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Kilimanjaro, with its three volcanic cones, Kibo, Mawenzi, and Shira, is a dormant volcanic mountain in Kilimanjaro National Park, Kilimanjaro Region, Tanzania. It is the highest mountain in Tanzania, the highest mountain in Africa and the highest free-standing mountain in the world at 5,895 meters above sea level (the Uhuru Peak/Kibo Peak). This statistical significance helped Mount Kilimanjaro secure the position as one of the Seven Natural Wonders of Africa, which were officially declared on February 11, 2013 in Arusha, Tanzania.
Kilimanjaro is composed of three distinct volcanic cones: Kibo 5,895 m; Mawenzi 5,149 m; and Shira 3,962 m. Uhuru Peak is the highest summit on Kibo's crater rim. Kilimanjaro is a large stratovolcano. Two of its three peaks, Mawenzi and Shira, are extinct while Kibo (the highest peak) is dormant and could erupt again. The last major eruption has been dated to between 150,000 and 200,000 years ago. Although it is dormant, Kibo has fumaroles that emit gas in the crater. Several collapses and landslides have occurred on Kibo in the past, one creating the area known as the Western Breach. There are six official trekking routes by which to climb Mt Kilimanjaro, namely: Marangu, Rongai, Lemosho, Shira, Umbwe and Machame. Of all the routes, Machame is by far the most scenic albeit steeper route up the mountain, which can be done in six or seven days. The Rongai is the easiest and least scenic of all camping routes with the most difficult summit night and the Marangu is also relatively easy, but accommodation is in shared huts with all other climbers. As a result, this route tends to be very busy, and ascent and descent routes are the same.
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