Culinary Adventure on Kilimanjaro: What’s the Food Like? | Kilimanjaro Sunrise

Kilimanjaro Sunrise
5 min readSep 9, 2023


When you think of Kilimanjaro, you probably think about its breathtaking vistas and awe-inspiring landscapes. However, beneath the towering glaciers and lush rainforests lies a culinary journey waiting for you to explore. Climbing Kilimanjaro is the adventure of a lifetime. Part of that adventure is experiencing the unique food that sustains climbers as they ascend to the Roof of Africa.

The Challenges of High-Altitude Cooking

Climbing Kilimanjaro presents a unique set of challenges. One of these challenges is cooking at high altitudes. As trekkers ascend the mountain, the air becomes thinner, and atmospheric pressure drops. This has a profound impact on the cooking process. At higher altitudes, water boils at a lower temperature, meaning that it takes longer to cook food.

Additionally, the reduced oxygen levels can make cooking more difficult. This requires chefs to adapt their techniques.

Annual Culinary Training

Our chefs go to annual training sessions to ensure they remain updated on the latest food trends. Furthermore, they promptly incorporate newly discovered cooking techniques into their culinary repertoire.

The Kilimanjaro Diet

The food on Kilimanjaro is not gourmet. Yet, it is hearty and designed to provide the necessary energy and sustenance for climbers. Trekkers can expect a diet rich in carbohydrates, which are essential for fueling the body during the demanding ascent. Staple foods include rice, pasta, and potatoes.

Protein is also vital for muscle recovery. Climbers can enjoy dishes like grilled chicken, beef stew, and eggs.

Are you a fan of soup? If so, you’re in for a delightful treat because we craft some of the most exquisite soups you’ll ever savor. Our soup selection includes varieties like cucumber, carrot, leek, and pumpkin. Each one is expertly prepared with a flavorful combination of broth and butter. These soups are a true delight to anticipate after a rewarding day of hiking.

Vegetarian options are also available, with lentils, beans, and a variety of vegetables making appearances in many meals.

With advanced warning, we can also accommodate Kosher, Vegan, and Gluten Free menus.

One thing you won’t get on the mountain is a boxed lunch. Boxed lunches are dry, tasteless meals that are unappetizing at best. We provide hot meals for lunch each day.

One of the key dietary components of Kilimanjaro is hydration. Staying well-hydrated is crucial at high altitudes to combat altitude sickness. Our guides frequently remind climbers to drink plenty of water. Hot beverages like tea and coffee are also provided to help keep climbers warm and hydrated.

The Magic of Tanzanian Cuisine

While the meals on Kilimanjaro are designed for sustenance, they still carry the flavors of Tanzanian cuisine. Dishes are often spiced with a blend of herbs and spices, giving them a distinct local flavor.

One of the highlights of Kilimanjaro cuisine is the availability of fresh tropical fruits. The local fruit adds a refreshing touch to the diet. Climbers can indulge in succulent pineapples, sweet bananas, papaya, and juicy oranges. The natural sugars provide a much-needed burst of energy and hydration.


Eating on Kilimanjaro is not just about the food; it’s also about the incredible dining locations.

Camps are strategically positioned to offer breathtaking views of the surrounding landscapes. We have a porter that runs ahead each morning to make sure our camps have great views and are not near the public toilets.

Trekkers can enjoy their meals while gazing out at the sweeping vistas of the Tanzanian plains, dense forests, and jagged peaks.

The Kilimanjaro dining experience also fosters camaraderie among trekkers. Sharing meals and stories with fellow climbers in the cozy dining tents adds a sense of community and adventure to the journey.


Climbing Kilimanjaro is a remarkable journey filled with natural wonders, physical challenges, and memorable experiences. The food on Kilimanjaro, while simple and designed for sustenance, is an essential part of the journey. It provides the energy and nourishment needed to conquer this towering African giant.

Exploring the unique high-altitude cuisine of Kilimanjaro, spiced with Tanzanian flavors and served against a backdrop of stunning landscapes, is an adventure for the senses. It’s a reminder that even in the most extreme environments, culinary creativity can thrive, adding a touch of flavor to an already unforgettable experience.

Book your trek today, not only to savor the breathtaking views but also to experience the culinary adventure on Kilimanjaro.

Originally published at on September 9, 2023.



Kilimanjaro Sunrise

Kilimanjaro Sunrise is a Kilimanjaro Trekking and Tanzanian Safari Company