Ifotaka is a remote Antandroy village notable for its dry Tamarind gallery forests, two of only four stands in the Mandrare River Valley. Its ground-breaking community ecotourism project began in 2001 and the luxury Madagascar Classic Camping’s Mandrare River Camp is situated nearby.

From Easter through New Year, you can explore intact, sacred gallery forest where the island’s national mammal, the Ringtail lemur, and the adorable, critically endangered Verreaux's sifaka - are commonly seen. They are equally at home in the healthy Spiny Bush which travel writer Dervla Murphy so aptly Christened ‘Nature’s Botanical Lunatic Asylum’. The Baobabs in this part of the south are of the large southern Malagasy species Adansonia za, standing like sentinels among much bushy Euphorbia, endemic Aloes and tall, spiky Finger trees (Didieraceae).

Reptiles such as the now critically endangered Madagascar radiated tortoise still exist there, and birding is rewarding, with specials such as Giant, Running and Crested couas being frequently spotted, along with garrulous Sicklebill vangas and Sakalava weavers.

While parts of Ifotaka's spiny bush have been decimated due to 'hatsake' (slash and burn agriculture), there are still impressive tracts remaining. In many cases, parcels of forest or woodland are protected when they conceal tombs, so are considered 'ala fady' (sacred forests). Guests at Mandrare River Camp are usually taken by guides to see examples of Antandroy tombs in the ala fady, during which time it is also possible to learn about the resident culture. 


Verreaux's sifaka in Didiera tree courtesy Madagascar Classic Camping.

Derek Schuurman

Travel Specialist

I'm here to tailor-make your perfect holiday. Give me a call and I'll use my expertise to create your personalised experience.
Total results: 2
Sort by:

Why Choose Us?

Passionate travel experts

  • We've been leading wildlife travel since our first South Africa tours over 25 years ago
  • Our Travel Specialists have lived in their specialist area for years
  • We work with local guides to immerse you deeper in our diverse range of experiences

Personal & tailor-made

  • You'll speak to your own expert who'll share their first-hand knowledge
  • We'll make your itinerary seamless with 24/7 emergency contact available
  • Your Travel Specialist will listen to ensure you have the best chance of seeing the wildlife you love

Responsible by nature

  • We take care to actively contribute to the conservation of environments we visit
  • For select countries, we make a charitable donation on your behalf when you make your booking
  • We've partnered with conservation experts and NGOs to curate responsible tours
British Travel Awards Crest
ATOL Protected ABTA Protected IATA Protected
Trust Pilot LATA Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office

For the latest travel advice from the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office check www.gov.uk/travelaware

Stay in Touch

Subscribe for our newsletter and to hear about exciting offers and experiences

By clicking ‘accept’, you consent to our use of cookies to improve our website experience. See our privacy policy for full information.