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    What can I do while at camp on Kilimanjaro?

    10 minutes read
    10 minutes read
    What Can I Do While At Camp On Mount Kilimanjaro?

    The Kilimanjaro adventure is a long trek, taking around 6 hours before you reach the first camp on Mount Kilimanjaro.

    However, your sacrifice will be worth it once you’ve reached the peak. The snow-capped summit and the almost unreal view from above will surely leave you breathless—in a good way!

    So, what can you do while at camp on Mount Kilimanjaro? Most climbers roam around the campsite, rest in their tents, clean themselves up or socialize with other trekkers.

    Upon reaching the campsite, our hard-working staff will take care of everything for you—from setting up the tent, cooking food, and fetching water. Typically, you’ll reach the camp in the afternoon and have several hours left before evening time.

    What are camp on mount Kilimanjaro like?

    If you’re not using the Marangu route, sleeping in tents will naturally be your way of life once you reach the summit. If you want to know what camp on Mount Kilimanjaro will be like, here are some of the things you can expect:

    1. Squat toilets

    Camp on mount kilimanjaro

    Toilets at campsites are different from those at home. At night, they’re a literal hole in the ground or rocks near your tents.

    However, if you need to get up to this kind of toilet condition, you may ask your chosen tour agency if they have special tent toilets with them. However, you’ll likely have to pay extra for that.

    2. Camp on Mount Kilimanjaro: Nighttime at campsites is colder

    Tanzania - nighttime at campsites is colder - what can i do while at camp on kilimanjaro?

    It will be colder at night at campsites than you might have expected. Thus, ensure you wear layers of clothing while you sleep to keep yourself warm.

    You can also bring your sleeping bag and an aluminium bottle of water to fill with hot or warm water before you doze off to sleep at night.

    3. Camp on Mount Kilimanjaro: Meals at mess tent

    Man plate with food

    Breakfast and dinner are typically served in mess tents. However, they can occasionally be arranged outdoors when the weather is nice.

    Usually, porters move ahead of the group to fetch water, prepare food, and set up the tents so that everything is ready when you and your group arrive at the campsite. Meals can vary each time, but fish, chicken, eggs, and vegetables will be present on the menu.

    Furthermore, there will also be spaghetti, oats porridge, pancake, mandazi, sausage, omelette, potato soup with toast bread, chapati, fruits, and more. Drinks, such as tea, milk, coffee, and chocolate, will also be on the menu for drinks.

    Drink refills will also be provided in the mess tent during breakfast and dinner.

    4. Camp on Mount Kilimanjaro: Beautiful starry night

    Tanzania - what can i do while at camp on mount kilimanjaro - what can i do while at camp on kilimanjaro?

    The night at Kilimanjaro is beautiful and full of sparkling stars, so we advise you to take advantage of the chance to stargaze at the camp after dinner.

    The starry night at Kilimanjaro is one of the experiences on the mountain that you won’t likely forget.

    Camp on Kilimanjaro like: Tents

    Tanzania - what are the tents like on kilimanjaro - what can i do while at camp on kilimanjaro?

    Tents are the go-to form of accommodation on your way up to Kilimanjaro, and within each tent is an oversized and thick foam pad that is an insulated mattress to resist cold.

    You’ll put your sleeping bag on the mattress to keep you warm. You can rent one at the camp if you don’t bring one.

    The sleeping tents are durable and built to withstand harsh weather conditions. They have two doors and are bonded to ensure they’re fully waterproof.

    In addition, a thick foam pad is given to all trekkers to keep them warm during the cold nights on Kilimanjaro. These are locally made sleeping pads and are thicker to keep you warm.

    Three to four people can share the tent with much space left for each person’s belongings.

    If you have a specific setup in mind, Easy Travel offers custom-made trips to execute what’s on your mind with the help and advice of our experts.

    How do you spend your free time at camp?

    Tanzania - how do you spend your free time at camp - what can i do while at camp on kilimanjaro?

    When you reach the camp, there are many things that you can do. You can either choose to socialize or rest in your tent. To give you an insight into the things that you can do at camp, we’ve prepared them below:

    1. Socialize with other hikers

    Tanzania - socialize with other hikers - what can i do while at camp on kilimanjaro?

    To create the best possible experience for your Kilimanjaro climb, you can socialize with other trekkers at the camp. Each person will have a story to tell, so you can use this time to get to know the people who will be with you throughout your trekking journey on Kilimanjaro.

    You can form bonds with others that might last beyond your Kili adventure. This way, you can support one another, making the journey a more manageable and pleasant experience.

    You could also make lifelong friends and travel buddies with some people on your trip. Thus, be bold and talk with the people at the camp, including the crew, people within your group, and people outside your party.

    2. Clean yourself up

    Tanzania - sponge bath - what can i do while at camp on kilimanjaro?

    Personal hygiene is essential, particularly on the mountain where bacterial infection is possible. Water and soaps are available at the campsite, so you can choose to clean yourself up before taking pictures or socializing with other hikers.

    Moreover, wash your hands each time you use the toilet. We provide private toilet tents so you don’t have to endure the “long-drop” public toilets, which are usually dirty. 

    3. Take some rest

    Tanzania - take some rest - what can i do while at camp on kilimanjaro?

    Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro is no joke. You’ll have to walk for several hours before reaching the camp, so it’s not surprising that you’ll want to rest before doing anything else.

    Thus, you can choose to get some rest after you have cleaned yourself. Get some rest as much as you want, but never skip your meals. It’s ideal to lay down horizontally to take the load off your body.

    Elevate your feet on your duffel bag or daypack to help reduce the swelling caused by walking for long hours. Resting your body after a long walk will help you recover and acclimate to the higher elevations.

    4. Taking pictures, videos, or writing in a journal

    Tanzania - taking pictures videos or writing in a journal - what can i do while at camp on kilimanjaro?

    At the camp, you can do many things in your free time. You can walk around the campsite, take amazing pictures of the scenery, record videos or write down your experiences on the mountain.

    You can also create a vlog to document your Kilimanjaro journey and inspire others to climb the highest mountain in Africa. You can talk about how you feel about the day hike, the scenery you saw, and your overall experience on your Kilimanjaro expedition with Easy Travel.

    5. Refuel and replenish in the mess tent

    Man plate with food

    Since you’ll be burning many calories throughout your Kilimanjaro journey, you’ll need to refuel and replenish your body with a substantial amount of foods and drinks to sustain your body’s energy.

    You can go to the mess tent, where we provide your meals and snacks. Each campsite has a shared dining tent with everything you need for a comfortable dining experience.

    At the mess tent, one of our staff will lay out various snacks, such as popcorn, cookies, peanuts, chips, fruits, tea, coffee, and hot chocolate for everyone. This is to prevent dehydration, which can contribute to altitude sickness.

    Health check

    Tanzania - health check - what can i do while at camp on kilimanjaro?

    At the briefing, you’ll be informed about what to expect the next day—which includes

    – weather

    – ideal clothes to wear

    – how long the hike will be,

    – the elevation of the next camp.

    On top of that, you’ll also undergo a health check. Our guide will check your heart rate, oxygen saturation, and pulse.

    They’ll also ask questions to ensure you’re not experiencing altitude sickness. Health checks are done twice a day for the safety of all climbers.


    Are you ready to climb the tallest freestanding mountain in the world? Out of the 7 Summits, Kilimanjaro is the easiest mountain to climb, but it still requires training and preparation. 

    Our Kilimanjaro specialists are here to help you along the way, from preparation and arrival to summit day and descent. We encourage you to contact Easy Travel, a global KPAP-registered, trusted tour operator, to plan your next adventure in Tanzania.

    Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

    1. How can I prevent altitude sickness while at camp on Kilimanjaro?

    During camp on Kilimanjaro, it’s essential to prioritize measures to avoid altitude sickness. Keep yourself well-hydrated by drinking ample water throughout the day. Furthermore, maintain a steady pace while climbing Kilimanjaro to allow your body to adjust gradually to the high altitude.

    Take regular breaks and refrain from pushing yourself too hard. Staying warm becomes particularly crucial during chilly early mornings and late afternoons. Dress in layers and don a warm jacket to trap body heat effectively.

    Drinking hot tea or soup can help keep you warm and hydrated. Pay attention to your body’s signals and immediately communicate altitude sickness symptoms to your trekking party or guide.

    2. What activities can I do during the early afternoon at camp on Kilimanjaro?

    During the early afternoon at camp on Kilimanjaro, you can engage in various activities to relax and rejuvenate after a day’s hike. Set up your tent and organize your belongings for the night. Take off your hiking boots and let your feet breathe while you rest.

    Indulge in a hearty meal prepared by your camp crew to recharge your energy reserves. Converse with fellow trekkers and exchange stories from the day’s adventure. If you have free time, take a stroll around the campsite to admire the mountain’s scenic beauty.

    3. How can I ensure a good night's sleep at camp on Kilimanjaro?

    Ensuring a good night’s sleep is essential for your overall well-being and performance while climbing Kilimanjaro. To optimize your sleep quality, provide a comfortable arrangement, including a well-insulated sleeping bag and pad.

    Wear fresh and dry attire before retiring to ensure warmth during the night. Steer clear of caffeine or alcohol intake before bed, as they may affect your sleep cycle.

    Furthermore, relaxation methods like deep breathing or meditation can be employed to ease into sleep mode. Should you encounter any discomfort or signs of altitude sickness overnight, don’t hesitate to inform your guide or fellow trekkers for support.

    4. What should I do if I feel cold at camp on Kilimanjaro?

    If you feel cold at camp on Kilimanjaro, it’s essential to warm up and prevent further discomfort immediately. To retain body heat, wear additional layers of clothing, including a warm jacket, hat, and gloves. Drink hot tea or soup to warm yourself from the inside out and stay hydrated.

    Use hand warmers or heated water bottles to warm your extremities, such as your hands and feet. If possible, seek shelter from the wind and cold by moving to a more protected area within the campsite. Avoid adding unnecessary stressors to your body and conserve energy for the next day’s hike.

    5. What should I do if I experience natural swelling at camp on Kilimanjaro?

    Encountering natural swelling, or edema, while camping on Kilimanjaro is typical, given the altitude and exertion of climbing. Should you observe swelling in your hands, feet, or elsewhere, it’s crucial to manage it promptly to avert additional discomfort or issues.

    Elevate the affected area above the level of your heart to promote drainage and reduce swelling. Avoid tight-fitting clothing or gear that may constrict blood flow and exacerbate swelling.

    Stay hydrated, take breaks to rest, and elevate your legs whenever possible. If the swelling persists or worsens, notify your guide or trekking party for assistance.

    6. How can I prevent altitude sickness while at camp on Kilimanjaro?

    Preventing altitude sickness at camp on Kilimanjaro requires several measures to ensure your safety and well-being. First, keep yourself hydrated by drinking plenty of water. Avoid alcohol and caffeine since they can contribute to dehydration.

    Additionally, ascend slowly and take regular breaks to allow your body to acclimatize to the high altitude. Consider taking altitude sickness medication if recommended by your healthcare provider. Monitor for symptoms such as headache, nausea, dizziness, and fatigue, and inform your guide immediately if you experience discomfort.

    Ultimately, pay heed to your body’s signals and be ready to go down to lower altitudes if you encounter severe symptoms of altitude sickness. These measures will ensure a secure and fulfilling ascent of Kilimanjaro.

    7. What should I pack in my day pack while at camp on Kilimanjaro?

    While at camp on Kilimanjaro, your day pack should contain essential items to keep you comfortable and prepared for the day’s hike. Start with layers of clothing to stay warm, including a warm jacket, gloves, and a hat to protect against cold temperatures.

    Pack snacks like energy bars, trail mix, and fruit to sustain your energy levels throughout the day. Be aware of bringing a reusable water bottle to ensure proper hydration, and contemplate carrying electrolyte tablets to replenish vital minerals.

    Remember essentials such as sunscreen, lip balm, and sunglasses to protect against sunburn and glare. Finally, pack personal items, such as a camera, sunscreen, insect repellent, and a small first aid kit. By packing smartly, you’ll be prepared for whatever the day’s hike on Kilimanjaro offers.

    8. What should I do if I feel cold at camp on Kilimanjaro?

    When experiencing cold temperatures at camp, prioritize wearing adequate layers of warm clothing and ensure your sleeping bag suits the prevailing conditions. Layering up with thermal undergarments, fleece jackets, and insulated pants can help trap heat and keep you warm throughout the night.

    Moreover, using hand warmers or filling a hot water bottle can provide warmth and comfort, especially during chilly evenings. By taking these measures, you can effectively combat the cold and enjoy a more comfortable camping experience on Kilimanjaro.

    9. How can I prevent natural swelling while at camp on Kilimanjaro?

    To minimize natural swelling, elevate your feet when taking breaks and refrain from prolonged sitting or standing. Doing gentle stretching exercises and massaging your legs can also help enhance blood circulation and alleviate swelling. These simple practices can provide a more comfortable and enjoyable experience while camping on Kilimanjaro.

    10. What should I do if I experience hot spots on my feet while at camp?

    When you detect hot spots on your feet while trekking, it’s crucial to halt and attend to them promptly to avoid developing blisters. Utilize moleskin or specialized blister patches to shield the affected regions and alleviate discomfort.

    Additionally, consider adjusting your socks or footwear to reduce friction and pressure on the hot spots. Taking these proactive measures can help prevent blisters and ensure a more comfortable hiking experience.

    11. How often should I check my oxygen readings at camp on Kilimanjaro?

    Regularly monitoring their oxygen readings is crucial for climbers, particularly when experiencing symptoms of altitude sickness. By keeping track of their oxygen saturation levels, they can better understand their body’s response to high-altitude environments.

    This information lets you make informed decisions about whether it’s necessary to descend to lower altitudes for your safety. Ultimately, maintaining awareness of your oxygen levels can help prevent altitude-related severe complications and ensure a safer climbing experience.

    12. What meal times are typically observed at camp on Kilimanjaro?

    Meal times at camp on Kilimanjaro can vary depending on the trekking company and itinerary. Breakfast is typically served early in the morning before the day’s hike, while dinner is served in the early evening after returning to camp. However, confirming meal times with your tour operator is essential to ensure you’re adequately fueled for your climb.

    Musaddiq Gulamhussein - Owner - Easy Travel Tanzania

    About the author: Musaddiq

    Meet Musaddiq Gulamhussein, owner of Easy Travel Tanzania, a tour company creating life-changing safari experiences for over 35 years. Musaddiq has explored Tanzania, developing a deep understanding of the local cultures and traditions. Follow his journey and gain insights into the African Safari experience through Easy Travel's social media and blog.

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