17 day tour
- Sail over the Pangalanes Canal
- Spot lemurs and chameleons
- Isalo Waterfalls
During this Highlights of Madagascar tour you will travel all over the red island and get to discover the national parks and its wildlife. Your journey begins in the capital Antananarivo, which you will immediately leave and swap for the Périnet park. You will sail through the Pangalanes Canal, meet the fishermen and sleep in a wooden chalet. Discover the countryside around Antsirabe, the city of pousse pousse, and go searching for various types of lemurs in Andringitra. After exploring the waterfalls of Isalo and the beaches of Ifaty, you will travel back to the capital, where you can get ready for the return trip.
17 day tour of Madagascar:
Route: Antananarivo – Andasibe – Pangalanes Canal – Andasibe – Antsirabe – Ambalavao – Tsaranoro Valley (Andringitra) – Isalo Nationaal Park – Ifaty – Antananarivo
Day 1 – Arrival in Antananarivo
After arriving at the airport you will be brought to a comfortable hotel in the capital. You have the rest of the day to recover from your flight or to wander into the city.
Day 2 – Antananarivo to Andasibe
After breakfast you will travel to Andasibe. Within 4 hours, you will reach Andasibe, which is located in the east of the country and is better known as Périnet. This is the habitat of the Indri Indri, the largest of the lemur species. Take a stroll in the evening to spot the nocturnal animals like the lemur mouse, the chameleon, the gecko and the tree frog. Spend the night in a wooden chalet on the edge of the rainforest.
Day 3 – Andasibe
Accompanied by a guide you will walk through the park and see the different lemur species. You can encounter the largest chameleon species here; the Parsons chameleon. After lunch you will drive to the Vakona domain, an island where you can photograph the previously spotted animals very well. On the same terrain is a former crocodile farm and if you look closely at the lake you might see one of these prehistoric monsters.
Day 4 – Andasibe to Canal Pangalanes
After breakfast and a three hour drive you will reach Manambato, the gateway to the Pangalanes Canal. The Pangalanes are formed by a string of hundreds of kilometres long lakes, creeks and lagoons, which are interconnected with each other by channels. In colonial times the water was used for transport, but nowadays it is so overgrown that only small pirogues of local fishermen can still find their way.
Day 5 – Pangalanes Canal
Today you will have plenty of time to explore the nature reserve. You can go hiking (with a guide or on your own) and encounter dancing sifakas, Indri Indri and other lemurs. The lush forest also houses a selection of carnivorous plants. You can also choose to explore the canal by boat and go bird watching along the shores or visit a fishing village.
Day 6 – Pangalanes Canal to Andasibe
After breakfast, the boat will bring you back down the creek until you return to the mainland. Then drive for a few hours to Andasibe where you will spend the night in the wooden chalets.
Day 7 – Andasibe to Antsirabe
Today will be a long day on the road, but of course you will have the necessary stops on the way. In total, you will drive for about six hours on the National Route 7 to Antsirabe. This lovely little town is the capital of the pousse pousse, a brightly coloured rickshaw pulled by manpower. The historical colonial buildings make this town a pleasant place to stop. You will spend two nights at the Résidence Madalief, a guesthouse that is part of a Dutch foundation that helps orphans and single mothers in Madagascar.
Day 8 – Antsirabe
Today will be an active day where you will explore the area of Antsirabe. There is a crater lake about twenty kilometres away which you will explore before crossing over the countryside by bike. Along the way you will encounter the rural population, who enjoy posing in front of the camera. In the afternoon there is enough time to visit Antsirabe.
Day 9 – Antsirabe to Ambalavao
You will continue over the Route National until you arrive in Ambalavao. This village is located in the highlands. You can wander through the streets or visit a local project that makes traditional decorative paper. You also take a look in the kitchen.
Day 10 – Ambalavao to Tsaranoro Valley (Andringitra)
On the way to the Andringitra mountains you will make a stop and visit the park d’Anja. A short ride brings you to a colony of lemurs. Madagascar is divided in two by a high mountain ridge, and the centre of this is the Andringitra mountain. You will spend two nights in a camp with full board, where you can do some mountain tours and other walks.
Day 11 – Tsaranoro Valley (Andringitra)
Accompanied by a local guide you will go explore the mountains. You can choose between easy, medium and difficult walks. You will remember the beautiful scenery for a long time.
Day 12 – Tsaranoro Valley (Andringitra) Isalo National Park
After leaving Andringitra and once again reaching the main road, you will continue your yourney to the south. Ranohira is located at the gateway to the Isalo National Park. You will spend two nights in a nice hotel with a pool.
Day 13 – Isalo National Park
Connoisseurs agree that Isalo is the most beautiful park of the south. Today you will have the whole day to explore this park under the supervision of a guide. The park consists of waterfalls, natural pools and adventurous mountain cleaves. In the middle of the jungle, you will be able to enjoy a barbecue lunch while ring-tailed lemurs and red head lemurs play around you in the bushes.
Day 14 – Isalo National Park to Ifaty
The Route National brings you to Tulear. From here you will drive through a sandy coastal road into the resort of Ifaty. You’ll spend two nights here and ready to enjoy sun, sea and sand.
Day 15 – Ifaty
Depending on the season, you could go snorkelling at a nearby reef. Today you can also choose to leave the harbour to look for migrating whales. Sports enthusiasts can take a lesson in kite surfing, or do a test dive. There are also different activities to do on land. The forest on the southwest of Madagascar is home to hundreds of strange looking baobabs, also called bottle trees, which you can admire.
Day 16 – Itafy to Antananarivo
A domestic flight will take you back to the capital in just over an hour. You will stay in the same hotel as the one on the first day of your trip.
Day 17 – departure from Antananarivo – end trip
You can explore the city again today. For example, visit the bustling Avenue de l’Independence and markets around it. Take a taxi to the highest point of the city, where the palaces of the last queen and her prime minister are worth a visit. Then you will be taken to the airport and depart from Madagascar.