Madagascar Wildlife and Discovery with Daniel Austin 2021
Baobab Alley on the way to Kirindy Forest  
Sicklebilled vanga is often seen in Menabe (Jan Gershag)  
Kirindy is the best place in which to seek Fossa (Fosa)  
Red-fronted brown lemur, Kirindy  
One of Daniel's previous groups explore Isalo  
Daniel Austin's group watching wildlife in Isalo  
Verreaux's sifaka, Zombitse (Craig)  
Ringtail lemur (Craig)  
Pachypodiums, southwest Madagascar (Daniel)  
Daniel Austin tour group planting Baobabs in Menabe  
Indri, Andasibe-Mantadia (Daniel)  
Blue coua is commonly seen in Andasibe-Mantadia  
Nose-horned chameleon, Andasibe-Mantadia NP  
Parson's chameleon, Mitsinjo rainforest (Derek)  
16 day tour
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Tour Highlights

  • Kirindy for Baobabs, Fossa and other rare wildlife
  • Sandstone canyons at Isalo
  • Spiny bush and rare birds in Ifaty
  • Birds galore in Zombitse-Vohibasia transition forest
  • Indri and other rainforest wildlife at Andasibe-Mantadia
  • Aye ayes of Le Palmarium
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I'm enquiring about: Madagascar Wildlife and Discovery with Daniel Austin 2021

Madagascar Wildlife and Discovery with Daniel Austin 2021


We are delighted to offer another wonderful wildlife and discovery tour with Madagascar expert Daniel Austin, who has been leading tours to the Madagascar's wilderness areas for the last 7 years. 

In our 2021 tour, Daniel will be taking a small group (maximum 8 participants), to look for the fascinating and highly endangered wildlife restricted to the central-western lowlands at Menabe Antimena Protected Area, where we explore the dry deciduous forests of Kirindy and Marofandilia, and we visit the iconic Baobab Avenue not far away. Our aim will be to spot rarities such as Fossa, Giant jumping rat and the smallest of all primates, Madame Berthe's mouse lemur. 

We then explore the south-western quarter, beginning with a Spiny bush excursion at Ifaty, home to a select band of endemic birds, notably Subdesert mesite and Long-tailed ground-roller. The botanical aspect here is fascinating, with thorny Didiera trees clawing their way towards the sky like giant octopi, and bloated baobabs standing like sentinels presiding over an otherworldly landscape. We travel inland to Isalo National Park, one of the country's most visited protected areas thanks to its sandstone canyons and also, some wildlife. Near Isalo, a trip highlight is the transition forest of Zombitse-Vohibasia, a small forest where wildlife viewing is rewarding all year long. 

The last section of the itinerary focuses on the humid eastern region, where first we spend three nights at Andasibe-Mantadia, the country's premier rainforest wildlife hotspot. Aside from its iconic Indri and various other lemur species, we will seek flagship species such as Parson's chameleon; Coral-billed nuthatch vanga and Giraffe-necked weevil. After having enjoyed the wildlife here, we travel down to the Pangalanes Canal for two nights at Le Palmarium, a prominent attraction of which its its habituated population of the Aye aye, a large and bizarre-looking nocturnal lemur which epitomises all that is weird and wonderful about Malagasy wildlife. 

Daniel will be accompanied by ace Malagasy wildlife expert guide, Harry (Hery) Rakotosalama. 

Group size: minimum 6 - maximum 8 participants. 

Read more about this tour

Day 1
Day 1
26 October 2021: Arrive into Antananarivo
Arrive into Antananarivo off your international flight.
(This itinerary is structured around Air France flights from London or select other UK airports to Paris CDG and on to Antananarivo, arriving late in the evening. But do let us know if you would prefer to fly on another carrier; we will be pleased to assist with arrangements).
You will be welcomed and transferred to Relais des Plateaux to stay overnight, breakfast included.
Accommodation: Relais Des Plateaux
Day 2
Day 2
27 October 2021: Antananarivo - Morondava - Kirindy Forest/ Menabe Antimena Protected Area
Transfer to Antananarivo airport for the flight to Morondava on the west coast.
On arrival, we travel in 4-wheel drive vehicles to Kirindy via Baobab Alley.
We stay 2 nights in en-suite bungalows at Relais du Kirindy.
In the afternoon and early evening, we explore this wonderful dry forest, searching for various diurnal and nocturnal lemurs, birds and reptiles.
Accommodation: Relais du Kirindy
Day 3
Day 3
28 October 2021 - Kirindy Forest
We make day and night walks in Kirindy, in search of its rare and often, range-restricted wildlife.
Accommodation: Relais du Kirindy
Day 4
Day 4
29 October 2021: Kirindy - Morondava - Antananarivo
We drive back to Morondava airport (about 90 minutes) to check in for the Tsaradia flight to Antananarivo.
On arrival, we transfer to Relais des Plateaux for an overnight stay. Closer to the time, when domestic flight schedules are published, we will finalise sightseeing excursions for this day.
Accommodation: Relais Des Plateaux
Day 5
Day 5
30 October 2021: Antananarivo - Tulear - Ifaty Beach
We transfer to the airport to check in for the Tsaradia flight to Tulear on the arid south-west coast.
On arrival, we visit the private reserve at Arboretum d'Antsokay, where the bizarre flora of the southern sub-desert is showcased. It is also excellent for small wildlife and for birds.
After lunch and a walk here, we travel about 30 minutes to Ifaty to overnight at Le Paradisier Ecolodge.
Accommodation: Le Paradisier
Day 6
Day 6
31 October 2021: Ifaty - Isalo National Park
An early start: after a coffee at the lodge, we visit the beguiling Spiny bush of Ifaty for its remarkable flora and rare birds.
Afterwards, we return to the hotel for breakfast. We then set off on the half-day drive along the very popular RN7 road, to Isalo National Park.
Here, we stay 3 nights in Isalo Rock Lodge.
Accommodation: Isalo Rock Lodge
Day 7
Day 7
01 November 2021: Zombitse day excursion
This morning we travel about an hour to Zombitse-Vohibasia National Park, which year round, is generally an excellent wildlife viewing experience.
After completing one of the simple trails here, we return to Isalo to stay overnight.
Accommodation: Isalo Rock Lodge
Day 8
Day 8
02 November 2021: Isalo National Park
Today we will be taken to explore Isalo National Park.
Accommodation: Isalo Rock Lodge
Day 9
Day 9
03 November 2021: Isalo - Tulear
We travel back to Tulear (half-day drive), near which we overnight in a hidden gem, Famata Lodge. This will allow for time to visit the remote south-west, where the habitat is 'coral ragg' scrub. We will visit Tsinjoriake and the Sarodrano cave in the afternoon.
Accommodation: Famata Lodge
Day 10
Day 10
04 November 2021: Tulear - Antananarivo - Andasibe-Mantadia National Park
We fly back to Antananarivo today and travel in 4-wheel drive vehicles east to Andasibe-Mantadia National Park, for a 3-night stat in Mantadia Lodge.
This evening we will make the first of two night walks to seek some nocturnal rainforest wildlife.
Accommodation: Mantadia Lodge
Day 11
Day 11
05 November 2021: Andasibe-Mantadia National Park
After an early breakfast we venture into the country's most famed rainforest, in search of the wonderful Indri and other rainforest inhabitants.
In the afternoon, we visit Lemur Island, for that 'lemur-on-the-shoulder' experience.
Tonight, we'll undertake a second night walk to chalk up more nocturnal species.
Day 12
Day 12
06 November 2021: Mantadia National Park
Another early start: we visit beautiful Mantadia National Park, about 37km from the lodge. Here we seek the likes of Diademed sifaka, Black & white ruffed lemur and many species of rainforest-dependent birds.
Please note that as is the case at Isalo, the terrain here requires a reasonable level of physical fitness. (This does not apply to Andasibe or 'Perinet', where trails are graded as Easy).
Accommodation: Mantadia Lodge
Day 13
Day 13
07 November 2021: Andasibe-Mantadia - Palmarium Reserve/Lac Ampitabe
We travel down the escarpment to Manambato, at the 600-km Pangalanes Canal. Here, we stay 2 nights in the rustic Le Palmarium, on the shore of Lac Ampitabe. (Drive time about 4hrs + boat transfer of abour 1 hr)
Tonight, we'll take a boat excursion to an offshore islet, where the big attraction is a habituated population of Aye ayes.
Accommodation: Le Palmarium
Day 14
Day 14
08 November 2021: Le Palmarium
Wildlife viewing at Le Palmarium is effortless - there is plenty to see and the place is a photographer's dream. Behind the hotel is a tract of East coast littoral forest, where lemurs such as the critically endangered Black and white ruffed lemur in particular, abound.
We make a second night excursion for those who want another fix of Aye ayes.
Accommodation: Le Palmarium
Day 15
Day 15
09 November 2021: Le Palmarium - Antananarivo
After a leisurely breakfast, we transfer by boat to Manambato, where our vehicles await. We travel back upcountry to Antananarivo (drive time about 7hrs, good roads) where we have day/evening rooms at Relais des Plateaux.
We will enjoy a farewell dinner nearby, and those taking the Air France flight out early tomorrow morning, will be transferred to the airport in time for the check-in.
Accommodation: Relais Des Plateaux
Day 16
10 November 2021 : Departure
Check in at Ivato Antananarivo Airport for your flight to Paris CDG (if you are flying on Air France), and on to London Heathrow or selected other UK airports.
*** Should you prefer another international carrier, please let us know - we will be happy to quote for you.
*** If you wish to upgrade your international flights, let us know and we shall advise supplement.
*** If you prefer to arrange your own international flights, deduct £890 from the the tour price per person as that is the Air France economy class fare we have used to calculate this tour price.

Pricing Information & Dates

16 day tour, from £7540 per person
Price Includes
Return international flights from London Heathrow (or selected other UK airports) to Antananarivo
Domestic Tsaradia/Air Madagascar flights
Airport taxes
Airport facilitation
Services of tour leader Daniel Austin throughout the tour
Services of experienced Malagasy guide throughout the tour
Services of drivers
Services of reserve/ national park guides.
National Park permits
All transfers and transportation in comfortable, private, 4-wheel drive vehicles
Activities and excursions as detailed
All accommodation as outlined
All meals
Bottled mineral water
Price Excludes
Madagascar visa (35 euro, issued on arrival)
Items of a personal nature (tips, phone calls, laundry, travel insurance)
Price Notes
Price Notes
Single Room Supplement: £690
Group size: minimum 6 - maximum 8

Tour Route Map

  1.   Antananarivo
  2.   Kirindy Forest
  3.   Tulear
  4.   Ifaty
  5.   Zombitse-Vohibasia Forest National Park
  6.   Isalo National Park
  7.   Andasibe-Mantadia National Park
  8.   Pangalanes Canal

Accommodation on this Tour

Isalo Rock Lodge
Isalo Rock Lodge
Isalo National Park, Madagascar
The impressive new Isalo Rock Lodge has 60 luxurious rooms and is located high on a sandstone massif overlooking the Isalo National Park. From the lodge the panoramic views over the surroundings area are breathtaking.
Le Palmarium
Le Palmarium
Pangalanes Canal, Madagascar
Le Palmarium About an hour by motorised boat from Manambato village (which in turn is about 4 hours drive east of Andasibe) or 2h30min from Port Fluvial, Tamatave, this simple, relaxed and no-frills......
Le Paradisier
Le Paradisier
Ifaty, Madagascar
Le Paradisier We really enjoy this property and recommend it highly for our guests visiting Ifaty-Mangily.It is located only about 10 minutes from Mangily village, about 20 minutes’ drive north......
Mantadia Lodge
Mantadia Lodge
Andasibe-Mantadia National Park, Madagascar
Mantadia Lodge Sure to become the most sought- after accommodation servicing Andasibe-Mantadia National Park, this lodge, under the same ownership as Couleur Café in Antsirabe, was opened in......
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.
Relais du Kirindy
Relais du Kirindy
Kirindy Forest, Madagascar
Comfortable, no-frills accommodation with swimming pool, half an hour's drive from Kirindy Forest.

Image Gallery


'Service from tour operator: Excellent. Overall holiday satisfaction: Excellent. Mandrare River Camp: Excellent in all respects. Same for Manafiafy and Constance Lodge Tsarabanjina. Maison Gallieni (Antananarivo): comfort, service and meals excellent; location and faciltities good.

We had the most AMAZING tme. Thank you for all your help - it was a very, very special trip'.

Mr & Mrs Parsloe
December 9, 2015
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