There are challenging peaks that can be found from Morocco’s Atlas Mountains all the way to South Africa’s Drakensberg. To illustrate, the highest mountain on the continent, Mount Kilimanjaro is Africa’s most popular trekking destination. Additionally, lesser-known mountain ranges like Uganda’s Rwenzori Mountains offer an astonishing array of snow-capped peaks right next to the equator. If you are a true adventurer with a plan to conquer the trekking routes in beautiful mountains in Africa, here are The Broad Life‘s top 10 suggestions.

1. Mount Kilimanjaro – Tanzania

A line of adventurers is trekking Mt. Kilimanjaro
A line of adventurers is trekking Mt. Kilimanjaro.

Actually, Mount Kilimanjaro is Africa’s most popular trekking destination and at 19,341 feet (5,895m), it is Africa’s highest peak. Especially, the route to the summit takes you through 5 different climates. There are about 30,000 people who attempt the climb each year. The successful rate of ascent on Kilimanjaro is approximate 65-70%.

The routes vary in difficulty level, traffic, and scenic spots. The least difficult routes are Marangu and Machame. On the other hand, the more difficult routes are Shira, Lemosho, and Umbwe. The longer routes will be more difficult to walk but you will be more acclimatized and your chances of reaching the top are higher.

2. Mount Kenya – Kenya

a couple reached the peak of Mt. Kenya at the elevation of 4,985m
A couple just reached the Lenana peak of Mt. Kenya at the elevation of 4,985m.

In fact, Mount Kenya is the second-highest mountain in Africa. There are different trekking routes in the area of Mt. Kenya for you to choose from. While the highest peaks Batian (5,200m) and Nelion (5,188m) require some climbing technique, Lenana (4,985m) is the peak that many adventurers choose. The slopes of Kenya are covered with forests and moors, giving way to rock, ice and snow. The mountain is part of a larger reserve.

The best time to climb Mount Kenya is between January-February and July-October. There are huts in the mountains, or you can camp.

3. Atlas Mountains – Morocco

Trekking in the Jebel Toubkal of High Atlas Mountains Morocco
A man is conquering the Jebel Toubkal peak of the Atlas Mountains range.

Jebel Toubkal, located in the High Atlas Mountains, is North Africa’s highest peak at 4,167m (13,667 ft). It has a challenging trek to the top of the mountain, but worth it for the breathtaking views. Although you can reach the top and back to Imlil village in one day, you should take at least 3 days to make the most of it. Imlil village is only about 1h30′ from Marrakesh city.

The Atlas Mountains cover a large territory and there are many good walks in the Middle Atlas, High Atlas, and Anti-Atlas Mountains. Furthermore, all bring to you the opportunity to meet the Berbers, the locals living in the region.

4. Simien Mountains – Ethiopia

beautiful landscape of Simien Mountains
The beautiful landscape of the Simien Mountains.

a Walia Ibex in the simien mountains
Walia Ibex can be found in the Simien Mountains.

The Simien Mountains are a vast mountain range in Ethiopia with many peaks above 4,000 meters (13,000 feet). On top of that, the highest peak is Ras Dashen at 4,543 meters (14,901 feet), making it the fourth highest mountain in Africa.

Trekking here is amazing! It’s not only because of the scenery, canyons, and streams but also because you get the chance to see some unique, endemic wildlife like the baboons and the Walia Ibex.

Most trips start from Debark (or Debarek), a 3-4 hour drive from Gondar. You can arrange porters, donkeys, equipment, and more from here.

5. Drakensberg – South Africa

The Drakensberg has the most ideal trekking routes and beautiful landscape
Among the beautiful mountains in Africa, the Drakensberg has the most ideal trekking routes for anyone.

The Drakensberg is South Africa’s highest mountain range. It’s called uKhahlamba, which means “barrier of spears” in Zulu. In particular, its lower elevation is ideal for day hiking, horseback riding, San Rock Art viewing, and bird watching. Its higher passes provide more challenging rides.

Serious trekkers should check out the “Drakensberg Traverse”. A 2-3 week trek that includes Drakensberg’s many massive peaks and dramatic spires, including the over 3000-foot Tugela Falls and poured over 5 separate floors. If you don’t have that much time, try the spectacular walk from the Sentinel to the Cathedral.

6. Mount Meru – Tanzania

Nature of Mount Meru
Trekkers will have great chances to experience the vast nature and wildlife while climbing Mount Meru.

Mount Meru is Tanzania’s second-highest mountain at 4,566 meters (14,980 ft). It is often used to run adaptation tests against its close neighbor, Mount Kilimanjaro. Normally, the trek to the top of this pretty volcano takes 3-4 days. Outstandingly, the route passes through lush ancient rainforests of fig-trees, giving way to heather lawns and wastelands. Along the trail are buffalo, baboons, and giraffes as well as hundreds of species of birds.

The best period for ascent is from August to October. Trekkers can spend the nights in small well-tended huts along the route. Armed rangers are required, so it’s best to organize your trip in advance.

7. Rwenzori Mountains – Uganda

unique flora of the Rwenzori Mountains
The unearthly beauty and beautiful unique flora that trekkers will meet while conquering the Rwenzori Mountains, one of the most beautiful mountains in Africa.

The Rwenzori Mountains, also called Mountains of the Moon, lie just north of the Equator along the border of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Uganda. Mount Stanley is the tallest mountain in the range, with double peaks, each over 5,000m high making it Africa’s 3rd highest mountain. Glaciers permanently adorn the mountain peaks.

The main trail up to the Stanley peaks is called Central Circuit and takes 4-10 days. Along the route, you will encounter jungle, swamps, boulders, glaciers, and elephants. Guides and armed rangers are required. There are basic huts along the routes for rest. The best time for a trek here is from December to February, and from June to August.

8. Mount Elgon – Uganda and Kenya

vegetation at Mount Elgon
The trek in Mount Elgon will offer you beautiful scenery with diverse vegetation.

Mount Elgon is a large extinct volcano located on the border between Kenya and Uganda. There are 5 main peaks, the two highest are Wagagai (4,321m) in Uganda and Sudek (4,302m) in Kenya. Distinctively, the crater here is one of the largest craters in the world. The routes offer challenging treks along canyons, waterfalls, and caves.

From December to March is the best time for your trip. Yet, you must hire an official guide. In Uganda, you can register at Mbale for walking equipment, information, and permits.

There are several trekking routes to choose from. If you’re planning to reach the top of any of the highest peaks, you’ll want to spend at least 5 days in the mountains.

9. Mount Cameroon – Cameroon

a hut in the trekking route in Mount Cameroon
You are able to meet the huts across the trekking route in Mount Cameroon.

Mount Cameroon is locally known as Mongo ma Ndemi (“Mountain of Greatness”). It is West Africa’s highest peak, at 4,040 meters (13,255 ft). In fact, Mount Cameroon is an active volcano. Its last eruption happened in 2000.

There are several mountain trails in the area. The oldest and steepest trail is the Guinness Trail named after an annual marathon once sponsored by Guinness Beer.

There are requirements for porters and guides on this 2-3 days tour. You can find basic huts and camps on the main trails. The main route passes through farmland, rainforest, montane forest, savanna, and finally to the rocky summit.

10. Mount Mulanje – Malawi

a group of 3 people are trekking in Mount Mulanje
Among the beautiful mountains in Africa, Mount Mulanje offers a great trek for families or groups of adventurers.

Actually, Mount Mulanje is a giant granite massif in southern Malawi. Its highest peak is Sapitwa at just over 3,000m. There are many routes to choose from with simple huts at the end of each route. Particularly, this is a great trek for families, with lots of streams and peaks to explore. You should spend at least 2 nights in the mountains.

The Mountain Club of Malawi has good route information as well as info on fees and how to pay your porter. If you join the Mountain Club, you can use their cooking equipment stored in the huts. Also, you should start your trek from Lihkubula Forest Lodge. From May to October is the best time to climb Mulanje.


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10 trekking routes in beautiful mountains in Africa - the broad life's pinterest board
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28 COMMENTS

  1. Africa is undeniably a perfect place to visit. Mountains and all other places are amazingly beautiful. Thanks for sharing these ideas.

  2. A lot of awesome views on these mountains. I would love to visit one day these mountains and expereince it.

  3. These are all beautiful mountains to hike. I’m so happy I can cross out a few of these mountains but I would like to hike all of them.

  4. Oh wow! Those veiws are amazing. I actually had no idea that there were mountains in Africa. It goes to show how little you can know about an area.

  5. Mountain climbing has always been an interest. I need to get going- I’m not getting any younger! There are several peaks in the USA that would be good for starters, before I attempt these African peaks.

  6. Nnniiiiccceeee…I want to trek the Kilimanjaro mountains, one day! I wonder how beautiful they are, from up there.

    • Nice choice! I’m going to share more info about Kilimanjaro so that you can make a plan to conquer the mountain.

  7. Africa is beautiful. And there are mountains like Kilimanjaro, Elgon and Meru which I would love to trek someday.

  8. These all sound like amazing treks! So scenic and they would be memorable places to visit.

    • Kilimanjaro is a well-known place for adventurers all over the world. I’m gonna have a more detailed informative post about the mountain so you can plan your trip to conquer the mountain.

  9. Those are all wonderful destinations to go and trek on. I would definitely prefer the one’s with snow or cold climate.

    • So you need to prepare more carefully for the difficult conditions of climbing. Enjoy the trip!

  10. This is so inspirational! My coach was just telling me the other day that he and his girlfriend are thinking of visiting Mount Kilimanjaro! After learning more about this beautiful destination, I want to add this to my bucket list now!

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