A great tour of Madagascar. See all the highlights, and do it in style
Rainforest, lemurs, baobabs and beach - the perfect trip for those wishing to experience wild Madagascar in style
Start with three nights at Madagascar's number one 'must see' protected rainforest area, Andasibe-Mantadia National Park ('Perinet'). Guided day and night walks will reveal many weird and wonderful life forms to you. You'll also learn about conservation and habitat restoration programmes in place, with development of permanently resident communities being the central focus. Return to the centrally-located capital city and then fly to Anjajavy Le Lodge, for a 5 night stay. (This can be extended if you wish). On the drier north-west coast, you can explore a wildlife-rich deciduous forest peppered with Baobabs and go for a boat trip into a healthy mangrove system. Be sure to visit magical Moramba Bay with its uninhabited, mushroom-shaped islets and lovely, secluded coves.
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Day 1: Fly to Antananarivo
Fly to vibrant Antananarivo. On arrival, you'll be welcomed and taken to Relais des Plateaux to overnight with breakfast..
Day 2: Head to the rainforests
After a lie-in, your guide and driver collect you from the hotel. Set off to Andasibe-Mantadia, a stunningly lovely Malagasy rainforest in the eastern escarpment.. Getting there entails an easy 5 hours drive along good, winding roads. Stay for 3 nights in Mantadia Lodge, Andasibe Hotel or Vakona Forest Lodge on a half board basis. Make an introductory rainforest walk with your guides.
Day 3: Lemurs, Chameleons and Things: Andasibe-Mantadia National Park
Try to be in the rainforest for the magical dawn chorus, as this is when diurnal wildlife is at its most active. You'll never forget walking to the rainforest as the mists lift off the canopy and you hear the Indris calling loudly to each-other. Trails are easy; guides are sure to find many animal oddities for you.
In the evening, you can make a night walk either in the rainforest parcel protected by VOIMMA guides' association, or at the rainforest concession looked after by the NGO Association Mitsinjo. The cast of characters you may then see, is delightful.
Day 4: Rainforest and wildlife: Andasibe-Mantadia National Park
Enjoy more time today in the country's number one must see protected rainforest site. Energetic visitors can go to Mantadia National Park or Maromizaha Experimental Reserve. Those keen on giving something back, are invited to plant an endemic tree sapling from the nurseries of the NGO Association Mitsinjo, which has long been conducting habitat restoration here. There's also horse riding on offer and the lodges have swimming pools for the warmer spring and summer months..
Day 5: Meandering back to Antananarivo
If you like, take a final early morning rainforest walk. Then drive back to the capital via Ambohimanga, a Royal Village which is one of the country's 3 UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Its a tranquil place from where you can take in panoramic Highlands vistas. Overnight once again in Relais des Plateaux with breakfast.
Day 6: Quick flight to Anjajavy Le Lodge and Reserve
Transfer to the MTA lounge at Antananarivo airport for the quick scheduled Madagascar Trans Air flight west to Anjajavy. (These depart thrice weekly at 07h30). Here you'll be met at the air strip and whisked off to Anjajavy Le Lodge to stay 5 nights in an air-conditioned, sea-facing villa with all meals included.
Days 6 - 10: Anjajavy Le Lodge and Reserve
Relax in style at the country's sole Relais & Chateaux property. Anjajavy is an exclusive experience, combining both the bAnjajavy Peninsulaeach (there are seven, white-sand beaches) and wildlife aspects - the property is responsible for protecting a huge tract of tropical dry deciduous forest, peppered with endemic Baobabs, mostly of the large northern species Adansonia madagascariensis. Wildife viewing is easy - groups of Coquerel's sifaka and common brown lemurs enter the verdant gardens daily. And there's plenty of birdlife and interesting reptiles. Guided day and night walks are included in the rates.
Day 11: Fly back to Antananarivo
Take the scheduled MTA flight back to Antananarivo, where your guide and driver meet you and take you for some shopping and sightseeing. You'll have a day/evening room at Relais des Plateaux.
Late evening transfer to the airport to check in for the Air France flight out.
Day 12: International flight home
Take the Air France flight back to UK via Paris CDG. You will be home by lunch time.
Location: Madagascar, Africa
Price based on two adults travelling together includes: return scheduled MTA flights from Antananarivo to Anjajavy, private transfers and 4WD transportation, services of dedicated professional English-speaking guide for Andasibe-Mantadia and Antananarivo (Anjajavy has its own guides and their services are included in the rates); excursions and activities as outlined; park permits and park guiding fees; accommodation with meals as outlined.
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