Tailor-Made Holiday

Madagascar - Family Adventure

Adventurous family holiday taking in the lakes, rainforests and islands

14 days

from $2,795pp (excluding flights)

From misty rainforests to jungle lakes and tropical islands, the chance to meet the weird and wonderful (and nonpoisonous!) wildlife on foot, by bike and kayaks ends on the shores of Ile St Marie, the original pirate headquarters. 

  • Meet lemurs who sing like whales, giant moths and camouflaged chameleons
  • Easy kayaking and bikes through jungles, lakes and traditional fishing villages
  • Explore the tropical island of Ile St Marie, searching for pirate graves
  • Feel the spray of whales breaching next to your boat on a marine safari

 Starting in Madagascar’s premier rainforest reserve, Andasibe, a walk through this atmospheric park in the eastern highlands, brings out animals of all shapes and sizes. From the largest lemur (Indri) and its haunting whale-like call, to the smallest chameleon (pygmy stump-tailed, no bigger than a fingernail) hiding under leaves, there is always something to discover.  The trails are well defined, but expect to go off-piste with your guide as the days here are just the start, as night fall brings a whole different range of animals and sounds with wide eyed nocturnal lemurs staring back at you as chameleons glow in the torchlight. The lodge's very own mountain bikes also allow you the chance to cycle around the area enjoy a spot of table football (played a lot in the nearby village!)

 The adventure then moves on to the waterways and lakes of the Pangalanes region, where easy kayaking and boat safaris, take you past traditional lakeside villages and fishermen casting their nets in the morning sun. Traditional bungalows with elevated decking opening out onto the lake shores offer stunning views of the peninsula and distant sea, whilst lemurs and birds chatter in the forests behind you and occasionally coming to investigate.

 A short flight then brings you to the tropical island (and ancient pirate headquarters) of Ile St Marie, a lush island, where the fertile greenery is dotted with traditional villages and markets, surrounded by squeaky white sand beaches and the odd pirate shipwreck amongst the colourful reefs. The beaches themselves are designed to soak up the sun, but if you have not yet sated an appetite for adventure, head inland to look for the crumbling pirate cemetery or take to the waters and watch whales breaching offshore. 

For a more detailed itinerary with great ideas on what to do and where to stay, please get in touch with our experts.

Price Excluding Flights $Flight cost from 
$ 3773.25 $ 1080
  Click here to see what is included/excluded

what is included

  • All accommodation
  • Internal flights
  • International flights as detailed
  • Sightseeing with private guide as per the itinerary
  • Transfers as detailed

what is excluded

  • Gratuities
  • Travel Insurance
  • Visas


Itinerary at a glance

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Day 1

Fly London to Nairobi overnight

Day 2

Fly Nairobi to Antananarivo

Antananarivo is literally translated as "City of a Thousand", in reference to the 1,000 Merina Tribe warriors, used by the king as protection of his city, but is also familiarly known as 'Tana'. Split into two regions (upper and lower towns), the city itself is a maze of bustling streets and alleyways, full of colourful markets, interspersed with ancient stone steps and historical sites.

You will be staying at Sakamanga Hotel, Bed & Breakfast

Day 3

Drive from Antananarivo to Andasibe

This morning after breakfast, you depart for Andasibe-Mantadia National Park. This four hour journey is an adventure in itself as the drive takes in spectacular mountain highlands and traditional Merina villages, with rice paddies stretching away into the distance, arriving at the lodge around lunchtime.

Easily accessible from the capital, Antananarivo, Andasibe is one of Madagascar's most popular wildlife parks and offers great opportunities to see some of the country's exceptional wildlife including the unique indri. Its popularity is reflected in the high-quality accommodation and guiding available.

You will be staying at Vakona Forest Lodge, Full board

Day 4

Full day in Andasibe National Park in search of lemurs
Heading out at first light as the indris' calls rings out across the forest is a thrilling introduction to Andasibe. Whilst the country's largest lemurs are the star attraction, the diversity of wildlife found in Andasibe, ensures there is enough to keep you busy for days. Lemurs abound during day walks and wandering the forest trails is great fun as leaf-tailed geckos camouflage themselves on trees where tiny nose-horned chameleons hide under leaves and comet moths dry their wings in the sun. Head out after dark as tiny tenrecs rustle in the leaves and mouse lemurs sit wide-eyed in the torchlight, whilst a chorus of frogs act as the night time soundtrack.

Nocturnal Walk
This afternoon is flexible, depending on your arrival time, but there will be an opportunity to head out into the forest to explore, including a nocturnal walk in the Mitsinjo Reserve to spot chameleons and lemurs by torchlight,

You will be staying at Vakona Forest Lodge, Full board

Day 5

Another day in the park.

You will be staying at Vakona Forest Lodge, Full board

Day 6

Travel Andasibe-Mantadia National Park from to Palmarium Private Reserve

Leave the park and travel by road to the village of Manambato, situated on the edge of Lake Rasoabe, a journey of around 3 hours with plenty of stops. From here, take a short boat ride through the lagoons and lakes to Lake Ampitabe, in the Palmarium Private Reserve, a journey of 1-2 hours depending on what you see. The journey passes through a wonderful mix of traditional country villages and fishing settlements.

Comprising a relatively small area of littoral forest, the Palmarium Private Reserve features broad, well-maintained trails that criss-cross the flat terrain. Home to several species of lemur - many of which are unafraid of humans - this protected area is a fantastic spot to capture up-close images of these iconic mammals. With the famous Pangalanes Canal running along its eastern edge, the reserve is also renowned for the array of reptiles - including chameleons - that thrive here. Flora is in equal abundance, with orchids and carnivorous pitcher plants among the flowers found within the reserve.

Two Days of Exploring
Spend the next two days exploring the region on foot, by boat and on night safaris.

You will be staying at Le Palmarium, Full board

Day 7

Second day of exploring.

You will be staying at Le Palmarium, Full board

Day 8

Drive from Palmarium Reserve to Tamatave

Depart the Palmarium Reserve and travel to Tamatave, which is approximately four hours away.

Travel from Tamatave to Ile Sainte Marie (Air Transfer Journey)

You will be staying at Princesse Bora, Full board

Day 9

Day spent exploring or relaxing

You will be staying at Princesse Bora, Full board

Day 10

Day spent exploring or relaxing

You will be staying at Princesse Bora, Full board

Day 11

Day spent exploring or relaxing

You will be staying at Princesse Bora, Full board

Day 12

You will be staying at Princesse Bora, Full board

Day 13

Fly Ile Sainte Marie to Antananarivo

Fly Antananarivo to Nairobi

Fly Nairobi to London overnight

Day 14

Arrive into London Heathrow


Below you can see some of the wonderful places we recommend you stay on your journey.

Vakona Forest Lodge

Vakona Forest Lodge

One of the most established lodges in the area, Vakona Forest Lodge sits in its own private reserve, so you get extra wildlife for your money along with plenty of rainforest....

View Accommodation

Princesse Bora

Princesse Bora

This relaxed and stylish privately-owned eco lodge lies on the tropical shores of Ile St Marie and is everything you hope it will be, with the lobby area a simple mix of polished drift wood, smooth stone and colourful cushions, setting the scene....

View Accommodation

For a more detailed itinerary with great ideas on what to do and where to stay, please get in touch with our experts.

Destination Experts

Our experts have unrivalled firsthand knowledge of Madagascar

Chris Johnston, Travel Expert

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Illona Cross, Travel Expert

"Illona was quite simply brilliant. She listened and carefully noted what we thought we wanted, made suggestions and came up with an itinerary which suited us down to the ground."

"Excellent personal service; well-informed local knowledge; dependable outcome; quality of experience."

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For a more detailed itinerary with great ideas on what to do and where to stay, please get in touch with our experts.

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