When you first enter Arusha, the first awesome sight to greet you is the magnificent peak of Mt Meru that forms a fabulous backdrop to this bustling town.
Ash Cone – Mount MeruTanzania’s second highest mountain, this beautiful, dormant volcano stands at 4566m (14,945ft) forming a majestic backdrop to the city of Arusha in northern Tanzania. Meru lies between Kilimanjaro to the east and Oldo inyo Lengai and the Great Rift Valley to the west.
Mount Meru is situated in the Arusha National Park; it is a stratovolcano with an explosive history: it has had four recorded eruptions, the last of which is thought to have occurred in 1910.
Treks up this mountain are arranged via Momella Gate, and treks can take 3 or 4 days to the summit, offering beautiful views over the surrounding park, city and its much larger neighbour Kilimanjaro.
The mountain plays an important part of the life of Arusha town, providing the water and climactic conditions that make the town so habitable.
The trek up the mountain is through a rainforest covered with lichens such as Old Man’s Beard, at the base followed by alpine desert and volcanic scree. The ascent is quite steep, the route to the summit passes over streams, through parkland, montane forest, a giant heather zone and moorland. The summit is reached by a narrow, barren ridge, which provides stunning views of the Ash Conelying several thousand feet below in the crater. Weather permitting, Kilimanjaro can be seen in the West. There are two huts available to climbers on the mountain and firewood is supplied. The best time to climb Meru is between October and February, or June to September. No treks are conducted in the rainy season between April and May as it is treacherous.
View of Summit from Little MeruOn the northern and eastern sides is the huge crater, encircled by 2000 ft high sheer cliff walls. The core of the volcano itself rises from the floor of the crater in a grey, grim cone.
The route to the summit passes through parkland, montane forest, a giant heather zone and moorland. Finally, the summit is reached by a narrow, barren ridge, which provides stunning views of the Ash Cone lying several thousand feet below in the crater and Kilimanjaro in the background. Over 400 species of birds, rhino, elephant, buffalo, baboon, warthog, black and white Colobus monkey and duiker are all found in this delightful "gem amongst parks". The visit to the Ngurdoto crater and Momella lakes, with their superb scenery, flamingoes and other wildlife, is an unforgettable experience.
The group will be accompanied on Mount Meru by a guide, armed ranger and porters. Accommodation on the mountain is in uniport huts. The summit of Meru can be reached over 3 days or 4 days.
The following are typical itineraries:
3 day / 2 night Mt Meru Trek
4 day / 3 night Mt Meru Trek