Trekking vacation in Madagascar

“There's no better way to immerse yourself in the "Lost World" of Madagascar than on foot. This trip combines camping and hotels with portered multi- and single-day treks.”

Highlights

Antananarivo | Ambositra | Trek in Antoetra | Visiting local villages | Ranomafana National Park | Ambalavao | Andringitra National Park | 3-day trek up Peak Boby | Anya Reserve | Lemurs | 2-day trek in Isalo National Park | Ifaty Beach

Travel Team

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11 Apr 2020
US $3279
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08 Aug 2020
US $3449
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22 Aug 2020
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05 Sep 2020
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19 Sep 2020
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10 Apr 2021
US $3449
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07 Aug 2021
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21 Aug 2021
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18 Sep 2021
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Our top tip:
Madagascar's highlands are surprisingly damp and chilly. Bring warm layers, especially for Peak Boby.
Trip type:
Small group tour, min. age 18. Average 4-16 people.
Activity level:
Moderate/challenging. Av. 5-8 hrs trekking, 7-15km.
Accomm:
8 nights simple hotels with en suite, 5 nights basic camping.
Solos:
Solo travelers welcome. Single rooms available with surcharge.
Included:
Accom, transport, tour leader, local guides, porters, listed activities. Intl. flights if booked.
Meals:
All breakfasts, 5 lunches, 5 dinners. Allow around 150 for extra meals, extra for drinks.
Vouchers
Accepted

Responsible tourism

As the pioneers of responsible tourism, we screen every trip so you can travel knowing your vacation will help support conservation and local people.

Environment
Activity:
Few vacations have as little detrimental impact on the environment and local residents as a trekking trip. Erosion on and adjacent to popular paths is a growing problem in certain places and therefore our trip leaders encourage clients to stick to advised routes in order to minimise this. Our tours are designed to entertain as well as inform about wildlife issues and promote animal welfare. When we visit National Parks such as Ranomafana , Andringitra and Isalo N.P, we pay park fees which contribute to the upkeep of these parks and the myriad of unique (and sometimes endangered) species which can be found there e.g. ring-tailed lemurs and baoab trees. Local guides are also employed when we enter these reserves. This creates employment and gives clients an altogether more informative, genuine experience.

Water:
Water is a really important issue with cycling trips and whilst we must stay hydrated, it is also vital that we have a system for providing clean water without causing lots of waste with plastic bottles. Lack of recycling is already a massive problem in India so we suggest that instead of repeatedly buying bottled water, guests should re-fill a singular bottle

UK Office:
It all starts at home so we have first worked at reducing our carbon footprint in our UK Offices. Through energy conservation measures and recycling policies, we are proud to be actively reducing the waste produced and our impact on the environment. We support various projects all over the world to try and give something back to the places we visit.
Community

The Impacts of this Trip

Accommodation and Meals:
We will be spending the most of the trip in tourist class hotels and five nights in full service camping. The vast majority of the staff is from nearby villages and they even offer accommodation for staff staying in villages further away. This industry is a great source of employment for local people, so by staying in these hotels and campsites we are providing a steady source of income for local communities. You will also find that some of the hotels have solar panels -meaning a smaller carbon footprint- whereas many work on their own electricity generators but switch them off from around 22:00 to 07:00. In terms of meals, hotels will source local produce as much as possible and clients are encouraged to explore local restaurants and markets if convenient. In Ambalavao, we can even stop at a wine farm and buy straight from the source of production. The cuisine has been strongly influenced by the French and the seafood is particularly fresh.

Local Craft and Culture:
Although this is a largely nature based trip, we incorporate as much benefit to local people as possible. One of the ways to support local people and boost the economy is to buy crafts along the roads in the smaller villages which we pass. There is some very creative Zafimaniry craftsmanship in Madagascar using recycled materials to create toys, decorate items and jewellery. For example, in Antsirabe, people sell souvenirs made from aluminium cans and in Ambostria, they use recuperated wood. The Zafimaniry people are renowned for intricate woodcarvings and this can be observed even in the decoration of village houses. Guides are careful to explain that anything made from animal parts and shells should not be purchased as this trade is detrimental to many of the wonderful species we find here.

Group Size:
This small group tour has a maximum of 16 participants, meaning that we have a low impact on the environments and communities we visit and are able to ensure that we do not disrupt or lead to the displacement of local people. The small number also allows us to stay in unique, family-run hotels that cannot benefit from coach tours and other mass tourism due to their limited sizes.

Climate

2 Reviews of Trekking vacation in Madagascar

4 out of 5 stars
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Reviewed on 17 Nov 2015 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?


Conquering the Grand Tsingy

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?


Be prepared for the long traveling days and the risk of an upset stomach (take supplies of Imodium and rehydration sachets). Saying that, the rewards are an abundance of wildlife and amazing landscapes that are unique and a once in a lifetime experience.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


The tour did visit a local wildlife sanctuary and our tour leader did find out of the way places in small villages to purchase food and gifts.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?


Fantastic.
Our Tour Leader was very knowledgeable and looked after the group very well. The trip is filled with a varied and extremely interesting itinerary that includes amazing landscapes and unique wildlife.

Reviewed on 22 Jul 2013 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?


Singing around the campfire with the porters and impressive landscape in Isalo

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?


Dress warm for Peak Boby. Mosquitos are not a problem in July. This is a very busy itinerary, I loved it but for those wanting relaxation or time to themselves this is not the trip for you. Tana is not a great place, if you have extra days don't spend them in Tana

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


Yes. Locals were used as porters and in Ifaty a local group provided entertainment in the Hotel

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?


Excellent. It was very well organised, made the most of the time available (which made for a very busy schedule). I was pleasantly surprised by the varying landscape

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