Day 1 : Arrival in Madagascar. our team will meet and welcome you at the airport ,then you will be transferred to your hotel.
Please be aware that your driver/guide will be waiting for you at the International Arrival gate. An airport sign with your name should be seen and you may have to look for a logo if the airport gets overcrowded. If you cannot locate your driver/guide please remain calm and approach the Airport Welcome Service. An announcement intended for your driver can be broadcasted there, and this will then become the rally point.
In the case of an emergency or you cannot locate your driver/guide, the emergency contact details are on your documents and you should call the mentioned numbers before attempting to leave the airport.
Day 2: TANA-TOLIARA-IFATY. After breakfast, we will transfer you to the airport to catch the flight to Toliara. In Toliara, our driver/guide will meet at the aiport and take you for an hour drive to Ifaty village.
En route stop at a Mangrove forest where along the muddy bays, if the tide is low, we should see migrant waders: Greater Sandplovers trotting across the mudflats with Curlew Sandpipers. Arriving in ifaty, you will be taken for a short visit at the spiny forest.
Among the stunted baobabs, sinister-looking didiereas, and assortment of sclerophyllous plants we´ll look for such birds as Sub-Desert Mesite, Running Coua, Thamnornis Warbler, Archbold´s Newtonia, Sub-Desert Brush Warbler, and Lafresnaye´s Vanga.
Two butterflies attract attention here, firstly the giant swallowtail Parmacophagus, a close relative of the New Guinea Birdwings, and the stunning Rhadama Pansy, as bright a blue as there is; night at PRINCESSE DU LAGON
Day 3: Morning visit of Ifaty spiny forest. A search before breakfast with local expertise should yield the difficult-to-find Long-tailed Ground-Roller. We´ll look for other special birds as well, such as the Olive-capped form of Red-capped Coua, Madagascar Hoopoe, Greater Vasa Parrot, Gray-headed Lovebird, Madagascar Magpie Robin, and various vangas including our first Red-tailed. After this avian feast we´ll return to the lodge for our breakfast.
Beach relax before heading back to Toliara in the afternoon.Night at AUBERGE DE LA TABLE
Day 4: Take a boat for a day excursion to Nosy Ve. This small island lies 3km off the West coast and can be reached by boat from Anakao. The island is not only good for birding but provides excellent snorkelling on the reefs.
Coastal birds include Red-tailed Tropicbird, Lesser Crested and Saunder’s Tern. Crab Plover and other waders such as Bar-tailed Godwit can sometimes be found. Back to Anakao ,you may see the Littoral Rock Thrush coming close to your hotel. Night at Longo vezo or safari vezo hotel or similar
Day 5: Early morning start to drive to TSIMANAPETSOTSA national park for a day visit. Tsimanampetsotsa is a birders paradise. More than 100 species are found here, including pink, greater and dwarf flamingos forming big colonies on the lake, 5 coua species, Archbold´s newtonia, Madagascar plover, red-shouldered vanga or Lafresnaye´s vanga.
Apart from birds, there are 12 species of mammals, among them the extremely rare and local endemic Grandidier´s mongoose and 4 lemur species: ring-tailed lemur, Verreaux´s sifaka, Gray-brown mouse lemur and white-footed sportive lemur.
Among the 39 reptile species, the most significant one is the radiated turtle, which is endemic to this region and extremely endangered to extinction.
Because of the chemical composition of the saline lake, no fish can survive in it. Nevertheless, the unique blind fish of the world is easy to find in some underground caves.
After the visit, you will drive back to Anakao.Overnight at the same hotel
Day 6: Boat trip back to Toliara then drive to Zombitse national park. visit of the park to find the endemic Appert´s Greenbul, found only here! Other birds may include Banded Kestrel, Cuckoo-Roller, and Madagascar Sandgrouse.
The largest of all the diurnal green geckoes, the spectacular Standing´s, is found here. Secretive Ring-tailed Lemurs and sleepy Rufous-tailed Dwarf Lemurs will peer at us from their tree cavities. After the early morning at Zombitse reserve we will continue to Isalo .Stay at Relais de la reine hotel or similar
Day 7: Visit of Isalo national park for its lunar landscape,canyons, rivers,natural swimming pool,lemurs, birds. Afternoon drive to Ambalavao. Night at Zongo hotel or similar
Day 8: Ambalavao-Ranomafana. After breakfast, you will drive to Anja reserve and visit this local community run park to find ring-tailed lemurs before heading to Ranomafana. Stay at SETAM LODGE or similar
Day 9: VISIT RANOMAFANA. Full day visit of Ranomafana national park.The Golden Bamboo Lemur was discovered here in 1986, and almost simultaneously the Greater Bamboo Lemur, once thought extinct, was rediscovered.
These events led to the park´s creation. Birds have profited from these discoveries, and we´ll be alert for the huge Henst´s Goshawk, the timid Brown Mesite, Madagascar Wood Rail, the stunning Blue Coua, the secretive Yellow-brow Coua, and mixed flocks containing Spectacled and Gray-crowned Greenbuls, spectacular Pitta-like Ground-Roller, Green Jery, and Rand´s Warbler. The more highland forest areas produce a different group of birds including Rufous-headed Ground-Roller, Brown Emutail, and the elusive but stunning and sometimes very confiding Yellow-bellied Sunbird-Asity.
In the nearby river and swamps we could find the greatly endangered Meller´s Duck, plus Madagascar Pratincole, Madagascar Snipe, and (with luck) Madagascar Partridge. Gray Emutail hide in the rank marshy grasses of the swamps.
In these highland areas the secretive Diademed Siffaka may be found. We will also have a night walk for the curious and varied frog fauna, and usually find a number of sleeping chameleons and quaint Rufous Mouse Lemurs.NIGHT AT THE SAME HOTEL
Day 10: Another morning visit of Ranomafana national park before heading to Ambositra. Arriving in Ambositra; you will visit one of the many small workshops that specialise in crafts as diverse as printmaking, woodcarving and marquetry.
Ambositra is the home of the Betsileo ethnic group, the third largest ethnic group of Madagascar. Located close by the Zafimaniry forest, Ambositra is most famous for its woodcraft but it's also known for its silk production, which is very important in the Malagasy culture.
The use of silk was once reserved exclusively for royalty but now everyone can wear it, though most of the time its use is reserved for the dead. When a Malagasy is buried, his body is wrapped in a large silk sheet called a 'lambamena'. After a few years, the family traditionally goes back to the tomb and changes this silk sheet with a new one - a custom known as 'famadihana'. Overnight at Artisan hotel or similar
Day 11: AMBOSITRA-TANA, drive back to Antananarivo. On the way, we will briefly stop at Ambatolampy, a small town well known for its aluminium pot workshops. Night an hotel not far from the airport
Day 12: TANA-MASOALA- Take a flight to Maroantsetra and boat trip to Masoala national park. Masoala is actually a complex of protected areas of 240,520 ha. It has four terrestrial parcels and three marine parcels. It is part of the forests of the East of Madagascar classified among the world natural heritage sites of the forests of the Atsinanana.
The Masoala complex, the Masoala Park and the special reserve of Nosy Mangabe is the biggest protected area of Madagascar. We can find islets of the forests or rocks, coral reefs, zones of herbaria and narrow strips of mangrove swamp forest there.
Masoala is among the richest regions on biodiversity. We can find 50% of species of the plants of Madagascar and more than 50% of the species of mammals, birds, amphibians and reptiles.Stay at Hyppocamp lodge or Masoala forest lodge
Day 13: A full day visit at the park MASOALA, 102 species of birds of which more than 60% are endemic which have been counted in Masoala. Among the ten species of lemurs of the park, four are part of the category of the primates the more threatened in the red list of the International union of the Conservation of the Nature (UICN).
Among the carnivores, Masoala is the only locality where the mongoose Salanoia concolor or Brown-tailed mongoose have been observed since the 1970. This species is the least known of the Malagasy carnivores.
The Humpback whale, the big dolphin and the belly pink dolphin live in Masoala sea. The Sirenien specie, the Dugong, exists too in this region. 41 types of corals are made an inventoryat Masoala. Reptiles, batrachians, marine turtles and fichies (Marin and from fresh water) are over there too.
Day 14: MASOALA-NOSY MANGABE- Leave Masoala to Nosy Mangabe, The Special Reserve of Nosy Mangabe is a small island (520 ha) covered in humid thick forest. Despite this island's remote natural beauty, Four lemur species (black and white lemur, brown lemur, aye aye, microcèbe), two of which are nocturnal, also can be found on Nosy Mangabe.
This is one of the places where you can find the Uroplatus, a well camouflaged and other worldly looking lizard. Nosy Mangabe also shelters the world's smallest chameleon, the tiny Brookesia, as well as other rare species like the Aye-Aye.
In fact, this forested island is thought by many to be the best place to observe the Aye-Aye, thought by many to be Madagascar's strangest lemur. With its golden sand beaches from whose shores you can see the hump backed whales swimming in the bay. Camping full-board
Day 15: NOSY MANGABE-MAROANTSETRA- After the breakfast, return to the forest. In fact, this forested island is thought by many to be the best place to observe the Aye-Aye, thought by many to be Madagascar's strangest lemur. With its golden sand beaches from whose shores you can see humpback whales swimming in the bay, and its emerald green forests where lemurs fling themselves through the canopy, Nosy Mangabe is a rare delight.
Before noon take a fast motor boat to get back to Maroantsetra
Day 16: Take a flight back to Tana then drive to Andasibe national park. Stay at an hotel (Vakona forest lodge or Eulopiella or Feon”ny ala or similar)
Day 17: VISIT OF ANDASIBE NATIONAL PARK. Full day visit of Andasibe -Mantadia national park. The primary forests of Andasibe-Mantadia contains a dense humid forest covered with lians, moss, fern tress and more than hundred orchids species blooming between September and January.
Another common plants growing here are pandanus, ravinala palm-tree, tambourissa, bamboos and some precious wood, like palisander and ebano.
The extraordinary animal diversity is completed with another 15 mammal species, more than 100 of birds (many of them endemic, like the Madagascar yellowbrow, Madagascar baza, Madagascar wagtail or the Madagascar serpent-eagle), 50 of reptiles, among them the biggest chameleon of the island, the boa manditra and many leaf-tailed geckos and more than 80 amphibians. There are also a few local endemic fishes swimming in the small rivers and hundreds of insects, among them some extraordinary colourful and big butterflies. Night at an hotel.
Day 18: Drive back to Tana following by the flight out. END OF THE TOUR
Tour Price: This DISCOVERY TOUR is a mixt of South ,east tour and Masoala tour would cost you €1750 per person ( based on 2 adults sharing a room )
And price includes:
All accommodation with bed and breakfast (full board when in MASOALA and Nosy Mangabe and Maroantsetra)
A good 4x4 car with air conditioning,FUEL and a driver/guide
All parks and reserves entrace fee
All local guides fee(note that using local guides is compulsory when visiting parks and reserves in Madagascar)
Assistance of English speaking bird guide
All aiports transfer
Boat fee to and back from Masoala
Boat fee to Anakao and back
EXCLUDES: Domestic flights, lunches and dinners,drinks and tips…