Top Ten African Safaris

East Africa: The Roof of Africa: Kilimanjaro, Tanzania

Covering the best wildlife spots in Africa is certainly something to brag about. But this list would not be complete without including another bragging right, scaling the continent's highest peak. The mighty Mount Kilimanjaro doesn't boast a large array of wildlife, although at the base you could still spot some leopard and elephant if you're lucky. But it does take ownership of the best view of the entire continent. It is also a study in contrasts.

You begin the ascent in the warm dry plains, ascending slowly to the wide belt of wet tropical forest where temperatures of 85 degrees will have you shedding layers. Not long after, however, you'll be wishing you had brought those toe-warming pads you naively tossed away, thinking they had no place in the tropics of sub-Saharan Africa. Along with the engulfing mist—that can cover you and your hiking party in no time—come freezing temperatures and the threat of a blinding blizzard. It is a glacier after all! But rest easy, all you thin-blooded climbers. Once you summit you will descend at a rapid pace and feel the warmth of the rich sun more commonly associated with Africa.

Just the Facts

Best Season: Climb during January-March, July-October

Highlights: Reaching Uhuru peak (the summit) at sunrise

Published: 28 Apr 2002 | Last Updated: 4 Dec 2012
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication


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