Overview of Madagascar

 

Madagascar boasts a verdant landscape, delightful beaches, unspoiled rainforests and thriving towns and ports that are bursting with character.

Its many nature reserves and national parks contain rare and wonderful wildlife – much of which is unique to the remote island. Indeed, so different are the native flora and fauna that Madagascar has been dubbed 'the eighth continent'.

The fourth largest island in the world is one of the most bio-diverse countries on earth, home to thousands of species of plant and animal life of which around four-fifths are endemic. .

The famous lemurs head many visitors’ wish lists. There are more than 100 species and subspecies in total, ranging from Madame Berthe's mouse lemur – the world’s smallest primate – to the large indri. Dwarf chameleons, tomato frogs, giant jumping rats and hedgehog-like tenrecs all add to the islands idiosyncratic natural wonders.

The island’s geographical isolation also led to the development of unique and remarkable plant life, such as the swollen baobab, Madagascar's national tree – a striking feature of the unique spiny forest ecosystem in the south of the country. In wilderness areas, such as Isalo National Park and Tsingy Nature Reserve, visitors are left gazing in awe at Madagascar’s impossibly exotic, endangered ecological treasures.

Head to the town of Antsirabe to view the volcanic lakes of Andraikiba and Tritriva and relax in the therapeutic thermal baths.

At Ile Sante Marie you can spot whales, stroll through herb gardens fragrant with the scent of vanilla and lemongrass, or take a macabre tour of the pirate cemetery.

Toamasina offers colonial architectural wonders as well as the popular Jardin D'Essel and the Parc Ivoloina.

You will find plenty of opportunities for first-class water sports such as diving, swimming, snorkelling and canoeing. And away from the idyllic coast there are countless trekking and hiking routes through Madagascar’s breath-taking nature reserves.

Our luxury Travel Managers  will bring all that is marvellous about Madagascar to your trip. Keep your eyes open for the unexpected, in a warm-hearted, captivating destination that makes for a refreshingly different holiday.

Climate

The climate of Madagascar is mainly subtropical, with a hot and rainy season between November and April, and a cooler dry season from May to October. However, significant variations in climate do exist according to the vagaries of altitude and geography. The west coast is drier than the east and the central highlands, while the far south and southwest experience a climate similar to a desert region. The east coast is prone to cyclones between February and March, and temperatures are much cooler in the highlands.

On the coast temperatures range from 27 to 32 degrees Celsius (81 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit) in the wet season and 18 to 22 degrees Celsius (64 to 72 degrees Fahrenheit) in the dry season.

May to October is the most pleasant time to travel to Madagascar, with cooler temperatures and little rain.

Language

Malagasy is the official language, but French is widely spoken.

Passport Visa

Most nationalities can obtain a tourist visa on arrival that is valid for 90 days. These cost MGA 140,000 (or equivalent in USD or EUR). Please check the rules around visa requirements before you travel, as they may change regularly.

A yellow fever vaccination certificate is required to enter if you are arriving within six days of leaving or transiting through an infected area.

Safety

The political situation in Madagascar can be unstable, especially in the Ambohijatovo, Lac Anosy, Antaninarenina and Analakely areas.

The usual precautions should be taken against opportunistic crime, especially in urban areas.

Travellers should carry ID at all times.

The height of the cyclone season is from January to March and affects the coastal regions.

Piracy is a concern in the Gulf of Aden and Indian Ocean.

Our Services

For all your high-end, bespoke leisure and corporate travel needs to Madagascar, contact our Travel Managers on 0203 535 9290 or info@simplexitytravel.com today.

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