Take In Madagascar’s Wildlife Highlights

Your Wildlife Highlights in Madagascar Tour covers the best birdwatching and lemur spots Madagascar has to offer in a short space of time. On this tour you will have an opportunity to discover different species of birds and lemurs, national parks with unique wildlife, stunning landscapes, diverse cultures and fascinating history. Madagascar’s avifauna is rich, with almost 300 bird species. More than half of Madagascar’s breeding birds are endemics that are found nowhere else on Earth. You will have your own personal driver guide with a 4×4 vehicle, so you can experience Madagascar at your own pace.

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Our Suggested Day By Day Itinerary

This tour can be fully personalised and upgrades are available.
Madagascar tailor-made holidays will be designed to suit your preferences.

PACKAGE DETAILS

  • From £3,400  Per Person
    Based on 2 people sharing a Twin or Double Room
  • Price Includes:

  • Return economy flights from UK London/Manchester/Birmingham. Contact us for flights quotation from different countries.
  • Excursions,
  • Entry fees,
  • Transport: Private A/C Car with Chauffeur Guide
    Hotels: Mixture of Simple & Mid-range hotels on Half Board & Full Board basis

Day 1 – Fly to Antananarivo

Today you will start your Madagascar adventure by flying to Antananarivo’s Ivato International Airport.

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Day 2 – Arrival → Antananarivo

‘’Manao ahoana’’ & ‘’Salama’’ Welcome to tropical paradise. You will be welcomed & greeted by your guide or representative on arrival at Antananarivo Ivato International Airport. You will be transferred to your hotel in Antananarivo. The travel time will be approximately 45 minutes to 1 hour depending on the road traffic.

  • Board Includes:
  • Breakfast

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Day 3 – Antananarivo → Ranomafana

After breakfast you will travel by car to Ranomafana National Park. The travel time will be approximately 7-8 hours. En route you will stop to have a tea break with a local Malagasy family.

Ranomafana is a mid-altitude rainforest and spreads over 41,601 hectares. Ranomafana offers skilled nature guides and are great help in finding elusive bird species. Ranomafana National Park’s success is because of one woman’s vision and dedication to preserve the nature and wildlife. Dr. Patricia Wright is considered to be one of the world’s foremost experts on lemurs, Wright is best known for her 26-year study of social and family interactions of wild lemurs in Ranomafana National Park, Madagascar.

Birds that can be found at Ranomafana include the ground-rollers such as the Pitta-Like Ground-Roller which is common.

  • Board Includes:
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

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Day 4 – Ranomafana National Park

After breakfast you will explore this wonderful rainforest. Ranomafana is a conservation success story in many ways. Today Ranomafana plays a crucial role in education and scientific research with the help of Centre ValBio Research Centre which is one of the most sophisticated research field stations in Madagascar.

There are many different forest types, from lowland rainforests to cloud forests and high plateau forests. It was classified a World Natural Heritage site of Atsinanana in 2007. It shelters a big wealth of endemic biodiversity with challenges. The forest marshes are home to Madagascar Snipe, Slender-billed Flufftail and Grey Emutail. You can see the rare species and seriously threatened lemurs. The park is also the genetic reservoir of some rare and endemic plant species. There are many rivers and streams passing through the forest. Several animal species have been recorded, 12 species of lemurs, including golden bamboo lemur, greater bamboo lemur, Milne-Edward’s shifaka, red bellied lemur plus 115 species of birds. About thirty amongst them exist exclusively in the primary forest of the park. There are also 90 species of butterflies, 98 species of amphibian and 62 species of reptiles; chameleons, lizards and fish.

Your specialist park guide will explain to you the circuits available to you before based on your fitness, expectation and the circuits. The shortest trek, Circuit Varibolomena, takes about 2-3 hours. This soft circuit is about 3 kilometres long but there are also medium to hard circuits to choose from.

During the evening there will be lectures about conservation in the ValBio Centre. You can also visit the centre during the opening hours. When it gets dark you will take a night walk with a guide to observe the nocturnal lemurs (active only during night time).

  • Board Includes:
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

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Day 5 – Ranomafana National Park

After breakfast you will explore Ranomafana to check off any birds, lemurs or other wildlife that you may still be trying to locate. Your specialist park guide will explain to you the circuits available to you before based on your fitness, expectation and the circuits.

  • Board Includes:
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

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Day 6 – Ranomafana → Tsaranoro Valley

After breakfast you will travel to your accommodation in Tsaranoro Valley, Andringitra National Park.

  • Board Includes:
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

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Day 7 – Tsaranoro Valley

After breakfast you will begin trekking towards the sacred Forest of Tsaranoro and its ring-tailed lemurs. Starting from the camp; you are entering into lush vegetation where different species of endemic trees abound that are infected by the “Ficus Strangler” (tall fig trees). You can also observe termite nests. After crossing a small stream, take the path up to the right and do not miss out on climbing up to see a great view of the overhanging vegetation. This forest is now the habitat of the ring-tailed lemurs. You may able to be see them jump from tree to tree.
Tsaranoro’s cliff has a path that leads you in several directions. If you go down the path for a few minutes you will arrive in the grasslands of the lower part of the forest. In the zebu’s grazing areas, you can still make out heaps of stones constituting ancient ruins. Throughout this trip, many tombs are visible. Malagasy tombs are usually far more elaborate than the homes they live in and are topped with carved wooden memorial posts called “aloalo” and often decorated with horns from a sacrificed zebu. This forest is still the cemetery of the inhabitants of the valley. Continue your way up to a small stream from which you will soon reach the camp.

After a picnic lunch you will continue your visit to the village of Sahanambo to discover the daily life of the inhabitants. Take the path that joins the track and visit the village of Andonaka. You will first pass through the “Tsaranoro’s School ” where on weekdays, you can visit the students and the two teachers. In the village you will come across women pounding rice in traditional method. You will see the traditional architecture of the Bara and Betsileo tribes with houses without flooring. Coloured balconies with drying sweetcorn are signs of wealth. You will pass the villages, rice fields and waterfalls to reach Sahanambo River. Afterwards you will take the path towards your accommodation.

  • Board Includes:
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

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Day 8 – Tsaranoro Valley → Isalo via Anja

After breakfast you will travel to Anja, en route to Isalo in the south. The South of Madagascar is known for its spiny forests and cactus trees with colourful tribes. The South is home to some of the most popular parks in Madagascar including Isalo National Park. Anja Community Reserve nicknamed “Anja Park” is a great place to see ring-tailed lemurs in troops. It is the most visited community-run protected area for the lemurs and the landscape is incredible with the backdrop of granite rocks.

You will take a 2 hour walk around the 30-hectare reserve to see the ring-tailed lemur families and varieties of flora. You can also see some Bestsileo tombs here.

Afterwards you will continue your journey towards Isalo.

  • Board Includes:
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

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Day 9 – Isalo National Park

Today you will explore Isalo National Park with your park guide. It is the Grand Canyon of Madagascar. Kingdom of the Queen of Isalo, cradle of a particular wild nature and an exceptional landscape, the lovers of the big escapes will be seduced by this park. The appeal is the remarkable landscape of the Jurassic Era eroded ruiniform sandstone, canyons and rare plants as well as the wildlife.

The highlights of the trekking circuits include the natural swimming pool and the canyons. The soft trekking circuit of Isalo covers approximately 3 kms in 3-4 hours. There are several circuits and you can talk to the guide for the best option that suits your expectations and fitness. Most hiking circuits include the natural swimming pool. It’s really worth a dip in the natural swimming pool as it’s an oasis.

These are around 80 species of birds living in Isalo among which the Benson’s rock-thrush (pseudocossyphus bensoni), an endemic species of Madagascar is well protected. You can also find 14 species of nocturnal lemurs, as well as ring-tailed, Verreaux’s Shifakas and red-fronted brown lemurs.

In the late afternoon, you will visit the Window of Isalo to see the sunset for a spectacular view.

  • Board Includes:
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

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Day 10 – Isalo National Park →  Tulear via Zombitse National Park and Reef Doctor Honko Project

After breakfast you will travel to Ifaty, en route you will visit the Zombitse National Park. The total travel time will be approximately 4 ½ hours.

The complex, Zombitse Vohibasia, is in the southwest of Madagascar. Zombitse Vohibasia is renowned for its wealth of rare bird species and its unique biodiversity. This is now a protected park.

Zombitse Vohibasia shelters 47% of the endemic birds of Madagascar and a local endemic species: the Appert’s Greenbul (Bernieria apperti) . It also counts 8 species of lemurs, of which some are almost threatened, such as the western fork-marked lemur (Phaner furcifer pallescens).

In Zombitse, you will do a soft circuit trek for 2 kms which takes about 1-2 hours depending on your interests.

After the park visit you will continue your journey to Tulear via the Reef Doctor Honko Project.

During your tour of the Reef Doctor Honko Project (Mangrove Conservation Project) you can learn about the project that is helping to protect mangroves and its ecosystems. You can walk on the elevated boardwalk to observe nature. The trained local guides can show you many wonders and explain how this unique ecosystem works as well as how local people truly depend on nature for their survival. There are many wetland bird species found here, including several threatened and endangered species. In fact, a study found that Ambondrolava (where the site is located) has the highest recorded wetland bird diversity in Madagascar’s south and southwest region. Even since that study, new species have been sighted here, including the endangered Humblot’s Heron.

 

  • Board Includes:
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

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Day 11 – Arboretum d’Antsokay

Situated 13 kilometres from Tulear along the Southwest coast is the impressive Arboretum d’Antsokay. Nature lovers will enjoy learning about the dry forest flora and fauna and it’s a great location for birdwatching.

 

  • Board Includes:
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

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Day 12 – Fly to Antananarivo from Tulear

In the morning you will travel to Tulear Airport. Travel time approximately 45 minutes – 1 hour. You will fly to Antananarivo. Flight time will be one hour. You will be picked up from the airport and transferred to your hotel. Approximate travel time to your hotel will be 10 minutes depending on the traffic.

You will have the rest of the day free to do as you wish.

  • Board Includes:
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

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Day 13 – Antananarivo → Andasibe

After breakfast you will travel to Andasibe in the East of Madagascar.

As the roads winds through the hairpin bends and turns you have opportunities to observe the daily activities of remote villages along this road. You will be passing terrace rice fields and bustling road side stalls with all the tropical fruits.

Travel time will be approximately 3 hours depending on the road traffic.

In the evening around 6pm you will be guided through the Analamazaotra Park on a Night Walk to spot the nocturnal animals including the ‘Goodman Mouse lemur. Experience the rainforest after dark where nocturnal lemurs, chameleons, geckos, frogs and fireflies come alive. The night walk can take 1½ – 2 hours.

  • Board Includes:
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

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Day 14 – Andasibe

After breakfast you will visit the Analamazaotra Special Reserve (Périnet) in Andasibe-Mantadia National Park to spot and hear the sounds of the Indri Lemurs. The Indri is the largest living lemur and known as babakotos in the local Malagasy language, which means ‘man of the forest’ or ‘little father’ and unlike other lemurs, they only have a short stumpy tail. Indri’s produce loud territorial calls that can be heard from over 1km away as you enter the park.

You will be trekking through beautiful waterfalls and landscape that will lead you towards a natural swimming pool with a cascading waterfall. Bathing is allowed so bring your swimsuits. Along the track there is an exceptional rainforest ambiance where you can generally hear the screams of the Indri and see some beautiful orchids. There many circuits to choose from depending on your fitness level. The easiest trekking with well paved paths can take from 2-3 hours with a distance of up to 3 kilometres.

  • Board Includes:
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

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Day 16 – Andasibe → Antananarivo

After breakfast you will travel to Antananarivo. As the roads winds through the hairpin bends and turns you have opportunities to observe the daily activities of remote villages along this road. You will be passing terrace rice fields and bustling road side stalls with all the tropical fruits.

Travel time approximately 3 hours depending on the road traffic.

In the evening, witness the best sunset with Sundowner drinks and dinner at Lokanga. It is the best place to say “cheers” to a great trip around Madagascar with a glass of wine, a beautiful view of Antananarivo and to look back at the great memories you have made.

  • Board Includes:
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

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Day 17 – End of Tour

Today you will be transferred to the airport for your flight back home. The travel time from your hotel is approximately 45 minutes to 1 hour depending on the traffic.

 

See more about day 17

Tailor Your Tour - Potential Highlights

  • See the Ring-Tailed Lemurs at Anja Reserve and Tsaranoro Valley
  • Spot ground-rollers and Golden Bamboo lemurs in Ranomafana National Park
  • Discover the canyons of Isalo National Park home to 80 species of birds including the rare Benson’s rock-thrush and ring-tailed lemurs
  • Watch endemic birds, geckos & lemurs at Zombitse National Park
  • Hear the Indri lemurs at Andasibe-Mantadia National Park
  • Taste the exotic cuisine of Madagascar

Is this your dream holiday? Or maybe you would like to make few changes? If so, then we can tailor it especially to your interest and requirement. Contact us to start creating your perfect holiday.

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