Mount Meru is the second highest mountain in Tanzania. Situated in the Arusha National Park within 1 hour's drive from the Kilimanjaro National Park, is often referred to as Mount Kilimanjaro's little brother. It offers great opportunities to warm up and pre-acclimatize to the high altitude before attempting to scale Africa's tallest mountain. At a height of 4,566 meters, however, Mount Meru is a truly impressive and worthwhile mountain to climb in its own right.
The mountain's distinct appearance was formed around 250 000 years ago by a tremendous volcanic eruption that destroyed the entire eastern flank, leaving a horseshoe-shaped crater. Besides its unique views and diverse vegetation, Mount Meru also gives you the chance to see wildlife in the form of a walking safari. On your trek you might come across large game such as giraffes, buffaloes, baboons, elephants, antelopes and colobus monkeys. But no need to worry – you will be accompanied by an armed park ranger on your tour.
During your climb, you will quickly experience the changing vegetation – from dense mountain rainforest into heather and moorland and finally alpine desert. The higher you climb, the less animals you'll spot, and the more your focus shifts to the landscape. From the top of Mount Meru, you'll be rewarded with stunning views not only of Mount Meru and the inner crater, but arguably also the most impressive sunrise views of Mount Kilimanjaro.
Mount Meru is often climbed in a minimum of 3 days, which involves a long descent from the summit all the way back down on the third day (3-day itinerary). To ease the burden on your knees, you may prefer to split your descent into 2 days (4-day itinerary).