Who Was The First To Climb Mount Kilimanjaro?

Who Was the First to Climb Mount Kilimanjaro? A Journey Through History with Lyimo Expeditions

Imagine standing at the highest point in Africa, breathing in the crisp, pure air as you gaze upon an awe-inspiring panorama of landscapes. This is the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro, a dream destination for adventurers and nature lovers alike. But have you ever wondered who was the first brave soul to conquer this majestic peak?

Welcome to the Lyimo Expeditions blog! We’re here to take you on an exhilarating journey through the history of Mount Kilimanjaro, the first ascent, and why you should choose us for your Tanzanian adventure. Fasten your seat belts, because this will be a thrilling ride!

The Giant of Africa: Mount Kilimanjaro

Standing at 5,895 meters (19,341 feet), Mount Kilimanjaro is the tallest freestanding mountain in the world. Located in Tanzania, near the border with Kenya, it is an iconic symbol of Africa’s natural beauty. The mountain comprises three volcanic cones: Kibo, Mawenzi, and Shira. Kibo is the highest and the only one that remains dormant, while Mawenzi and Shira are extinct.

Mount Kilimanjaro is not just a mountain; it’s a legend wrapped in clouds, a story told by glaciers, and a dream painted by the twilight. Let’s unravel the tale of the first ascent that marked a significant milestone in the annals of mountaineering.

The First Ascent: Hans Meyer and Ludwig Purtscheller

The first successful ascent to the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro was achieved on October 6th, 1889, by German geographer Hans Meyer and Austrian mountaineer Ludwig Purtscheller. This monumental feat was not just a stroll up the mountain. It was a grueling expedition that required immense resolve, meticulous planning, and a hearty dose of bravery.

Hans Meyer: The Determined Geographer

Hans Meyer, a seasoned explorer and geographer, had a burning passion for Africa and its uncharted territories. Born on March 22, 1858, in Hildburghausen, Germany, Meyer was fascinated by the mysterious allure of Mount Kilimanjaro. His first attempt to summit in 1887 was thwarted by the hostile environment and insufficient preparation.

However, Meyer was not the one to give up easily. His relentless spirit drove him back to Kilimanjaro in 1888, but he again faced failure due to illness and adverse weather conditions. The third time, as they say, was the charm.

Ludwig Purtscheller: The Expert Mountaineer

Ludwig Purtscheller, born on October 6, 1849, in Innsbruck, Austria, was a renowned mountaineer with numerous ascents to his name. His expertise in high-altitude climbing made him the perfect companion for Meyer. When Meyer reached out to Purtscheller, he eagerly accepted the challenge, setting the stage for one of the most historic climbs in mountaineering history.

The Historic Climb

In 1889, equipped with better planning, acclimatization strategies, and supplies, Meyer and Purtscheller set off for their final attempt. They were accompanied by a group of local porters, including Yohani Kinyala Lauwo, a Chagga guide who played a pivotal role in the success of the expedition.

The journey was fraught with challenges, including harsh weather, treacherous terrain, and the ever-present risk of altitude sickness. Yet, the team’s resilience saw them through. On October 6, 1889, after an arduous climb, Meyer and Purtscheller finally stood atop Kibo, the highest peak of Mount Kilimanjaro, etching their names into the annals of history.

Why Climb Kilimanjaro with Lyimo Expeditions?

Now that you’ve been inspired by the incredible story of Hans Meyer and Ludwig Purtscheller, why not make your own history by climbing Mount Kilimanjaro? Here at Lyimo Expeditions, we provide more than just a trek; we offer a life-changing experience that you’ll cherish forever.

Expertise and Experience

Our team comprises seasoned guides and porters, many of whom have climbed Kilimanjaro multiple times. Their knowledge of the terrain, weather conditions, and acclimatization techniques ensures your safety and increases your chances of reaching the summit.

Tailored Itineraries

We understand that every climber is unique, which is why we offer customized itineraries to suit your preferences, fitness levels, and schedules. Whether you’re a novice or an experienced mountaineer, we have the perfect package for you.

Comprehensive Support

From the moment you contact us at info@lyimoexpeditionskilimanjaro.com or call us at +255718442953, you’ll receive unparalleled support. Our dedicated team will assist you with everything from visa arrangements to packing lists, making your journey as seamless as possible.

Eco-Friendly Practices

As stewards of this magnificent mountain, we are committed to preserving its pristine environment. Our expeditions adhere to strict eco-friendly practices, ensuring that we leave no trace behind.

Cultural Immersion

Our expeditions offer more than just a climb. You’ll have the opportunity to immerse yourself in the rich culture of the Chagga people, who call the slopes of Kilimanjaro home. Learn about their traditions, taste local cuisine, and gain a deeper appreciation for the region’s heritage.

Health and Safety

Your well-being is our top priority. Our guides are trained in wilderness first aid and are equipped with essential medical supplies, including oxygen and pulse oximeters. We closely monitor your health throughout the climb, making adjustments as needed to ensure your safety.

Additional Activities: Beyond Kilimanjaro

While climbing Mount Kilimanjaro is undoubtedly the highlight, Tanzania offers a plethora of other exhilarating activities. At Lyimo Expeditions, we can help you explore the diverse landscapes and incredible wildlife that make Tanzania a top destination for adventurers.

Serengeti National Park

Witness the awe-inspiring Great Migration, where millions of wildebeest, zebras, and gazelles traverse the plains in search of fresh grazing grounds. Our experienced guides will take you on unforgettable game drives, offering the chance to see the Big Five up close.

Ngorongoro Crater

A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Ngorongoro Crater is teeming with wildlife. This natural amphitheater provides a unique setting for game viewing, with opportunities to spot lions, elephants, rhinos, and more.

Zanzibar Archipelago

After conquering Kilimanjaro, unwind on the pristine beaches of Zanzibar. Explore the historic Stone Town, indulge in delectable seafood, and snorkel in the crystal-clear waters of the Indian Ocean.

Tarangire National Park

Known for its large elephant population and baobab trees, Tarangire National Park offers a serene yet thrilling safari experience. The park is also home to diverse bird species, making it a paradise for birdwatchers.

Testimonials: Hear from Our Happy Clients

Don’t just take our word for it! Here’s what some of our satisfied clients have to say about their experience with Lyimo Expeditions:

Emma from the UK

"I had the most incredible experience climbing Kilimanjaro with Lyimo Expeditions. The guides were knowledgeable, supportive, and truly cared about our safety. The cultural immersion aspect was a delightful bonus! Highly recommend them."

John from the USA

"Lyimo Expeditions made my dream of summiting Kilimanjaro come true. From the initial inquiry to the final ascent, everything was meticulously planned. I felt safe and well taken care of throughout the journey."

Maria from Spain

"The team at Lyimo Expeditions was fantastic! They provided excellent support and made sure we were well-prepared for the climb. The safari in Serengeti and the beach relaxation in Zanzibar were the perfect additions to our trip."

Book Your Adventure Today!

Embarking on an adventure with Lyimo Expeditions means becoming a part of a rich legacy of explorers who have dared to dream and conquer Kilimanjaro. Whether you’re an avid mountaineer or a curious traveler, we invite you to join us on this extraordinary journey.

Ready to make your own history? Contact us today at info@lyimoexpeditionskilimanjaro.com or call us at +255718442953 to book your Tanzania tours and safaris. Let’s create unforgettable memories together!


The story of the first ascent of Mount Kilimanjaro is a testament to human perseverance, courage, and the unyielding spirit of exploration. Hans Meyer and Ludwig Purtscheller’s historic climb paved the way for countless adventurers to follow. Now, it’s your turn to stand on the roof of Africa and experience the magic of Kilimanjaro with Lyimo Expeditions.

Don’t miss the chance to embark on this life-changing adventure. Reach out to us at info@lyimoexpeditionskilimanjaro.com or call us at +255718442953, and let’s start planning your Tanzanian escapade today!

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