In addition to its height (it is the highest African mountain), Mount Kilimanjaro is the most famous too. It’s in the Great Rift Valley and it is a stratovolcano composed of three distinct dormant craters: Kibo, the highest (5,895 metres), Mawenzi and Shira.
The environment you walk through before reaching the summit is various:
- The slopes, up to 1,800 metres, are highly populated, cultivated but also covered by forests.
- Up to 2,800 metres, the vegetation is luxuriant and there are Senecio plants, endemic in this region.
- The moorland, up to 4,000 metres, with the typical Erica
- The alpine desert, up to 5,000 metres, experiences a wide temperature range between night and day… the vegetation here does not exceed 50 species, including mosses and lichens. With this kind of hostile climate, animal life is difficult as well.
- The summit: above 5,000 meters. During the day, the temperature can be very high, the vegetation is almost exclusively lichens while the wildlife is almost absent.
It is possible to climb this outstanding giant with qualified and experienced guides and porters. There are several access points: the main itinerary is Marangu Route.