Madagascar Wildlife Safari
Madagascar wildlife safari is a 17 day African safari tour in Madagascar. This 17 day Madagascar wildlife safari starts in Antananarivo. You will visit the West and the North Eastern parts of Madagascar.
About the 17 Day Madagascar Wildlife Safari
Madagascar wildlife safari is a 17 day African safari tour in Madagascar. This Madagascar safari tour aims to show visitors some of its recognized highlights. You will delve a little further off the beaten track to uncover the rural life. On this Madagascar tour, you will visit the West and the North Eastern parts of Madagascar..
The 17 day Madagascar wildlife safari starts in Antananarivo. The Madagascar safari tour starts with the west of Madagascar. Here you will see the beautiful baobabs avenue.
Proceed to the remote landscapes to reach the incredible Tsingy de Bemaraha National Park. This is a jagged land of limestone pinnacles which you will explore by boat and on foot.
You will go back to Morondava, we visit the famous ‘Avenue des Baobabs’. It is one of Madagascar’s most iconic sights.
Fly back to Antananarivo and travel to the forests of Andasibe and Akanin’ny Nofy. Here you will walk the trails in search of the indri and other lemurs. There are great chances to see Madagascar’s extraordinary wildlife.
To finish the tour in beauty you will head to the north east. This gives you the chance to visit one of the most striking beautiful and wild areas of Madagascar.
This is unique in the world, a place of dense, rain forests, sheer, high cliffs. You will find plants and animals found nowhere else on earth. Marojejy National park.
Highlights of the 17 day Madagascar Wildlife Safari
It is much more than just a ‘highlights’ trip. This Madagascar wildlife safari offers real opportunities to get off the beaten track. This tour goes further than most to offer more than a superb introduction to Madagascar. The highlights include:
- Forest Hikes
- Nature Walk
- Reptile Count
- Lemur Treks
- Beach holiday
- Cultural Experience
Detailed 17 Day Madagascar Wildlife Safari Itinerary
Day 1: Antananarivo
Meet and greet upon arrival at the Ivato International Airport in Madagascar. After clearance with immigration, enjoy a transfer to your hotel in Antananarivo. You will get a briefing on your Madagascar wildlife safari at the comfort of your hotel. Overnight will be at Hotel Sakamanga or similar booked on bed and breakfast basis.
Day 2: Tana – Manambato – Ankanin’ny nofy
After an early breakfast, you will leave the capital for the east coast. A winding road along the eastern side of the island awaits us. Green forests and typical Malagasy highlands villages are on the agenda. Free lunch. Continuation is of the road to Akanin’ny Nofy which means “dream nest” in Malagasy.
Stop at Antsapanana for a tasting of exotic fruits: cinnamon apples, soursop …. Through a small track of 30 min, we reach Manambato, a small village Betsimisaraka. Enjoy a boat trip to Ankanin’ny nofy along the Pangalane canal. Known as the ‘nest of dreams’, this peaceful and relaxing haven is home to white sand beaches. There are also forests, scattered orchids, strings of lakes and mangroves. You will have your overnight here.
Day 3: Ankanin’ny nofy
You will have full day exploring Ankanin’ny nofy. All factors that have made the reserve to one of the most popular visits in the Pangalanes canal.
Located on a peninsula of about 35 ha, on the shores of Lake Ampitabe. This is separated from the Indian Ocean by a mere line of thin coastal dunes. They sometimes aget to a few meters width only.
Ankanin’ny nofy is a protected area and home to nearly 100 000 palm trees specific to Madagascar. Ten species of lemurs live in freedom in the reserve. Here you will also find reptiles, amphibians and crocodiles.
Visitors can watch Indri Indri, sifakas, mouse and crowned lemurs. You may alsi see the shy and extraordinary endangered Aye Aye. Night will be at Palmarium hotel.
This evening, you will be taken for a night walk to find the rare and extra-odinary Aye Aye. This is because this is one of the few places where you could find them in their wild habitat.
It is now possible to see aye aye during your stay at the Palmarium Hotel (Akanin’ny nofy). There’s a little island where 6 aye aye individuals live. This is 5 minutes by boat on the way to Manambato from your hotel.
Day 4: Ankanin’ny nofy – Manambato – Andasibe
Enjoy your morning in Ankanin’ny nofy with breakfast at your hotel. This is before a boat trip to Manambato. You will proceed to Andasibe national park in time for a night walk. Here you will enjoy more nocturnal lemurs and other animals.
Andasibe National Park
3-hour drive east of Tana are Andasibe (Perinet) & Mantadia National Park. They are south (about 2 km) of the village of Andasibe is one of the oldest reserves of Madagascar:
Both parks belong to the same dense tropical rainforest. They boast of many special flora and fauna. Here you will find lianas, bamboo, palm and palisander trees. There are over 100 species of flowering orchids (between September and January).
Perinet is known for its great biodiversity and beautiful colored chameleons. here you will find reptiles and frogs, 14 species of lemurs and over 100 species of birds.
The park is world famous for its population of Indri Indri, the largest living lemur. You can hear the peculiar call of the indri early in the morning until noon and again in the late afternoon.
There are several different circuits in both Andasibe and Mantadia. They suite every physical condition and interest. Mantadia, which has less tourists, trails are a bit harder (mountainous) and more varied.
Day 5: Andasibe National Park
Enjoy a full day on Madagascar wildlife safari with a visit of Andasibe -Mantadia. The primary forests of Andasibe-Mantadia contains a dense humid forest. It is covered with lians, moss, fern tress and more than hundred orchids species. They bloom between September and Januar.
Other common plants growing here are pandanus, ravinala palm-tree and tambourissa. We also have bamboos and some precious wood, like palisander and ebano.
The extraordinary animal diversity is completed with another 15-mammal species. There are more than 100 of birds many of them endemic. They include the Madagascar yellow brow, Madagascarbaza, Madagascar wagtail or the Madagascar serpent-eagle.
The park has 50 species of reptiles, among them the biggest chameleon of the island. This is the boa manditra and many leaf-tailed geckos and more than 80 amphibians.
There are also a few local endemic fishes swimming in the small rivers. We cannot leave hundreds of insects, among them some extraordinary colorful and big butterflies. Night at a hotel.
Day 6: Andasibe – Antsirabe
After an early breakfast leave to Antsirabe. This is approximately 8 hours’ drive that goes through Tana where you will stop for lunch. The scenery is beautiful and you would be able to meet the local. You will learn more about their culture and lifestyle.
Your Madagascar wildlife safari will stop in Ambatolampy. You will visit workshops where craftsmen building aluminium pots. One man can produce about twenty per day.
Other workshops are dedicated to the production of “football games”. The games feature the best international teams. The frame is made of pine, players are made of aluminium and are hand-painted.
Ambatolampy which is 70 km south of Tana is the largest town between the capital and Antsirabe. It is an important centre of auto mechanics. Here lots of taxi-brousse are usually repaired. But it is mainly known for its forging and foundry industry.
This small typical town deserves much better than just stop. The beauty is its natural scenery and its cool climate. This invites more like no other place for outdoor activities.
You will arrive in Antsirabe in the early evening. Marvel at the skill of local craftsmen creating toys from recycled tin cans. There are wooden sculptures, zebu-horn jewellery, polished gems and minerals. We have not mensioned embroidered tablecloths, silk scarves, raffia handicrafts and more. OVERNIGHT AT HOTEL TRIANON or similar.
Day 7: Antsirabe – Kirindy
Your Madagascar wildlife safari will have a long drive to Kirindy via the Baobabs avenue. You will stop at this beautiful baobab avenue for photos.
This is a natural avenue of imposing Grandidier’s baobabs. It is one of Madagascar’s must-see sights. It is some 45 minutes from Morondava. This is on the dusty track to Kirindy Reserve, Baobab Alley is best visited around sunrise or sunset. This is because the softer lighting brings out the red tones of the tree trunks. This makes for a splendid photo opportunity.
You will stop here again on the way back from the Tsingy and spend a moment for the sunset time. This evening in Kinrindy you will do a night walk to find the smallest lemurs. They are the mouse lemurs and other night active animals. OVERNIGHT AT KIRINDY LODGE or CAMP AMOUREUX.
Day 8: Kirindy – Bekopaka
Your Madagascar wildlife safari make a morning visit of Kirindy private reserve. This is before heading to Bekopaka village where the TSINGY of Bemaraha national park is.
Kirindy is the best place in the whole island to observe . This is thee biggest carnivorous and cat-like of Madagascar. It also home to seven species of lemur. The most common are the common brown lemurs and the Verreaux’s sifakas.
These are long-legged, seven-pound lemurs, white with dark patches, leap among tree trunks. This is high in the canopy, propelled by their powerful hind legs. They will do this maintaining an upright posture. The remaining species are nocturnal.
They are the rare Coquerel’s giant mouse lemur and pygmy mouse-lemur. We also have fork-crowned lemur and Gray mouse lemur. Others are western fat-tailed dwarf lemur and red-tailed sportive lemur. Several bats, tenrecs, mongooses and rodents complete the mammal population.
40 bird, 50 reptile and 15 amphibian species are also found in this magnificent forest.
After the visit, drive to Bekopaka. NIGHT AT OLYMPE DU BEMARAHA HOTEL or similar.
Day 9: Tsingy of Beramaha National Park
Your Madagascar wildlife safari will have a full day Tsingy Of Bemaraha tour. The mineral forest of Tsingy de Bemaraha stands on the western coast of Madagascar. Tsingy is the Malagasy word for “walking on tiptoes”. The impenetrable labyrinth of limestone needles justifies this name.
The whole protected area was designated a World Heritage Site by the UNESCO in 1990. It comprises a surface of 1.575 km². This remote area was not a tourist trek until 1998. This is when the southern part (723 km²) was declared a National Park.
The northern section is an Integral Reserve so tourists are not allowed to enter the zone. The reserve’s canyons, gorges, undisturbed forests, lakes and mangrove swamps display an astonishing richness. You will find fauna and flora which have not been completely recorded. The rate of endemism is about 85%, and 47% are even local endemic!
The limestone seabed rose to create a plateau around 200 million years ago. Little by little this has been eroded by heavy rainfalls until it became its actual shape.
This massif is delimited to the east by the abrupt Bemaraha Cliffs. They rise some 300 to 400m above the Manambolo River valley. The cliffs do extend several tens of kilometers from north to south.
The western slopes of the massif rise more gently. The whole western region of the reserve forms a plateau. They come with rounded hillocks which slope away to the west.
To the north undulating hills alternate with limestone extrusions. While in the south extensive pinnacle formations make access extremely restricted. In the south of Petit Tsingy is the spectacular Manambolo Gorge. Here you can see waterfalls, lemurs and magnificent untouched forests.
Day 10: Bekopaka – Morondava
Leave Bekopaka in the morning and head to Morondava. Your Madagascar wildlife safari will stop again at the Baobabs avenue or the sunset time. Night at Hotel Chez Maggie or similar.
Day 11: Morondava – Tana
Fly back to Tana and transfer to your Tana hotel for overnight
Day 12: Tana – Sambava – Camp Mantella
After breakfast, your Madagascar wildlife safari takes a flight to Sambava. Arriving in Sambava, our driver /guide will meet you at the airport of Sambava. You will thereafter take you for an hour drive to get to Manantenina. This is where Marojejy national park entrance is and where you start the trek to the park.
Marojejy is one of the most striking beautiful and wild areas of Madagascar. It is unique in the world, a place of dense, jungly rainforests. There are sheer, high cliffs, and plants and animals found nowhere else on earth.
The Mantella Trek takes you to Camp Mantella, about a four-hour hike from Manantenina. Camp Mantella has an elevation of 450 m [1475 ft]. It has six cabins furnished with beds, mattresses, and bedding. It also has a large sheltered eating area with an assortment of cooking utensils.
A campground is located nearby for those who prefer to pitch a tent. This area of lowland rainforest is a good place to see several species of lemurs. There are many birds here. They include the helmet vanga and many species of amphibians and reptiles. The beautiful Cascade de Humbert waterfall is a short walk (800 m) from the camp. For best wildlife viewing, we recommend at least two days for this trek.
Day 13: Camp Mantella – Camp Marojejia
Your Madagascar wildlife safari takes on the Simpona Trek. This is a continuation of the Mantella Trek. The trek leads from Camp Mantella up to Camp Marojejia, about a two-hour hike.
Camp Marojejia is at the transition between lowland and montane rainforest. This is at an elevation 775 m [2540 ft]. It is perched on a hillside with stupendous views. It overlooks sheer granite outcrops and lush vegetation.
The camp consists of a sheltered eating area and four cabins. The cabins come furnished with beds, mattresses, and bedding. The name of this trek comes from the Malagasy name for the Silky Sifaka. This is a beautiful white lemur which you can find only in this area.
You need to hire a “Simpona Specialist” to icnrease posibility of seeing Silky Sifaka. Plan on spending at least three days in Marojejy National park for this trek.
Day 14: Marojejy National Park
Another full day of Madagascar wildlife safari in in Marojejy national park.
Day 15: Marojejy – Sambava
Your Madagascar wildlife safari exits the Marojejy National park. You will drive down back to Sambava. Night at Mimi hotel or similar.
Day 16: Sambava – Antananarivo
Your last day on Madagascar wildlife safari takes the flight back to Tana. Transfer back to your hotel with the afternoon at leisure.
Day 17: Departure
After breakfast, leave for Ambohimanga Kings Palace which is located at 22 km from Tana. This is the cradle of the Merina dynasty and the Mecca of the Merina Kingdom. It is the starting point for the unification of Imerina.
This ancient royal city was reputed to be a sacred city where no foreigner could enter. There’s a lot to admire in this place. This is from the entrance of the village to the old stone gate-shaped disc in the chamber. You get to enjoy the royal box of Andrianampoinimerina.
There is also the summer palace of the queens, the Horse Park and sacred ponds. The enclosure is surrounded by a wall made mainly of egg whites in place of cement. The door to the east has “Ambatomitsangana” inscribed on it. It is actually a large stone disc 4m in diameter rolled closed every night and open every morning by dozens of men.
After the visit your Madagascar safari trip proceeds to the Digue market. This is the place for handcrafts Malagasy that you will be able buy some souvenirs. Transfer to the airport in time for your afternoon international flight.
———- End of the 17 Day Madagascar Wildlife Safari ———-
17 Day Madagascar Wildlife Safari Costs:
What is included in the cost of 17 Day Madagascar Wildlife Safari?
- Car and fuel with a driver
- Guide assistance during the whole tour
- Accommodation as per the itinerary on bed and breakfast basis
- Park entrance fees and local guide fees
- All boat transfers
17 Day Madagascar Wildlife Tour Safari Price excludes:
- Your food and drinks during the whole tour
- All your international flights
What to Carry on the 17 Day Madagascar Wildlife Safari
- Light and a few heavy clothing for evenings
- Closed, comfortable shoes
- Sun protection like sun cream, hat
- Insect repellant
Destinations on the Madagascar Wildlife Safari
Ankanin’ny nofy Reserve
Ankanin’ny nofy Reserve is situated on the shores of Lake Ampitabe. It is Located on Madagascar’s eastern coast. This reserve is nestled on lake Ampitabe. The simplest way to get there is to sail down the Canal des Pangalanes from Toamasina by scow.
You can also rent a motorized canoe.It is separated from the Indian Ocean by sand dunes. Ankanin’ny Nofy means the “nest of dreams”. It is one of the most beautiful sites along the Pangalanes Canal.
On your Madagascar wildlife safari don’t miss the charming private reserve of Le Palmarium. This is inhabited by many different species of lemur.
What to See in Ankanin’ny nofy Reserve
The must see of Ankanin’ny Nofy is the palm grove. This private reserve is housed on a peninsula of 86 acres. The reserve contains more than 100 000 species of palm trees, some of which are rare and endemic. The palm grove is also rich in orchids, acacias and carnivore plants.
As you will notice is often the case during your stay in Madagascar, the reserve is proud to play host to about ten species of lemur who choose to live there. In particular when on your Madagascar wildlife safari, look forward to the Indri Indri, the largest lemur on the planet. There is also the Propithecus that loves to stand upright and the Aye Aye, an endangered species.
Andasibe National Park
The Madagascar wildlife safari to Andasibe-Mantadia corridor goes to the foothills of the eastern escarpment of Madagascar. The village of Andasibe offers a perfect base to explore the Andasibe National Park. The 154 km2 Madagascar national park consists of two protected areas. The special Reserve of Indri d’ Analamazaotra and the National Park of Mantadia Analamazaotra, which is better known as “Périnet”.
This conservancy is full of untouched montane forest and natural beauty, and boasts almost all of the eastern rainforest endemics. This area is known for its population of Indri Lemurs, which are the largest living lemurs. During the morning and again in the late afternoon, your Madagascar wildlife safari looks forward to sights and sounds of the various lemurs. You will be assured of unforgettable wildlife experience on Madagascar tour here.
The Mantadia National Park covers 10,000 hectares. Both Perinet and Mantadia are a sanctuary for birdlife, and the area is known to be the best Ground-Roller reserve in the country. Altogether, this area boasts 112 bird species, eleven lemur species, and is also exceptionally rich in frogs and reptiles, with 39 reptile species, and 36 frog species. Other species of mammals include the Eastern Avahi, the Diademed Sifaka, and the Lowland Streaked Tenrec.
What to See in Andasibe Matandia National Park
The Parks is a good place where tourists can go for birding. It has a recorded number of bird species that amount to over 100 and all these can be viewed throughout the Park. Most of the bird species that are found in the park are endemic and these include the wagtail, Madagascar Falcon, long eared owl, the Madagascar green sunbird and many more others. A visit to the park gives birders a chance to see these rare birds and they also get to take some photos while birding.
The Andasibe Park is also filled with a lot of animals that can be viewed by those on Madagascar wildlife safari once they visit the park. You will be able to see the Indri-Indri, various reptiles like chameleons, snakes, lizard, geckos and many more and these can easily be seen during the rainy season and at night since this is the only time that they are extremely active. The Andasibe is also famously known for its large number of frogs that are can be found in the various parts of the Park.
The Indri-Indri is one of the many species of Lemur that this Madagascar wildlife safari will find in the Andasibe national Park. Those on Madagascar wildlife safari here are guaranteed to see at least one or two in the trees. The Indri-indri looks like a baby panda due to the black and white markings that they have on their bodies although they are a lot thinner than the Pandas. The noise that they make cannot be forgotten that easily and the noise that sounds like a wail carriers over 30 kilometers through the Park.
Baobabs Avenue Madagascar
The Madagascar wildlife safari will visit Avenue of the Baobabs, or Alley of the Baobabs, is a prominent group of Grandidier’s baobabs (Adansonia grandidieri) lining the dirt road. This is between Morondava and Belon’i Tsiribihina. It is found in the Menabe region of western Madagascar.
On your Madagascar wildlife safari, you will see a striking landscape draws travelers from around the world, making it one of the most visited locations in the region. It has been a center of local conservation efforts.
It was granted temporary protected status in July 2007 by the Ministry of Environment, Water and Forests. This is a step toward making it Madagascar’s first natural monument.
The baobabs of Madagascar have to be seen to be believed. Of eight baobab species in the world, six are endemic to Madagascar. One other is found in Africa and another in Australia.
The best place to see one of these species, the Adansonia granddieri, when on Madagascar wildlife safari is the Avenue des Baobabs. This is a large region with the majestic tree in abundance, and a sacred baobab with offerings around it showing the significance of the trees. There are also two that have become intertwined, and are known as Les Baobabs Amoureux. If you arrive at sunrise or sunset, the view is striking, and good photos are a guarantee.
The nearest town to the Avenue of the Baobabs is Morondava. The area was the centre of the Sakalava kingdom, and the tombs here are spectacular and beautiful. It is now the centre of a rice-growing and ostrich-farming area, and is popular as a seaside resort with a laidback and friendly atmosphere.
Kirindy Private Reserve
A Madagascar wildlife safari to Kirindy goes 50 km northeast of the town of Morondava. This is a privately managed forest by a Swiss company dedicated to a selective and sustainable logging.
Kirindy Private Reserve comprises one of the most outstanding and threatened wildlife habitats in Madagascar. There are the dry deciduous forest whose extension has been reduced to 3 per cent of their original extent.
The reserve is dominated by majestic baobab trees and a forest canopy of even 14 m altitude. This is a protected area of approximate 100 square kilometres. It is the only place where the world’s smallest known primate, the giant jumping rat, occurs.
This animal can hop like a miniature kangaroo, but is also seen walking on all four limbs. The Sakavala people living here are mainly proud zebu holders.
What to See in Kirindy Private Reserve
Kirindy is the best place in the whole island to observe fossas. It is easy to see them when on Madagascar wildlife safari especially during the mating time between October and December. It is also home to seven species of lemur.
The most common on your Madagascar wildlife safari are the common brown lemurs and the Verreaux’s sifakas. These are long-legged, seven-pound lemurs often white with dark patches. They can leap among tree trunks high in the canopy, propelled by their powerful hind legs but continually maintaining an upright posture.
The remaining species to be seen on your Madagascar wildlife safari are nocturnal. They include the rare Coquerel’s giant mouse lemur and pygmy mouse-lemur.
Others that you may see on Madagascar wildlife safari are fork-crowned lemur, Gray mouse lemur, western fat-tailed dwarf lemur and red-tailed sportive lemur. Several bats, tenrecs, mongooses and rodents complete the mammal population.
Kirindy Private reserve is also home to 40 bird, 50 reptile and 15 amphibian species that your Madagascar wildlife safari will discover in this magnificent forest.
Tsingy of Beramaha National Park
The Tsingy Bemaraha National Park or Grand Tsingy is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This is one of the most spectacular natural landscapes in the world.
A Madagascar wildlife safari takes you to an extensive area of limestone massif has been eroded into impressive karst pinnacles. This geological wonder is a monument of karst limestone that comprises karstic landscapes.
The limestone uplands cut into impressive ‘tsingy’ peaks and a ‘forest’ of limestone needles. There is the spectacular canyon of the Manambolo River, rolling hills and high peaks. The undisturbed forests, lakes and mangrove swamps are the habitat for rare and endangered lemurs.
What to See in Tsingy of Beramaha National Park
A Madagascar wildlife safari takes you to the home of11 species of lemurs found here. They include Deken’s Shifakas, red-fronted brown lemur, Cleese’s woolly lemur and more.
There are five families of bats and 103 species of birds that have been recorded in Grand Tsingy. The index of the reptiles and amphibians is as large, as Bemaraha possesses 34 species that are all endemic.
These are just a first taste of what can be discovered on this unique island on your Madagascar wildlife safari.
Marojejy National Park
Madagascar wildlife safari takes you to one of the most strikingly beautiful and wild areas of Madagascar. Marojejy National Park is unique in the world, a place of dense, jungly rainforests, sheer, high cliffs, and plants and animals found nowhere else on earth.
Marojejy is located in the rain forests of northeastern Madagascar. This 17 day Madagascar wildlife safari goes between the present-day towns of Andapa and Sambava. The Marojejy Massif was first described by Professor Henri Humbert of the Paris Natural History Museum in 1948.
Humbert was an eminent botanist who arrived in Madagascar after exploring many of the mountain ranges in Africa. Following his expedition to Marojejy, Humbert published a book entitled A Marvel of Nature. In the book he described Marojejy as the most impressive range in all of Madagascar due to its grandeur, its rich flora, and especially its pristine natural state. His enthusiasm led him to ensure that Marojejy was protected as one of Madagascar’s strict nature reserves.
Marojejy remained listed as a strict reserve from 1952 to 1998, when its status was changed to that of a national park. This change removed the restrictions which limited entry to research scientists only. As a national park in Madagascar, Marojejy is now open to all visitors that is why Madagascar wildlife safari heads here.
Why Go to Marojejy National Park
Marojejy National Park is noted for its rich biodiversity, which can appeal to both scientist and ecotourist. There are a wide range of habitats within the park, and many of its plants and animals are endemic to the area.
Scientific expeditions regularly discover species that are either not previously documented in Marojejy, or in some cases, completely new to science.
Some new species are highly endangered. In the case of many large groups, such as invertebrates, very little is known and much remains to be discovered.
The vegetation of Marojejy National Park is extremely diverse due to the various microclimates. The microclimates also affect plant growth rates, with the wet eastern slopes showing faster plant growth.
The dry western slopes exhibiting slower plant growth, and the plants on the ridge tops hindered by high winds and poor soils.
Marojejy National park harbors an impressive list of plants and animals. There are at least 275 species of ferns, 35 species of palms, 149 species of amphibians and reptiles, and 118 species of birds.
Madagascar wildlife safari to Marojejy taks you to the home to eleven species of lemurs. This include the critically endangered Silky Sifaka (Propithecus candidus).