Umbwe Cave Camp Elevation / Altitude: 2,930 meters

Umbwe Cave Camp is the first accommodation point that you will use when you are hiking using the Umbwe Route on Mount Kilimanjaro. It is comparatively small among all the camps on the mountain where you will most definitely have dinner and spend the night on day 1 of climbing along Umbwe Route just after a brief hike from the starting point, the Umbwe Gate. The next stop after Umbwe Cave Camp is usually the Barranco Camp. Umbwe Campsite bears very basic features like public toilets and about 3 communal pit latrines. Other than that, there is nothing else on this campsite.

Location of Umbwe Cave campsite

The Umbwe Cave Camp is situated on the Southern slopes of the mountain in the rainforest zone of Mount Kilimanjaro surrounded by tall trees, and moss-filled rocks where the terrain is always wet and muddy due to high precipitation. This rainforest vegetation receives rain from time to time and the weather is always unpredictable. The hike from Umbwe Cave Camp to the next camp, Barranco Camp is steep and direct leading to the heath and moorland vegetation that is present at Barranco Camp. Though Umbwe Cave Camp is closer to the Umbwe River, it sits in between the ridge that is sandwiched between River Lonzo and River Umbwe.

Umbwe Gate to Umbwe Camp

Your hike to Umbwe Cave Camp begins at Umbwe Gate and takes you through a dense montane forest. Your senses are assaulted by the towering trees, the heavy humidity in the air, and the entrancing singing of the birds.

While the track rises progressively and is rather clear as you follow the heavily forested trail, there may be some steep spots. Because it is a rainforest, there may be mud, and you could have to scramble over rocks, so proceed with caution at all times. Having said that, it is always possible for it to rain nearby, so make sure you have rain gear on hand!

As you get closer to the crest between the Lonzo and Umbwe rivers, the path starts to get more congested. If you’re fortunate, you could catch a sight of Kibo Peak in the distance in addition to the stunning vistas of the deep gorges.

The day comes to an end at the Umbwe Cave Camp, where you are surrounded by trees and dense vegetation.




Additional information

RoutesUmbwe Route
AmenitiesLunch and Picnic Site
VegetationRainforest Zone

third cave