It is that time of the year again, when the annual Rombo Marathon in its second installment, gets to race at the foot of Africa’s highest peak, Mount Kilimanjaro during Christmas Holidays.
The second edition of Rombo Marathon gets flagged off on the 23rd Day of December 2023.
Runners also get to race along the Kenya-Tanzania borderline in the Tarakea and Rongai sections of the thick forested Rombo District in Kilimanjaro Region.
The Marathon once more traces the remote trails of Rongai Forest Reserve along the slopes of Mount Kilimanjaro. Take note, it usually drizzles in the area around this time of the year
According to the event coordinator, Temy Isidori the starting and ending point is the Rongai Forest Sports Grounds with the race culminating with a mouthwatering meal of traditionally grilled goats, popularly known as ‘Ndafu!’
Organized by the Rombo Sports Agency, the second Rombo Marathon also features the flagship 21 kilometers half-marathon racing and then there is the 10 kilometers’ trail run in the forest as well as the fun race covering five kilometers.
“The Marathon is also a fundraiser, to generate money for the rehabilitation of Huruma Designated District Hospital and the construction of toilet facilities for primary and secondary schools in Rombo,” revealed Isidori.
The Minister of Education, Science and Technology, Adolf Mkenda usually participates in the race.
More than 1000 athletes have confirmed their participation in the Rombo Marathon and festival 2023, according to the organizers.
Registrations are taking place in Moshi, Dodoma and Dar-es-Salaam.
This year, all runners’ clubs in the country as well as sports men and women from various institutions such as the NMB and CRDB banks, Social Security Fund entities and other organizations.
During the inaugural Rombo Marathon, previously held in December 2022, a total 540 athletes took part in the Kilimanjaro forest racing event.
As it is the norm during Christmas and New Year Holidays when most native residents of Kilimanjaro travel back to their home villages, the event aims to attract most of these leisure travellers.
As they get to celebrate the festival with respective members of their families, the Marathon will also give them a side event consisting of sports, forest trekking tourism and traditional ‘ndafu,’ barbecue.
Organizers believe that the Marathon should also be serving an active wellbeing fitness platform and meeting point.