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Written by: AK on 25 October 2017

The Kilimanjaro packing list: what you should bring for your hike of a lifetime

Packing list Kilimanjaro

Climbing Kilimanjaro is the dream for many adventurers. An experienced mountain crew, good camping equipment and hiking boots certainly are essential tools to help you reach the summit. But on your hike through five different vegetation zones, you will need a little more than that.

The difference in temperatures is extreme: from hot and humid 40 degrees when trekking through the rain forest to icy -20 degrees on the summit.

What should you pack for the hike of a lifetime? We’ll tell you:

During the first two days, you will be trekking through the rainforest at high temperatures. Here you will need

  • A day pack: your luggage will be carried by our porters, but in your day pack you will carry everything you need on this day’s leg, including your lunch box, water for the hike, your camera and rain jacket. The porters are quick on their feet and hike faster than most climbers. You will only see your luggage again in the evening.
  • A comfy pair of shorts, for example sports or trekking shorts
  • T-shirts
  • Hiking boots: there’s no getting around investing into a good pair of hiking boots. They will carry you to the highest point in Africa after all.
  • Lighter sneakers or sports shoes: once you arrive at camp you will want to toss your precious hiking boots. Walking around camp is more comfortable in sneakers.
  • Hiking socks: It will pay off to invest in a couple of pairs of good hiking socks. Blisters is the last thing you need.
  • Water bottles: you should drink three litres of water each day so you will need at least three of these.
  • A hat and sunscreen to protect yourself against the sun.
  • Polarised sunglasses: make sure your sunglasses are of good quality. The higher you climb the stronger the UV rays will be.

And the higher you will climb, the colder it will get too. The hot days will pass by quickly. For this second leg of your Kilimanjaro climb you should pack:

  • Long thermos: it might look funny, but that doesn’t matter on Kili. You will be grateful you packed them
  • A warm fleece or jersey
  • Long trekking pants: hiking in Jeans is not very comfortable
  • A scarf or buff and a warm beanie
  • Rain pants, ski pants, a winter jacket and gloves: these are not part of everyone’s wardrobe. If you live in Australia, you don’t need to buy a winter jacket. You can rent it from us.

Now that you’re dressed, what about your gear?

  • A big bag or backpack to store all your clothes: our porters will carry this luggage for you from one camp to the next. Therefore, don’t bring a suitcase but duffle bag or backpack only. The maximum weight is 12 kilograms.
  • A head-lamp: to find your way around camp and especially during summit night, your torch will be your best friend.
  • A first-aid-kit
  • A towel and toiletry bag: while there are no showers on Kilimanjaro, we will provide you with a bowl of warm water for a quick wash.
  • Toilet paper
  • Your passport and money: your passport is safest with you and the crew will appreciate a tip after the hard work during your climb
  • A book, mp3-player or deck of cards to pass time and find distraction during the hours spent in camp.

That’s all you need. We will provide the rest! Let’s go!

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