3 Days Climb the “Mountain of God” Ol Doinyo Lengai

  • Climb Tanzania’s only active volcano, the sacred “Mountain of God” of the Maasai
  • The only active volcano in the world that erupts natrocarbonatite lava
  • Watch the sunrise from the summit of Ol’ Doinyo Lengai
  • Enjoy one of the roughest and most fascinating landscapes in Africa

Climbing to the summit [2890 mt / 9481 ft] of the active volcano, which is locally regarded as the sacred Mountain of God in the Maa Language, is possible without specific equipment but the ascent is challenging because the mountain is very steep. The best time to climb the mountain is early in the morning before the sun is getting to hot. The upper part of the volcano is the hardest to climb. The slope is about 45 to 55 degrees. The surface is covered by a thin slippery layer of lava under which the ash is still loose. You will proceed almost crawling, going up and sliding down continuously. The summit tent to be hazy and cloudy except for a few hours early in the morning when you should be able to see the sun rising over Mount Kilimanjaro. There is a cold wind and temperature is about 10 degrees. To descent it will take you approximately 5 hours.

Until 2007 eruption there were two craters, the active northern one about 200 meters deep and the sleeping southern one. After the eruption they melted together.

Mt. Ol Doinyo Lengai is the only known volcano in the world that sometimes erupts natrocarbonatite lava, a highly fluid lava that contains almost no silicon. Natrocarbonatite lava (most fluid lava) is also much cooler than other lavas. During the day most of this lava flows look like fluid black oil. Some feel the lava flows resemble mud like?flows. Natrocarbonatite lava turns white when in contact with moisture. During rainy periods, the lava turns white almost immediately whilst this whitening takes longer during the dry periods.

Herds of zebra and wildebeest can sometimes be seen on the trip. A trip to the mountain can also cover other nearby areas of interest like Lake Natron, which is a breeding ground for all East African flamingos and other birds. There are several Maasai bomas (villages) which can be visited on additional cost, just talk to your driver guide. If you are interested, you can visit the nearby Mount Gelai with geysers and a brilliant waterfall.

  • Day 1: Moshi/Arusha – Lake Natron
    Departure from Moshi or Arusha at 7.00 am and drive to Ngaresero village (Lake Natron) with packed lunch. After lunch you will travel north along the Great Rift Valley wall to Lake Natron and the village of Ngare Sero near the holy Maasai mountain "Ol 'Doinyo Lengai". This is about 8 hours driving. Optional: In the late afternoon, together with a local Maasai guide, you hike through a shady gorge to the Engero Sero waterfalls. There you’ll have the opportunity to swim in a beautiful natural swimming pool surrounded by steep cliffs.

    Meal plan: lunch, dinner
    Possible Accommodation: Maasai Giraffe Eco Lodge or Campsite

  • Day 2: Climb Ol Doinyo Lengai
    At very early morning 1:00 a.m. drive to the base of the Ol' Doinyo Lengai mountain to start the climb. You will reach the summit during sunrise and spend some time there before coming down to the base of the mountain. From there clients will be transferred by Jeep to Giraffe Eco Lodge or Campsite for shower and rest.

    In the afternoon you drive to the edge of Lake Natron, one of the most alkaline lakes in the world. With millions of small crustaceans, the lake is a refuge for thousands of flamingos and one of the most important flamingo breeding grounds on earth.

    Meal plan: breakfast, lunch, dinner

    Possible Accommodation: Maasai Giraffe Eco Lodge or Campsite

  • Day 3: Lake Natron – Arusha/Moshi
    After breakfast relaxation and then drive back to Arusha or Moshi with lunch box or additional program (see our options).

    Before leaving for Arusha or Moshi a visit to a Maasai village (Boma) can be arranged to interact with Maasai people and learn their culture and everyday activities.

    Meal plan: breakfast, lunch

  • Transport from and to your hotel/residence or airport/seaport
  • English-speaking professional driver/mountain guides
  • 4x4 vehicle
  • Guides, Porters, cook salaries
  • All Park fees
  • Accommodation and meals as mentioned in the itinerary or as agreed. N. B. accommodation mentioned in the itinerary is dependent on availability at the time of booking; alternatives of a similar class may be booked instead
  • All camping gear (if applicable)
  • Drinking water during the game drives/walking safaris/mountain hikes
  • Driver’s salary and allowances and park fees for vehicle and driver
  • International/national flights and visa fees
  • Extras, personal expenses i.e. soft and alcoholic drinks, telephone, souvenirs, laundry etc.
  • Travel, medical, injury and luggage insurance
  • Flying doctor rescue services
  • Government-imposed increases in taxes and/or park entrance fees
  • Tips to the driver & guides
  • Anything else not mentioned in the inclusions
  • Optional activities not outlined in the itinerary
  • Visit to a Maasai village
  • Trip to Lake Natron
  • Visit the Engero Sero waterfalls
  • On request other Tour languages possible
  • Additional accommodation before and after the tour can be arranged for an extra cost
  • Extension of stay or additional program is possible / or have a look at our other offers

  • The main rainy season is from Late March to late May.
  • The ideal Travel time is from the end of December to mid-March with good visibility in the mountains.
  • The large dry season from July to October is also suitable, but it can get cold when trekking in the highlands.
  • The small rainy season in November / December brings somewhat more changeable weather.
  • The best time to Travel to Lake Natron is in the dry months from July to October. During this time, up to two million Lesser Flamingos usually live and breed at the lake.

Please follow the list below to ensure your comfort. You will have a better vacation if you are prepared.

But please note that this list is not exhaustive!

Almost all equipment is available to rent from our team in Tanzania if required. Please talk to us in advance for further planning.

  • sun hat
  • sunglasses
  • head torch
  • buff or lightweight neck gaiter (for keeping out dust)
  • rain shell
  • light fleece
  • long sleeve t shirt x 2
  • hiking trousers (zip off style are recommended, so you have shorts too)
  • waterproof trousers
  • socks x 3 pairs
  • hiking shoes preferably with some decent ankle support
  • flip flops for in camp
  • walking poles
  • gaiters for those that have low cut hiking shoes
  • water bottles x 3, enough to hold 3 Liters
  • Usually our tours require a minimum of 2 persons to run. Single travelers can join a tour or ask us for a tailor-made safari.
  • We offer discounted prices for children.

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This itinerary is an example of tours we organize.

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