Menus Served On Mount Kilimanjaro

All of your meals on Kilimanjaro are freshly cooked by excellent chefs and served according to your dietary preference.

  • Normal diet
  • Vegan diet
  • Vegetarian diet
  • Halal diet
  • Gluten-free diet

Meet Your Tanzanian Tour Guide

  • 46 years of age
  • Has been leading Kilimanjaro expeditions since 2010.
  • Has 3 years of experience as a porter on Kilimanjaro
  • Received Wilderness First Responders (WFR) safety training

Safety Trekking Materials & Hiking Equipment

High-Altitude Kits

  • Supplemental Oxygen
  • Pulse Oximeter

Medication & Sanitary Treatments

  • Hand Sanitizer
  • Anti-Acid Tablets
  • Throat Lozenges
  • Eye Drops
  • Loperamide Tablets
  • Insect Sting Relief Treatment
  • Glucose
  • Oral Rehydration Salts
  • Dexamethasone
  • Phenergan
  • Soap
  • Hydrogen Peroxide

Wraps, Splints & Wound Coverings

  • Triangular Cravat Bandages
  • Rolled Gauze
  • Homeostatic Gauze
  • First-Aid Cleansing Pads With Topical Anesthetic

Tools & Supplies

  • Paramedic Shears
  • Standard Thermometer
  • Small Mirror
  • Surgical Gloves
  • Small Notepad & Pencil
  • Headlamp
  • Stethoscope
  • Portable Stretcher

Evacuation Protocols On This Walking Tour

  • Evacuations on Kilimanjaro are initially on foot and are accompanied by an assistant guide however if you’re unable to walk, 2 assistant guides will carry you with a stretcher up to the nearest point an ambulance or helicopter can be reached.
  • Once in an ambulance, you’ll be transferred to the nearest gate to be picked up or KCMC hospital for treatment. If your condition is severe, you’ll be accompanied by an assistant guide to the hospital where he’ll monitor your condition and write a report. As you undergo medical attention, your family and Embassy will be notified about your health condition. They’ll continue to receive daily reports until you either recover or a close family member arrives.
  • Helicopter evacuations are extremely rare however, in light of an event, you’ll be picked up at Barafu (4,570m/15,000ft) or Kibo (4,724m/15,500ft) and transferred to KCMC hospital along with an assistant guide. These sites are very high and can be extremely dangerous during evacuations so, rescues out of these sites will be conducted on pilot discretion.

Transportation & Meeting Points

  • You will be met at Kilimanjaro International Airport and transferred to Venus Premier Hotel in Arusha City.
  • The next day, you’ll be picked up and taken to Mount Kilimanjaro, where your Kilimanjaro trek will begin.
  • Please keep in mind that the price includes both the hotel and the transfers (airport + trailheads). 

Departure Time

10:00 AM

Kilimanjaro National Park Fees

Kilimanjaro National Park fees
Conservation Fees$70/Per Day
Camping Fees$50/Per Night
Rescue Fees$20/Per Hiker
Guide and Porter Entrance Fees$2/Per Supporting Crew
Forest Entry Fees$10/Per Hiker
Forest Vehicle Entry Fees$20/Per Vehicle
Forest Support Crew Entry Fees$1/Per Supporting Crew
Tourism Value Added Tax (VAT)18%
Retail Value Added Tax (VAT)18%

Compare The Northern Circuit Route’s 9-Day Prices & Package Tours

Open Group Treks

Save Costs Hiking Northern Circuit Route’s 9 Day Tour With A Kilimanjaro Group. Package includes:

  • Park Fees & Taxes
  • Lodging before and after the hike
  • Camping tents during the hike
  • Mattresses
  • Dining mess tents
  • Airport pick-up and drop-off
  • Transportation to and from the hotel and trailhead
  • Breakfast before and after the climb
  • 3 meals per day during the hike
  • Water during the hike
  • Supplemental Oxygen
  • Support team (certified guides, porters, and cooks)
  • Kilimanjaro evacuation insurance


Private Treks

Get Kilimanjaro Privacy & Flexibility Hiking This 9 Day Northern Circuit Private Tour. Package includes:

  • Park Fees & Taxes
  • Lodging before and after the hike
  • Camping tents during the hike
  • Mattresses
  • Dining mess tents
  • Private toilet
  • Flexible travel itinerary during your hike
  • Airport pick-up and drop-off
  • Transportation to and from the hotel and trailhead
  • Breakfast before and after the climb
  • 3 meals per day during the hike
  • Water during the hike
  • Supplemental Oxygen
  • Private support team (certified guides, porters, and cooks)
  • Kilimanjaro evacuation insurance


Package Tours Exclude

  • Flights
  • Visas
  • Insurance
  • Tips
  • Private Expenses

How To Book A Package Tour

  • Step 1: Go to the booking engine on this page and choose your trekking date, package tier, number of travelers joining the expedition, and click on the “Proceed Booking” button.
  • Step 2: Fill in your personal details accurately, including your dietary preference and/or special requirements for the trip, under the “Additional Notes” section. Once you have finished, click on the “Next” button.
  • Step 3: At checkout, click on the “Book Now And Pay Later” button and wait to receive a list of wire transfer details from the official business booking email.
  • Important Notice: Please ensure that wire transfers are made according to the transaction details suitable for your region. Details will be listed in the booking confirmation email sent after registration.

Payment Process

Paying For Group Treks

  • Pay a small $200 deposit, when booking; then
  • Pay the remaining balance upon arrival; and
  • If you can’t make your trek date, youll get unlimited deferrals at no additional cost

Paying For Private Treks

  • Pay a $550 deposit, when booking; then
  • Pay the remaining balance upon arrival; and
  • If you can’t make your trek date, youll get unlimited deferrals at no additional cost

9-Day Kilimanjaro Climbing Itinerary & Cumulative Elevation Gains


All trekkers will have to arrange their own flights to Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO) and apply for their own visas through the online immigration portal. Visa guidelines are also available on the official immigration website. 

Note, if you’re arriving from a country subject to yellow fever, you will be required to show proof of vaccination. A 72-hour PCR test is required for entry.

A transfer will be arranged to drop off you and your luggage at the hotel to unwind from your travels. Briefing will take place in the evening or early morning.


After breakfast, a car will transfer you to the Londorossi Park Gate for registration while the porters pack supplies and luggages before ascent. Please pack trekking belongings not exceeding 15-18kg as porters are only allowed to carry weight no more than 20kg.


From camp, the trek will resume east; across the Shira Plateau with a breath taking view of the Shira Cathedral. The trail crosses moorland meadow and leads to Shira 1 Camp for an overnight stay at 3,500m. Glaciers of the western breach can be spotted from this point. Expect a temperature to drop compared to the previous night.



As we move from camp, we’ll enter the moorland zone before making our way towards Shira 2 camp.


On this day, we will continue east up a ridge (Shira Ridge) and then head southeast towards the Lava Tower for lunch and acclimatization. As this will be the toughest day of the trek, you may start sensing the change in altitude.


After lunch, well descend to Moir Hut. The “trek high & sleep low” technique is commonly used to help trekkers cope with the changes in altitude. The descent to Moir Camp will take approximately 2-3 hours where the camp is situated on the base of Lent Hills. This grants enormous acclimatization opportunities as there are a variety of good landscapes along Lent Hills. 


We’ll hike the steep trails from moir valley before trekking towards the summit of Lent Hills and back into the main trail and you approach Buffalo Camp. This section offers great views of the plains that extend across the Tanzanian northern border.


After an early rise, we’ll head up Buffalo ridge. This route is rarely traveled and the terrain becomes increasingly sparse. We’ll trek through remote valleys, past the northern slopes of Kilimanjaro before retiring at Third Cave Camp.


After breakfast, we’ll trek steadily up and over the “Saddle”, which sits between Kibo and Mawenzi peak before retiring at camp.


This is summit day and may also be the most physically and mentally challenging phase of your trek. The hike will resume between the Redman and Ratzel Glacier heading towards the crater rim at Stella Point (5,732m). Uhuru (5,895m) Peak, the highest point of the mountain, is only an hour away from Stella Point.



From the summit of Kilimanjaro, you will descend down Mweka route 3,100m to Mweka Camp for lunch. This point will also be the last point for dinner and an overnight stay.


After breakfast, we will further descend 1,300m to Mweka Gate where you’ll collect your Kilimanjaro certificates from the Kilimanjaro National Park headquarters. A transfer from the gate to the hotel will be arranged after receiving your certificates.


If you have booked a Wildlife Safari or Zanzibar Beach Holiday package with us, you’ll  be transferred to the next chapter of your journey. If you have not booked an additional trip with XPATS International, you’ll be transferred to the airport.


Overnight Stays At The Hotel Before & After Your Hike

Camping Tents At The Mountain’s Campsites

Trekking Map Of The Northern Circuit Route On Kilimanjaro

Northern Circuit Route Map

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Related topics to understand:

The Northern Circuit route costs anywhere between $2,400 to $3,400 when trekking with a group. Though this is the case, you can pay the route’s minimum rate by joining an open group hike instead of a standard group trek. Expect to pay no less than $2,400 for an open group Kilimanjaro climb.

Though the Northern Circuit is physically straining, the route more than makes up for it in acclimatization opportunities. Trekkers who choose this trail will be sacrificing physical ease for acclimatization landscapes.

2 Reviews
Sort By:RatingDate

Tomas Granec

Group Traveller

We booked northern circuit route. It’s tracks are easy: you can walk safely to the top without climbing. If you are healthy and normal fit, you make it.

October 7, 2020

Tomislav Vitkovic

Group Traveller

Excellent Experience. The job and the effort of all Crew was marvelous. We had lots of fun, we feel secured every minute during the Hike. Our guides and porters were trustfully and very professional. And we summit successfully. Well done. Very good Job!
We highly recommend the company for successfully reaching the summit on the roof of Africa (MOUNT KILIMANJARO).

September 4, 2019