Madagascar: The Eighth Continent

  • A wealth of unusual wildlife
  • Sweet Indian Ocean beaches & reefs
  • Overnight at lovely rain forest lodges
Madagascar Africa
Trip Type: Sample Itinerary
Trip Length: 12 Days
Activity type(s): Cultural Tour, Safari
Trip Extensions: Call 888-570-7108 for custom extension options

Most of us are just a little hipper to Madagascar than Marco Polo, who almost seven centuries ago called it “Magastar, one of the greatest and richest Isles of the World . . . governed by foure old men.” Fourth-greatest isle in size, Madagascar is probably the world’s richest in fauna and flora; it’s said to be home to an incredible— when you stop to think about it—5 percent of the planet’s plant and animal species, 80 percent of which are found nowhere else (including the 30 species of the island’s signature lemurs, who rafted away with the rest of island as it left Africa 60-odd million years ago—before the rise of the larger primates). Little wonder that Madagascar is often called the Eighth Continent.

We set out from the highland capital of Antananarivo (or Tana, as it’s commonly called) for a visit to the rain forest of the eastern plains at Andasibe. We’ll have a day and a half, based from the lovely bungalows of the Vakona Forest Lodge, in guided exploration of the Analamazoatra Reserve, haunt of the largest of the lemurs, the Indri indri, and Mantadia National Park, also lemur-rich (both, almost needless to say, are thronged with birds and gloriously rampant greenery). After some fine wildlife and reef excursions at Vakona, we’re off to our finale, flying across the island to the village of Anjajavy, to which no roads lead, but which has some of the sweetest beaches, reefs, and forests (1,800 floral species, eagles, iguanas, and lemurs, etc., etc.) on any continent.


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GeoEx Safaris

Madagascar, young woman with face painted, near Ampijoroa.

Itinerary at a Glance

  • Day 1: arrive in Antananarivo
  • Day 2: drive to Andasibe
  • Day 3: Andasibe
  • Day 4: return to Antananarivo
  • Day 5: fly to Morondava
  • Days 6 & 7: Kirindy Forest & Avenue of the Baobabs
  • Day 8: fly to Antananarivo
  • Day 9: fly to Anjajavy
  • Days 10–11: Anjajavy
  • Day 12: fly to and depart Antananarivo.