One of the world’s last undiscovered places with so many contrasts in one place: weird & wonderful creatures, desert and rainforest, reef and hiking. This large island off the east coast of Africa has epic terrain and some incredible wildlife. If you love to get off the beaten track – this is a dream destination for anyone with an adventurous spirit.
Let us show you the weird and wonderful world of Madagascar.
Incredible Cultures – These are natives who have been isolated from the mainland for 165 million years. The beautiful, fierce nomadic tribes of the Antadroy still follow ancient traditions of ancestor worship. Experience sacred forests, tombs and cults, bizarre and fascinating traditions and long-established ceremonies. Witness traditional dancing and music. Explore local markets which are a delight to the senses with color, smells, sounds, animals, people and the odd bargain.
A Wild World of Flora and Fauna – The iconic animal here is the lemur, but there is so much more to discover. Madagascar has 5% of all known plant & animal species, with many unique and strange creatures calling this island home – the abundance of wildlife is a revelation. Here you will find the fossa (a feline like predator), bright frogs, bobble-eyed chameleons and graceful sea life such as turtles, sharks and rays. You may even be lucky to spot humpback whales during winter. Your eyes will be spoilt with flora such as the baobab trees, the spiny forest deserts and hundreds of brightly colored orchids decorating the rainforests.
Incredible Landscapes – Few places on earth offer such diversity as Madagascar. A variety of forests from rainy, to dry to spiny. Baobab trees, rice paddies, arid deserts, sandstone canyons and limestone karsts. Add to this, 3000 miles of beautiful beaches and pristine tropical reef. The scenery is a photographer’s dream.
Where To Go?
The North – Combine outdoor adventures and turquoise waters in a short time frame. National parks here have incredible scenery and wildlife. Nosy Be Island is known as the ‘Perfumed Isle’ due to its vanilla plants, ylang ylang blossoms and pepper plantations. You’ll have extraordinary diving and snorkeling surrounding the island and those nearby.
The South – Providing surreal panoramic scenes for any avid photographer, this is hottest and driest part of the country with giant baobabs and spiny forests. You may wish to visit local fishing villages or do whale watching in season. National parks here have canyons and natural rock pools.
The East – Many diverse landscapes and climates. Find lemur in the forests, particularly Parc National d’Andasibe Mantadia. The adventurous can traverse the Canal des Pangalane with its canals and lagoons. Fly to Ile Sainte Marie, for palm-fringed beaches and traditional fishing villages.
The West – With many areas only accessible by plane, this area is very much untouched. Here you’ll find the Avenue of the Baobabs, karst mountains, coral islands and the sort after fossa.
The Centre – Antananarivo, the capital, is surrounded by hills and a ridge that bisects the city. A visit to the palace, central markets and botanical gardens are recommended. The roads enveloping the city pass by charming mountain villages and markets.
When To Go?
Please talk to us, and we can give you our recommendations on the best time to travel, based on your safari itinerary.
January – March: The rainy season, with storms and sometimes cyclones in central and north areas.
April – May: The start of the dry season, with lush green foliage.
June – July: The perfect time for baby lemurs, as well as and humpback whales on Ile Sainte-Marie.
August – October: Cooler in the south-west. The iconic ring-tail lemurs are born in October.
November – December – Temperatures are hot in the southwest, rains returning to the center of the island. For a beach break, December is perfect.
At Rothschild Safaris, we believe that the design of your trip is very important. We put great time and care in to the order and logistics of your you travel. In Madagascar, travelling between areas may take time, but the sights and experiences along the way are what make traveling half the fun! We are prepared with expert advice and first-hand experience on the most comfortable and convenient way to travel between locations, so that you have minimum stress and maximum time on the ground.