Madagascar,

Wild Madagascar in Comfort

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Tailor-Made Tour
16 Days
From £5177
GEOIP Not Available
Honeymoon
Primate Watching
Beach
Culture and Archaeology
Luxury

Tour Introduction

16 Days from £5177
GEOIP Not Available
per adult. All trip details below can be tailored just for you

An extra-special itinerary crafted to reveal many of Madagascar’s top natural history and cultural highlights, whilst staying in some of the most luxurious accommodations for maximum comfort.

Focussing on all three of Madagascar’s forest types; the rainforest, eerie spiny forest and wildlife rich dry deciduous forest you will get to sample a great selection of wildlife, but also varied landscapes and some fascinating cultural insights too.

The pace is very gentle with ample time to explore each region without too much internal travel and features top quality accommodations and service at each location. There will also be plenty of downtime at the lovely Anjajavy Hotel with its stunning beach, warm sea bathing, swimming pool and even wildlife on the doorstep to finish with.

Among the many experiences to treasure will be coming face to face with an indri and spotting giant chameleons in the rainforests of Mitsinjo, immersing yourself in amongst a family group of ring-tailed lemurs and interacting with the fascinating Antandroy tribe along the Mandrare River and watching Coquerel’s sifakas dancing through the grounds of the Anjajavy Hotel.

 

 

 

Full Itinerary

Price from £5177
GEOIP Not Available
per adult. Based on sharing double / twin rooms
Day 1
Antananarivo

Arrive Antananarivo. Met on arrival at the airport and transfer (15 minutes) to your hotel.

Staying at Relais des Plateaux. Includes No Meals.

Day 2
Andasibe

Today depart for the 5 hour drive to the rainforest reserves of Andasibe, stopping for lunch en route by the riverside at Mandraka Park.

In the late afternoon and evening take a night walk in the community managed VOIMMA Reserve to spot nocturnal wildlife including Goodman's mouse lemur, Eastern woolly lemur and sleeping Parson's chameleons.

Staying at Mantadia Lodge. Includes All Meals.

Day 3
Andasibe and VOIMMA

Today take a morning walk in the Perinet Reserve to enjoy some close sightings of the magnificent tail less indri. This is also the best location to encounter the stunning diademed sifaka, Eastern grey bamboo lemur and common brown lemur.

In the afternoon explore the community managed VOIMMA Reserve where the indris are habituated and often allow an exceptionally close approach and a very intimate sighting. Contuine the walk once dark to spot more nocturnal species.

Staying at Mantadia Lodge. Includes All Meals.

Day 4
Mantadia National Park

An early drive (1 ½ hours) to Mantadia National Park to the north. Enjoy a full day with a packed lunch to explore the wonderful primary rainforest of this large National Park in search of its special wildlife.

Highlights include the agile and often vocal black-and-white ruffed lemur is often found here on the ridgelines and other wildlife includes the colourful painted mantella frog and bizarre giraffe-necked weevil.

Among the birdlife includes 4 species of ground roller and the shy red-breasted coua is another speciality of this forest. Take another night walk in the evening for nocturnal wildlife.

Staying at Mantadia Lodge. Includes All Meals.

Day 5
Mitsinjo Reserve

Morning excursion to the Mitsinjo Reserve where the wonderful indri can again be observed at close quaters, they will often feed only a few feet away here. Perhaps also focus on some of the other lemurs today such as the Eastern grey bamboo lemur or the interesting range of endemic reptiles and frogs.

After lunch return 5 hours by road back to Antananarivo.

Staying at Relais des Plateaux. Includes Breakfast.

Day 6
Mandrare River Camp

Morning transfer to the airport to take the Tsaradia flight TZ 716 at 1250 to Fort Dauphin arriving 1440.

Met on arrival at the airport and commence the interesting drive (4 hours) through transitional and spiny forest to the Mandrare River Camp.

Activitiesfrom the camp include fascinating guided walks to see the endemic wildlife found in the different forest types including the bizarre spiny forest and riverine gallery forest, home to a large population of ring-tailed lemurs.

The strange spiny forest in particular contains many endemic plants adapted to the arid conditions and is dominated by the thorny Didiereacae, or octopus, trees and the local baobab, Andansonia rubrostipa (fony).

This is an excellent location to see the iconic Verreaux’s sifakas leaping between the trees. Birdlife includes sickle-billed vanga, running, green-capped and giant couas and if lucky you may also find a rare radiated tortoise.

Staying at Mandrare River Camp. Includes All Meals.

Day 7
Mandrare River Camp

Today enjoy a full day of guided excursions in a small group with a local guide (maximum 6 in a group).

The area is home to the Antandroy tribe, regarded by some as the most traditional tribe in Madagascar. During your stay you will have the opportunity to experience the rich culture of the area as well as view the wonderful wildlife including large groups of ring-tailed lemurs and dancing Verreaux’s sifakas.

Night walks will be offered to see nocturnal lemur species such as gray and gray-brown mouse lemurs and the range restricted white-footed sportive lemur, Madagascar scops owls, warty chameleons, large-headed geckos and much more.

Staying at Mandrare River Camp. Includes All Meals.

Day 8
Mandrare River Camp

Enjoy another full day of guided activities in a small group

The local Antandroy tribe that inhabit this region are fascinating to interact with and are largely unaffected by the outside world, holding onto their strong beliefs and living very naturally. The forest and associated wildlife here is preserved by the people themselves who hold them sacred as resting places for their ancestors.

This evening depart for a selection of sundowners, around a fire amidst the baobabs before enjoying a tribal dance performance.

Staying at Mandrare River Camp. Includes All Meals.

Day 9
Mandrare River Camp

Today perhaps visit the local spiny forest at dawn for more wildlife viewing, followed by a visit to a local village. Later in the morning return to Fort Dauphin stopping to admire the spiny forest along the journey. After lunch check in to your hotel and enjoy the evening at leisure.

Staying at Le Croix du Sud . Includes All Meals.

Day 10
Antananarivo

Morning transfer to the Fort Dauphin airport. Take Tsaradia domestic flight to Antananarivo. Met on arrival and transfer to the hotel. Enjoy the rest of the day at leisure.

Staying at Maison Galleni . Includes Breakfast.

Day 11
Antananarivo - Ambohimanga Hill

Today enjoy a guided city tour of Antananarivo (Tana) with your private guide and a vechile at your disposal.

The highlights of Tana include sites such as the old Prime Minister’s Palace, Presidential Palace, the Queen's Palace, several museums, the historical old town, train station, independence square, the La Digue market and some of Tana’s impressive Catholic churches. You can explore different areas based on your interests.

Later perhaps visit the Ambohimanga Hill, about 20 km from Tana to see the old royal palace complex (now the last surviving example of Malagasy royal residences since the Rova sadly burnt down), which is very atmospheric.

Staying at Maison Galleni . Includes Breakfast.

Day 12
Anjajavy

Take an early transfer (15 minutes) back to Tana's airport for your scheduled charter flight to the remote Anjajavy peninsula. You will arrive around 0900 in the morning with the rest of the day at leisure. You can choose from a range of included or optional activities on offer or simply just relax or explore independently.

Staying at Anjajavy L’Hotel. Includes Breakfast and Dinner.

Day 13
Anjajavy

Day at leisure in Anjajavy to enjoy the wildlife of the private dry forest reserve, wonderful beach and various activities on offer.

The surrounding dry forest reserve contains endemic species of trees and plants and is a refuge for many lemur species including the charming Coquerel’s sifakas that visit the lodge grounds each day. The nocturnal fat-tailed dwarf lemur, gray mouse lemur and Milne Edwards sportive lemur are among those seen on night walks. Madagascar's top predator, the fossa is also found in the reserve as are tenrecs, many chameleons, ground boas, and the very rare Madagascar fish eagle nests on the coast too.

If lucky you may now also catch a glimpse of the mysterious aye aye on a night walk in the lodge’s private reserve thanks to a successful reintroduction programme.

Staying at Anjajavy L’Hotel. Includes Breakfast and Dinner.

Day 14
Anjajavy

Day at leisure in Anjajavy. Optional activities include: boat trips, guided forest walks, kayaking and snorkelling.

There is a swimming pool to augment the warm sea bathing, and other water sports available include catamaran sailing, windsurfing, fishing, canoeing and water skiing. Four wheel drive and boat excursions, hiking and cycling are also possible.

Nearby there are two local villages that may be visited, where you can see the benefits accrued to the populations from their proximity and involvement with the hotel.

Staying at Anjajavy L’Hotel. Includes Breakfast.

Day 15
Antananarivo

Today take the scheduled charter flight at 0930 back to Antananarivo arriving at 1100. On arrival transfer to your hotel or enjoy exploring some of the city of Antananarivo with a guide and vechile at your disposal.

Staying at Relais des Plateaux . Includes Breakfast.

Day 16
Depart Antananarivo

Today transfer back to the airport to depart Antananarivo on your flight home.

Includes Breakfast.

Tour Accommodation

Madagascar Eastern Madagascar

Maison Gallieni

Overview

Located on the heights and boasting stunning views of the Malagasy capital Antananarivo, Maison Gallieni is a charming luxurious guesthouse. With just four guest rooms on the two floors, it is a peaceful and exclusive place to stay whilst you explore the historic and beautiful city. With brick, wood and stone interiors, the house exudes a relaxing charm and has an easy open plan feel.

The four bedrooms all have their own appeal, and differ slightly form one another. Chambre Moncao is located on the ground floor offering direct access to the outdoor pool. Also on the ground floor, Chambre Tana has a large, airy bathroom, and Chambre Fara enjoys direct access to the garden. Upstairs, Chambre Gallieni offers splendid views over the city, as well as a large bathroom with bath tub and walk in shower.

With beautifully furnished communal living and dining areas, guests will truly feel at home at the Maison Gallieni. Sunbathe by the pool, cosy up by the fire  or brows the interesting titles in the library.

Swimming Pool
Yes
Air Conditioning
Yes
Rooms
4
Facilities

The ground floor has a library, three bedrooms, outdoor seating area, heated outdoor pool and garden. On the first floor there is one other bedroom, a living room with fireplace, dining room and veranda. Bedrooms are equipped with flat screen TVs, air conditioning, safe, telephone, ensuite bathroom and WIFI internet access.

Optional Activities

The house is in an excellent location for exploring the city, just a few hundred meters from the famous Faravohitra Cathedral (built in 1868), and close to the large Analakely Pavilions covered market, and the renowned Avenue de l’independance.

Madagascar

Mantadia Lodge

Overview

The newly opened Mantadia Lodge is located along a ridge above the the village of Andasibe and is surrounded by eucalyptus forest, but with views towards the rainforest of Analamazotra in the distance. The lodge is only a 10 minute drive from the entrance to Perinet Reserve and an hour a half drive from Mantadia National Park and the song of the indri can often be heard at dawn.

The lodge offers some of the most comfortable accommodation, facilities and settings in the Andasibe area with 28 rooms including 2 suites. The accommodation features a garden and sun terrace, which can be enjoyed by guests if the weather permits. All rooms offer high speed Wi-Fi, flat screen TV, kettle and tea facilities, a safety deposit box in the bathroom and a wood stove for the cooler seasons. There is a superb onsite restaurant designed with an exceptional view and terrace. There is a well stocked bar and a welcoming lounge with both inside and outside reading areas and also a beautiful infinity pool in the grounds plus a spa.

 

Swimming Pool
Yes
Air Conditioning
No
Rooms
28
Facilities

Restaurant, bar and infity swimming pool and spa in the landscaped garden. Rooms feature modern private bathrooms, Wi-Fi, flat-screen cable TV and a laundry service is available.

Local Wildlife

In the early mornings you may wake to the song of the indri, which echoes throughout the local area. Perinet Reserve and its nearby Mantadia National Park is the best location to see this impressive species in all of Madagascar. There are eight other species of Lemur in Andasibe and the most commonly seen include the diademed sifaka, black-and-white ruffed lemur, Eastern grey bamboo lemur, common brown lemur and eastern woolly lemurs and furry-eared dwarf and Goodman’s mouse lemurs at night. There are some wonderful chameleons in the reserve including the two-foot long Parson’s Chameleon and tiny nose-horned and brookesia chameleons. Endemic Frogs are plentiful and birding highlights include Madagascar blue pigeon, Madagascar long-eared owl, Madagascar starling and numerous species of vanga, coua and the shy ground rollers.

Optional Activities

All exploring is done on foot along trails that weave through the forest: expeditions can vary in length from one hour to five. Walks are particularly rewarding in the early morning when Indri calls, sounding rather like a unique forest whale song echo through the air.

Madagascar Eastern Madagascar

Relais des Plateaux

Overview

Situated about 10 minutes’ drive from the airport, this comfortable three-star hotel set in exotic gardens offers well equipped, en suite rooms including air conditioning, satellite TV, mini-bar, tea and coffee facilities and hair dryer. Each room is decorated in a Malagasy design using local materials and the rooms are arranged in a village layout with good access.

Other facilities in the hotel include a local handicraft shop, restaurant serving delicious French cuisine and local delicacies, bar and swimming pool (heated in the cooler months).

Swimming Pool
Yes
Air Conditioning
Yes
Rooms
42
Facilities

Restaurant, air-conditioning, Wi-Fi, mini bar, safety deposit box, satellite TV, direct-dial telephone,

Optional Activities

City tour of Antananarivo, excursion to Ambohimanga Hill, visit to Tsarasaotra Lake (aka. Lac Alarobia) in a district of Tana for some unusual Hauts Plateaux birdwatching.

Madagascar Western Madagascar

Anjajavy L’ Hotel

Overview

Considered the top hotel in the country, luxurious Anjajavy l’Hotel spreads along a beautiful beach on a remote peninsula in northwest Madagascar. Accommodation at Anjajavy is in comfortable, air-conditioned two-storey villas constructed of rosewood and satrana-leaf thatch. Each detached villa has a large verandah overlooking the sea, double bed, private bathroom equipped with a large bathtub, a first floor sitting room (which converts to a second bedroom – ideal for two children), room safe and mini bar. There is a swimming pool to augment the warm sea bathing: other water sports include catamaran sailing, windsurfing, canoeing, paddle boarding, fishing and water skiing. Four-wheel drive and boat excursions, guided walking, hiking and cycling are also possible optional activities.

A boat excursion to Moramba Bay is highly rewarding for its beauty, sacred baobabs and the very rare Madagascar fish eagle, as is boating amongst the mangroves at sunset, especially when armed with a sundowner cocktail. Nearby are two local Sakalava fishing villages, Ambondro Ampassy and Anjajavy, where you can see the many benefits to the local population resulting from their close involvement with the hotel.

The adjacent 550-hectare tropical dry forest reserve contains endemic trees and other flora and is a refuge for many animal species. In 2014, two aye aye were translocated to the reserve from a forested area 50km away which had been purposely burned. There, aye ayes were being killed as evil spirits, as happened at Anjajavy before the lodge educated the locals. Plans are afoot to double the reserve by end 2015. Birding is excellent in the reserve and there are many marked paths through the forest and leading to nearby inlets. Nature walks can be taken with or without guides – maps are available at the reception.

Lemurs visit the lodge grounds most evenings – a rare occurrence for Madagascar’s lodges – offering excellent photographic opportunities and easy viewing. The sight of a Coquerel’s sifaka “dancing” across the ground near your room is spellbinding.

Access to Anjajavy is by charter plane from Antananarivo three times a week (Tue, Thu, Sat). Air transfers can usually be arranged on other days at a surcharge, with departures to/from Nosy Be possible on request.

Swimming Pool
Yes
Air Conditioning
Yes
Rooms
24
Facilities

Excellent beachside swimming pool; restaurant; bar; boutique shop; private 550 hectare dry tropical deciduous forest reserve home to many lemurs including the Coquerel's sifaka and two recently reintroduced aye aye.

Local Wildlife

Coquerel's sifaka, aye aye, common brown lemur, gray mouse lemur, Western fat-tailed dwarf lemur, Milne-Edwards sportive lemur, ghost crab and various chameleons, geckos and sankes. Birds include the very rare Madagascar fish eagle, sickle-billed vanga, both greater and lesser vasa parrots and crested coua.

Optional Activities

Water-skiing; boat trips to the mangroves, Moramba Bay and for private picnics in secluded coves; visits to the local villages; traditional pirogue (outrigger canoe) excursions; massage treatments; fishing.

Madagascar Southern Madagascar

Mandrare River Camp

Overview

Situated in the remote southeast of Madagascar, Mandrare River Camp is a luxury, tented lodge on the banks of the Mandrare River in the ancestral lands of the Antandroy, possibly the fiercest and most traditional tribe in Madagascar (but friendly to visitors). Experience the rich, unspoilt culture and the iconic wildlife of the remote off the beaten track region.

The journey from Fort Dauphin to reach this extraordinary camp can take 4 hours and is very bumpy due to the state of the road but is very interesting but charter flights are also possible.

Accommodation in an African-style safari tent, with a veranda with two canvas safari chairs and a small table. The solid-built bathroom section is attached to the rear of the tent and includes a shower area, toilet and washstand with basin. Hot water for the basin and shower is solar heated. The lodge now also features a swimming pool for cooling off in after a walk in the hot spiny forest. Service is very attentive and always friendly with drinks (including all alcoholic drinks except Champagne) included at all times, and high-quality meals are wonderfully prepared and presented. Normally a cooling breeze ensures the shaded camp is quite pleasant during the heat of the day and quite a few species of reptile and frog can be found in the lodge grounds itself.

Excursions are flexible according to guests’ interests but operate in small groups (to a maximum of 6) and include guided walks in the local spiny forest and riverine (gallery) forest to see the endemic wildlife in the mornings and late afternoons – good for escaping the heat of the sun too. Nocturnal walks are also offered for the fascinating nocturnal species found here.

The strange forest here contains many endemic plants adapted to the arid conditions and is dominated by the thorny Didiereacae, or octopus, trees and the local baobab, Andansonia rubrostipa (fony).

The local Antandroy tribe that inhabit this region are fascinating to interact with and are largely unaffected by the outside world, holding onto their strong beliefs and living very naturally. The forest and associated wildlife here are preserved by the people themselves who hold them sacred as resting places for their ancestors.

The lodge hosts often arrange magical evening sundowners amidst the baobabs for guests around a fire. Watching the sun set and moon rise with a view across the Baobabs to the mountains beyond is a magical experience. Local villages often also come to perform beautiful traditional dances, accompanied by singing and music.

Swimming Pool
Yes
Air Conditioning
Yes
Rooms
7
Facilities

Dining tent, private bathrooms and solar powered hot water showers, verandas, inclusive drinks.

Local Wildlife

Lemur species include both the famous ring-tailed and "dancing" Verreaux's sifakas and also nocturnal white-footed sportive lemurs and locally endemic grey-brown mouse lemurs. Birdlife of the spiny forest features Madagascar scops owl and Madagascar nightjar, sickle-billed and Chabert's vangas, running, green-capped and crested couas, banded kestrel and Madagascar harrier hawk and many other resident birds. There are also many reptiles to see such as the warty chameleon, thick-tailed gecko, Dumeril's ground boa and endangered radiated tortoises if lucky.

Optional Activities

Wildlife walks, immersive cultural activities including visits to the Antandroy tribes and their sacred forests. Excursions can also be made to the Lac Anony Lake and impressive sand dune system.

Route Map

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Mandrare River Camp: -24.822294, 46.167297
Relais des Plateaux: -18.834180, 47.463010
Mantadia Lodge: -18.918703, 48.415681
Maison Gallieni: -18.908387, 47.529237
Anjajavy le Lodge: -14.990470, 47.228107

Departure Dates

This tour has no set departure date and can be tailored to suit your travel requirements. Contact us for more details.

Travel Information

Are International Flights Included?

No. Please contact us for a quote if required.

Flight Info:

Fly to Antananarivo via Paris (CDG) from London Heathrow or Manchester with Air France. Other flight options include Kenya Airways and Ethiopian Airlines and South African Airways.

Best Visited:

April to December

Are you ATOL Registered?

Yes. This means we are legally able to book your international flights in conjunction with your ground arrangements so you can book with us with complete confidence. Read more about our ATOL license here.

Ian Loyd

Area Specialist

If you have any questions regarding this Tour, please feel free to contact me on +44 (0)1803 866965

Quality of wildlife: Excellent. We saw everything we wished for and more. All guides were excellent. English excellent, very comprehensive knowledge. [Our escort guide] in particular was superb with an encyclopaedic knowledge.

Mr D M - South Petherton