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MADAGASCAR AT THE HEART OF MEN

1.290 € /personne

Madagascar, in many ways, can be considered as one of the last sanctuary of wildlife on the planet. Its biodiversity is famous for being endemic at 90%. But the “Great Island” has also been a human melting pot for thousands of year and is today the result of a big mixture. A mixture of beliefs, of cultures, languages and know-how from Asia, Africa and Europe.

 With this circuit under the aegis of exchange, we offer you to thrill and vibrate at the pace of Madagascar. A unique experience, full of discoveries and encounters. 

  • Length: 16 days and 15 nights
  • Season: Anytime of the year

Physical difficulty: easy

Discovery Trip with SUDMADATREK

2 Stars hotels and half pension or full pension

Rooms double and twin

4 People required (up to 12 persons)

D1 : ANTANANARIVO – ANTSIRABE

We come welcome you directly at the international airport of Ivato, and head straight south. Throughout the plains of the highlands, you’ll discover the first amazing scenery of your trip:  the rural villages surrounded by rice fields and the population of farmers whose lifestyle has not changed since the dawn of time

We’ll stop to visit the city of Ambatolampy; well known for its aluminum craftsmanship.

Free lunch before Antsirabe, the thermal city constructed and developed by Norwegian missionaries. This city is ranked first in agriculture and the second in industry in the whole country. The beautiful middle class houses downtown are witnesses of this frivolous era.

Then we keep on heading south to reach the lakes Tritriva and Andraikiba.

Diner and night at the hotel

D2 : ANTSIRABE – PAYS ZAFIMANIRY  – FIANARANTSOA

We leave the hotel early in the morning. The Zafimaniry region is a 6 hour-long trip, and the road is tough on the end. The track runs through bare mountains and valleys: the consequence of “Tavy”: the infamous “slash and burn” that has been practiced here for generations by the Zafimaniry but has destroy all the neighboring forests. We’ll visit a couple traditional villages and eat at a restaurant down in Ambositra, then reach Fianarantsoa, the capital of the Bestileo region.

Visit of the Tea Plantation. We’ll walk through the tea plantations and the typical betsileo villages.  After a little lesson on the process and the different machinery that come with it, we head towards the conditioning plant. A little degustation and wandering around and we head back to the hotel at Fianarantsoa.

Night and diner.

D3 : FIANARANTSOA – AMBALAVAO – ITAOLANA 4 hours of walking and  400m+ et 350m- of height difference.

To enter this region filled with history, we leave Ambalavao and head south, to the rural community of Ambohimahamasina. It’s a 45km ride, but we will need more than three hours round trip to reach our objective. Starting from the center of the upper town, we head down, for an hour toward the village of ’Andranomangitsy located at the foot of the sacred mountain of Angavoa. The tracks then reaches the wonderful village of Andalandranovao in the middle of the rice fields. There, our hosts are expecting us for our first meal, rice based of course. We’ll have a little talk and then hit the track again, eastward to another village, Vohimarina, the Itaolana Mountain. From the bottom of the valley, the summit in all its magnificence covered with sacred primary rainforest.

This first walk will give you a little taste of our little stay here. At night fall we’ll assign you to a local family who will welcome you with warmth. Your hosts are always happy to share a good (rice of course) meal and host vasaha (strangers)/

D4 : ITAOLANA – AMBALAHAZO 6 hours walking and  591m+, 716m- of difference in height.

This second day, you’ll climb the two summits of the mountain of Itaolana, one of the three sacred mountains around Ambohimahamasina, that peaks at 1489m. It’s a three-hour adventure that starts in the middle of the Tavy where we will pass by two posts where guards are assigned to preserve the kingdom. From there, we have a pretty intense walk throughout the eucalyptus forest and the tall grass in order to reach the primary forest at the roots of the mountain.  The traditional guide is the guardian of the forest. This means his Saotra (gifts for the ancestors) are necessary to the good climbing.

We pass by the third guard post before reaching the first summit and the King’s stele.

The second peak is just half an hour away and we get there fast. The panorama is breath taking, on the whole territory of the Ambohimahamasina territory and the neighboring mountain ranges of the Tanala Land (people of the forest).

We can also see our next stop at the horizon, the Andringitra rocky Mountains.

After a well-deserved break, we finally head down to the inhabited valleys surrounded by eucalyptus.

 

We sleep at Ambalazaho, a village with a lake ten minutes away. There, local women will present to you the traditional activities that have been developed these last years thanks to sustainable tourism and NGOs,  among other things.

 

D5 : AMBALAHAZO – AMBOHIMAHAMASINA – AMBALAVAO 5 hours of walking and 376m+, 292m- of difference in height.

 

Right after a nutritious breakfast in the coolness of the morning. We’ll start by visiting an home-made forge and discovering how people make their tools here. You might learn some techniques!

After that, the silk crafts shops. Here, a small number of women have been weaving silk for generations. It used to be wool made out of wild silk but this practice has been lost over time and now it is cotton that is used. However, some craft shops want to come back to this old technique, and they reopened a workshop in Ambalavao, this development is partly funded by the NGO CCD Namana.  .

Unfortunately, it’s tiime to head back to the commune of Ambohimahamasina and get in the car. Before leaving, a last look at these unmovable mountains that surround us. Pretty satisfying when you’ve conquered them. The ride back is full of images that will last, we go back to Ambalavao for a whole new adventure.

Nigh and diner at the hotel in Ambalavao

 

D6 : AMBALAVAO – ANDRINGITRA 4 hours walking and 400 m of difference in height.

 

Today, you will discover the Andringintra mountain range. On our way, the Antemoro paper craft shop in Ambalavao is worth a detour. We hit the track that leads to the entrance of the on roughly 45km. A beautiful scenery that the terrible state of the road will give you all the time to admire. As soon as we get to Namoly, we enter the park and start our first day by going to the royal bath and the camping site of Andriamposty. Around 4 hour a walk and 400 meters of difference in height.

 

Diner and night right under the foot of the granite cliff, at  2050 meters of altitude.

D7 : ANDRINGITRA 7 to 8 hours of walk and 600m+ 900m- of difference in height.

Early departure to climb the Pic Bobby. We need to catch the morning lights to appreciate the view. The summit is very exposed to the climatic influences and the humidity from the east and this can bring a lot of fog around and spoil the trek a little.

 

After only 2 hours and a half of climbing, we’ll discover the amazing panorama on the whole area. If the weather is on your side, you might even catch a glimpse of the Isalo mountain range, down south. Our stop in three days.

After that, the circuit goes down to the “extra-terrestrial foot hills”. They were called this way because of their intriguing deserted and surrealist landscapes. The steep slopes around make it seem like taken out of a lunar scenery.

Before heading back to the camp, we will cross a forest of palm trees endemic to this very side of the mountain, the “ravenea glauca”. The camping site, near the freshening waters of the river, will be most welcome after this big day

D8 : ANDRINGITRA –TSARANORO 4 hours a walk and 700m- of difference in height

fter a good breakfast, we leave for the Tsaranoro valley, home of many types of lizzards, aloes, and Pachypodium d’enchyflorum. Once on the foothills, the track crosses several Barabory villages. Here, we can witness a cultural mix, the Betsileo and the Bara

Starting from the village of Morarano, we’ll begin the crossing of the wonderful valley of Tsaranoro.

Night and night at the Lodge.

D9 : TSARANORO Valley  or Resting day at the camp

There are three excursions possible for this day, picnic is included.

 

  • Circuit Hara Aravatra :

 

A small (half a day) climb on a little distance. We start form the camp throughout the rice fields, then up the hill during an hour. On our way down, we take a detour by a little, intricate forest where several families of Lemur Catta have settled. Another hour to go before heading back. You’ll be rewarded with a beautiful view of the surrounding villages

 

  • Circuit Sacred Forest and Village: 4 hour long.

 

This circuit starts on an easy ground, taken by the locals to cross the cultures of manioc and rice. We’ll cross the village of Andonaka and visit the green school of Tsaranoro. After the village, a small track we reach the sacred forest inhabited by Lemur Catta, who wander and sun bath on the big flat rocks. The forest is also filled with tombs of ancestors for the Betsileo and the Bara people. We’ll visit some and reach a natural pool that brings a magical aspect to the forest. After a little break, we head to the Soavahiny village, literally “where the strangers are welcome”, not far from the forest. On our way back to the camp, you’ll see the free clinic, the only way for everyone around to get medicines in the whole area. The visit is really interesting and you may want to support the program by giving away some of your extra pills and medicines.

 

  • Circuit Tsaranoro :

 

We leave early the camp and start by crossing the sacred forest of Tsaranoro, graveyard of the locals of the valley. Many lemurs chill out here, have sunbaths on the flat rocks. We have to climb a little towards the foot of the cliff and cross a water stream and then walk alongside the water to reach the plateau of Tsaranoro. A little break and we go meet with the Chameleon, the Langera summit. It’s a little steep and care is needed to reach the top, but when we get there, you won’t regret a thing. The 360 panorama is just breath taking. You will have all lunch (or just a snack depending on the hour) to appreciate it. We head back to the village of Morarano then, and to the camp. It’s a hot time of the day and a big effort back, so you might appreciate a little bath in the river.

 

 

  • Paragliding:

 

There is also the opportunity to do paragliding in these mountains. There are 5 spots, and incredible thrills are guaranteed, even if you’ve never done it. It is important though to tell us in advance, at least 48 hours before so that we can prepare it all for you in an efficient way.

D10 : VALLEE DE TSARANORO – ISALO

Time to leave the Tsaranoro Valley, it’s a 3 hour and a half ride to the city of Ranohira, and its famous national park; Isalo.

As we head South on the road the landscapes drastically change. Pretty fast, the panorama flattens and immense tall grass fields surround us. This is the plateau of Ihorombe, land of the zebu farmers and of the golden horizon. Only one road goes through, the RN7, and people walk huge distances to meet in different villages in these savannah-looking plains.

Finally, we get to Ranohira, and the Isalo, a deserted mountain barrier.

Free lunch, setting up at the hotel, and diner.

Night and the hotel

D11 : CANYON – NATURAL POOL:  6 hours of walking and 500m of difference in height.

Transfer to the lower Ranohira.

We need to walk a little to reach the foot of this huge cliffs, where the remnants of an old forest have survived, hosting a couple families of Lemur Catta, recognizable at  their black and white tail, and the pure white Sifaka.

With luck, and silence, you might meet a couple of them after a bend of the track that runs between dry trees and rock. But the canyons eventually open their gates and reveals their treasures to the curious explorers who dare enter the narrow path.

 

Back in the sun, and up the crest of the cliff where you will admire a beautiful panorama of the North. Once inside these walls, you’ll be struck by the weird shapes, consequence of thousands of years of erosion. The colors, vegetation and profiles are exceptional and some see animals and patterns on the rock.

After 4 hours of walking in this mineral desert, under a hot sun, you’ll be rewarded with water. A small oasis lies in the middle of nowhere, for those who can find it. A good bath and the sunset will appease your day and conclude this first part of the visit.

A good meal and night at the camping site.

D12 : NATURAL POOL – NAMAZA- IFATY 4 hours of walking and 200 meters of difference in height

Today, it’s the Anamaza canyons that are heading for. It starts slowly, early in the morning to avoid the hottest time of the day, as we cross the same savanna-looking plateau and head down deep in a steep valley. The way down is well fitted out for the safety of less adventurous visitors. In the middle of the canyon runs the Namaza, a little stream protected by a comfortable forest that harbors a really laid back population of lemurs. There are not shy and we’ll see many of them while going up the water towards the beautiful waterfall of the Nymphs and its fresh waters. The difference of landscape and sensations between here and the plateau above is striking and really specific to this place.

After this scenery, time to hit the road, for the transfer to Tuléar.

On the way, a look at some familial tombs of the Antandroy and the Mahafaly tribes and the sapphire cities that popped out of nowhere in the desert, where the thirst for blue stones is just too strong.

After that, Mangily, a tiny village on the coast, south of the island, facing one of the most beautiful lagoon of the planet.

3 Nights at the hotel, half pension on the seashore.

D13 au D15: IFATY

This lagoon of Ranobe is a world famous diving site and one of the most beautiful lagoon on the planet. It offers on more than 40km of coral reef some of the most sought after locations to observe underwater wildlife. Its crystalline blue water and its extremely rich fauna and flora truly make it an ecological jewel. There are two channels, with really characteristic floors that will guarantee fascination to the diver inside you.

Free lunch.

The mixing flows of warm and cold water come sustain the great quantities of plankton and krill that nourish more than 400 species of fish and 46 types of coral reef. A glimpse on a marine map will reveal another secret, way deeper. There are canyons that run along the barrier, offering exceptional and preserved sites.

 

Night and diner at the hotel

 

-Exemples of diving sites :

 

  • The Rose FlowerBed, Corral Reef Gardenl (inside the lagoon)

 

There are stone fish, lion fish, scorpion fish, parrots, stingrays and torpidos

 

  • Grotte Juliette, Akio, Cathedrale (inside the paths)

 

You will see glass fish and loaches and grouper inside the rifts. The paths have shaped a monumental maze for rays, barracudas and red carp.

 

  • Bevato, Tortuga, Snapper Point (outside of the lagoon)

 

This site is famous for moray eels and black spotted rays. There are also red snappers, giant stingrays and sharks.

 

 

 

-A Walk around:

 

Visiting the baobab forest aboard a zebu cart  is always really appreciated by visitors. The Vezo villages and the beautiful reserve of Reniala around are also a must-see.

All these activities are of course included in the price.

You’ll have all the time to linger in the sand and have sunbaths on the paradisiacal beach, even a massage or beach sports, buying souvenirs.

 

Nigh at the hotel.

 

D16: IFATY – TANA – FlIGHT BACK HOME

 

Transfer to Tuléar to take the flight to Tana. There, if you have time before your connection, maybe visit the famous « marché de la digue »

TOUR HIGHLIGHT:

  • Our Sustainable Trek
  • Sleeping with local families
  • The 2nd highest peak of Madagascar
  • The great cliff of Tsaranoro, 800m vertical
  • Camping out in the open wilderness
  • One of the biggest (and most beautiful) lagoon on the planet.
  • The special evening animation by our team (music and traditional songs)

Tariff: 1290€person (all tax included)

Included in the price:

  • Private bus with air conditioning.
  • Fuel for the roundtrip
  • Insurance for the vehicle
  • An English speaking guide and a driver
  • Hosting and food for the driver
  • Premium hotels
  • Full board
  • Tourist vignette
  • National parc entrance fee
  • Local guides
  • Visits
  • The pousse pousse
  • Picnic during the excursions in the parks.

Non included in the price:

  • Ticket Paris – Tana , regular flight
  • Taxes and fuel premium for your flight
  • Domestic Flight Tuléar – Tana
  • Water and beverages
  • Tips
  • Health and repatriation insurance
  • Cancellation

MANDATORY DOCUMENTS:

Passport (children included) valid at least 6 months after returning to home country. Out of European Union, consult your consulate

HEALTH

We strongly recommend the classic vaccines for Madagascar.

MOIS Début du voyage Fin du Voyage Groupe Minimum Prix TTC
Avril 11/04 28/04 4 1290€
Mai 02/05 19/05 4 1290€
Juin 06/06 23/06 4 1290€
Juillet 04/07 21/07 4 1290€
Août 08/08 25/08 4 1290€
Septembre 12/09 29/09 4 1290€
Octobre 03/10 20/10 4 1290€
Novembre 07/11 24/11 4 1290€
Décembre 05/12 22/12 4 1290€
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