(Please take the time to peruse through the terms & conditions of this deal at the bottom of the page)
SAINTE MARIE ISLAND
- Departures 01 Mar – 31 Oct 2013, from $620*pp twin share
- 7 nights accommodation in hotels, daily breakfast in Antananarivo, breakfast and dinner in Sainte Marie
- Day 1: Arrival at Ivato Airport, Antananarivo. Transfer to IC Hotel or similar (en-suite rooms with hot water & balcony, restaurant, bar & swimming pool)
- Day 2: Transfer to Ivato Airport for flight^ to St Marie. Transfer to Hotel de Charme Vanivola or similar (Bungalow with en-suite bathroom, restaurant, bar & swimming pool). Excursions: Hotel can arrange boat tours to different parts of St Marie, road trips, whale tours (in season) and quad bike tours.
- Days 3-6: Snorkelling, scuba diving, fishing trips, cocktail on the beach, stroll into the small town of Ambodifotatra to explore some boutiques or the local market (Tuesday and Thursday).
- Day 7: Check out & transfer to airport for return flight^ to Antananarivo. Upon arrival, transfer to IC Hotel or similar (en-suite rooms with hot water and balcony, restaurant, bar and swimming pool).
- Day 8: After breakfast at IC Hotel, transfer back to Antananarivo airport for flight^ back home
LEMUR & BEACH
- Departures 01 Mar – 10 Jul & 07 Sep – 31 Oct 2013, from $955*pp twin share
- Departures from 11 Jul – 06 Sep 2013, from $1050*pp twin share
- 7 nights accommodation, daily breakfast, all entrance fees, specialist guides in the National Parks
- Day 1: Upon arrival at Nosy Be, transfer to the Vanila hotel (Garden room with ensuite bathroom. Attractions: beautiful beaches, views from the peak of Mont Passot, scuba diving and a visit to the Ylang Ylang distillery (all optional extras)
- Days 2-4: Visits to smaller surrounding islands off Nosy Be, such as Nosy Komba with a chance to view the semi-tame Black Lemurs, Nosy Tanikely for exceptional snorkeling and scuba diving off the island of Nosy Sakatia. An organized spice tour through the lodge or a ride into Hell-Ville to visit the bustling daily market- a good place to pick up spices at very reasonable prices. Enjoy a sunset at the tiny rustic bar at the top of mount Passot, taking in the breathtaking view of the 7 sacred crater lakes or sail upon catamaran under the great Madagascan sun. Fishing and diving trips may also be arranged, or simply just enjoy a cocktail or two on the beach. All these excursions are booked as per your convenience at an additional cost.
- Day 5: After breakfast, check-out of Vanila Hotel. Transfer to airport for flight^ to Antananarivo. Head to Andasibe & check-in at Vakona Forest Lodge (bungalows surrounded by the forest, with en-suite bathrooms and veranda). Enjoy a night walk to observe night active lemurs and other nocturnal animals.
- Day 6: Guided visit to the Special Reserve of Andasibe after breakfast. Discover many species including Indri Indri, the largest lemurs on the island. This 810 hectare reserve is unique containing a wide variety of orchids, canopy, and endemic animals like chameleons, tenrecs, and many birds. Visit to the Orchid garden followed by lunch at the hotel. Afternoon visit to Lemur Island at Vakona Forest Lodge. The rest of the afternoon, you can relax by the pool or enjoy a horse ride, or visit the Private Park of Vakona (horse-riding & visit to Private park being optional extras).
- Day 7: After breakfast, head back to Tana (at an additional cost), stopping for lunch at the Reptile & Butterfly farm (at own expense). Check in at Le Relais des Plateaux (rooms with en-suite bathrooms, aircon TV).
- Day 8: Check out of hotel & head to Tana airport for home-bound flight^
- Departures 01 Mar – 31 Oct 2013, from $1290*pp twin share
- 7 nights accommodation in hotels, daily breakfast, all park and reserve entrance fees, service of local guide in Andasibe, car transfer with an English-speaking driver from Antananarivo to Manambato, group Size: 2 – 10 participants
- Day 1: Upon arrival at Antananarivo, transfer to Andasibe. Along the way, a brief stop at Marozevo to visit a reptile farm. Check-in at Hotel Grace Lodge, or similar. Before dinner, enjoy a night walk to see some nocturnal species of lemurs.
- Day 2: After breakfast, morning visit to the Andasibe National Park to see the Indri lemurs, the largest of the lemur species, as well as brown lemurs, bamboo lemurs, various birds, colourful chameleons and other fauna and flora. Then drive to Manambato followed by a boat transfer to Akanin’ ny Nofy, which means “Nest of Dreams”. Check-in at Hotel Palmarium or similar.
- Day 3: Morning visit to the private Palmarium Park to discover the endemic flora and fauna of Madagascar, such as rare palm trees and plants like orchids and mahoganies, as well as reptiles and 10 different species of lemurs living in its trees. In the afternoon, boat transfer to Tamatave in the Pangalanes Channel. Check-in at Hotel Joffre or similar.
- Day 4: Transfer to airport for flight^ to Sainte Marie. Check-in at Vanivola or similar. The island offers long beaches, shallow seas, cascades, tropical flowers and almost Caribbean atmosphere and is also of interest for its several old buildings and its long history as a pirate haunt.
- Days 5-6: Go on a boat excursion to the small island “Ile aux Nattes”, Sainte Marie’s jewel with its beautiful beaches, bays and emerald lagoon; or visit the pirates’ cemetery. For outdoor-lovers, the island offers many opportunities to explore on foot. Enjoy the crystal clear waters of the Indian Ocean while snorkeling or scuba diving with one of the many operators on the island. From July to October, you will have the chance to see the majestic humpback whales near the island.
- Day 7: Transfer to airport for flight^ to Antananarivo. Check-in at Residence Lapasoa or similar. With its bustling markets, friendly people and ancient town on a hill with freestone churches and ancient royal places, Antananarivo is unique among the world’s other capitals. You can wander through the capital’s steep and narrow streets, taking in its architecture, atmosphere and pace. Or you can climb up to the old rova (palace) and enjoy the views over Antananarivo and the surrounding countryside. The town is at its best in the evening when the setting sun spectacularly illuminates its hillsides.
- Day 8: Transfer to airport in Antananarivo for home-bound flight^.
BAREFOOT LUXURY SOUTHERN EXPLORER
- Departures 01 Apr – 20 Jun & 21 Nov – 17 Dec 2013, from $3050*pp twin share
- Departures 21 Jun – 20 Nov 2013, from $3710*pp twin share
- 7 nights accommodation, breakfast at Antananarivo, all excursions, park fees and community/environmental levies, experienced professional Malagasy guide, all required transport in an air-conditioned vehicle in Antananarivo and in 4×4 vehicles in all other locations, all-inclusive basis at Mandrare River Camp (activities, meals and international drinks) & Manafiafy Lodge (activities, meals and local soft drinks and beers)
- Day 1: Arrival in Antananarivo, check-in at Pavillion de l’Emyrne, or similar (double room with en-suite bathroom) . It was originally built as a private residence in the 1930s and is a delightful city guesthouse with its own garden. Rooms are air-conditioned and have satellite television.
- Day 2: After breakfast, transfer to Ivato airport for two-hour flight^ to Fort Dauphin. Upon arrival, transfer by road & check-in at Mandrare River Camp (Private luxury tents with en-suite bathroom, hot water). Settle into your tent or enjoy the majestic views over the River. After a barbeque lunch of succulent grilled meats and salads, go for a walk to the Sacred Ifotaka community forests which are filled with the ancestral tombs of the local Antandroy Tribe as well as a bewildering array of flora and fauna, unique to the spiny forest.
- Day 3: Enjoy a relaxed breakfast on the banks of the river before embarking on a trip to the sacred Gallery forests. These forests are deciduous, mainly tamarind, and full of wildlife, especially lemurs with large groups of Ring tailed Lemurs. Then enjoy watching the sun set and moon rise with a view across the Baobabs to the mountains beyond. In the evening, the local villagers may come to perform traditional dances accompanied by singing and music.
- Day 4: After breakfast, head South through the Mandrare Valley to Lake Anony, a stunning soda lake with huge sand dunes (a must for children!), littoral dry forest scrub and a good number of greater flamingos to be spotted on the lake. After a relaxing picnic lunch on the lakeside hut, return to camp.
- Day 5: After breakfast, transfer by road & check-in at Manafiafy Beach & Rainforest Lodge (private bungalows with en-suite bathroom, sundeck and separate access to the magnificent unspoilt beach). Situated on a beautiful white sandy bay, fringed with forest covered mountains, the lodge offers barefoot luxury with wildlife and water at your doorstep. It is possible to fly from Mandrare River Camp to Manafiafy, which avoids the long road transfer. The flight requires a minimum of 2 people to operate, takes approximately 45 minutes, requires reservation in advance at an additional cost. Maximum 3 people per plane.
- Days 6-7: Canoeing in the mangroves, early morning boat trips for wetland birding, day and night walks in the rainforest to see five species of lemur, snorkelling in the bay and nearby cove, whale watching from the 15ft observation tower (June to December). Boat trips to the nearby islands for a secluded picnic lunch, walks along long empty beaches, visits to the local village and school. Optional activities, payable locally at the lodge include: massage treatments, whale watching boat trips (June to December), deep see fishing trips. Forest walks are the main reason for visiting this part of the island and those accessible from Manafiafy are “Littoral” rain forests – home to several Lemurs (collared brown, woolly, brown mouse, dwarf and sportive) as well as reptiles, spiders, birds, insects and orchids. Walks can be done at any time of the day and early evening, and are always accompanied by a Manafiafy guide.
- Day 8: Drive back to Fort Dauphin and continue to the airport for flight^ to Antananarivo.
1000 VIEWS OF MADAGASCAR
- Departures 05 – 15 Apr, 03 – 13 May, 31 may – 10 June, 05 – 15 July, 02 – 12 Aug, 06 – 16 Sep, 04 – 14 Oct, 01 – 11 Nov 2013, from $1550*pp twin share
- 10 nights accommodation in hotels and lodges, daily breakfast, all entrance fees, specialist local guides in the national park, group Size: 4 – 10 participants, an English-speaking driver (cannot advise on Flora and Fauna, and therefore will not accompany clients into parks)
- Day 1: Arrival at Antananarivo. Head to Andasibe & check-in at Grace Lodge or similar (bungalows with en-suite bathrooms, verandah). Enjoy a night walk to observe night active lemurs and other nocturnal animals.
- Day 2: Morning visit to Special Reserve of Andasibe, to see the Indri Indri, the largest lemurs on the island. This 810 hectare reserve contains a wide variety of orchids, canopy, and endemic animals like chameleons, tenrecs, and many birds. Afterwards, a walk through the orchid park & in the afternoon, a visit to Andasibe village inhabited by the second largest tribe on the island.
- Day 3: Drive back to Tana, heading south to Antsirabe stopping at Ambatolampy for a short visit of this huge agricultural city. Arrival in Antsirabe or ‘the place of salt’, an elegant city well known as the centre of the beer industry. Founded by the Norwegians in 1856, it is the only place which really feels and looks like a European city. Check-in at Chambres du Voyageur (rooms with e-suite bathrooms).
- Day 4: After breakfast, drive to Ambositra, the centre of Madagascar’s wood carving industry, with the landscape being dominated by rice fields on stage, pine forests, eucalyptus trees and rocky mountains. Arrive at Ranomafana National Park. Check-in at Centrest, or similar (rooms with e-suite bathrooms).
- Day 5: Visit to the Parc National de Ranomafana (approximately 40,000 hectares), with its rain forested hills and abundant wildlife, is one of the most heavily visited national parks. In addition to its densely forested hills, Ranomafana’s terrain is characterized by numerous small streams, which plummet down to the beautiful Namorona River. Although much of the region has been logged, the easternmost part of the park retains relatively large areas of primary forest. Attraction: Walks in the National Park for several hours spotting some of the lemurs, chameleons and other animals.
- Day 6: Depart from Ranomafana passing Fianarantsoa, the capital of the Betsileo tribes. Head southwards to Ambalavao for wine tasting followed by a visit to the ‘Anteimoro Paper Factory’, a vestige of the Arabian civilisation in the island. Continue to Ihosy, the capital of the Bara tribes and pass through the mountain chain of Andringitra, with its famous ‘3 hillocks’ and its huge ‘archbishop’s cape’. You will also see a spectacular huge granite dome with twin rock towers called: ‘the gate of the south’, which marks the end of the highland and the beginning of the south and the ‘Bishop’s hat’, which is a sacred place for the local people. Then pass through the huge ‘Plateaux de Horombe’ which, with its very deep red soil, reminds us of ‘the no man’s land’. Arrive in Isalo. Check-in at Isalo Ranch (rooms with e-suite bathrooms, restaurant)
- Day 7: Visit to Isalo National Park covering an area of 81, 540 hectares. After a 10-minute drive from Ranohira village, a walk of about 1½ hour to reach the ‘Natural Swimming Pool’. Along the way you will see vegetation like Uapaca bojeri, Pachypodium rosulatum or ‘elephant’s foot’, Aloe isaloensis, a native species of aloe and endemic to Isalo. You will walk through the eroded mountains, where Bara placed their dead before they brought them into their real tombs. After 20 minutes’ walk, you will have a spectacular view of the huge sandstone mountains with its beautiful colours and its strange and eroded forms giving many different images like ‘the tortoise’, ‘the masks’ and ‘the crocodiles’. Along the way, you may spot sifakas, brown lemurs and ringtaild lemurs, as well as fifty-five species of birds, lizards and snakes, finally reaching the swimming pool, with its crystal clear water – a great reward after a long walk.
- Day 8: After breakfast, continue to Tuléar. On the way, you will get to admire the different ‘Mahafaly tombs’ and the ‘Antandroy tombs’. Then we drive to Ifaty, which lies about 27 km from Tuléar. Situated in the deep south, the landscape is dominated by the spiny forest like the cactus, different euphorbiacea and didieracea. Mangrove trees line the coast alternated by Vezo villages. Check-in at Hotel de la Plage (rooms with en-suite bathrooms).
- Day 9: Ifaty is an ideal place for diving and snorkeling and a popular place for birdwatchers. Visit the ‘Reserve Domergue’, a communal reserve where one will see two kinds of baobabs, spiny bush, reptiles like ‘boa madagascariensis’, ‘geckos’ and ‘chameleon parsoni’ (the largest one). Take a boat trip to see the whales. From July to mid September, whales come to the cool seas off Madagascar to give birth to their young. It is a spectacular experience, and it is possible to see the whales very near to the boat. In the afternoon you can walk to the village of Mangily to visit a local school and also experience the Vezo Fishermen’s way of life, especially after coming back from fishing.
- Day 10: Transfer to the airport for the flight^ back to Tana. Also called the ‘City of Thousands’, Tana is the capital of Madagascar. It is the city where the first King started to unify the different kingdoms of the island. Built in stages: The high city is the first area occupied during the royal period where the old queen’s palace is situated, the mid-city, where all the chic boutiques of the capital are found and then the low city, which is the commercial area of the town. Check-in at Residence Lapasoa, or similar (rooms with en-suite bathroom, & restaurant)
- Day 11: Transfer to the airport for home-bound flight^
*Conditions apply. All tours subject to availability. Seasonal/single supplements may apply. Option to upgrade accommodation. Full payment 60 days prior to departure. Credit card surcharge of minimum 1.5% may apply for Visa & Mastercard. We do not accept American Express or Diners. Cancellation penalties will apply. Price includes land arrangements only.
^Flights are at an additional cost, please ask for special airfares.