4 Days Mount Meru Trekking Tour
An ascent of Mount Meru is a great experience and very rewarding. Today’s crater of Mt Meru was formed about 250,000 years ago when the volcano erupted sideways. During this process the eastern side of the volcanic cone was blasted away, leaving the northern, southern and western slopes of the cone intact. Therefore, the crater of Mt. Meru looks like a horseshoe from above, with its highest point on the western crater rim. The huge cliffs below the summit drop a breathtaking 1500 meters to the crater floor, making it one of the highest crater walls in all of Africa.
Mount Meru is the fifth highest mountain on the African continent and the second highest in Tanzania. On the relatively demanding four-day hike you will probably see giraffes, buffalos, antelopes and monkeys. A tour up to Socialist Peak at 4,566 meters on the only legal Momela route therefore is not only a mountain tour but also a walking safari. An armed park ranger will accompany you for safety.
Day 1: Arrival in Arusha
Transfer from Kilimanjaro airport or Arusha bus terminal (e.g. from Nairobi) to your accommodation in Moshi or Arusha.
Day 2: Arusha – Momella Gate (1,500 m) – Miriakamba Hut (2,500 m)
altitude Δ: 1000 m, distance: approx. 7 km, time required: approx. 6 hours
After your breakfast you will be picked up from your accommodation in Arusha / Moshi and transferred to Momella Gate inside the Arusha National Park. Upon arrival, porters will organize and pack your belongings while you complete the registration process with TANAPA (Tanzania National Park Authority) and sign into the mountaineering book. Your first Mount Meru Trekking day is very similar to a walking safari for the most part. Expect to see giraffes, antelopes, buffalo, zebras and elephants near the trail. After about 2 hours the Maio waterfall comes into sight – the perfect place to rest and have a picnic. Afterwards you walk through the famous fig tree arch and finally reach the Miriakamba Hut at 2500 meters. Due to the presence of wildlife you will always be accompanied by an armed ranger. Dinner followed by an overnight stay at Miriakamba Hut.
Day 3: Miriakamba Hut (2,500 m) – Saddle Hut (3,000 m)
altitude Δ: 1000 m, distance: approx. 6 km, time required: approx. 4 hours
After breakfast you follow a steep path. Due to the gain in altitude it gets noticeably cooler than the day before. The clouds often hang low in the rainforest and create an impressive atmosphere in the lush vegetation. After about 2 hours of ascent you will reach the viewpoint “Mgongo wa Tembo” (Elephant Ridge) at 3.200 m where you can take a well-deserved break. You reach the tree line and the landscape changes into heath and moorland. When you arrive at the Saddle Hut and still have enough energy left, you can make a detour to Litte Meru at 3820 meters. If the weather is good, you will have a magnificent view of Arusha and Kilimanjaro National Park. Dinner and early evening rest in the Saddle Hut.
Day 4: Saddle Hut (3,550 m) – Socialist Peak (4,562 m) – Miriakamba Hut (2,500 m)
altitude Δ: 1050 m, distance: approx. 16 km, time required: approx. 11 hours
After a short night, you will have a quick breakfast and start your summit hike very early at around 2 am. The trail leads you through a steep ascent to Rhino Point at 3800 meters and finally to Cobra Point at 4350 meters. Towards the end of the hike, you will climb a ridge between the inner cliffs of Meru and its crater. At sunrise you will reach Socialist Peak at 4562 meters. Hongera (Congratulations)! You will enjoy a truly spectacular view of the desert-like Mount Meru Caldera and Kilimanjaro on the horizon. After you have celebrated your success and appreciate the unique scenery once again, you descend to the Saddle Hut and take a lunch break. Afterwards you descend to Miriakamba Hut (2500 m) where you have dinner and stay overnight.
Day 5: Miriakamba Hut (2,500 m) – Momella Gate (1,500 m) – Arusha
altitude Δ: 1000 m, distance: approx. 4 km, time required: approx. 3 hours
After breakfast you follow an alternative route back to the Momella Gate. This route is a little shorter, but there is still a chance to see elephants, buffalo, giraffe and colobus monkeys. At the gate you say goodbye to your team and ranger. After you have been issued a summit certificate, your driver will take you back to your accommodation in Arusha or Moshi.
Day 6: Arusha / Moshi
After breakfast transfer to the central bus station, to the airline office in the city for your shuttle bus to the airport or extension e.g. Northern Circuit Safari, Mount Kilimanjaro Trekking or onward flight to Zanzibar.