Spot lemurs and get dreaming on the beaches of this southern African gem.

Create your own wildlife-filled jungle jaunt through Madagascar on a 14-day adventure to the island’s hotspots. You’ll be lazing on white-sand beaches, exploring tropical rainforests and spending time with a huge variety of local wildlife, including the lemur – the island's most popular animal inhabitants. Dig a little deeper throughout your journey and interact with local communities, getting an insight into the day-to-day life of Malagasy and Betsileo peoples. Discover the French colonial influences in Antananarivo and Antsirabe, and get the chance to chill out in your own time. An eco escapade in Madagascar awaits, with flamingos, beaches and relaxed vibes at every turn.


Start
Antananarivo, Madagascar
Finish
Antananarivo, Madagascar
Destination
Madagascar
Style
Original
Theme
Wildlife
Code
YBSN
Physical rating
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1, Max 12

Why you'll love this trip

  • Count how many species of lemur you can spot in Isalo, Anadsibe and Ranomafana national parks – so many of the 33 different types will be out and about for you to spot.

  • Stay in a cottage deep within the Ranomafana National Park with your small group, surrounded by lush rainforest and countless species of flora and fauna.

  • Explore the important Malagasy process of silk production with a visit to local village industries in Ambositra – home to a community of Betsileo people.

  • Explore the sandstone formations, deep canyons, palm-lined oases and vast grasslands of Isalo National Park – just some of Madagascar’s varied range of stunning landscapes.

  • Chill out at Anakao – an Indian Ocean beachside paradise surrounded by reefs, and consider taking an optional journey to Tsimanampetsotsa National parks for some pink flamingo spotting.

Is this trip right for you?

  • Although anyone with a good level of fitness should be able to partake in this itinerary, there are several challenging aspects: guided day walks through the many national parks can be hot and humid.

  • Road conditions in Madagascar are also notoriously poor. This means some of the driving days will be long as well as bumpy.

  • Some accommodation inside the national parks is basic and may not have the creature comforts of hotels in bigger towns and cities. Be prepared for no wifi or air conditioning. But also for charming, tucked away locations you won’t quite believe are real.

Itinerary

This itinerary is valid for departures from 01 Jan 2019 to 01 Dec 2019.
View the 2020 itinerary
Welcome to Madagascar. This country's capital is the charmingly crowded Antananarivo – a fun, hilly place to explore. Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6 pm, but if you do happen to arrive early, why not head to Analakey to visit the street markets or perhaps seek out a cafe to soak up the atmosphere. After your important briefing, where you’ll meet up with your group leader and fellow travellers, why not keep the introductions going with an optional dinner with your group at a local restaurant.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Antananarivo - Ambohimanga Rova Tour (per person; minimum 2) (including transport,entry, guiding) - EUR90
  • Antananarivo - Lemur's Park - EUR80
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Special Information
It’s very important that you attend the welcome meeting as we will be collecting insurance details and next of kin information at this time. If you are going to be late please let your travel agent or hotel reception know. Ask reception or look for a note in the lobby for more information on where the meeting will take place.
Leave Antananarivo in your dust after breakfast, heading for Andasibe National Park (approximately 4 hours). Stop en route at Pereyras Nature Farm – a private reserve that's home to chameleons, frogs, snakes and so much more wildlife. This evening, you'll have an opportunity to take night walk through the forest at Mitsinjo – a privately-owned reserve, where you'll encounter nocturnal species including endemic butterflies and lemurs.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Andasibe National Park - Mitsinjo night walk
  • Andasibe Nationa Park - Pereyras Private Reserve
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Andasibe is the most visited park in Madagascar and famous for the 11 species of lemur that call it home. Aside from lemurs, you'll find endemic birds including the long-eared owl and the rufous-headed ground roller, as well as the smallest living chameleon – brookesia minima – and many times types of reptiles, insects and frogs. This region is popular thanks to an abundance of unique wildlife, and you'll have an opportunity to discover them during a guided walk through the national park.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Andasibe National Park - guided walk
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Drive to Antisrabe (approximately 6-7 hours) and spend some free time getting to know the city on arrival. Antsirabe maintains a Malagasy touch with all the tranquillity of a small European town, thanks to the contrast of its bustling street markets and Colonial-style facades. Located in the highlands, it's a popular spa town thanks to the hot springs and thermal baths, and the colourful rickshaws known as 'pousse-pousse' are a popular form of transport. Make use of them in your tour of the city and discover tree-lined avenues, interesting architecture, a range of markets and farmland all rolled into one.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Antsirabe - Rickshaw City Tour - EUR2
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner
Make the short journey to Ambositra this morning, home to the third-largest ethnic group in Madagascar – the Betsileo people. Take a visit to the nearby Sandrandahy villages and explore the process of silk production, which is an important part of Malagasy culture. The use of silk was once reserved exclusively for royalty, but now everyone is free to wear it though its use is more often used for the dead. When a Malagasy is buried, their body is wrapped in a large, silk sheet known as a 'lambamena' and, after a few years, the family traditionally return to the tomb to exchange the sheet for a new one. This custom is known as famadihana, and each village specialises in one step of the production. Enjoy a local lunch before spending a free evening in Ambositra.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Ambositra - Village Visit
  • Ambositra -Manandriana Village Lunch
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
Travel this morning to Ranomafa National Park, a journey of about 5 hours. Located in the southeastern part of Madagascar, this park is home to a number of rare species. Ranomafana means 'hot water' in the Malagasy language and the area is haven for small mammals, birds, reptiles and insects, as well as palms, bamboo, orchids and carnivorous plants. It's home to 13 species of lemur, including the famous golden bamboo lemur, which was first reported in the area in 1985 and is one of the reasons why the government decided to protect this forest. Enjoy some free time on arrival, and you may want to consider taking an optional night walk once the sun goes down. Your accommodation tonight is a small cottage located within the park's boundaries.
Accommodation
  • Cottage (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Ranomafana NP - Night Walk - EUR5
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Continue exploring Ranomafana, this time on a guided walk. Keep your eyes peeled for lemurs, striped civets, mongooses, goshawks, geckos, frogs and butterflies. You may even spot an incredible net-casting spider or the world's smallest chameleon. Relax into the day, and once again spend the night within the park.
Accommodation
  • Cottage (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Ranomafana National Park - Rainforest walk
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Travel this morning to Fianarantsoa – a colourful town known for its markets and handicrafts. This heritage site is a must-see, with its long, paved roads, labyrinths of small paths and old houses with flower-studded balconies and tiled roofs. Take a day visit to a typical Malagasy village for an insight into how the majority of the island's population live, then explore the surrounding countryside, which is dotted with rice paddies and vineyards that produce Fianarantsoa's famous wine. You'll get a chance to sample local cuisine with a lunch stop in the villages then, in the afternoon, visit the historical old city of Fianarantsoa on foot.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Betsileo - village visit
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
Drive approximately 8 hours west toward Isalo National Park. You’ll stop at the Anja Community Reserve on your way – a great spot to observe lemurs and learn a little more about the local culture. The local villagers will be your guide on this excursion, and your leader will be able to translate all the knowledge they can pass on to you. Isalo is known for its variety of landscapes, from rainforests and rolling plains teeming with life to strange geological formations and deep-cut canyons. And of course, there are a variety of lemur species roaming around the place because – well, this is Madagascar. Spend a couple of days exploring the park, which is home to over 80 species of birds, 30 species of reptiles and 14 species of mammals including three lemur species – ring-tailed, red-fronted and Verreaux's sifakas lemur.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (2 nights)
Included Activities
  • Ambalavao - Anja Community Reserve
  • Ambalavao - Antemoro Paper Factory visit
  • Isalo National Park - guided walk
Meals Included
  • Breakfast (2)
You'll be up early today (approximately 5.30 am) to travel to Toliara Harbour, from where the group will take a boat to Anakao. Imagine perfect white sandy beaches beside turquoise waters, and that’s Anakao – a small, laid-back town in which fishing is the main occupation. Enjoy a free day taking it easy on the beach, soaking up some sun and swimming in the clear waters of the Mozambique Channel. You’re on island time now – so chill out and bask in the golden glow of Anakao.
Accommodation
  • Ecolodge (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Anakao- Nosy Ve Excursion - Free
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Special Information
Lalandaka Eco Lodge has bungalow style accommodation. In true eco fashion, there is no running water in the bungalows and there is no hot water in the camp. Each bungalow is regularly supplied with a bucket of fresh water for washing and flushing the toilet.
Today is another free day of leisure in this paradise. Consider taking a full-day tour of Tsimanampetsotse National Park – a birder’s paradise named for its spectacular lake. More than 100 species of bird can be found here, including pink, greater and dwarf flamingos, as well as the gray-brown mouse and white-footed sportive lemurs. Maybe paddle a canoe out to the mirage of Nosy Ve instead and check out the beaches and reef, or just hang out in Anakao town and make the most of its convenient beaches.
Accommodation
  • Ecolodge (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Today is departure day; however, your flight back to Antananarivo is included and this morning we depart for the Tulear airport and the 1-hour flight back to the capital. Your trip will end on arrival at Antananarivo Airport. Please advise your group leader if you have any international flights reserved for today. While we try to book an early departure for this domestic flight, we can often get moved to the later departure with a scheduled arrival after 8 pm in the evening, as air travel in Madagascar is notoriously delayed. Because of this, it is recommended to consider an extra night in Antananarivo. We'll be happy to organise additional accommodation (subject to availability).  
Meals Included
  • Breakfast

Meals

10 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 1 dinner

Transport

Private Vehicles, Boat, Plane

Accommodation

Hotel (5 nights) Bungalows (3 nights) Cottage(2 nights) Lodge (2 nights)

Included activities

  • Andasibe National Park - Mitsinjo night walk
  • Andasibe Nationa Park - Pereyras Private Reserve
  • Andasibe National Park - guided walk
  • Ambositra - Village Visit
  • Ambositra -Manandriana Village Lunch
  • Ranomafana National Park - Rainforest walk
  • Betsileo - village visit
  • Ambalavao - Anja Community Reserve
  • Ambalavao - Antemoro Paper Factory visit
  • Isalo National Park - guided walk

Dates & availability

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Important notes

SINGLE SUPPLEMENT 
A single supplement is available on this trip.

ITINERARY
This trip finishes on day 13 at Antananarivo airport. An airport transfer to the city centre and starting point hotel is included if you are extending your stay. Internal flights in Madagascar can be re-scheduled at short notice and whilst we try to reserve an early flight on departure day often this can get moved to the later flight, with an arrival into Antananarivo at 8 pm. Delays are common and services at the airport can be slow. We recommend considering booking extra accommodation unless you have a very late international departure.

ACCOMMODATION
Days 11 and 12 in Anakao has bungalow style accommodation. In true Eco fashion there is no running water in the bungalows and there is no hot water in the camp. Each bungalow is regularly supplied with a bucket of fresh water for washing and flushing the toilet.

ITINERARY CHANGES 2020
This trip will be 14 days in 2020. This change has been made due to internal flights in Madagascar often being unreliable and to allow for any changes to flight schedules, the tour will now finish on the morning of day 14 at the hotel in Antananarivo.

Essential trip information

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