TANZANIA (eTN) – Thousands of runners across the world are set to participate in the tourist famous Kilimanjaro Marathon set to take place in northern Tanzania with expectations to attract spectators from sporting, travel, and tourism flocking to observe the fabulous annual event on the foothills of Mount Kilimanjaro.
The race is scheduled to be held at the end of February and is expected to pull in a crowd of about 8,000 runners from more than 45 countries, including tourists and several visitors booked to Tanzania and East Africa.
Set up to promote tourism in Tanzania, the Kilimanjaro Marathon has been growing yearly, pulling runners and non-runners to take part.
From professional runners, the Kilimanjaro Marathon takes place in Moshi town on the laps of the fabled Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania’s northern tourist circuit.
Unlike Olympic or other sporting events, this marathon is organized to raise funds for disadvantaged people in Tanzania. The 2016 Kilimanjaro Marathon has been organized by the South Africa-based Wild Frontiers safari company and Tanzania Breweries Limited, the leading beer brewer in Tanzania through its Kilimanjaro Premium Lager.
Wild Frontiers Managing Director, John Addison, whose company is the main organizer of the marathon, said participants are expected to attend the annual event.
“With most international arrivals choosing to stay on and either climb Kilimanjaro mountain afterwards or else explore the vast plains of the Serengeti, while some are choosing to relax and enjoy the post-race experience of chill weather of Kilimanjaro or move on to warm sandy beaches of Zanzibar,” he said.
Kilimanjaro Premium Lager Marathon is now in its 14th year. Runners pass through some of Tanzania’s most beautiful landscapes, including many banana and coffee farms in real African villages on the mountain slopes.
It is known as one of the most scenic races in the world, with Kilimanjaro’s white peak looking over the runners as they run through the rural farmlands and villages, rich with green bananas and coffee trees.
Runners pass through many smallholding farms, villages, parts of town, banana and coffee plantations, and patches of forest, providing great excitement to the residents who give ample vocal support.
The event attracts both top athletes running for big prizes and gives them a chance to prove themselves on an international stage, from Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, and Ethiopia, as well as social runners from around the world, coming to Tanzania to enjoy sporting before visiting Tanzania’s top attractions including the Serengeti National Park, Ngorongoro Crater and Zanzibar, as well as climbing Kilimanjaro.
Every year, at the end of February, the 42.2 km marathon, a 21.1 km half marathon and a 5-km fun run, are held in the town of Moshi, on the laps of Mount Kilimanjaro, Africa’s highest mountain and the highest free-standing mountain in the world. The race is run under the watchful eye of Mount Kilimanjaro.