Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro, the highest peak in Africa, is an exhilarating adventure that requires careful preparation and planning. To ensure a successful and enjoyable trek, it’s essential to pack wisely, taking into account the diverse climates and terrains you’ll encounter. Here’s a comprehensive packing guide to help you gear up for the adventure of a lifetime.

Essential Bags

Day Bag

  • Capacity: Opt for a 30-liter waterproof backpack.
  • Features: Ensure it has a hydration bladder pocket, comfortable straps, and hip belts for support.
  • Purpose: Carry essentials like water, snacks, and layers for daily hiking.

Main Bag

  • Type: A soft, waterproof duffel bag or backpack (80 liters or more).
  • Weight Limit: Adhere to the 15-kilo limit set by the national park.
  • Porters: This bag will be carried by porters, so pack items you won’t need during the day.

Collapsible Duffel Bag

  • Use: For storing non-essential items at the starting hotel.


Base Layers

  • Material: Merino wool t-shirts and thermal leggings for insulation.
  • Function: Wicks moisture and provides warmth.

Hiking Pants

  • Variety: Pack a lighter pair for warmer days and a thicker pair for cooler temperatures.


  • Vest: A merino wool vest for additional warmth.
  • Puffy Jacket: Essential for insulation during colder segments.

Outer Layers

  • Rain Jacket and Pants: Waterproof gear to protect against rain and wind.
  • Gaiters: To prevent mud and water from entering your boots.

Camp/Sleeping Wear

  • Comfort: Fleece pants and a fleece jacket for relaxation and warmth at camp.

Summit Night Gear

  • Layers: Layer up with thermal leggings, fleece leggings, hiking pants, rain pants, thermal tops, a vest, a fleece, a puffy jacket, and a rain jacket for the summit ascent.


  • Protection: A waterproof hat for sun and rain, and a warm beanie or toque for cold temperatures.


  • Variety: Light gloves for hiking and warm mittens for summit night.

Face Protection

  • Coverage: Buffs and a balaclava to shield against wind and cold.

Socks and Underwear

  • Material: Wool hiking socks and comfortable bras. Include a warm pair of socks for summit night.



  • Protection: UV-protected, wrap-around sunglasses for high-altitude sun exposure.

Hand and Foot Warmers

  • Warmth: Essential for keeping extremities warm during the summit night.


  • Capacity: A 2-liter hydration pack and a 1-liter Nalgene bottle. Porters provide filtered water daily.


  • Necessity: Essential for night hiking, especially on summit night. Bring extra batteries.

Hot Water Bottle

  • Comfort: Can be filled with hot water at camp for warmth at night.

Toiletries and Hygiene

Sunscreen and Lip Balm

  • Protection: High SPF for protection against intense UV rays.

Toothpaste and Toothbrush

  • Oral Hygiene: For daily dental care.

Face Wipes and Dry Shampoo

  • Cleaning: Refresh and clean without water.


  • Skin Care: Prevents skin from drying out in the harsh mountain climate.

Wilderness Wipes and Microfiber Towel

  • Bathing: For cleaning and drying off.

First Aid and Medications

First Aid Kit

  • Preparedness: Stocked with essential items for minor injuries and ailments.


  • Altitude Sickness: Diamox, Advil, anti-nausea tablets, and electrolyte powders.


Power Bank

  • Capacity: A 20,000 milliamp-hour battery pack to keep devices charged.


  • Entertainment: For reading during downtime.


  • Tracking: To monitor hikes and health.


  • Memories: With extra batteries for capturing the breathtaking scenery.



  • Energy: Favorite snacks to maintain energy and appetite.

Packing Cubes and Shoe Bags

  • Organization: For organizing and separating gear.

Universal Adapter

  • Charging: For charging electronics before and after the hike.

Some essential tips to keep in mind for your Kilimanjaro climb

  • Test Your Gear: Ensure comfort and functionality before the climb.
  • Keep it Slow: Maintain a slow and steady pace to aid in acclimatization and increase your chances of reaching the summit.
  • Pack Wisely: Follow the packing list closely and avoid overpacking. Every item should be essential for the climb.
  • Stay Hydrated: Drink 2-3 liters of water daily to keep your body hydrated and aid in acclimatization.
  • Prepare Physically: Engage in a training plan that builds cardiovascular endurance and simulates hiking in hills or mountains.
  • Protect Your Skin: Use high SPF sunscreen and wear protective clothing to shield against the strong UV rays at high altitude.
  • Care for Your Feet: Choose well-fitted boots and take measures to prevent blisters, such as proper lacing and using tape on sore spots.
  • Respect the Mountain: Follow the Leave No Trace principles and ensure all waste is carried back down.
  • Acclimatize Properly: Listen to your body and give it time to adjust to the altitude. Avoid alcohol and caffeine during the climb.
  • Dress for the Summit: Prepare for cold temperatures with appropriate layers, including thermal leggings, fleece, and a thick down jacket.
  • Value Your Support Team: Engage with and show appreciation for your porters, guides, and support crew, who are essential to your journey.

By following these tips and adhering to the comprehensive packing guide, you’ll be well-equipped to embark on the adventure of a lifetime and conquer the Roof of Africa.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here