“Because of my passion and connection I made with this mountain, I promised to build the best climbing company with a different attitude. One that nourished the climbers and the crew”

 Ria Francakova – Founder


“Because of my passion and connection I made with this mountain, I promised to build the best climbing company with a different attitude. One that nourished the climbers and the crew."

 Ria Francakova – Founder

Best Kilimanjaro Tour Company Barking Zebra Founder pointing to Kibo

“I can do better!”

It was a disaster. My first climb on Kilimanjaro in 2008 climbing with some friends. The Kilimanjaro tour company we used cut corners every possible way. Bad camping equipment, poor hygiene in the kitchen, we all got sick. But we weren’t the only ones. Even the porters and guides were miserable, telling us how badly they were treated – low pay, bad working conditions, poor equipment and more!

Still, the startling landscapes, the challenge of the mountain and its wonderful people captured my heart and soul… and I was hooked on the magic of Kilimanjaro.
I decided right then I would improve the climbing experience and start a Kilimanjaro climbing company with a different attitude. One that nourished the climbers and the crew. That paid a fair wage, had great equipment, offered delicious and nutritious food, and focused on the safety and well being of both the clients and crew.

Back on that first climb, I promised my porters and guides I would come back and hire them, and we would have a company that would offer the finest climbing experience on Kilimanjaro.
So, this is what I did. And now I invite you to come join us and share the grandest adventure in Africa.

Best Kilimanjaro tour companies Barking Zebra founder


Most folks don’t know the difference between a climbing company, a tour outfitter and a travel agent. And why should they? That’s not their job.

But the problem is you might choose a climbing outfit who then subcontracts your climb to someone else who then hands it off to yet a third contractor.

Not us. We have our own dedicated team of porters, guides, and cooks on the ground in Tanzania. We know all our people and have personally trained them, so you can share our confidence that you’re getting the best.

You see, it’s our job to be responsible to you, our clients. We know our crews will deliver and bring you the best possible climb.

In fact, our reputation has grown so much we often supply other tour outfitters with our teams because they trust our level of quality.

When you’re on a Barking Zebra climb it’s no secret how well the trek is organized and outfitted. Our guests have reported a phenomenon we call, ‘Mountain Envy’. This is when one of our groups happens to be camped near some other outfitter and those folks see the quality of our staff, our gear, how well we eat and what a great time we’re having.

This is the payoff of years of growing our company, always striving for the best, and taking a stand. We never compromise – not in how we provide for our teams and not in how we provide for our guests.

It was a tougher road to grow the company this way, but we believe the results for you are worth it. You’ll believe it too, because when you’re on the mountain with Barking Zebra, you’ll never have a moment of ‘Mountain Envy’.

But you’re sure to feel some ‘Mountain Pride’.

Barking Zebra Crew

We couldn’t make it to the top without our experienced mountain crew. They are the brains, muscle and expertise that ensures your climb is safe and successful.



What’s left to do? We’ve earned the best reputation, helped create the finest mountain team in the business, and are grateful for our happy climbers. So, what do we do now?
Two words – more and better.
We’re going to keep offering our exciting selection of personalized climbs up the big hill. You’ll always have more choices with us.

Another big part of our commitment is providing our crews with the best possible wage and working conditions for a better life.
And keeping the mountain clean. During the slow rainy season, we’ll keep our people busy cleaning up the mountain. That way, they’ll still earn a living wage as we improve the environment for all of us.

We can’t think of a better way to express the love we feel for our mountaineering family and for the mountain itself. At Barking Zebra, we see a future of ever more opportunities for our favorite people – those heading up the mountain.

Guides training with a Portable Altitude Chamber at Karanga camp Mount Kilimanjaro
Safety On The Mountain

The overall safety of our climb is our first priority at Barking Zebra.

Barking Zebra porter ascending Mount Kilimanjaro
Kilimanjaro Porters

Our porters are the backbone of the climb. They carry the load of the entire expedition.

Barking Zebra has the best chefs on Mount Kilimanjaro
Our Talented Chefs

Our chefs are well-trained to cook fresh and nutritious meals throughout your trek.


Group Departures

Leave No Trace Partner
Kilimanjaro Porters Assistance Project
Adventure Travel Trade Association Member
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