When we hear the name Madagascar we generally think about the fun and frolic movie Madagascar and of course lemurs, but this beautiful island is so much more. This huge island is located on the southeast coast of Africa. With an abundance of flora and fauna, this place is perfect for those who want to rejuvenate themselves. Sometimes also referred to as the eight continents by scientists here are 8 things you can do when on this exotic island!
Formally known as the French Tananarive, this is the largest city and the capital of Madagascar. This vibrant and exotic city is divided into 3 parts that are: the downtown (ancient swamp), the intermediate level (known as “Plateau du Colbert” and situated in the heart of the cliffs, and the age-old city in upper town (“La Haute Ville”), where Palaces (Queen’s palace, ancient Prime Minister Rainilaiarivony palace, ancient Justice palace), cathedrals, churches and the residential region of ancient noblemen families are present.
Situated on the northwest coast is Madagascar’s busiest and biggest tourist destination, Nosy Be. You will experience tropical climate here which makes it the perfect destination for beachy bums along with the perfect location. The water here stays shallow for miles making it the perfect swimming destination. The tranquility and calmness of these beaches will calm your body, mind, and soul.
Ranomafana National Park
Probably the most famous park of Madagascar, it holds great importance to the natives as well as the world as it is the home to the golden bamboo lemur. The park was constructed in 1991 after the discovery of this rare species in the year 1986. Get in the deep woods of this lush jungle where generally visitors do not travel to experience wildlife up close like never before!
Instead of the usual land route you can also explore this island through river tour by pirogue or canoe in the Tsiribihina river. You can book a tour which will not just take you around the island but you can also camp on the riverbank and cook in open to experience the true feeling of living in the wild which will make you feel more inclined towards mother nature.
The Avenue of the Baobabs
This unique place is a group of around 20-25 Baobab trees situated alongside the dirt road between Morondava and Belon’i Tsiribihina in the Menabe region towards the western region of Madagascar. The unique landscape attracts tourists from all over the world who come to witness this unusual route. It was also declared of being in a temporary protected status in July 2007 by the Ministry of Environment, Water and Forests, which can be said is the first step towards making this a heritage monument.
Isalo National Park
Home to Madagascar’s most breathtaking scenic views and also sometimes referred to as the Jurassic Park is the Isalo National Park. If you are a wildlife lover this place is the best to see ring-tailed lemurs and white sifakas in live action and their natural habitat. Apart from this, the park’s scenic view includes eroded sandstone in its ruined formations which fate long back till the Jurassic period, deep canyons with riparian forests, palm-lined oases, fire-resistant Tapia forests, and open grasslands which are something you surely can’t miss!
Andasibe National Park
A 3-hour drive east of Antananarivo will take you to the Andasibe National Park, it is one of the highly protected areas in entire Madagascar. The park is divided into two levels: The Mantadia Park and the Analamazaotra reserve of Indri. The park boasts of 11 species of lemurs out of which the largest, the Indri, is easily spotted because of its loud and spectacular shrieks. The park is the best place to see them in their natural habitat. The park also has various species of birds, reptiles, insects, and batrachians along with an abundance of tropical vegetation like ferns, epiphytes, sacred creepers, orchids and dwarf palm trees.
Tsingy de Bemaraha
The last addition in Madagascar’s wildlife parks is the Tsingy de Bemaraha which was opened in 1998. The huge 152,000ha Bemaraha is known for its limestone peaks that even reach up to the height of 150 feet. The park is also rich with flora and fauna as it is also the home to 11 different species of lemurs including the unique Decken’s sifaka, The Red-fronted brown lemurs along with the endangered and protected Madagascar fish-eagle. Don’t forget to visit the magnificent Manambola river canyon while you are here!