Climbing Kilimanjaro in January

Climbing Kilimanjaro in January Weather and Temperature 

Climbing Kilimanjaro in January is a popular and warm season with clear skies in the mornings and evenings. However, the long rainy season starts at the end of March and continues through to early June, which is not recommended as the trails can be very wet, muddy, and snowy. The dry seasons are from the beginning of December through the beginning of March, and then from late June through the end of October. Climbing in March or October, just before each of the two rainy seasons, is the best hedge to avoid both crowds and foul weather. The days are mainly dry, beautifully clear with few clouds and occasional brief showers. Hikers who prefer a balance of good weather and fewer crowds. The potential for snow at the summit adds a thrilling bonus. Climbers should be aware of any sudden weather changes, as storms can occasionally roll in from the Indian Ocean.


January is a popular time to climb Kilimanjaro due to several reasons. Firstly, the weather conditions during this month are relatively stable, with clear skies and minimal rainfall. This makes it easier to navigate the mountain and increases the chances of a successful summit. Additionally, January falls within the dry season, ensuring that the trails are not too slippery or muddy, further enhancing the climbing experience.

Furthermore, January offers a quieter and more peaceful atmosphere on the mountain. Compared to the peak tourist season in the summer months, you can enjoy a more serene climb with fewer crowds. This allows you to fully immerse yourself in the beauty of the surroundings and create a deeper connection with nature.


Understanding the weather and conditions of Kilimanjaro in January is crucial for a successful climb. During this month, temperatures can vary significantly depending on the altitude. At the base of the mountain, temperatures can reach around 25°C (77°F), while at the summit, they can drop to as low as -20°C (-4°F) or even lower. It is essential to pack appropriate clothing to withstand these extreme temperature changes.

In terms of precipitation, January is one of the driest months on Kilimanjaro. However, it is still important to be prepared for occasional showers and snowfall, especially at higher elevations. It is recommended to bring waterproof gear and layers that can be easily adjusted to adapt to changing weather conditions.


When it comes to choosing the right route for a January climb on Kilimanjaro, several factors need to be considered. The most popular Kilimanjaro routes for this time of the year are the Machame and Lemosho routes. These routes provide a good balance between scenic beauty, acclimatization, and relatively low traffic.

The Machame route, also known as the “Whiskey Route,” offers stunning views and diverse landscapes. It is a challenging route that requires a good level of fitness and determination. On the other hand, the Lemosho route is longer and more gradual, allowing for better acclimatization and increasing the chances of a successful summit. Ultimately, the choice of route will depend on your personal preferences, fitness level, and the amount of time you have available for the climb. It is advisable to consult with experienced guides or tour operators who can provide expert advice tailored to your specific needs.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. When is the best time to climb Kilimanjaro in January?

A: January is one of the best months to climb Kilimanjaro as it falls within the dry season, providing clear skies and good visibility.

2. Is it safe to climb Kilimanjaro in January?

A: Yes, it is generally considered safe to climb Kilimanjaro in January. However, like any mountain climb, there are risks involved and it is important to choose a reputable tour company and follow all safety guidelines.

3. What is the weather like when climbing Kilimanjaro in January?

A: January is typically a warm and dry month on Mount Kilimanjaro, with temperatures ranging from 50-77°F (10-25°C) during the day and dropping to below freezing at night. It is important to pack appropriate clothing for both warm and cold weather.

4. How difficult is it to climb Kilimanjaro in January?

A: Climbing Kilimanjaro in January is considered moderately difficult, as it requires physical fitness and mental stamina. However, with proper training and preparation, it is achievable for people of all ages and fitness levels.

5. What are the accommodation options when climbing Kilimanjaro in January?

A: There are various accommodation options available on Kilimanjaro, ranging from basic campsites to luxury lodges. The most popular option is camping, where tents and other necessary equipment are provided by tour companies.

6. What are the necessary permits and fees for climbing Kilimanjaro in January?

A: In order to climb Kilimanjaro, you will need to obtain a climbing permit and pay park fees. These costs can vary depending on the route and tour company, but generally range from $800-$1000. It is important to budget for these fees when planning your climb.

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Josephat Mashehe is a seasoned Kilimanjaro guide who offers his expertise to those looking to conquer Africa's highest peak. With years of experience under his belt, Josephat provides comprehensive guidance, ensuring a safe and memorable journey for adventurers. His services include detailed planning, safety measures, and on-site assistance, making him an invaluable asset for anyone aiming to tackle the challenging climb of Mount Kilimanjaro.
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