Why Connect Your Kilimanjaro Trip with an African Safari Adventure

safari tips kilimanjaro

Many people around the globe want to visit Kilimanjaro - no doubt because it's the highest mountain in Africa. Lots of us want to go on an African safari too and see the Big Five. In fact, both of these adventures are very high on people's bucket-lists - so why not combine the two? In this blog post, I'm going to put forward my reasons why I think you should combine your Kilimanjaro trip with an awesome safari adventure, as well as give you some practical information about the former. Hold on to your safari hats, and let's get started!

Where Is Mount Kilimanjaro and How to Get There

First things first, where even is Mount Kilimanjaro? Kilimanjaro is in Tanzania which is a country in East Africa that is bordered by Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, Zambia, the DRC, Malawi and Mozambique. It's not hard to remember where Kilimanjaro actually is within Tanzania - because it's literally in a park called Kilimanjaro National Park, in a region called Kilimanjaro Region (I love this). To get to Kilimanjaro you will need to fly to the airport, which, you guessed it, is called Kilimanjaro International Airport (not kidding).

Top Reasons to Connect Your Kilimanjaro Trip with an African Safari Adventure

So... are there good safaris near Kilimanjaro? Yepp, there are actually a lot of good safaris near Mount Kilimanjaro - from popular ones to less popular ones (which have the advantage of feeling more personal and unique). Here are four reasons we think you should definitely connect your Kilimanjaro hike with a safari trip:

#1. Because You Only Live Once!

Sometimes, especially when you are young, it's easy to forget that we only have a limited time on this planet. Combine that with shorter and shorter vacation times and suddenly you're looking back at your life, wishing you'd done the things you wanted to do when you had the chance and hoping that you get a reincarnated second chance. As much as I'd like to believe that we do, it's not for certain, thus it's so important to do all the things that you want to as soon as you can.

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You could do Kilimanjaro now and save the safari for your next trip to Africa - but what if you don't get the chance to go back? What if you can't go back? We can't know the future, we only know the present so do it now if you can. This is the first reason why I recommend combing your Kilimanjaro trek with a safari - do it before or do it after, but do it, almost regardless of the extra time and money it takes (because, as they put it in Internet parlance, YOLO).

#2. There are Travel Companies that do both!

Whilst going on a safari and then to Kilimanjaro (or vice versa) may sound like the dream, organising it all could be a potential nightmare. Luckily for us, there are travel companies which can organise both your African Safari and Kilimanjaro expedition which makes everything that much more convenient. Altezza, for example, organise group tours every 2-3 days, and not just to Kilimanjaro and for safaris - they also offer beach holidays too, yay! What's more, they're actually run by real travellers - so you know that they not just have your best interests at heart, they truly understand them, as only other travellers can.

#3. For the 'Gram

As a recovering Instagram influencer, I try nowadays to use my skills for good. In this case, pointing out to you that you can have a great Kilimanjaro photo, you can have a great safari photo - but if you combine the two you will have the greatest photo. Everyone loves these two things individually, but put together and they are just *chef's kiss*

#4. It's environmentally friendlier than flying out separately

Although you will need to fly too Kilimanjaro International Airport to climb Kilimanjaro, environmentalism needs all of us to do things to the best of our abilities - we don't have to be perfect, as long as we make an effort. Therefore, it's better to fly to Tanzania once and do the safari at the same time, than it is to fly to the country, leave, and then fly back a second time to do the safari tour. It's just maths (and fossil fuels).

How Much Does All of This Cost?

A Kilimanjaro trip will cost around 2000 - 2300 USD per person, depending on which route you want to do, what time of year you go, how many days you go for - routes are between 6 to 8 days. The different routes offer slightly different acclimatization options. Please note that climbing Kilimanjaro is breathtaking and awe-inspiring and unforgettable - but it is hard (because of the acclimatization). Most people who've done both agree that Kilimanjaro is harder to climb than Everest! Put simply, you need to go with the experts and the professionals when you do this, it's not an opportunity for cost cutting. A safari trip costs between $800 and $2300, depending on how long you go for (3 to 7 days is recommended).

Which Kilimanjaro Route Should I Choose?

Out of the eight main Kilimanjaro routes, the 3 most popular ones are Marangu, Machame and Lemosho. Whilst I feel like popularity doesn't always lead to the correct path, when it comes to scaling mountains, I think it's best to go with the majority - they tried and tested it so you don't have to. Put simply, they're popular for good reasons.

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But out of those three, which one should you choose? Personally, I love Machame Route because it starts in a tropical forest. Marangu is good too, because it's the only route that offers somewhere to sleep overnight. Lemosho route is great if you want to help your acclimatization, because it starts at a high-altitude drop-off point. This is a question I wouldn't stress about too much though, because no matter which route you choose, you will be climbing the highest mountain in the world and get to see Africa from heaven.

Why Connect Your Kilimanjaro Trip with an African Safari Adventure

Hopefully by this point I have shared some useful bits of knowledge to help you with your own Kilimanjaro trip. I also hope that I've been able to convince you to combine it with an African safari adventure. I know it might seem greedy to tick off two unforgettable trips back to back, but really I think you're worth it and (somewhat ironically) it's a more environmentally sound plan!

Let me know if you have any questions or if you've been on both already and definitely let me know if there's anything I can add to this article so we can help out fellow adventurers!

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We overland. We eat plants and fungi. We live outside as much as possible. We are all connected. A female travel blogger overlanding and writing about ecotourism, ethical and sustainable travel, socially conscious travel and housesitting. An online travel magazine since 2015.


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