info@cactus-madagascar.com Cactus Tours Madagascar

Madagascar off-the-beaten track
14 days

From Masoala to the Tsingy de Bemaraha

Set off on a 14-day adventure through Madagascar’s contrasting terrains, from the primary rainforest of Masoala to the stunning Tsingy de Bemaraha. Discover Masoala’s rich biodiversity, encompassing unique species and three marine reserves. Journey through the dry deciduous regions, marked by majestic baobabs, to the awe-inspiring geological formations of Tsingy de Bemaraha National Park.

This tour is packed with activities like wildlife viewing, hiking, canoeing, snorkeling, botanical explorations, and birdwatching, with optional whale-watching in June-July. Delight in night walks, visiting local villages, and exploring workshops, offering ample opportunities for photography enthusiasts. The itinerary includes Antananarivo, Maroantsetra, Masoala, Andasibe/Mantadia, Morondava, Kirindy, and ends back in Antananarivo for a comprehensive Malagasy experience.

Your journey starts in the vibrant capital city, Antananarivo, where you can immerse yourself in Malagasy culture and history. Visit historical sites, bustling markets, and enjoy the city’s unique blend of traditional and contemporary life. From there, head to the lush rainforests of Maroantsetra, a gateway to Masoala National Park. Here, you’ll encounter a plethora of wildlife, including the elusive aye-aye and colorful chameleons. The park’s dense forests, teeming with endemic flora and fauna, provide a haven for nature lovers.

Next, experience the magical Andasibe/Mantadia National Park, renowned for its population of Indri, the largest living lemur. Listen to their haunting calls echoing through the forest and explore the park’s rich ecosystem. This area also provides an opportunity to engage with local conservation efforts and understand the delicate balance between human and wildlife coexistence.

As you head towards the west coast, the landscape dramatically changes to the dry forests near Morondava. Here, the iconic Avenue of the Baobabs offers a breathtaking sunset view, creating an unforgettable backdrop for photographers. Explore the Kirindy Reserve, a critical habitat for several lemur species and the fosa, Madagascar’s top predator.

The climax of your journey is the surreal Tsingy de Bemaraha National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Its limestone karst landscape forms a forest of jagged peaks, offering challenging hikes and spectacular views. Traverse via suspension bridges and witness the park’s unique ecosystem, home to various endemic species of fauna.

Throughout the tour, enjoy authentic Malagasy cuisine, featuring fresh seafood, zebu (a type of local cattle) dishes, and tropical fruits. Engage with local communities, learn about their traditions, and discover the art of silk weaving and woodcarving. The tour also offers comfortable accommodations, ranging from eco-lodges nestled in nature to charming hotels in the cities, ensuring a restful and rejuvenating experience.

Return to Antananarivo for last-minute shopping and to reflect on the unforgettable experiences and memories made in Madagascar’s diverse landscapes. This is an expedition into the heart of one of the world’s most unique ecosystems, offering adventure, cultural immersion, and a deep connection with nature.

  • Wildlife viewing
  • Hiking
  • Canoeing
  • Snorkeling
  • Botanical exploration
  • Birdwatching [optional]
  • Possibility of Whale-watching in June-July
  • Night walks
  • Visits of villages
  • Visit of workshops
  • Photography
  • Wildlife viewing
  • Hiking
  • Canoeing
  • Snorkeling
  • Botanical exploration
  • Birdwatching [optional]
  • Possibility of Whale-watching in June-July
  • Night walks
  • Visits of villages
  • Visit of workshops
  • Photography

Itinerary outline

  • Antananarivo
  • Maroantsetra
  • Masoala
  • Andasibe / Mantadia
  • Morondava
  • Kirindy
  • Tsingy de Bemaraha
  • Antananarivo

Suggested extensions

Detailed itinerary

Arrival in Antananarivo. You will be met at the airport. Transfer to the airport and briefing.

Drive eastwards to Andasibe throughout the eastern slopes.
En route,  visit the reserve of Peyrieras at Mandraka.
In Andasibe, visit of VOIMMA nature reserve managed by the local community.
Night walk.

   

Hike at Mantadia Reserve – a primary rainforest.

   

Hike at Analamazaotra National Park and visit of Lemurs’ Island. Drive back to Antananarivo.

   

Fly to Maroantsetra
Visit of the town of Maroantsetra and its vanilla workshops.
   

Early morning boat transfer to Masoala. Exploration of the jungle. Rest of the day at leisure.

Note: most boat transfers to Masoala can be done only in early morning due to the state of the wind.

      

Walking safari inside of the jungle of Masoala. Day at leisure at the marine reserve.

 

Boat transfer to Maroantsetra. Fly back to Antananarivo.

  

Fly to Morondava.
Drive to Kirindy Reserve – through the Baobab Avenue.
Night walk at Kirindy.

   

Morning hike at Kirindy reserve and drive  northwards to the Tsingy.

       

Walking safari at the Tsingy through the canyons and the rock forest.

    

Visit of caves of stalagmite-stalactite along the Manambolo River.
Drive back to Belo and to Morondava.
Sun-downing at the Baobab Avenue.

 

City tour in Morondava. Visit of the local market. Fly back to Antananarivo.

City tour in Morondava. Visit of the local market of the Sakalava capital. Fly back to Antananarivo. City tour if time allows and fly back homewards. End of our services.

Trip notes

Plan trip to Madagascar

Departure

Any day
>> How to book a tour

Trip planning

Period

April to November.
- Humpback whales arrive in Madagascar around June and leave around September.
- The cyclonic season in Madagascar starts in January to end around March.

Madagascar best transportations

Transportations

4WD - Motorboats - Domestic flights
This tour is subject to flight schedules otherwise it can be done by private flights
>> Transportation standard

Accommodation in Madagascar

Accommodations

Hotels - Lodges
>> Lodging types & standards

Madagascar plan

City of departure

Antananarivo, the Capital city.

Leisurely hike in Madagascar

Ease of access

Medium

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