Frequent Asked Questions

Visiting Tanzania, it’s truly depends on your own schedule, time and budget:

For Safari

With many National parks and attractions to choose from our travel consultant can customize a tour which will meet your taste for any schedule throughout the year.

For Mountain Trekking

Long rains do take place in April and May so it isn’t an ideal time to Trek Mount Kilimanjaro or Meru.

Though for Kilimanjaro during this long rains you can trek through the Rongai route which approaches the mountain from the Leeward side hence receive No or Low precipitate throughout the year and also it’s less scenic

The Great Migration is the annual cycle of movement made by over 2 million wildebeest, 250,000 zebras, and 400,000 Thomson gazelles in their continuous search for water and green pasture throughout the Serengeti ecosystem. Every year, the ungulates follow a fairly predictable migration route however the timing of the movement varies from year to year depending on rain patterns, from the vast Serengeti plains to the hills of Kenya’s Masai Mara.

Typically, December to May is considered the green season and the migration can usually be found on the plains in the southern and eastern Serengeti. By late May when the plains start to dry up, the migration will head westwards to the Western Corridor and remain there until around July before heading to the Northern Serengeti. The dry season from late June to October offers the best wildlife viewing in general with the wildlife migration as its absolute highlight. This is when the famous river crossings take place. During the height of the dry season from August to October, a portion of the migration herd will spill across the Kenyan border into the Masai Mara. Usually, by November, the rains will have commenced on the southern plains starting the migration cycle all over again. The best time to visit the Serengeti is from June to September being the dry season; it’s better to be equipped for cool or cold temperatures at night, especially at higher altitudes. In September the temperatures begin to increase, and it can get a bit hot at lower elevations. During October, the short rains season starts. In June, the herds of wildebeest are located in the iii

northwestern park of the park, in the area of the rivers Grumeti and Mara (Mara Region) where you can watch them when crossing rivers, while in July they move to the Masai Mara. At the end of October or in November, the wildebeest return to the Serengeti, when, the short rain season begins. As for other seasons you can choose. January and February, in the “short dry season,” when they are in the southern part of the park or nearby Ngorongoro and are in breeding season. See the great migration map for visual details.

In short:

  • December to May Southern Serengeti
  • May to June/July Western Serengeti
  • June to October Northern Serengeti
  • November the cycle repeats

The Great Migration Calendar


This is the common question for most average climbers and old age hikers.

Mount Kilimanjaro Summit is the most incredible point in Africa. If you don’t Summit Kilimanjaro it does not mean you are not physically fit enough.

Now let’s answer a question on Can I climb Mount Kilimanjaro?

The answer is yes. Every year, over 50,000 people just like you come to Tanzania to climb Kilimanjaro, the world’s tallest free-standing mountain and Africa’s highest peak.

Mount Kilimanjaro is a place of myth and folklore. Located 200 miles (325 km) from the equator, the mountain defies logic with its crown of ice.

Climbing Kilimanjaro does not require any technical skills or special equipment, just some physical fitness and determination. People from all walks of life, from a 7 year old child to an 89 year old woman, have successfully summited Kilimanjaro. But the challenge should not be taken lightly. You need to understand what lies ahead.

One question we get asked a lot is ‘how fit do I need to be to climb Kilimanjaro? Or simply can I climb Kilimanjaro? Whilst a high level of fitness will make the climb a lot easier it by no means requires super human fitness. We often take people who have left their fifties well behind them and are not in peak physical condition. In fact, if you are carrying a few extra pounds this is a great way to lose weight! That being said, a solid Kilimanjaro training plan will allow you to better prepare for the climb and give you more opportunity to enjoy yourself when you’re on the mountain. Training to climb Kilimanjaro v

What all successful climbers share though is a real Fly Africa Safaris attitude and that means high levels of grit and determination. Summiting Kilimanjaro is a long slow grind but provided you have the determination to do just one more step even when you are tired we can help you get to the top.

If you are comfortable walking for 6-7 hours with an ascent of 1000m then you are certainly fit enough to succeed on Kilimanjaro. Similarly if you can do a full hour spinning, a vigorous aerobics class or can jog at a decent pace for 45 minutes then there is no reason why you can’t summit Kilimanjaro.

The bare facts about the climb are that you will probably be walking 6-7 hours per day with a rough ascent each day of 1000m.

Practice Hiking

The best training by far to climb Kilimanjaro is to get your walking boots on and get lots of miles under your belt. Whether this is two to three hours walking locally or full days away on your nearest hills, you just need to clock up lots of hours on your feet as more than anything else it is just walking every day for 7 days that people find tiring. And the best cure for this is to have spent lots of hours just walking.

Hiking practice allows you to understand the stress your joints will be put under and how well you can deal with this. It also allows you to wear in your boots as this takes some time and can often be uncomfortable. Start with a comfortable distance that suits you and slowly try to work your way up to a 5-6 hour trek. If you can do this a few times then you’ll be in good stead to climb Kilimanjaro.

Aerobic Training for Kilimanjaro

Aerobic (or cardio) training will be a key factor in allowing you to climb Kilimanjaro. Aerobic literally means ‘requiring free oxygen’ and refers to the use of oxygen to adequately meet energy demands during exercise via aerobic metabolism.

Aerobic exercise builds up your cardiovascular system allowing you process limited oxygen in a more effective way. This is key for Kilimanjaro as it is a long distance exercise at altitude which will give the body less oxygen per breath.

Aerobic exercise, unlike anaerobic exercise, requires oxygen for elongated periods of time. Examples of aerobic exercise would be lane swimming, long distance jogging, walking and cycling.

One crucial thing we tell our customers are doesn’t rush up the mountain! Trying to ascend too quickly is a huge mistake. Our porters can often be heard saying “Pole Pole”, meaning ‘Slow Slow’ in Swahili. Because of the altitude your body needs time to adjust – no matter your fitness levels! However, having a good cardiovascular system will help with this, but it won’t prevent it. Kilimanjaro is not a sprint, it’s a marathon! We recommend putting the slowest hiker to the front of the group. vi

Depending on fitness, we recommend a 3-6 month Kilimanjaro training plan. Your hiking practice will help, but we also suggest running 6-12km three times a week. If you’re using a treadmill remember to set a slight incline.

Strength Training For Kilimanjaro

Any Kilimanjaro training plan should also include strength training. Although not as important as your aerobic training, strengthening your upper body, core and, in particular, your legs will greatly increase your chances of success. You’ll be on your legs at least 7 hours a day; you therefore need them to be strong enough to take the punishment.

To strengthen your legs we recommend doing the following exercises:

  • Squats
  • Front and reverse leg curls
  • Lunges
  • Step aerobics

Remember when doing these exercises to keep watch of your technique. Exercises done with poor technique will more often than not harm you instead of help you.

Building upper body and core strength is also crucial as you’ll not only be standing for hours, but you’ll also be carrying gear.

We recommend the following exercises to strengthen your upper body and core:

  • Shoulder presses
  • Back and shoulder flies
  • Sit-ups
  • Kettle-bell rows / swings

Remember to stretch after all exercise sessions! Increasing flexibility will allow your body to recover more quickly overnight after trekking all day. No one wants to trek for 7 hours after waking up with stiff joints aching all over!

The importance of stretching

Most sports injuries occur due to poor stretching. This is particularly true on mountains where repetitive movements over tough terrain put a lot of stress on joints and muscle. To loosen your muscles and increase suppleness we recommend adopting a regular stretching regime. Spend 10 minutes every morning stretching your main muscle groups.

So get that date with destiny booked, put on your boots and get out there walking!

Mental Stamina

Just as important as physical stamina is mental stamina and attitude. There always comes a point (most often during summit night) that you will want to quit and just head back down the mountain. Keeping a positive attitude and digging deep to push through is incredibly important and a valuable skill. vii

Training your mental stamina is no easy thing, but there are ways to accomplish it. You essentially need to construct an activity that pushes your body to what it thinks is its limit, then you need to push past that to reach your goal.

A great way to achieve this is long distance running such as half marathons and full marathons. A marathon will push you to your limit whilst having an achievable goal in sight – the finish line. If you can do this with a friend or training partner then the entire better as you will both push each other to achieve more. Remember, it’s that final push when your head is telling you to stop that will allow you to get into the state of mind required to scale Kilimanjaro.

Understand the climb and apply to your training – We highly recommend you to be training 4 – 5 times a week with heavy weight in your back pack and at the same time don’t forget to do interval training. Remember, on your climb you will be moving up and down hills on steep and challenging terrain up to almost 6 hours in most of the days and 14 hours on the summit attempt. So, it is important to be ready so you can easily manage the distances and miles you are walking and getting specific conditioning for the climb

Summary for Kilimanjaro Training Plan

Frequently Asked Questions

Kilimanjaro Training Because the trek up Kilimanjaro is not a complicated or treacherous climb, but instead more of a hike, it is important to focus mainly on mental stamina and breathing. The high altitudes and quick decent can be a recipe for disaster when you haven’t properly trained for it and can cause you to have to turn back to base for help. Kilimanjaro Training Plan The physical training for Kilimanjaro should be a good mix of stair masters, uphill treadmill climbs and breathing exercises. You should alternate days using the stair master and the treadmill, but do these exercises with around six kilograms of weight on your back. Go for the machine settings that will provide hill simulations and don’t forget to practice your breathing as you go.

Altitude sickness, also called Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS), hypobaropathy and soroche, is an illness caused by exposure to the low air pressure; especially low partial pressure of oxygen, which many climbers experience at high altitudes.

AMS is caused by exerting yourself at high altitudes, especially if you have not been properly acclimatized. It is most common at altitudes above 2400 meters. Kilimanjaro peak is nearly 6000 meters above sea level. At this height, the air pressure (and the amount of oxygen it contains) is less than half that at sea level, and has been said to be comparable to ‘working with only one lung’.

AMS can be serious, especially as it can be debilitating, and it generally occurs far from places where medical treatment can be easily administered. viii

Not everyone suffers from AMS, of course, and it is very difficult to predict who is or is not vulnerable to it. Generally speaking, a fit person is less vulnerable than an unfit person, because their cardiovascular system can operate at low pressures longer without as much strain. Even so, anyone can be vulnerable at altitudes above 3500 meters, no matter their fitness level, if they have not spent some time getting used to the low atmospheric pressures first.

Undoubtedly the best way to see how you are going to react to high altitude is to go high and try to do some exercises. For most of us that isn’t an option so a good alternative is to have a session with a specialist altitude training company that have equipment that simulates the effects of altitude.

Avoiding AMS

I. Walk high, sleep low. It is best to gradually climb higher each day, and then descend lower to sleep. This lets you gradually become accustomed to lower pressures, and then recover somewhat overnight.

II. Slow and steady. You need to keep your respiration rate low enough to maintain a normal conversation. If you are panting or breathing hard, you must slow down. Overworking your heart and lungs substantially increases your chance of becoming ill.

III. Drink much more water than you think you need. Proper hydration helps acclimatization dramatically. You need to drink at least three liters each day. As dehydration presents many of the same symptoms as altitude sickness, your chances of being allowed to continue are best if you stay hydrated.

IV. Diamox. The general consensus of the research is that Diamox is helpful in avoiding AMS. We use it when climbing Kilimanjaro. We recommend you Google Diamox and its effects yourself. It is a prescription drug, and you should consult with your doctor before taking it.

Effects of exposure to low atmospheric pressure

I. Low oxygen saturation

At high altitudes and low pressures, each breath takes in less oxygen, and transfers less to the blood. Blood with low levels of oxygen is said to be poorly saturated. Having slightly low oxygen saturation can lead to fatigue and feeling breathless. Severe low oxygen saturation can cause impaired mental functions, reduce your decision making ability, and have other dangerous effects. All our guides have pulse-ox meters to check your oxygen saturation daily.

II. Cerebral oedema

Severely reduced air pressure can cause fluid to collect in the sinuses and air cavities in the skull. Initially it presents as a mild headache, but can eventually cause disorientation, coma and even death. Cerebral oedema can present very suddenly, and is an extremely serious medical issue.

III. Pulmonary oedema

This is caused by reduced air pressure in the lungs. Fluid sometimes begins to seep from the lung tissues into the air spaces of the lungs, making breathing even more difficult. This often presents like pneumonia, and is most likely to occur during sleep. ix

How to recognize AMS

AMS does not present as a slow, gradual worsening of lesser altitude-related symptoms like breathlessness or headache. It is in fact generally a rapid, dramatic onset of symptoms that can render a person unable to walk or take care of themselves at all.

Our guides are trained to recognize AMS and apply the appropriate first aid. They will monitor your blood oxygen saturation and evaluate your overall acclimatization, but it is vital that you monitor and report your condition accurately, for everyone’s safety.

Our client descent protocol

If our guides believe you may be in poor health or that allowing you to continue the climb may be dangerous, they will require you to begin your descent immediately. If that decision is made, it will be according to this protocol:

1) Measuring your oxygen saturation

If it is below 80%, then you will be required to submit to another test every half hour, for the next two hours. If your saturation does not rise to at least 75%, you will be required to descend immediately. If your saturation is at least 75%, you will be allowed to continue subject to close monitoring. If your condition worsens you must notify your guide immediately, and begin the descent.

2) Evaluation on the Lake Louise Scale

If your score is between 6 and 8 then the guide will consider whether you can continue based on your score, oxygen saturation levels, pulse rate and overall well-being. If you are allowed to continue, you will be monitored closely for the duration of the ascent. If your condition worsens you must notify your guide immediately, and begin the descent. If your Lake Louise Score is higher than 8, you must descend immediately.

What insurance do I need to climb Kilimanjaro?

Kilimanjaro Climbing Insurance is very essential because a mountain as high as Kilimanjaro does have dangers. You should ensure that you have good insurance to cover these risks. It is a condition of booking to climb Kilimanjaro that you have medical and accident insurance.

Your Kilimanjaro travel Insurance must cover helicopter evacuation if it becomes necessary. It should also cover the costs of getting home should you miss your scheduled flight due to accident, injury, illness or simple bad luck.

Your insurance must specifically include cover you to climb up to 6000 meters.

Your Kilimanjaro travel insurance should also protect against the ‘standard’ travel dangers, including: baggage delay, loss of personal items etc. x

General Travel Insurance

Make sure that you have a travel and health care insurance.

It should at least cover:-

Costs for doctors, hospital and medicines

Emergency medical transportation (minimum of $25,000)

You have made a significant investment in your travel plans and while in most cases, everything will run smoothly, situations may arise on or before your trip that are out of our control as your travel agent and for which we cannot be held responsible. A Travel Insurance may help to make your trip more worry-free by protecting your investment and yourself.

Travel insurances can cover expenses resulting from situations such as:-

  • Trip Cancellation and Interruption due to sickness/death of you, family member or travel companion
  • Emergency medical Transportation
  • Trip and Baggage Delay
  • Lost or stolen baggage
  • Doctor and Hospital Payments
  • Travel Accidents
  • Weather delays

We can recommend insurance offered by Travel Insurance Center

For climbers based in the UK or the US, it is best to fly to Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO). KLM flies to JRO from all of the major UK airports and many of the larger US international airports as well. UK flights tend to leave early in the morning, transfer at Luchthaven Schiphol, Amsterdam’s main airport, and arrive at JRO late that same evening.

All of our tours begin at a town called Moshi, known as the gateway to Mount Kilimanjaro. Moshi is situated low on the mountain’s south slope, at an altitude of nearly 1000 meters above sea level. Moshi is only 25 miles from Kilimanjaro International Airport by car, and we will arrange transport from the airport to your hotel as part of your trek. Transport is generally available at any time, including the late evening or early morning, and takes approximately three quarters of an hour.

Moshi is an excellent choice for hotel accommodation during your stay, but it does fill up quickly during the peak season, so be sure to reserve your booking with us as early as possible. It is wise xi

to plan a rest day after such a long flight to recover and prepare yourself and your kit for the climb, rather than planning on hitting the mountain the next morning.

Recommended airlines and routes

Some UK climbers choose to fly into Nairobi via Kenyan Airways or British Airways. These flights are only available departing from Heathrow in London. Climbers arriving in Nairobi generally book a transfer flight to Kilimanjaro international Airport via Precision Air, Air Kenya, Air Tanzania or Ethiopian Airways.

We do not recommend flying through Nairobi, because Nairobi Airport is often uncomfortable, and transfer times can sometimes be very long. It also has a reputation for poor baggage handling and delays in transferring baggage between flights.

Turkish Airlines, Air Emirates and Qatar also fly into JRO now, but these flights often involve long delays and flights leaving late at night for UK travelers. However, climbers travelling from the US often report better service and experiences flying with Turkish Airlines, Air Emirates and Qatar, so we do recommend these flights from North America.

Vayama operates excellent flights to East Africa, including Tanzania, Uganda, Kenya or Zanzibar from JRO, and is a good choice if you wish to see more of this beautiful region before returning home. Many travelers schedule a beach holiday in exotic Zanzibar to rest up after their climb. We find the best way to arrange transport for that is to book your return flight out of Dar es Salaam, then to Zanzibar on an internal flight, and eventually back to Dar es Salaam for your flight home.

Frequently asked questions

Getting to Kilimanjaro

Because Kilimanjaro is in Tanzania, you will need to more than likely travel to get there, this means flying to Kilimanjaro International Airport and then get to Moshi or Arusha, which is approximately 45 km away, to start your climb. If you can’t get into Kilimanjaro International Airport from a direct flight, you can fly to Dar es Salaam or Nairobi, Kenya and then head to the Kilimanjaro airport.


Journey to the celebrated Northern Circuit of Tanzania, following the path of the last Great Migration on earth.

Send custom inquiry

Quotes are provided without any obligation to book. Your request will be sent directly to the operator