Top Madagascar Tours & Vacations 2024/2025 [reviews &...

Madagascar Tours & Travel Packages 2024/2025

18 Madagascar trips. Compare tour itineraries from 6 tour companies. 33 reviews. 4.8/5 avg rating.

Small Group Madagascar Tours

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Top Madagascar Attractions & Experiences

Top Madagascar Experiences

  • Spotting a ring-tailed lemur or aye-aye on a trek through the rainforest.
  • Snapping a photo of Madagascar’s incredible baobab trees that look like something Dr. Seuss would dream up.
  • Catching a chameleon in the act of changing colors in its natural habitat, under the watchful eye of an expert guide.
  • Searching for rare fluorescent frogs and geckos on night walks from your lodge.
  • Watching for whales and dolphins off the coastlines.
  • Staying in secluded jungle lodges either in national parks or private reserves, some reached only by airplane
  • Relaxing on a beach or snorkeling in Nosy Be, the largest of Madagascar’s offshore islands, known as the “perfume island.”
  • Taking an excursion to Nosy Komba, an island near Nosy Be, to see black lemurs.
  • Visiting a bustling market in Antananarivo, Madagascar’s capital city.


Madagascar Tours & Travel Guide

Madagascar Attractions & Landmarks Guide

Madagascar, the world’s fourth largest island, is known as the “Galapagos of Africa,” serving as a kind of living laboratory in the Indian Ocean. After splitting off from mainland Africa around 100 million years ago, and now lying some 225 miles away across the Mozambique Channel, its endemic animal species developed fully apart from the rest of the continent -- and the world.

Almost all of its mammal species -- including the island’s famous lemurs, a primitive type of primates -- are found nowhere else on earth. (The two major exceptions are bats as well as some lemurs found on the nearby Comoros Islands.)

Madagascar’s biodiversity is among the richest on the planet. Some 11,000 endemic plant species blanket the island, and more species of both flora and fauna are being discovered every year -- even as many others become endangered and face extinction.

Madagascar’s birds, reptiles, and amphibians are also mostly endemic. The world’s biggest and smallest chameleons, the world’s biggest primates (400-pound lemurs, now extinct) and the world’s largest bird -- the elephant bird, also now extinct -- are or were all found here.

Lemurs Are the Stars

Lemurs are the big draw in the wildlife parade. Madagascar has more than 100 species or subspecies of lemurs including pygmy mouse lemurs, the world’s smallest primates. Among the better known species are ring-tailed lemurs, aye-ayes, indris and sifakas. Loss of habitat and hunting, however, have also left lemurs the world’s most endangered primates.

The country has been aggressively establishing parks and reserves to try to protect those remaining, and deforestation has dropped dramatically in those areas. But a healthy eco-tourism industry, bringing much needed jobs and revenues into an impoverished country, is essential to maintaining their rainforest habitats.

You can look for lemurs in a number of locations throughout the island. One of the best is Montagne d’Ambre National Park, a rainforest wilderness dotted with lakes and waterfalls in the northern reaches of the island. It’s also home to the world’s smallest chameleons, among the park’s 59 species of reptiles.

Another park in the northern part of the island, Ankarana Reserve, is also rich in wildlife and plant life, as is Andasibe National Park in eastern Madagascar, where you may see several varieties of lemurs, birds and chameleons. A private reserve, Palmarium Park, also on the eastern side of the island, showcases lemurs as well as various endemic trees and plants including orchids and mahogany trees.

Giant Baobabs

Giant baobabs, though, with their massive, gnarly trunks, are the most striking trees on the island. Madagascar is ringed by tropical beaches, which provide a great way to relax after tracking lemurs or spotting chameleons in the rainforests. One of the best places to recharge is Nosy Be, a much smaller island that lies about ten miles offshore, where the beaches are lined with palm trees and the snorkeling and diving are excellent amid the coral reefs.

The inland capital and largest city, Antananarivo (Tana), is built on hills and features steep stair-step streets, busy markets and old palaces to explore, while coastal Antsiranana (formerly Diego-Suarez) at the northern tip of Madagascar is located on a beautiful bay.

By far the best way to see endangered lemurs and other exotic wildlife on Madagascar is via guided tours, led by experts in navigating the local rainforests and highlands. You can rely on Stride to help you find the best outfitters on this unforgettable island.

The Different Ecological Regions of Madagascar

Madagascar is the world’s fourth largest island and as such exhibits several microclimates and the temperature fluctuates dramatically. There are 5 major climate zones (also called biomes) in Madagascar:

1. Desert - Southern Madagascar exhibits desert landscapes, most notable for the “Spiny Forest” which only thrive in this particularly arid region of Madagascar. If you visit the Spiny Forest, you’ll see plants that belong to the “Didiereaceae” family and are native to Madagascar - seen very little anywhere else on earth.

2. Savanna - The southern part of Madagascar is also where you’ll find large and flat savanna landscape, famous for the whimsically shaped Baobab trees.

3. Tropical Rainforest - Central Madagascar and the eastern coasts have high humidity and rainfall - the perfect conditions for Tropical Rainforest. Along the coasts the conditions are very similar to the Amazon basin. In the Lowland Madagascar rainforest is where you’ll find a majority of the famous ring tailed lemurs.

4. Mountain Range - There is also a large mountain range in Madagascar, running from the northern part of the island to the south. The highest peak is known as “Maromokotro” in the Tsaratanana Reserve and is open to experienced climbers.

5. Wetland - The Madagascar wetland regions run along the coasts. Mangrove forests thrive in these ecosystems, as do a large majority of Madagascar’s diverse bird population.

Madagascar Reviews & Ratings

4.8/5  Excellent
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K

Karleen

Dec 2019

Written on

Amazing sights and experiences

In a short time this trip takes you to a number of amazing sights and experiences. Meeting the lemurs and kameleons is magic, but driving and especially walking thro...

P

Paula

Dec 2019

Written on

The country of Madagascar is amazing!

The country of Madagascar is amazing! The landscape and lemurs are fantastic but what really made the trip for me was the Malagasy people. So happy, helpful and frie...

B

Bettina

Dec 2019

Written on

An amazing trip through this beautifully stunning and diverse country!

An amazing trip through this beautifully stunning and diverse country! Perfect balance between wildlife, culture and relaxation on the beach in the end! Andry, the t...

L

Luan

Dec 2019

Written on

Madagascar is an amazing experience.

Madagascar is an amazing experience. However, be prepared to spend the vast majority of time on this holiday sat down, either in a boat, minibus or in 4 x 4s. Trip n...

m

michel

Nov 2019

Written on

Overall a fabulous trip with some amazing experiences.

Overall a fabulous trip with some amazing experiences. Highlights included getting up close to chameleons and lemurs, interacting with the local people in rural area...

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