Madagascar Wildlife and Birdwatching

This tour combines Madagascar unique and rich biodiversity. This wonderful explorations will make you discover most fascinating Malagasy birdlife as well as plants and animals,spectacular landscapes, and various National Parks all famous for the rich fauna and flora. Madagascar records 291 species of breeding birds but nearly 50% of them are total or partial endemic (also present on the neighboring islands), 5 families are only known in Madagascar.

What's Included?

• All transfers airport / Hotel / airport as per detailed program,
• Accommodation on Full board basis during the tour
• A four wheel drive with an English speaking driver for individuals, a bus with an English tour guide for group, petrol included
• All visits and entrance fees in National park mentioned in the program: Analamazaotra Special Reserve, Mantadia National Park, Ranomafana National Park, Isalo National Park, Berenty Private Reserve, Tsarasaotra Park
• All the excursions mentioned in the itinerary
• 01 bottle of water per person per day during the tour
• Tourists taxes

Duration

17 days

Destination Covered

Andasibe-Mantadia National Park

Best Suited

All, Budget, Families, Groups
Day 1: Arrival In Antananarivo
Arrival to Madagascar, meet with the tour guide and then transfer to hotel.
Overnight at LOUVRE HOTEL AND SPA

Day 2: Antananarivo - Andasibe
Early departure to Andasibe reserve to the east in the morning (Andasibe-Mantadia National Park). Birding on the way, stop at the ridge of the Mangoro River: with chance we may see Madagascar Prantincole, Eleonora’s Falcon, Sooty Falcon.
Lunch in Moramanga.
First immersion in forest, visit of Analamazaotra national park:
Red-fronted couas, Cuckoo-roller, Madagascar blue pigeon, Madagascar spinetail, Common (wattled) Sunbird-asity, Long-billed and Spectacled greenbuls, Crossley’s babbler, various Vangas (notably the local ‘special’, the Coral-billed nuthatch Vanga) and Ward’s flycatcher.

The reserve is the sanctuary of the famous BABAKOTO (the biggest lemurs existing) or the Indri lemurs, as well as Grey bamboo and Brown lemurs.
Overnight and dinner at VAKONA FOREST LODGE
By the evening, night walk to look for Madagascar long-eared owl and Rainforest scops owl. We should see many herps (reptiles and frogs), notably various chameleons, geckoes, Mouse lemurs, Eastern woolly lemurs, Boa and tree frogs…

Day 3: Mantadia National Park
A day excursion with a tour guide to explore Mantadia National Park. It is one of Madagascar’s prime sites for rainforest birding.
All the rainforest-dependent Ground-rollers are present, as are other sought-after rainforest specials like Brown mesite, Collared nightjar, Grey-crowned greenbul, White-throated and Yellow-browed oxylabes, Velvet asity, Brown emutail and Red forest fody. The unusual Helmet Vanga is also known to occur here and the nationally rare Pollen’s Vanga is regularly seen.
On the way back, we may see Madagascar flufftail and White-throated rail.
Full board accomodation at VAKONA FOREST LODGE.

Day 4: Andasibe – Antsirabe - Antsirabe
Breakfast and then back to Antananarivo. On the way, stop at Peyrieras, a small privately run reserve at Marozevo; many reptiles (chameleons, iguanas, geckos, frogs), batraciens (amphibians), crocodiles and papillons (butterflies). Most of the reptiles and the other species are held within several large caged buildings and greenhouses, which tourists may enter when accompanied by a guide.
Lunch in Antananarivo, continuation to Antsirabe by the afternoon.
On the way, visit of a traditional cooking pots workshop. City tour by car
Overnight and dinner at ROYAL PALACE HOTELwww.leroyalpalace.mg

Day 5: Antsirabe –Ranomafana 260 KM
Breakfast at the hotel, morning drive to Ranomafana. A beautiful landscape along the way, terraced rice fields along the hill, typical betsileo houses; a very simple house made with raw bricks with its puddle clay walls washed by the rain. Usually there is no fireplace; the smoke filters out through the window or through the thatched roof.
Stop at AMBOSITRA, the centre of Malagasy handcraft: well-known by its wood carven sculpture of the Zafimaniry tribe.
Continuation through the Ranomafana forest after lunch.
Overnight and dinner at HOTEL THERMAL Ranomafanawww.thermal-ranomafana.mg

Day 6 & 7: Ranomafana
Two days exploration of Ranomafana National Park. Starting early in the morning for birdwatching in this rain forest. Ranomafana is one of Madagascar’s richest sites for rainforest wildlife, particularly birds. It is excellent for rarities like Madagascar crested ibis, Henst’s goshawk, the beautiful rainforest-dependent ground-rollers (especially the Pitta-like, which is reasonably plentiful in the park), Velvet asity, Common sunbird asity, various Vangas (notably Blue, Rufous, Hook-billed, Chabert’s, Red-tailed and Pollen’s), Forest rock-thrush, Green Jery, Brown Newtonia and the Cryptic warbler.
At higher elevations, Rufous-headed ground-roller and Yellow-bellied sunbird asity are present in fair numbers, making Vohiparara the best place to seek these species. As in Périnet, we are bound to see different species oflemurs, reptiles, frogs and fascinating invertebrates.
Full board accommodation at HOTEL THERMAL

Day 8: Ranomafana - Isalo National Park 358km
After breakfast, drive from Ranomafana National Park to Isalo National Park.Arrival in Fianarantsoa, city tour including the laboratory of the famous photographer Pierrot Men. Stopover in Ambalavao to visit the Antemoro paper mill: handmade papers which are decorated with dried petals.
Crossing the vast plateau of Ihorombe before reaching the towering jagged massif of Isalo. Passing by the « Porte du Sud » here should be the beginning of this extraordinary tour of the south along endless strange natural shapes , large savannahs.
The traveller suddenly discovers a new world, an unexpected landscape. Big herds of zebus on the way.
Overnight and dinner at ISALO ROCK LODGEwww.isalorocklodge.com

Day 9: Isalo National Park
Day excursion to explore Isalo National Park, though it is not a rich spot for birdingit is where we can spot the Benson’s Rock thrush. This is one of the most visited National Park in the country because of its amazing landscapes and canyons.
Isalo National Park is the silo of biodiversity of Madagascar Great South. Birds, reptiles, amphibians, lemurs, Aloe, Euphorbia, Pachypodiumetc ... nature is particularly generous in this part of the island, despite the rather dry landscape.
Walk to the “Piscine Naturelle” , a beautiful spot which invites to relax and bath.
Back to hotel in the afternoon
Overnight and dinner at ISALO ROCK LODGE.

Day 10: Isalo – Anakao 243 KM
Early breakfast, continuation to Tulear. Landscape is dominated by spiny bush adapted to long periods of dryness, characteristic of the South. Along the road, we can see typicalMahafaly and Antandroy’s tombs: very colourful and decorated with different pictures. Magnificent « Aloalos » stood on top: grave poles made of carved wood with geometrical design on the top of which we see naive daily life scenes.
Transfer to the port and then by ferry to Anakao, a fisherman village not far from Tuléar.
Full board accommodation at ANAKAO OCEAN LODGE.

Day 11: Anakao
Day for leisure by the seaside.
Activities on option:
- Snorkelling
- Whale watching
- Surfing
- Fishing
- Boat rental
- Kite and wind surfing
- ....
Full board accommodation at ANAKAO OCEAN LODGE

Day 12: Anakao – Tulear - Antananarivo
Breakfast at hotel, transfer by boat to Tuléar, transfer to the airport and the flight back to Antananarivo. Meet and assist upon arrival. Transfer to the hotel.
Overnight and dinner at LE LOUVRE HOTEL AND SPA.

Day 13: Antananarivo – Fort Dauphin - Berenty
Breakfast. Transfer to the airport and then flight to Fort Dauphin as per flight schedule. Meet and assist upon arrival to Fort Dauphin, continuation by car to Berenty Private Reserve. Rather bad road but offers a large scenic interest: luxuriant vegetation ofwhich carnivorous plants, crossing the spiny bushes.
Paradise of botanists with its extraordinary variety of euphorbiacea unique in the world. The famous baobab, « mother of the forest». Antanosy’s funeral figures with memorial stones of the died people.
On the way, wide plantations of sisal. First incursion into the forest. Before dinner, nocturnal walk within the reserve.
Overnight and atBERENTY LODGEwww.madagascar-resorts.com/la-reserve-de-berenty

Day 14 & 15: Berenty
Incursion into the reserve, which offers a very big interest for the ecotourists: 340 ha, along the river Mandrare, a private reserve created in 1936 by a French family.
Fauna and flora of a gallery forest: lemurs, turtles, and a big variety of endemic birds. A museum inside this famous forest which shows: musical instruments, Antandroy’s soul.
Full board accommodation at BERENTY LODGE.

Day 16: Berenty – Fortdauphin - Antananarivo
Breakfast and transfer to the airport, flight back to Tana. Meet and assist upon arrival. Transfer in town.
Overnight and dinner to LOUVRE HOTEL AND SPA.

Day 17: Antananarivo - Paris
Breakfast, city tour of Antananarivo with a visit toTsarasaotra Park,located at the heart of Antananarivo's industrial area, but its lake is a vital refuge and nesting site for about 14 threatened endemic bird species such as the Madagascar pond heron, Meller's duck and Madagascar little grebe. The site is classified RAMSAR (International Convention on Wetlands). Day use at the hotel LE BOIS VERT (late check in).Transfer to airport and depart Tana.
END OF OUR SERVICES.
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The full amount due by the Client, shall be payable not less than 30 days prior to the date of departure/start of services.
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