With exotic wildlife and dramatic, contrasting landscapes, Madagascar is truly a destination for avid travellers. You will be guaranteed a warm welcome from the friendly locals who are an eclectic mix of Indonesian, French, Arab and African descent. The country is probably most well known as the home of the quirky and charming lemur. Isolated from widespread evolutionary change, there are almost 60 different species of lemur. While Madagascan tourism is still somewhat underdeveloped, you will find the spectacular landscapes, simple craft-working communities and unique biodiversity of wildlife and flora are a wonderful combination.
On this journey you will enjoy the following special experiences: • See ring-tailed lemurs on Lemur Island Visit Lemur Island by canoe, a tiny reserve that protects a number of habituated lemurs. There are four species to see, the bamboo lemur, the black & white ruffed lemur, brown lemur and one diademed sifaka.
• Indulge in a seafood BBQ picnic On a beautiful white coral sand island dine on shrimp kebab, whole crab and baked fish with lime. You can then simply relax, swim or go snorkeling on this stunning island.
• Learn about the ingenious cottage industry Learn about the industry of aluminium smelting, where local families make their living using simple techniques crafting cooking pots and cutlery.
Welcome Back Offer If you have travelled on one of our Journeys before, we would like to offer you a saving of $400 per couple (or $200 per person) if you book this journey.
Day 1: Antananarivo Arrive in 'Tana' the capital city of Madagascar and meet our guide.
Day 2: Antananarivo > Andasibe (B,L,D) Morning drive east to Andasibe, the Lemur kingdom. Along the way we will see the Merina villages of the Highlands and visit the Peryeras butterfly centre. Enjoy an evening walk to observe nocturnal lemurs and other animals.
Day 3: Andasibe (B,L,D) Visit Analamazaotra Reserve to see the Indri Indri - the largest lemur, with a haunting whale-like call. This 154 km squared reserve is unique with its endemic fauna and flora and variety of orchids and animals such as chameleons, tenrecs, and birdlife. Afternoon visit to Mantandia National Park with a greater variety of reptiles, mammals and birdlife.
Day 4: Andasibe > Antsirabe (B,L,D) We drive back towards Tana and then south to Antsirabe, across the highland landscape called 'lavaka' with beautiful rice fields and fruit trees. We stop in Ambatolampy to observe the ingenious cottage industry of aluminium smelting. Continue to Antsirabe, 'the place of salt', an elegant city and known as the centre of the beer industry. Founded by Norwegians in 1856, it is the only place in Madagascar which really feels and looks like a European city.
Day 5: Antsirabe > Ranomafana (B,L,D) We enjoy a morning tour of the city on 'pousse pousse' (rickshaws). Continue to Ambositra, the centre of Madagascar's wood carving industry. We continue the drive to Ranomafana and this evening we will have a night walk where you may be lucky to see microcebus - the 'mouse lemur'.
Day 6: Ranomafana > Ranohira (Isalo) (BLD) This morning we visit Ranomafana National Park - where the golden bamboo lemur was discovered in 1986 and also home to two of the rarest species of lemur. After our visit, we continue on the road to Ambalavao for lunch before travelling to Ranohira through the 'passage to the south'. Along the way we see the spectacular huge granite dome with twin rock towers named 'the gate of the south' and the 'Bishops Hat', another incredible formation and sacred location for the local people.
Day 7: Ranohira (Isalo) (B,L,D) Today we explore the Isalo National Park with a local guide. The park covers an area of 815 km squared, comprising of the entire stretch of the Isalo massif-spectacular with its eroded sandstone elevations. Walk to a beautiful natural swimming hole with crystal clear water. Along the way see endemic vegetation, spectacular views of the mountains and you may see sifakas, brown and ring-tailed lemurs, as well as different species of birds, lizards and snakes. See the sun set at Isalo Window.
Day 8: Ranohira > Ifaty (B,L,D) After breakfast, see the fascinating tombs of the Mahafaly and Antandroy ethnic groups, then continue to Tulear. After a short visit, drive to Ifaty, where the beaches are lined with canoes made from hollowed out tree trunks, and houses are made from reeds. See small pirogues with men who go fishing twice a day, while children and women wait on the coast to collect the fish before taking them to Tulear to sell.
Day 9: Ifaty (B,L,D) Today we head out on traditional pirogues (canoes) exploring the lagoons and waterways around Ifaty. Enjoy a lobster lunch on the beach. This afternoon visit Reniala Baobab Reserve home to a unique ecosystem with its 'spiny' forest as well as some spectacular and very old baobabs.
Day 10: Ifaty > Tulear > Antananarivo (B,L,D) Drive to Tulear for our flight back to Tana, known as 'the city of a thousand' where you can enjoy an afternoon walking tour of Tana to wander the steep streets and discover beautiful colonial buildings.
Day 11: Antananarivo > Nosy Be (B,D) We fly to Nosy Be, an island off the northwest coast of Madagascar, and the most popular resort on the island. Nosy Be is also a gateway to some of the smaller, more beautiful islands of the Indian Ocean.
Day 12: Nosy Be (B,D) Today we head out for a full day excursion to Nosy Komba and Nosy Tanikely - islands off the coast of Nosy Be. On Nosy Komba we will visit the Lemur Park to see the Macaco lemur and the local village where local fishermen head out on their traditional boats. On to Nosy Tanikely, a protected marine nature reserve where we can snorkel right off the beach and may even be lucky enough to spot turtles here. We enjoy a delightful BBQ seafood lunch on Nosy Tanikely before returning to Nosy Be.
Day 13: Nosy Be (B,D) Day at leisure.
Day 14: Nosy Be (B) Depart our hotel today with a transfer to Nosy Be Airport, where the journey ends. (Direct flights are available from Nosy Be > Johannesburg, not included).
• A World Journeys host • Economy class flights within the itinerary • Accommodation in best available hotels and lodges • Transfers, sightseeing and National Park entrance fees as per the itinerary • Meals as indicated (B,L,D) • Gratuities
Pricing (per person) $AUD
Book and pay your deposit at least 6 months before departure and we will match you up with another same gender solo traveller to share at the share twin price. If we are unable to provide a share, accommodation will be provided on a single basis at no additional cost.
Departs 3 September 2018
3 September 2018
Booking conditions A non-refundable deposit of $2,000 per person is required, with the balance due 16 June 2018. As cancellation fees apply, travel insurance is mandatory.
A non-refundable deposit of $2,000 per person is required, with the balance due 16 June 2018. As cancellation fees apply, travel insurance is mandatory.
Not included • International airfares
• Items of a personal nature
• Visa (if applicable)
• Travel insurance (mandatory)
• Optional activities
• International airfares • Items of a personal nature • Visa (if applicable) • Travel insurance (mandatory) • Optional activities
Gratuity In the countries we are visiting, tipping is customary. For a hassle free journey, tipping is included and will be handled by the World Journeys host.
In the countries we are visiting, tipping is customary. For a hassle free journey, tipping is included and will be handled by the World Journeys host.
Highlights - really don't know what to say!
The chance to see so many lemurs, chameleons, and explore an African country that has evolved without large mammals. Beautiful coastal areas, stunning geological vistas. Then there are the people - crowds of, walking, carrying, pushing, pulling, riding, smiling, babies, toddlers, children carrying babies. People making bricks, rum, charcoal, gardening, hoeing, tending livestock etc. I could go on and on about the amazing people. Everyone working, everyone smiling. Sure they have cellphones, but everything was hand labour, with an impressive amount of recycling. Amazing. So was it the wildlife or the humanity that enthralled me most? I think a combination, which leaves me grateful to have visited that special island. And our host, young Paul, what can I say. Just the best. Truly.
What an interesting place!
Yes we are back from our adventure in Madagascar....what an interesting place, a glittering gem in the Indian Ocean...so diverse, and I might add there was no shortage of lemurs. A great time and a totally worthwhile experience - I loved it all. Highlights - well to my mind every day was a highlight - there was something different to see and experience each day, although, being a person who loves the sea, those last lazy days in Nosey Be were hard to beat - that beautiful beach and sunsets. The whole itinerary was well organised, and covered so much in the time we were there.
What an amazing tour we all did!
I wasn't sure what to expect, especially as your company had said to keep an open mind. The travel documents were impressive, expensive. The booklet on the tour was very good, and I'm sure I will find a good use for the writing case. Highlights - where to start...seeing lemurs in the wild was impressive, but seeing them up very close, on the Lemur island, was special too. Andasibe. Swimming in that beautiful oasis pool at Isalo National Park, on the desert walk. Ifaty, the lodge on the beach, beach walks, sailing in a pirogue, the huge boabab tree. Seeing the turtles swimming at Nosy Be. Nitpicking a bit but, when the book said butterfly house, I thought we were going to see butterflies. It hadn't occurred to me it was the wrong time of year, probably because they were out here. Seeing all the chameleons up close, and being able to handle some of them, was really very interesting. I think perhaps if you put Butterfly (seasonal) and Chameleon house it would cover you, and add a dimension to the visit. Well worth doing. Our host Paul was ok, always on hand for tips, made all our check ins at hotels lodges and airports run smoothly, let us know in advance what was going on, was helpful if we needed it and had a great sense of humour. Our driver was excellent. He looked after his vehicle, and therefore us. And I think he was telling Mike the best places for us to visit, a little embroidery factory and zebu horn factory in Antsirabe, all very interesting. The local guides along the way were all excellent. How some of them found tiny mouse lemurs and chameleons in the dark is amazing. Hotels and lodges all the way were very good. All clean, and a pleasure to stay in. Very good food. A 3 course lunch and dinner seemed excessive but we tried our best to do it justice every day! It was an amazing tour, with great people. Very exclusive. I'd happily go with your company again. Thank you, and Zoe, who deserves a mention for all her hard work sorting my flights out. I left it until the last minute as my Mother wasn't very fit at the time, then Zoe had to try and get my flights match with everybody else. She was lovely, and very efficient.