Our Madagascar Trip Report

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May 27th, 2008, 12:46 PM
  #1
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Join Date: Apr 2007
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Our Madagascar Trip Report

This has been begun on flyertalk. Here is the direct link:
http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=826343
They allow posting of photos therefore I placed it into their forum. I have posted the itinerary with prices as they stood in 2008. It is very hard to find some of this information out. If anyone has questions post here. If you would like our itinerary here it is:
Sunday. April 13th:
Arrival in Madagascar AF 21:55pm nonstop from CDG
Lodging at our friends lovely home in Antananarivo aka "Tana"

Monday. April 14th: Tana
Change money at the bank, arrange our for our hired car English speaking driver/guide at Boogie Pilgrim TA, buy cell phone and then buy our air tickets at Cortez Travel TA. Don't expect to use credit cards anywhere. Expect to use taxi or a driver everywhere in Tana.

Tuesday. April 15th – Tana – Andasibe (about 3 to 4 hour drive)
Lodging: Vakona Lodge with canoe trip
Price: don't remember

Wednesday. April 16th – Andasibe
Visit to Analazamatra National hiking inReserve and Mantadia National Park
Lodging: Vakona Lodge

Thursday. April 17th Andasibe – Tana (3 hours by road)
Lodging; Our friend's home in Tana

Friday. April 18th: Tana – Ansirabe (3 hours by road)
Lodging: Camelia B&B
Price: 80,000 Ariary/room or $50/room USD

Saturday. April 19th Ansirabe - Amboistra (by road)
Lodging; Motel Violette
Price: about $40/room USD

Sunday. April 20th : Amboistra – Ranomafana (4 hours by road)
Lodging: SETAM Lodge
Price: about $75 USD per room

Monday. April 21st; Ranomafana – Fianarantsoa (1 hours by road)
Visit to Ranamafana National Park – rain forest hiking
Lodging: Tsara Guest House
Price: 40 Euros/room
Dinner visit with close friends who live in the Fianarantsoa region

Tuesday. April 22nd: Fiana – Camp Catta (four hours by road)
Note: In route, Visit the Papier Antamoria in the town of Ambaloavoa and the Anja Private Reserve which has ring tail lemurs. Hiking

Wednesday. April 23rd: Camp Catta
Hiking in Andringtra National Park

Thursday, April 24th– Camp Catta – Isalo National Park (4 hours by road) hiking
Lodging: Relais de la Reine
Price : 54 Euros/room

Friday, April 25th : Isalo National Park hiking!
Lodging: Relais de la Reine
Price : 54 Euros/room

Saturday, April 26th : Isalo - Tulear (3 hours by road) then on to Ifaty (1.5 hrs by road)
Lodging: Les Dunes Hotel
Price: $200 USD for two bedroom ocean view suite gorgeous
Note: Beautiful Hotel on the Beach in the dry forest – swimming pool; Also the ONLY place in the entire country that took my credit card.

Sunday, April 27th ; Tulear – Fort Dauphin (by plane) Air Madagascar nonstop see separate review of flight at:http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=824717

Lv. Tulear
Ar. Fort Dauphin
Lodging: Lava Soa with knockout sea view but very simple lodings

Monday, April 28th Fort Dauphin
Day Visit to Andohahela National Park
Lodging; Lava Soa

Tuesday, April 29th ; Fort Dauphin –Tana (by Plane) Air Madagascar
Lv. Fort Dauphin:
Ar. Tana:

Wednesday, April 30th ; Tana
Shopping in Tana Visit to “Ambohimanga” - Summer Palace

Thursday, May 1st : Tana – Joberg
South Africa Airlink
Lv. Tana 1400
Ar. Joberg 1720

SAA flight was about $400 USD per ticket
Air Madagascar one way Tulear - Fort Dauphine plus one way Fort Dauphine Antananarivo $326.00 per ticket.
Be aware that Air Madagascar does very different routes on different days. Sometime there are many stops some days nonstop. Ask lots of questions. Carry lots of cash.
Be prepared to be blown away by the most beautiful "secret" destination in Africa.

Oh and one more pleasant suprise they LOVE American Tourists there! Dont' be afraid go and visit Madagscar. It was the best trip ever.
ijkh is offline  
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May 27th, 2008, 01:45 PM
  #2
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 14,440
Your pre-departure intro is one of the most dramatic I’ve ever seen. I bet you celebrated all 21 days and right you should. Some inefficient use of FF miles and a ticked off husband is minor stuff by comparison.

I loved your lemur pictures. The tail shot is cute.

“There is an option to walk the island and be jumped upon by the lemur or canoe around the idyllic island.”

Jumped on, really?

Your comment about the 9th poorest country in the world being too poor for litter was interesting.

Thanks for reporting on a place that we don’t read that much about. It looked like there would be more to come on flyertalk, including more photos, unless my browser just quit midway through your report.

Welcome back!
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May 27th, 2008, 02:21 PM
  #3
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 7,372
Beautiful pictures and a great report! Thanks!
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May 27th, 2008, 02:55 PM
  #4
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Join Date: Apr 2007
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Thank you so much for the feedback. I will continue with my report and photos on flyertalk.

Quite honestly the second part of the trip seemed so, so...I don't know civilized. We went from Tana to Joburg to Livingstone. At LVI we very much enjoyed the posh Royal Livingstone Hotel for a night. What a treat after all that dusty travel! After Livingstone we began our WS safari in Botswana. We did 3 lodges for 3 days each. It was lovely to view the big game. Honestly we both felt it was a bit too a passive trip for us. In hind sight we should have booked a walking safari. We thought this would be available to us at Chitabe Lediba...but that is another story already told. (See Chitabe Fire posting)

Sitting in a car or boat for 9 days was a too much for us. It was very relaxing to have everything neat and organized for us after "hard travelling". Maybe it was just too hard too top our experience in Madagascar.

Attention TA's and travel writers who read this posting. YOU SHOULD promote this beautiful country. People are interested in visiting. They really need your help in organizing such a trip. Most people are put off by having to walk around with so much cash on them. We felt safe everywhere we went. However we did not walk the streets at night, hired a private car and stayed in the best lodgings possible in the country. I heartily recommend it.
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May 28th, 2008, 10:10 AM
  #5
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 172
Lynne,
ljkh didn't comment (yet) but I can tell you from my personal experience that on that little island the lemurs really do jump on you, rather as if you were a small tree. Usually they were intent on going somewhere else, like a real tree, and were quite oblivious to you personally. Unless of course you're holding a banana . . . I have pictures of other visitors with lemurs on their heads.

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May 28th, 2008, 01:14 PM
  #6
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
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Thanks, nice to see a report on Madagascar -- very few trip reports.

I visited in May 2005, also using 120,000 miles for an Air France biz class ticket (priced at $11,700 at that time, so one of my best uses of frequent flyer seats).

Did you get to see the indri at Andasibe (Perinet). It was a muddy, wet hike (several leeches), but spectacular to see, and hear, in the wild.
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May 28th, 2008, 07:26 PM
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We did not opt to walk onto the "Lemur Island" at Vakona Lodge. I just didn't want to wear a lemur on my head We really LOVED that canoe trip at sunset. Very romantic...except for the guide.

We loved the Perinet at Andisibe. We had our best up close and personal visit with the Indri at the NGO Mitsinjo (Pronounced Mitzinzu) is a private park almost across the street from Andisibe visitor center. These Indri came down from their trees to our level and spent a long time with us. Their haunting and loud call is something you really must hear. It is fantastic. You can not see Indri in zoos. They die in captivity. This was truely a treasured life experience. Old timers in Madagascar say that 30 years ago you could hear the Indri calls all the way in Antanarivo. Now they are very limited. Their amazing call is heard up to 6km away!
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May 30th, 2008, 07:23 AM
  #8
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I have a couple other suggestions for people travelling to Madagascar:
1) buy a Dreamsack, a silk sleep sack. It will keep you comfortable even in the most humble of lodgings. We used ours when beds seemed musty even in the best available lodgings.
2) No leeches during the dry season. Also no dangerous animals nor snakes to worry about in Madagascar.
5) Expect to get some tummy troubles. It is par for the course and bring appropriate supplies.
6) If coming from the US or Mexico plan on staying at least one night enroute in Europe to reset your internal sleep clock. Bring lots of Tylenol PM or better yet plain Benadryl.
7) You can use an ATM debit card but those machines can be dicey. I would depend on that for cash.

That is all for now
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Oct 16th, 2015, 01:27 AM
  #9
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 2
FOR ANYONE WILLING TO EXPLORE MADAGASCAR'S WILDLIFE:

Hi there,

My name is Thomas.

I traveled to Madagascar three months ago.
The Big Island actually is gifted with unparalleled riches,the likes of animal species (lemurs, chameleons,...) that exist nowhere else on Earth, breathtaking landscapes, paradisiacal beaches... and the list goes on and on.
We (me and my family) did experience a truly unforgettable trip thanks to the helping hands of TSIKY TOUR (www.tsiky-tour.com/en), the tour agency we chose. Interestingly, Tsiky Tour provided assistance in booking our air ticket, everything about accommodation (bedding included), cash-related needs, choice of itinerary,...etc.
I would recommend Tsiky Tour to NYONE PLANNING TO EXPLORE MADAGASCAR AND ITS ONE OF A KIND BIODIVERSITY RICHNESS!
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Oct 16th, 2015, 01:48 AM
  #10
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
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ANYONE, special mention to NATURE LOVERS!
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