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See Indri on your Madagascar Holidays. Holidays to Madagascar can combine beach and wildlife

Eastern Rainforests + Sainte Marie Island


MPD10A
10 NIGHTS
FROM £2,095
International flights quoted separately
For travel between July and September, the magnificent eastern rainforests of Andisibe-Mantadia offer the perfect combination of lemurs with a luxury holiday on the beautiful beaches of Sainte Marie Island, where humpback whales come to breed. Enjoy night walks, the Indri Special Reserve & Lemur Island. English speaking guide, local flights, transfers & park fees included.
Whale watching Ile Sainte-Marie
• 
Antananarivo
• 
Analamazaotra Indri Reserve
• 
Mantadia Rainforest
• 
Lemur Island
• 
Night Walks
• 
Diademed Sifaka
• 
St Marie Island
• 
Humpbacked Whales
• 
Scuba Diving
• 
Deep Sea Fishing
• 
Antananarivo
• 
Analamazaotra Indri Reserve
• 
Mantadia Rainforest
• 
Lemur Island
• 
Night Walks
• 
Diademed Sifaka
• 
St Marie Island
• 
Humpbacked Whales
• 
Scuba Diving
• 
Deep Sea Fishing
Day 1
You will be met at Antananarivo Airport and transferred to your hotel in the capital city of the tropical island of Madagascar.
 
Check into your hotel and relax in your warm friendly surroundings.
Day 2
Today enjoy a full day tour to Ambohimanga and the Lemur Park.
 
Leaving Antananarivo, we travel 40-minutes northeast to the fortified royal settlement (or 'rova') at Ambohimanga. Meaning 'Blue Hill', this complex of royal buildings and palaces is situated on the highest and most sacred of the twelve royal hills surrounding Antananarivo. It is the best-preserved remains of the pre-colonial Merina Kingdom and an important source of Malagasy identity. Andrianampoinimerina was its most famous king, as he united the various Malagasy tribes into a single kingdom. The walled historic village includes the tombs of several kings and queens and remains a place of worship for pilgrims. It is Madagascar's only World Heritage Site. Afterwards you will have the opportunity to visit the local village to see their lifestyle.
 
After lunch (own account) we continue to the Lemur Park, a private nature reserve located near the Katsaoka River. Here you can see many species of birds, medicinal plants, reptiles and lemurs. These include the ring tailed lemur, black and white ruffed lemur, common brown lemur, Coquerel’s sifaka, crowned sifaka, mongoose lemur and eastern lesser bamboo lemur. After about an hour at the park, we return to Antananarivo.
Day 3
Today depart from Antananarivo and travel 4-hours with your guide to the small village of Andasibe. On this scenic drive you will see local villages with their long red clay houses, rice paddies and roadside markets, which will give you a good feel for traditional Malagasy life.
 
On arrival at your lodge, enjoy a 2 to 3-hour walk in the montagne rainforest of Analamazaotra Reserve (previously called Perinet Reserve), which covers 810 hectares. This is where you come to see the magnificent black and white Indri - the largest lemur species in Madagascar, with their eerie wailing calls as they sing from the treetops and mark out their territory.
 
The path into the rainforest starts with a steep ascent up some well-made steps, followed by some relatively good paths, although a longer more gentle ascent is also available. There may be some scrambling off the path to get closer to the Indri, but there are plenty of trees to hang onto for balance.
 
You can also hope to see the beautiful orange, grey and white Diademed Sifaka as well as the Black-and-White Ruffed Lemur - although be warned that tracking lemurs in the dense canopy of this rainforest is hard work and you can realistically hope for only two or three sightings on each walk. However the excitement of finding them hiding high in the treetop canopy, and jumping from tree to tree, is a thrilling memory that will last a lifetime - so once you find a group do linger and enjoy watching their behaviour for a while.
 
In the early evening enjoy a 1-hour noctural guided walk along a road close to the Analamazaotra Reserve, so remember your headlamp. Here you can hope to see the glowing eyes of the tiny Goodman's mouse lemur, little tree frogs and sleeping chameleons.
 
Note: Tracking lemurs requires physical mobility and stamina as some trails are demanding, although your guide will be mindful of your level of fitness and adapt your route accordingly. Remember to dress appropriately when exploring the rainforest i.e. walking boots with good tread and proper rain gear, including lightweight waterproof trousers. A head torch for night walks is essential and light gardening gloves are useful to protect your hands when scrambling through the rainforest. As the climate in the mountains is much cooler than at the coast, especially at night, also pack a fleece.
Day 4
Today we drive 1-hour along a rough gravel road to the massive 16,000-hectare primary montane rainforests of Mantadia National Park.
 
The trees in these rainforests are tall and some trails are steep and muddy. There are also streams to cross using log bridges, but you should be rewarded by a view of the gorgeous Diademed Sifaka, perhaps the most beautiful of all the lemurs with its fluffy golden-orange, grey and white coat.
 
You should also see the Black-and-White Ruffed Lemurs that scream at each other across the forest and, if you are fortunate, maybe also the large Indri that is easily heard because of its impressive shrieks. This park is also a great place to see the giraffe-necked weevil, tenrec (similar to hedgehog), frogs and chameleons.
 
The indigenous flora is outstanding, with hundreds of species of orchids that blossom in October & November, many species of ferns, sacred creepers, lichens and dwarf palm trees. In total there are 12 different species of lemurs, 28 species of reptiles and over 100 bird species.
 
Afterwards enjoy a 30-minute visit to Lemur Island, where you can interact with and take close-up photos of habituated lemurs rescued from captivity and now living in the semi-wild near Vakona Lodge.
 
Note: Tracking lemurs requires physical mobility as some trails are demanding, although your guide will be mindful of your level of fitness and adapt your route accordingly. Remember to dress appropriately when exploring the rainforest i.e. walking boots with good tread and proper rain gear, including lightweight waterproof trousers. A head torch for night walks is essential and light gardening gloves are useful to protect your hands when scrambling through the rainforest. As the climate in the mountains is much cooler than at the coast, especially at night, also pack a fleece.
Day 5
Today transfer 4-hours back to Antananarivo, the capital city of this enormous island.
 
Check into your hotel near Antananarivo Airport.
Day 6
Today transfer to Antananarivo Airport for your flight to the beautiful island of Sainte Marie, where you will be met and transferred to your hotel.
 
This clove island off the east coast of Madagascar boasts spectacular views and lavish vegetation, with over 10 different species of orchids - including some of the rarest and most beautiful in the country. Check into your hotel and relax on this remote paradise island.
Days 7 To 9
At leisure to relax and enjoy the facilities of your hotel or explore the wonderful island of Sainte Marie (also known as Nosy Borah).
 
Famous for its spices, orchids, coconut palms and spectacularly unspoilt beaches, from July to September each year this small island is also renowned as one of the top Whale Watching locations in the world, with humpbacked whales congregating in large numbers in Saint Marie Bay after having migrated over 3,000 miles (5,000 km) from Antarctica to breed.
Day 10
Transfer to Sainte Marie Airport for your flight to Antananarivo, where you will be met and transferred to your airport hotel.
Day 11
Transfer to Antananarivo Airport for your flight home.
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