14 Day Scenic Madagascar Safari

Do you dream of atypical holidays, wild nature, and unforgettable discoveries? This tour in Madagascar is made for you! A trip that takes you to explore the heart of Madagascar, visiting the small town of Manakara by train, the authentic village of Andringitra not forgetting the impressive sunset under the baobabs in Morondava.

Day 1: Arrival Antananarivo

Welcome to Madagascar! After landing at the international airport of Tana. After all formalities and money exchange your English speaking driver guide will drive you to the hotel. You can spend the rest of the day in the vibrant capital at your leisure.

Accommodation: La Villette (Mid-range hotel located in or near Antananarivo)

Day 2: Antsirabe (around 70 Km )

After breakfast, you will take the southern road, the famous N7 in the direction of Antsirabe. Stops punctuate this route to appreciate the typical landscapes of the Central Highlands with their rice terraces, their eucalyptus forests, their tall brick houses with thatched roofs. Stop in the small town of Ambatolampy, located at the foot of the Ankaratra Massif, for the visit of an artisanal factory of aluminium kitchen utensils.

Arrival in Antsirabe installation at the hotel, lunch. Let yourself be tempted by a rickshaw ride to explore this city that has preserved beautiful Merinas houses and some colonial buildings, including the arranged spa in the early nineteenth century on the shores of the lake. Several craft workshops are also worth a visit if time permits.

Accommodation: Arotel (Mid-range hotel located in or near Antsirabe)

Day 3: Fianarantsoa (around 240 Km)

From Antsirabe, set course for Fianarantsoa today. Before your departure, an interesting city tour of Antsirabe is on the program. Among others, you will visit the following sites: Antsirabe Cathedral, the stone grinding workshop, Antsirabe Avenue with the central station, a small factory of objects made with zebu horns and, depending on the time available, the art gallery of “Fulgence”. He is a famous artist who focuses mainly on painting. After this complete city tour, you will leave Antsirabe. Finally, you will continue your way to Fianarantsoa. The latter is translated as “where you learn good things”. It belongs to one of the biggest cities of Madagascar and is considered as the capital of the Betsileo people. A city tour through the old and upper town is not to be missed in Fianarantsoa.

Accommodation: Hotel Zomatel (Mid-range hotel located in or near Ambalavao)

Day 4: Manakara (by Train)

An authentic adventure awaits you today. You are going to take the train from Fianarantsoa to Manakara today in a relaxed atmosphere. The railway was built during the colonial period to transport the colonial goods. Nowadays, goods from all villages are still transported by train. The scenery is particularly attractive on the first stretch of the train journey. Admire the beautiful waterfall, the small colourful villages and the lush rainforest that make this train ride worthwhile. Once in Manakara you are going to move directly into your room.

Accommodation: Parthenay (Mid-range hotel located in or near Manakara)

Day 5: Ranomafana (around 185 Km)

Today you leave the coastal town of Manakara and set off for Ranomafana. The latter is one of the last mountain cloud forests on earth and offers many spectacular views for all nature lovers, some of which will surely be unforgettable. The Ranomafana National Park is home to numerous species of animals and plants, many of which are unfortunately threatened with extinction. On arrival, a night walk along the edge of the forest is on the programme.

Accommodation: Hotel Centrest (Mid-range hotel bordering Ranomafana NP without fences)

Day 6: Andringitra (around 175 km)

During a long circular hike, you will discover the secrets of the Park. Numerous endemic animals can be observed up close: Birds, chameleons, butterflies, frogs and 12 species of lemurs. You are going to leave Ranomafana after your visit and set course to Andringitra. Your present day village is Andringitra, where the second highest massif of Madagascar called “Pic Boby” is located. On the way, you will pass by Ambalavao, where you will stop briefly to visit the Anja Reserve, which is well worth seeing. Here you will observe plenty of wild Kattas, which give the impression that they populate the small reserve. After this impressive hike, you continue your way to Andringintra, your final destination today. The massif of Andringitra is one of the accessible peaks of the Red Island. Its height varies between 500 and 2.658 meters and it is very attractive because of its mountainous landscape.

Accommodation: Tsara Camp (Mid-range tented camp located outside Andringitra)

Day 7: Sacred forest of Tsaranoro

Culture and nature day… The Tsaranoro valley is nestled between the Andringitra mountain range to the east and Mount Tsaranoro to the west, a steep cliff of 800m world famous for climbing enthusiasts. Day of discovery of the valley with its sacred forest, its Betsileo villages with its craftsmen (artisanal forge, basketry…). You will climb the “Pic Caméléon” located at an altitude of 1,540m for a vertical drop of 600m: crossing the sacred forest with its wealth (tradition, fauna, flora…) where you can observe the “Maki” in its natural environment. At the top, a 360° panoramic view of the valley and its villages that you are going to visit during the descent.

Accommodation: Tsara Camp (Mid-range tented camp located outside Andringitra)

Day 8: Ambositra (around 262 Km)

From Andringitra, set course for Ambositra today. Tne name of the city can be translated by “City of the Castrated Zebus”. But beyond the many farm animals, Ambositra is especially known for its art of Malagasy sculpture. This extremely fertile area is also known as the granary of Madagascar. It is located in the Amoron’i Mania Region, where the Betsileo tribe, whose ancestors were Asian, lives. It is also known as the capital of woodcarving. This art is mastered by the Zafimaniry tribe. Once there, let yourself be tempted by a visit to a woodcarving workshop, where inlays of noble wood – for statues, chess sets or jewellery boxes – are made with the simplest means. You can buy souvenirs or utensils from zebu horns.

Accommodation: L’Artisan (Budget hotel located in or near Ambositra)

Day 9: Miandrivazo (around 400 Km)

After breakfast you will take the state road 34 to reach Miandrivazo. Several stops punctuate your trip to stretch your legs. After a few kilometers, you will make a stop in Betafo where you can admire the beautiful landscape and the authentic villages. You will then take the road back to Miandrivazo. Arrival expected in the late afternoon.

Accomodation: Princesse Tsiribihina Hotel (Mid-range hotel located in or near Miandrivazo)

Day 10: Morondava (around 290 Km)

Morning departure to reach Morondava, Malaimbandy will be your next step before reaching Morondava. Crossing landscapes of high plateaus with arid savannah landscapes, this journey will make you discover a mosaic of landscapes which makes all the charm of the Big Island. Once in Morondava, let yourself be tempted by an interessant city tour of Morondava.

Accommodation: Renala Au Sable D’or (Mid-range hotel located in or near Morondava)

Day 11: Kirindy Reserve (around 70 Km)

After breakfast you will take about 70 km of track to reach the Kirindy reserve. The latter is characterized by its important richness in flora with a high rate of endemicity. In the forest, you can also observe various types of animal species in the vicinity and without any danger such as : Maki, Sifaka and the famous Fosa. After lunch, you will resume your journey by visiting the baobab avenue. The sunset at this place is not to be missed. It offers you not only beautiful photographic motifs, but also a beautiful show of colours. A sacred baobab tree stands out from those which are lining on the track. The locals come here to honor their ancestors by offering gifts. They decided to plant them upside down, putting the roots in the air. You will also admire the famous « Baobab amoureux », which according to local beliefs can bring luck to couples. On the premises, the most striking species is the Adansonia grandidieri. Of course, this tree is endemic to Madagascar.

Accommodation: Renala Au Sable D’or (Mid-range hotel located outside Kirindy Forest)

Day 12: Free day in Morondava

Morondava is one of those villages far from everything, a little forgotten, crushed under a blazing sun. The atmosphere here is very calm and even the generally lively market gives off a feeling of tranquillity. After a stroll through the narrow streets of the town, we suggest you to go south on foot to the fishing village of Betania, which you will reach by walking along the beach for an hour or so.

Accommodation: Renala Au Sable D’or (Mid-range hotel located in or near Morondava)

Day 13: Antsirabe (aroud 485 Km)

In the early morning, you are going to leave the coastal town of Morondava and return to Antsirabe. In Miandrivazo you will have a short break for lunch and the opportunity to stretch your legs. On the way you will soon notice how the dry, cattle-breeding region of Miandrivazo contrasts with the green and volcanic areas of Antsirabe and its surroundings.

Accommodation: Arotel (Mid-range hotel located in or near Antsirabe)

Day 14: Departure (around 170 Km)

Your trip ends today, after a few kilometers and if your schedule permits, you are invited to an informative visit to the Museum of Photography of Andohalo. There you will discover the history of the high plateaus in the royal era. After the visit, you will go to the colourful local markets where you will be able to buy some souvenirs. Finally, you will be driven to the airport.