Mt. Meru is with its 4.566m/ 14.980ft Tanzania’s second highest peak. It is located in the Arusha National Park and with its graceful jagged profile clearly visible to anyone visiting Arusha town.
Like most of the mountains in this region, Mt. Meru was created by volcanic action associated with the formation of the Great Rift Valley. Once a perfect volcanic cone with internal crater (actually caldera) lost its top and its entire eastern side in a gigantic explosion million of years ago; as a result of the explosion the top half of the mountain is now shaped like a huge horseshoe, with the highest point, Meru Summit, directly opposite the missing eastern side. More recent eruptions have created an additional peak inside the caldera, the Ash Cone; small eruptions recorded in last 100 years indicate that Mt. Meru is not extinct.
Here are presented the standard Mt. Meru Treks, which follow the same route but differ in the number of days.
This exciting trek to the Meru Summit along the Momela Route takes you through different vegetation zones, varying from grassland to lush forest rich with wildlife (including buffalos, giraffes and zebras ) on the lower slopes of the mountain through to barren outcrop further up to the rocky summit. There is a spectacular and exhilarating walk along the narrow edge of the crater rim towards the peak, offering the ultimate view from Meru Summit.
Although climbing Mt. Meru is not considered to be as difficult or technical as Kilimanjaro in many ways; it still remains a serious trek and proper acclimatization is important. The trek route is also continually steep and for this reason alone it is often considered tougher than its taller and neighboring cousin. It can be climbed in four days (three nights) and some well-acclimatized, fit trekkers even do it in three days – by combining Day 3 and Day 4.
Overnight is in huts. In addition to our walking guide, an armed Ranger will accompany you during the trek to protect you from wildlife.
After breakfast transfer from Arusha town to ‘Momela Gate’ in Arusha National Park, where the trek up Tanzania’s second highest peak begins. First cross Ngarenanyuki River and continue into the forest, passing the ‘Fig Tree Arch’, ‘Itikoni Clearing’ and Maio Falls, before reaching Miriakamba Hut. Dinner and overnight.
Spent the day trekking up to the Saddle Hut, where you can chose amongst the following options:
Either enjoy a 2-3 hour trek to the summit of Little Meru (3.820m/12.533ft), where you can enjoy impressive views of the Meru Summit, the top of the Ash Cone within ‘Little Meru’s caldera, as well as the main crater’s horseshoe shape in addition to magnificant views of neighboring Mt. Kilimanjaro.
Or enjoy a two hour trek to the Rhino Point for stunning views of Mt. Kilimanjaro and Mt. Meru’s main crater. This is the main route up to the summit but because of the extensive views it well worth trekking at least twice!
Thirdly you may just want relax at Saddle Hut.
DAY 3: Saddle Hut– Meru Summit – Miriakamba Hut (14km, 8-11 hour walk, 1000m/3281ft ascent, 2070m/6791ft descent)
An early departure from the Saddle Hut (around 02.00 am) passes Rhino Point and continues along the narrow rim of the crater towards the Summit (4.566m/14.980ft). You should reach the summit in time to witness the sun rising in all its glory from behind Mt. Kilimanjaro. Descent to Miriakamba Hut takes on the same route.
After breakfast, depart from ‘Miriakamba Hut’ for Momela Gate, where you will be met and transferred back to Arusha.
If there is sufficient time, a complimentary game drive is done in Arusha National Park, where rare Black and White Colobus monkeys and numerous Flamingos can be observed.
End of tour.