Day 1: arrival in
the Madagascan capital, Antananarivo (1 night), and transfer
to our accommodation.
Day 2: fly to
Tulear, in the south of the island (1 night) for an
introduction to the island’s endemic flora at the Antsokay
Aboretum, before we begin our tour of the national parks.
Days 3-4: journey
to Ranohira and Isalo National Park (2 nights), through the
legendary landscapes of
baobabs. Isalo is home to some of the most stunning scenery on
the island, and affords you a fantastic chance of being able to
observe the dancing ring-tailed lemurs. Walks explore
the canyons and sandstone cliffs of magnificent Isalo
National Park. Its mountains are home to over 400 species of
flora. There’s the chance to take a swim in some of the natural
pools and waterfalls on the walks. En-route our journey takes us
on a visit to one of the sapphire mines on the island.
Days 5-6: to
our camp (2 nights) in the majestic valley of Tsaranoro,
Andringitra National Park. The park is a sacred place for many
cultures, and home to many mysteries and legends. Its scenery is
superb, with vistas of dramatic peaks and waterfalls accompanying
our walks as we visit the surrounding villages.
Angringitra is also home to the highest peak on the island - Boby
Peak, known locally as the Roof of Madagascar.
7-8: en route to
Fianarantsoa (2 nights), we stop to explore the community reserve
of Anja and see ringtail lemurs up close, before village walks
introduce us to the Betsileo culture and their traditions. We
share a typical Malagasy lunch at the home of one of the families.
9-10: the lush rainforests of Ranomafana National
Park (2 nights) afford us excellent opportunities to discover a
vast diversity of flora and fauna. We enjoy a night walk here too,
introducing us to a host of different animal species. If we’re
lucky we may see the park’s famous resident, the golden bamboo
lemur. Walks will be scheduled in the early morning and the late
afternoon to give us the best chance of spotting wildlife.
11-12: a city tour of Antsirabe (2 night). Our stay
here is a guest house run by the charity Residence Madalief,
which supports projects in the local community. Our stay here
gives us a fantastic opportunity to support this worthwhile
charity. Walks in the area discover the surrounding villages and the
beautiful volcanic Lac Tritriva.
Days 13-14: the
iconic Micheline train takes us into the heart of Andasibe
National Park (2 nights), home to many endangered species,
including 11 types of lemur and the Indri. The journey on the
Micheline is a highlight in itself. The "train" has been
restored to its former 1930's glory, and is the last of its kind
operating a regular service anywhere in the world. This makes
quite an entry to the final national park of our journey.
Day 15: return to
Antananarivo in time to explore before our late evening flight