Kilimanjaro National Park

Kilimanjaro National Park was founded in 1973. In 1987 the park is declared as a “World Heritage Site” by UNESCO. The park covers the entire mountain, above the tree line, including six corridors through the forest, from about 2.000 m. high.

It lies at Mount Kilimanjaro and covers an area of 753 km². The wildlife has adapted itself to the environment. It ranges from elephants, monkeys and various bird species down to a single spider and a butterfly swept by the wind on the crater rim. Around the mountain lies the savannah with agriculture fields, villages, and cities. On the lower slopes, the tribes are cultivating the land, growing coffee, corn (maize) and bananas. Above the cultivated land begins the richer, tropical mountain forest.

At an altitude of about 2.700 meters above the tropical mountain-forest, the land changes in an area with giant tree heath growing up to 10 to 12 meters high. Almost every day the clouds hang low over forest and heath and it is very foggy and wet.

Although Mount Kilimanjaro lies in the tropics, not far from the equator, there are a series of mountain climate-zones. On Mount Kilimanjaro climbers travel from the tropics to the arctic climate zones and back.

Mount Kilimanjaro is the highest mountain in Africa and one of the most recognizable landmarks on the continent. Its distinctive silhouette and snow-capped dormant forms a freestanding mountain massif of 60 by 80 kilometers formed by three stratovolcanoes, situated in the Kilimanjaro region in the northeastern part of Tanzania. The mountain extends over 5 kilometers high above its surroundings and is therefore the highest freestanding mountain in the world. The largest and highest volcano (snow-capped dormant) Kibo (5.892 meters) is flanked by Shira (3.962 meters) and Mawenzi (5.148 meters). On the mountain, there are about 250 craters.

Mount Kilimanjaro is a popular mountain. It is an easily accessible area with, for the reasonably experienced and fit walkers, the highest peak in Africa. The various climate zones on one mountain, makes it possible to make a journey from the tropics to the pole and the particular views of and from the mountain, making Mount Kilimanjaro for many, irresistible. In addition, porters can carry your luggage, and a good cook prepares your meal on your hike.

You must still do the walking yourself though ….

Every year tens of thousands begin the ascent of Kibo. Less than half reach the top. Many people overestimate their own abilities and underestimate the low temperature and the effects of efforts at high altitudes.

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