West Usambara Mountains: Lushoto - Mambo, 5 Days Hiking Itinerary
There are two main options for getting to Lushoto from Arusha (via Moshi) by bus. First, there are two direct buses per day, both theoretically taking around 6 hours and departing at about 6am from Arusha. The other option is to take an express bus, and alight at Mombo, from where there are frequent daladalas and buses to Lushoto. The experience tells, it will need always at least 8 hours. Of course we also organize a private transfer. The route runs over 200km west and parallel to the North and South Pare Mountains. South of Same then the huge Usambara mountains rise from the plain. On the right hand extends the sheer endless expanse of the Maasai dry savanna, the Masai steppe.
Day 1… Arusha to Lushoto
If all goes well, you will arrive in Lushoto in the early afternoon and have time for a city walk, before or after your move into your room in the Lawns Hotel. You will meet your local guide at the hotel.
Day 2… Tour to Irente Viewpoint and Kisasa Waterfalls in Magamba rainforest.
After breakfast you will walk to the Irente view point by the shortest way through agricultural areas and forest. After thoroughly enjoying the phenomenal view and also the wonderful views over the Mkomazi floodplains, you walk back on the normal road and stop by the Irente Farm for a pre-ordered lunch. The distance is only 1,7km.
The Irente Biodiversity Reserve which extends about 200ha operates on four pillars: Nature based tourism, food processing, Biodiversity protection, Farming. The nature reserve is owned and managed by North-Eastern Diocese of the Lutheran Church of Tanzania.
The lunch: rye bread, tilsiter cheese, goat cheese, quark with herbs, cut fresh vegetables, fruits, different kinds of mustard and and…..
Hope you will enjoy this very special lunch and then make a nap or walk around the farm lodge and relish the view and the garden.
To shorten the walking time you will go back to Lushoto by motorbike and then continue hiking in the Magamba nature reserve to the waterfalls.
On the way to the Kisasa waterfalls you pass little waterfalls as well.
Maybe you will have some interesting meetings with little pets at the Kisasa waterfalls also.
You will go the same way back to Lushoto and then to the hotel.
Day 3… Drive from Lushoto to starting point between Lukozi and Malindi - Hiking to Rangwi
After breakfast and check out from your hotel, you will buy some provision at the market and shops in Lushoto for the next two days and then drive by taxi or daladala to the starting point for your day hike. It will be between Lukozi and Malindi about 40km far from Lushoto.
It is not a signposted footpath. Your local guide will lead you up and down through the landscape. If it is too steep for you, he will use another path. It is a walking time from ca. 4 hours. So it is enough time for detours.
Arrived in Rangwi and finally at the convent of Rangwi sisters.
If it is market day, you will go there first and then explore the village.
Back at the convent of the Rangwi sisters, you can relax with a contemplative walk through the extensive garden area. The convent was founded by German missionaries in 1953.
You will have lunch and dinner there and stay overnight in the guesthouse.
Day 4… Rangwi – Mambo
After breakfast we leave Rangwi and start with a steep climb the way to Mambo. The tour will last approximately 4 hours.
You reach Mambo and visit the pottery. It is a cooperative of women. They show their products and how to make them.
After the demo you continue to the viewpoint.
The view is phenomenal. If you are a darling of fortune, you will see the Kilimanjaro.
After a long break, you will walk through Mambo to your lodge, Magumba View Cottages for dinner and overnight.
From the Magumba viewpoint you have a fantastic view as well all the way to Kenya and Mt. Kilimanjaro if the weather allows it.
Day 5… Mambo – Arusha
The bus departing 5.30 am in Mambo takes you direct via Lushoto to Arusha (via Moshi).