Umbwe route is possibly the most beautiful route in Mount Kilimanjaro. It is a camping route and it begins in the rain forest to Umbwe Cave (3000m) to Barranco (3950m) then proceeds with the Kibo circuit up to Barafu (4600m) in the alpine desert if you don't ascend to the summit through the Western Breach. This steep and very direct route is suitable for more experienced trekkers, but should not be rushed. It combines pleasant forest walking with a challenging approach to the summit.
For the best hike it takes a minimum of six days. It is also (in) famous the shortest route (24.35km) from the gate to the summit via the Western Breach although the steepest and hardest of the trails on Kilimanjaro. The gradient is that in a couple of places on the first day you can stand upright and kiss it at the same time although it is a non-technical climb. The difficult is that, it is so damn relentlessly uphill but your eyes will be grateful you chose this route as they will feast upon the awesome scenery, particularly on the second morning as you leave the forest and find yourself on a narrow ridge between the heathers.
This route is also one of the less visited on the first two days but from day three it joins up with the popular Machame Route and heads through the Kibo circuit to Barafu. Approaching the summit from Western Breach via the Arrow Glacier, it is quieter than all the other summit trails because it is risk to use the Western Breach as it is common with avalanches.