Are you heading out to Kilimanjaro for the adventure of a lifetime with Acacia Africa? You’re probably already feeling the flutter of nerves. Put some of them to bed with this handy list of our top tips for walking Kili like a pro.
1) Get physical
Kilimanjaro is a popular obstacle for adventure lovers to conquer, given she is the tallest mountain in Africa. While she isn’t quite Everest, it’s still important to give her the respect she deserves as a peak. The experience truly is one for a lifetime- but don’t take it for granted. Altitude sickness is a potential worry on this peak. There’s not much you can do to ward it off, but making sure your body is fit and ready will help.
A positive mindset is a must, too. Your porter will help you- but whether you get there or not will be down to you. Whether it’s the perfect summit playlist, or some positivity practices for the mind, invest in making sure you’re thoughts are in the right place.
2) Slowly does it
Talking about altitude sickness… one of the best ways to avoid it is to take it slow and steady. In the story of the tortoise and the hair, it’s time to go full tortoise. There’s no race, see. Just you, a challenge and your will to succeed.
3) Stay hydrated
You’re also going to need to stay on top of hydration when you walk Kilimanjaro. Investing in a constantly-available water source like a Camelbak is honestly one of the top tips we can offer. Aim to stay in at least the 3 litre a day area, and don’t forget to add some rehydration salts to the mix, either. Altitude can bring on some unpleasant tummy effects, and this will help keep your system balanced.
4) Get the right gear
If you’re going to get the best from this experience, you’re going to need to invest in yourself a little. From the right boots, straight through to clothing that keeps you warm and toasty, having the right gear could make or break your experience. Gloves, a hat and scarf, appropriate thermal layers, a great sleeping bag, and the best boots you can buy will make everything easier. And don’t forget your sunscreen, either! Windburn on top of sunburn is an experience no one needs.
5) Give yourself the ultimate boost
Now you’ve done everything physically and mentally you can to prepare, it’s time to tune into the most important tip of all- it will all be in your mind in the end. Come prepared to sing and laugh, and feel the endorphin boost it releases carry you over the low moments. Call your ‘tribe’ together, and find your summit buddy. Climbing Kilimanjaro solo is a feat few manage. You need friends who have your back. Fortunately, your summit-mates may start off as strangers, but you will be firm friends by the time summit day rolls along. And you will need them- and they you. Whether it’s scaring away a moment of the blues, or keeping over-enthusiasm in check, or even watching out when you pee, your friends are going to be a key part in getting you to the top.
Conquering Kilimanjaro’s ancient scree slopes will be a life-changing experience. You’ll meet friends you never knew, and find depths you never suspected you had. With these tips from Acacia Africa under your (hiking) belt, you’ll be able to get the very most from the experience, too.
We can help you make your Killi dreams a reality, too. Explore some of our most popular Kilimanjaro tours for yourself. Each offers you the chance to experience this iconic mountain for yourself, and tick this experience off your bucket list. Don’t forget to enjoy that spectacular sunrise at the summit!