Madagascar , the famous road to the South

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€3467 per person
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Departure Location
Malta International Airport
Return Location
Istanbul Airport

Madagascar The famous road to the South

From : €3467


Antananarivo, Antsirabe, Ranomafana, Isalo, Tulear & Ifaty


We will meet at the airport at 4.45 pm, for our Turkish Airlines flight to Istanbul that leaves at 7.45 pm and arrives at 12.10 am (16th November). We later proceed with the next flight to Madagascar, to Antananarivo, departing at 2.20 am and arriving at 3.05 pm. On arrival, we are transferred to our hotel and check in at Le Louvre Hotel (or similar).


Breakfast and today we will enjoy a city tour of Antananarivo, also known by its colonial shorthand form Tana. Built on a narrow, rocky ridge, Antananarivo occupies a strategic point at the centre of the island of Madagascar. Two forts watch over the city from the east and southwest, while within the city limits lay royal palaces, embassies, some fifty churches and a mosque. At the capital and largest city in Madagascar, we will discover the upper city, where one finds the main construction and the most attractive buildings in the city in terms of architecture and location “the Rova” also called the “Queen’s palace”. In the upper town, brightly traditional painted columned houses of the Merina people are stacked up on the hillsides which also offer a great panoramic view over the city and its surroundings. Afternoon – time at leisure.


After breakfast, we start the trip to the south and drive to Antsirabe. A short stop at Ambatolampy, mainly known for its forging and foundry industry, famous for its production of kitchen utensils made of aluminium. We arrive at Antsirabe approximately by lunchtime. Antsirabe, the third largest city in Madagascar and the capital of the Vakinankaratra region was founded by Norwegian missionaries attracted by the cool climate and the healing properties of the thermal springs. The name means the place of salt. It is the agricultural and industrial centre of Madagascar, best known as the centre of beer. The town is also the capital of pousse-pousse (a rickshaw pulled by a man) and most of the people earn their living by taking housewives to the market, kids to school or taking tourists around town. The rickshaw men or pousse-pousse drivers are the lifeblood of the town. The areas immediately south of Antsirabe are very fertile and steep slopes are neatly terraced and irrigated and with rice shots at different stages of maturation, provide an intricate patchwork of vivid greens. In the afternoon we have a short city tour and visit of the small handicraft fabrics. After that, check in to the hotel – Arotel (or similar).


Breakfast and today, we will head to the south, with the main stop at Ambositra, the centre of Madagascar’s woodcarving industry and the Arts-and-crafts capital of the country. Upon arrival, we have a short city tour and then some time for lunch. Afterwards, we continue to the southeast and late in the afternoon arrive at the village of Ranomafana. The ride to Ranomafana from the crossroad before Alakamisy Ambohimaha takes about 45 minutes (36km) on a good paved road. Along the way, we see kids selling crawfish from the nearby stream. Piles of charcoal sacs for sale are also seen along the road and most of the Tanala people, the ethnic group from this region, earn their living on making charcoal for cooking. Overnight at Thermal Hotel (or similar)


We enjoy breakfast and today, we will have a day expedition into the Ranomafana National Park to spot the best of wildlife species. During the walks, we will be on the lookout for a wealth of other wildlife, rare and exclusive species of birds such as the brown mesite, the Pitta-like ground roller and the velvet asity amongst others. Hike up to the higher level of the forest to see the Milne Edward’s Sifaka, the red-bellied lemur, the golden bamboo lemur, and more. In the afternoon, we head to Vohiparara forest to see other species of endemic birds like the Madagascar flufftails, the cryptic warbler (newly discovered) and the Madagascar rail. Reptiles such as the leaf-tailed gecko and some mantilla frogs can be seen in the forest. In the evening, we will have a nocturnal visit.


Breakfast and we will leave Ranomafana and drive on passing through the town of Fianarantsoa. Then Ambalavao where we will have lunch and spend some free time. Ambalavao is a beautiful and peaceful little town with the half traditional and half-colonial architecture of its houses with their varangue balconies made of carved wood, very attractive two-storey brick houses with painted doors and windows with vertical ladders to connect floor to floor. Exterior balconies store dried corn or rice used for fodders. In Ambalavao, one can see the process from the silkworms to the finished product; view weavers and spinners in action; dyers run back and forth preparing and drying the next colours for some exquisite liners en scarves. Visit the local paper factory, which allows visitors to learn more about this famous paper “Antemoro paper”. Then another visit at the Anjà reserve, a community-run park located 15 minutes’ drive from Ambalavao with superb scenery and intriguing plants. It is a protected area that is managed by local farmers in association with the WWF. The park shelters several clans of fairly easy to-see ring-tailed. This is a wonderful example of local people helping to protect their local wildlife. Apart from lemurs, one can also see plenty of birds, reptiles like chameleons, snakes, etc – a good opportunity to look for another bizarre Malagasy inhabitant “the pink-flated leaf bug”. After these visits, we continue and reach Ranohira Isalo, the main village at the entry of the national park. We arrive at the destination by the end of the day and overnight at Le Jardin Du Roy Hotel (or similar).


Today, we will have a day expedition into the Isalo National Park. This is among the best and most visited parks in Madagascar, with astonishing landscapes made of natural massive rock uniform dating from the Jurassic era, with typical and amazing wildlife species. Isalo is a combination of sandstone rocks, rare endemic plants such as the pachypodium rosulatum or “elephant foot” and dry weather. The sandstone of the Isalo Mountains in the park provides some of the most beautiful scenery in Madagascar. The visit begins with a morning trekking into the park, then to the natural pool. Then hikers continue over an undulating plateau with varied views of rock formations. Guests taking this must be sure-footed, strong with endurance in hot conditions. The landscape includes several trails to view the sweeping colours of this Jurassic scenery. Isalo’s wildlife includes Sifaka, brown and ringtailed lemurs as well as over 500 species of plants. Late in the afternoon, we drive back to the lodge with a short stop at the sandstone window of Isalo to enjoy the sunset. A real postcard that deserves the detour.


On this day, we will have another half-day expedition in the park with a different itinerary. Afterwards, we return to the hotel and have some time at leisure.


Breakfast and then we leave Isalo in the morning and start off the day. We pass through the sapphire-rush town of Ilakaka. Along the road, we pass many mining small towns where local miners descend every day into the bowels of mines to find one stone. We also see dramatic plains, small villages, zebu herds and baobab trees. The zebu or hump-backed cattle occupies an important place in the traditional Malagasy culture. The social status, fortune and wealth of the Bara people are measured in their cattle which symbolizes beauty, pride and happiness. Later on, we arrive in Tulear, the last town of the southwest part of the country. Upon arrival, visit the arboretum of Antsokay, a botanical garden established by a prominent Swiss-born botanist in 1980 which spread large endemic and specific plants of the south region. After lunch, we head on to the north to reach Ifaty, a small coastal beach village. Overnight at Dunes D’Ifaty Hotel (or similar).


Breakfast and we will have a morning drive to the spiny forest of Reniala for the expedition. The forest is one of the most important in the region also for botanical species. We will see Baobab trees and succulents along the main trail and we will have bird watching at the same time as this forest is a unique spot for the long-tailed ground roller, sub-desert mesite and other interesting bird species including the Green Capped Coua, some geckos and snakes, warty chameleons can also be spotted in the forest. This forest is also rich in medicinal plants. After the visit, back to the hotel for lunch. In the afternoon, we go for a dugout session to spot the everyday life of local people in this village. After the tour, return to the hotel.


Breakfast and today we enjoy a visit to the mangrove, honko community reserve followed by a visit to a turtle village reserved for the protection of endemic turtles of Madagascar. We return to our hotel for lunch and the rest of the day at leisure.


After breakfast, we leave Ifaty and drive to Tulear for a city tour and a visit to the shell market. Lunch at a local restaurant (included) before we are transferred to Tulear for our flight back to Antananarivo. Upon arrival, we are transferred to our hotel Relais des Plateaux (or similar).


Breakfast and free time. Later in the evening, we are transferred to the airport for our return flight. Departure at 4.25 pm and arriving at 5.40 am in Istanbul (29th November). Then, we have our final flight to Malta departing at 8.20 am and arriving at 8.50 am.


Adult in Triple €3467

Adult in Twin €3637

Adult in Single €4223


Turkish Airlines flights to Antananarivo via Istanbul Domestic flight Tulear to Antananarivo

12 nights’ accommodation in Madagascar 3 & 4-star hotels

Daily breakfasts, 11 lunches & 12 dinners

All transfers as per the programme

All excursions are guided by English speaking guide as indicated in the itinerary

All parks, reserves, and visits entrance fees, with local forest guides at each park mentioned in the itinerary Ranomafana National Park, Isalo National Park, Arboretum of Antsokay in Tulear, Reniala private reserve at Ifaty

Services of Tour Leader

All taxes

Insolvency Fund

The minimum group size is based on 20 passengers

Note: A Maltese passport with a validity date of 6 months beyond the departure date.

Visa: Please ask at the desk for requirements.

Vaccines: Kindly check with the National Immunisation Service at Floriana Health Centre.

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From €5387
Starting from
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Madagascar , the famous road to the South

€3467 per person

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