Wildlife of Madagascar
Ringtail lemurs, Madagascar's national mammal  
Coquerel's sifaka are endangered and local to west Madagascar  
The Pittalike ground-roller, arguably Madagascar's most beautiful endemic bird  
Satanic leaf-tailed gecko, one of the bizarre Uroplatus geckos unique to Madagascar  
Boophis phyrrus, Andasibe-Mantadia National Park (D Austin)  
Largest of all chameleons is the rainforest-dependent Parson's chameleon (Franco Andreone)  
Largest of the extant lemurs, the Indri can only be seen in its Malagasy rainforest home  
The endemic Red-breasted coua can be seen in Andasibe-Mantadia National Park (Eric Mathieu)  
The 'dancing' Verreaux's sifaka in Berenty Reserve  
The remarkable Fringed gecko (Uroplatus), a master of camoglage  
14 day tour
Including flights and transfers
Prices from
£4650 - £4979

Tour Highlights

  • Indri, Parson's chameleon and other rainforest rarities in Andasibe-Mantadia
  • Ringtails, Verreaux's sifakas and bizarre spiny forest flora at Berenty
  • Coquerel's sifakas, Madagascar fish eagles and Rhinoceros chameleons at Ankarafantsika
  • Experiencing Madagascar's incomparable diversity
  • See the work of inspiring NGOs such as Association Mitsinjo
I'm enquiring about: Wildlife of Madagascar
I'm enquiring about: Wildlife of Madagascar

Wildlife of Madagascar

Madagascar

On this private guided tour of which the sites of interest can be visited in any order, you get to explore four of the most prominent wildlife hotspots of Madagascar: Andasibe and Mantadia National Parks in the eastern rainforest band, Ankarafantsika National Park***situated inland from the west coast and Berenty Private Reserve in the arid south or 'Androy'. You are likely to see an incredible range of Madagascar's endemic wildlife, notably lemurs, from the biggest (the Indri) to the smallest (at least five species of Mouse lemurs on this trip), and from the most iconic ( Ringtail lemur, the national mammal) to the endangered (Coquerel's sifaka). You also stand an excellent chance to tick off a wide range of endemic birds and reptiles, notably wonderful chameleons, tree frogs and other fascinating animal oddities.  

***Ankarafantsika National Park can be substituted with the equally rewarding Kirindy Forest for the western region/ tropical dry deciduous forests. Both are outstanding wildlife localities. 

November 2016 update: we currently recommend arranging this itinerary in such a way that it ends with Andasibe-Mantadia National Park, because getting there is achieved by means of an easy 4-hour drive from the capital, Antananarivo. (That way, relying on Air Madagascar the day before your international flight out, is reduced). 

Read more about this tour


Day 1
Arrival
Depart on the Air France flight from London Heathrow (or another UK airport) to Antananarivo via Paris CDG. You will be met, assisted and transferred to Relais des Plateaux to stay overnight, breakfast included.
Day 2
Day 2
Andasibe-Mantadia National Park (Perinet)
Your professional wildlife expert guide and your driver will collect you from your hotel. Travel east along good roads in your private 4WD to Vakona Forest Lodge in Andasibe-Mantadia National Park (about three hours by road) for a 3-night stay with breakfast and dinner included. You will be taken for an introductory guided rainforest walk to seek lemurs, endemic rainforest-dependent birds as well as fascinating reptiles and frogs. During your stay here you might also wish to visit the impressive tree nurseries of Association Mitsinjo (pictured), where some 100 species of endemic rainforest trees are being cultivated as part of a reforestation programme. Visitors may, for a small donation, plant an endemic tree here: as our friend, guidebook guru Hilary Bradt comments, 'What better way could there be of literally putting something back into the soil of a country you are visiting than planting a tree?'.
Accommodation: Vakona Forest Lodge
       
Day 3
Day 3
Andasibe-Mantadia National Park
Here you spend your time exploring this rainforest wildlife hotspot with your guide - look for Indri (the largest of all the lemur), the 2ft long Parson's chameleon and endemic birds such as the Blue coua, Madagascar blue pigeon, Lesser vasa parrot, Crossley's babbler and Nelicourvi weaver. You can take an easy night walk in Station Forestier d'Analamazaotra, administered by proactive NGO Association Mitsinjo. This is the only site in the area where you can experience the rainforest after dark, surrounded by a cast of other weird and wonderful animal oddities which emerge from their daytime hideouts after dusk. With luck you may see Eastern woolly lemur, Sportive lemur, Furry-eared dwarf lemur and Goodman's mouse lemur. Its the best time to seek chameleons which initially reflect white in torch-light. You should also see various species of Tree frog. You may also see birds such as the Madagascar long-eared owl and rare Collared nightjar.
Accommodation: Vakona Forest Lodge
       
Day 4
Day 4
Andasibe-Mantadia National Park
Visit the beautiful 10,000ha of primary forest in Mantadia National Park with your guides. This rainforest holds a collection of rare mammals and birds not necessarily found in Andasibe-Mantadia National Park, including approachable groups of Diademed sifaka and the vociferous Black-and-white ruffed lemur. Rare birds abound, as do interesting reptiles and frogs. Alternatively, you might prefer to explore more of the rainforest at Andasibe.
Accommodation: Vakona Forest Lodge
       
Day 5
Day 5
Antananarivo
Today, take another guided rainforest walk in either Andasibe, or for keen birders, revisit Mantadia National Park which might reveal rarities such as Gray-crowned tetraka, White-browed oxylabes and Red forest fody. Birders can also look out in rank roadside growth for species such as White-throated rail (pictured). In the mid- afternoon you will be driven back to Antananarivo to stay overnight at Relais des Plateaux Hotel with breakfast included.
Accommodation: Relais Des Plateaux
   
Day 6
Day 6
Ankarafantsika National Park (Ampijoroa)
Transfer to the airport for the Air Madagascar flight to Mahajanga, a port on the west coast of the island. Your guide and driver will meet you and transfer you two hours inland along a good road to Ankarafantsika National Park (Ampijoroa), where you stay 2 nights in a basic, en-suite lakeside bungalow at Gite de Ampijoroa, with all meals included. (September - November 2016 updates are very good, particularly the food and local guiding). Ankarafantsika is one of the island's two top wildlife hotspots for wildlife unique to the highly threatened and fragmented western deciduous dry forests. Key species include Coquerel's sifaka, the rare and cathameral Mongoose lemur (pictured), Common brown lemur and all the forest-dependent birds local to the western region. At Lac Ravelobe you may see the Madagascar fish eagle, one of the world's six rarest raptors. Reptiles abound, notably Collared iguanids, Giant hognosed snakes and Rhinoceros chameleon. Night walks are superb here with wildlife abundant in and around the campsite.
Accommodation: Gite de Ampijoroa
         
Day 7
Day 7
Ankarafantsika National Park (Ampijoroa)
All day to explore the easy trails in Ankarafantsika where wildlife viewing is almost effortless year round. Guided day and night walks in this rich tropical dry deciduous forest are popular with wildlife enthusiasts, who can also see the Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust's largest Madagascar-based project here, aimed at rescuing 4 species of endemic Malagasy tortoises and its sole Freshwater turtle from extinction. Thus far the DWCT has done really well with the rarest of all, the Ploughshare tortoise or Angonoka. Expect to see acrobatic Coquerel's sifakas even in the campsite, along with many birds including the Crested coua (pictured) and the garrulous Sicklebill vanga.
Accommodation: Gite de Ampijoroa
         
Day 8
Day 8
Ankarafantsika National Park - Mahajanga
Morning to explore more of the delightful forest of Ankarafantsika National Park with your guides. In the afternoon transfer to Mahajanga and then north along a rutted road to the lovely Antsanitia Resort, where you overnight with all meals included. Antsanitia is a lovely location in which to relax at the spa and beach after exploring Ankarafantsika.
Day 9
Day 9
Antananarivo
Transfer to the airport for the flight back to Antananarivo, where you will be met and transferred to Relais des Plateaux for an overnight stay with breakfast.
 
Accommodation: Relais Des Plateaux
   
Day 10
Day 10
Berenty Private Reserve
Take the Air Madagascar flight to Fort Dauphin on the far south coast of the island where you will be met and driven inland along deteriorating roads to the famed Berenty Private Reserve. Here you stay 3 nights in a bungalow at the recently refurbished Berenty Lodge (the new bungalows are highly praised, and food reviews excellent - November 2016 update) with breakfast and dinner included. This reserve was brought into the international spotlight largely thanks to the 40+ years of conservation work conducted by late primatologist Lady Alison Jolly, author of engaging books such as Lords and Lemurs and her recently released memoirs, 'Thank You Madagascar: the conservation diaries of Alison Jolly' which was launched in March 2015. It was Lady Jolly who wrote extensively on the country's national mammal, the highly terrestrial Ringtail lemur (pictured) and female dominance among lemurs.
Accommodation: Berenty Lodge
         
Day 11
Day 11
Berenty Private Reserve
Berenty is set in spiny forest surrounded by sisal plantations. It is Madagascar's most famous reserve and the easiest place to see Ring-tailed lemurs. By day, you will see numerous Ring-tailed and Brown lemurs and Verreaux's sifakas (photo by Gerald Cubitt). At night, look for White-footed sportive lemur, Grey mouse lemur, the newly recognised Red-and-grey mouse lemur, and Common and Lesser hedgehog tenrec. The park has a number of broad trails that are easily followed with or without your guide.
Accommodation: Berenty Lodge
         
Day 12
Day 12
Berenty Private Reserve
Spend more time exploring Berenty either with your guides or independently. Aside from its iconic lemurs, you should see the large roost of Madagascar flying foxes or fruit bats (pictured, by Gerald Cubitt) and endemic birds including the stately Giant coua, Grey-headed lovebird, Madagascar magpie-robin and Sakalalva weaver. There is also an interesting museum and in the area, some fascinating dry country flora such as endemic Moringa trees.
Accommodation: Berenty Lodge
         
Day 13
Day 13
Antananarivo
Return to Fort Dauphin airport for a flight to Antananarivo where you will be met and taken to see the city highlights and have a day room at Relais des Plateaux. Evening transfer back to the airport to check in for the Air France flight departing after midnight to Paris CDG.
Accommodation: Relais Des Plateaux
   
Day 14
Departure
Air France flight departs at approximately 01h40 to Paris, arriving CDG at 11h25. Connect with the lunch-time Air France flight back to London Heathrow or another UK airport.

Pricing Information & Dates

14 day tour, from £4650 - £4979 per person
Price Includes:
  • Flights
  • Accommodation
  • Transfers
  • Guide
Price Includes
* Return international Air France*** flights from London Heathrow (or selected other UK airports) to Antananarivo via Paris CDG
* Internal Air Madagascar (or Madagasikara Airways) flights
* Airport taxes
* Services of a dedicated, professional, wildlife expert Malagasy guide and of drivers throughout
* Private transfers and 4WD transportation
* Accommodation with meals as specified.
Price Excludes
* Visa fee (27 Euros)
* Drinks, gratuities and items of a personal nature
Price Notes
*** Rates are subject to availability and seasonal variation. If you would prefer to fly internationally on a different carrier, we will be delighted to quote based on your preferred airline. Ask us for details.

Tour Route Map

  1.   Berenty Private Reserve
  2.   Ankarafantsika
  3.   Andasibe-Mantadia National Park
  4.   Antananarivo

Accommodation on this Tour

Berenty Lodge
Berenty Lodge
Berenty Private Reserve, Madagascar
Berenty Lodge has 13 simple en suite bungalows, and is located in one of Madagascar’s oldest reserves, established by the De Heaulme family in 1937. Breakfasts are served in the snack-bar, near the bungalows, from where you can watch wildlife while you dine.
         
Gite de Ampijoroa
Gite de Ampijoroa
Ankarafantsika, Madagascar
Gite de Ampijoroa has three types of accommodation including seven simple en suite chalets - some of which sleep up to four guests - which are located on the shore of Lac Ravelobe in wildlife-rich deciduous woodland mixed with teak trees.
         
Relais Des Plateaux
Relais Des Plateaux
Antananarivo, Madagascar
Relais Des Plateaux is positioned on the outskirts of Antananarivo and is just a ten minute drive away from the airport. Rooms are large and comfortable with air-conditioning and mini-bar. The hotel has a large outdoor heated pool and a spacious new restaurant.
   
Vakona Forest Lodge
Vakona Forest Lodge
Andasibe-Mantadia National Park, Madagascar
This is a family-run property and the best hotel in the area. It has 28 comfortable rooms and bungalows, a sparkling pool and stables in a eucalyptus plantation and private reserve 7km from the entrance to Perinet. The lodge is 140 km from the capital, about 3 hours by tarred road.
       

Image Gallery

Reviews

'Hi Derek 

We're all now safely back from Madagascar and just wanted to send our thanks for all you did to organise such an amazing adventure.  The lodges, guides and Marc  were all outstanding. As you warned us, we were affected quite a bit by Air Madagascar's unreliability but Marc and the office staff worked hard to make the changes as smooth and as comfortable as possible.

I do so hope that Air Madagascar sorts out its unreliable schedules before they manage to kill of the majority of tourism. 

We will definitely recommend Madagascar to all our travelling friends and will do all we can to help the great conservation work and tourism industry there.  It's an extraordinary country with the most wonderful wildlife and people.  We were made to feel very welcome and given the very best service people could offer. 

 Best wishes,

 JP'

 

 

Prowse Private Group
November 7, 2016

'Herilala was a SUPERB guide - he even went to Berenty with us!. Excellent holiday. Met all our expectations and exceeded on wildlife spotting. Very satisfied with Relais des Plateaux. Food was surprisingly good at Andasibe Hotel. Berenty is stunning for wildlife. La Croix du Sud had the best decorated bedroom and bathroom outside of Anjajavy: the photo in the itinerary does not do it justice.

Mantadia was excellent and order was reversed, which was the right thing to do because of the poor state of the road to the park and the long drive back to Tana.

The road to Berenty was very picturesque but 'deteriorating road' does not describe it......the driver was excellent and managed the jouney in 3 hours thanks to some superb rally driving!'

Mr Alderman and Ms Frost
October 6, 2016
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