Madagascar Budget Tour
This Madagascar Budget tour takes you to the diverse Island of Madagascar. It is the 4th largest island in the world. This Madagascar Budget tour starts from the capital city of Tana (Antananarivo). You’ll visit Antsirabe and Ranomafana. This beautiful reserve protects a humid rain forest. It is home to an array of wildlife including lemurs, reptiles and teeming with birds. The Madagascar Budget tour will also go to Fianarantsoa. This is the capital of the Betsileo tribe. You’ll also go to Ranohira and Tulear which is a coastal town with a port. The old buildings make for a spectacular setting. This is against the backdrop of mangroves on the town’s outskirts. Morondava is a vibrant west coast town. It is well known for its seaside resort and laid-back atmosphere.Morondava is a prosperous rice-growing area. It is also the southern gateway to the attractions of the west. This includes the Kirindy forest and the famous baobabs.
Day 1: Antananarivo
You’ll be met on arrival in Antananarivo by our Madagascar safari rep. You’ll enjoy a briefing on this Madagascar Budget tour. Enjoy a transfer to your budget hotel in Antananarivo.
Day 2: Antananarivo – Antsirabe
Your Madagascar Budget tour will depart after breakfast. This will be to Antsirabe that is a pretty thermal town. The town has a typical Malagasy style. This combines well with the tranquility of a small European provincial town. Antsirabe means ‘where there is much salt’. It is one of Madagascar’s major trading centres for semiprecious stones and minerals. Ypu’ll drive through landscape that is mainly composed of mountains and rice fields. In Antsirabe you’ll go on a city tour with a visit to Andraikiba lake. You’ll also visit the legendary Tritriva Crater Lake. It is said that the lake’s water level decreases during rainy season. The opposite that is the level increases in dry season. You’ll visit a gemstone factory. Here you can watch the cutting and polishing process and purchase souvenirs.
Day 3: Antsirabe – Ranomafana
After breakfast your Madagascar Budget tour drives to Ranomafana National Park. This is one of the richest for discovering biodiversity in the eastern humid forest. The park is nestled in a mountainous and extremely rainy region. This park accounts for its nickname the ‘misty land’. The tropical forest is home to 12 species of lemurs. They include the golden bamboo lemur and brown lemurs. There are various species of birds, colorful chameleons and frogs. You’ll stop in Ambositra to visit some Zafimaniry woodcarving shops. This art is classified as World Intangible Heritage by UNESCO. It was revealed to the public in the fifties. This is when food shortage obliged this population of foresters to sell their furniture and sculptures. Zafimaniry Art expresses itself through daily life objects. This includes honey pots, weaving-looms, stools, plates and more. There is also a construction part such as doors and windows. You’ll then head to Ranomafana Park after the tour. You’ll unwind before your exploration of the national park the following day.
Day 4: Ranomafana – Fianarantsoa
In the morning you’ll explore the National Park to see lemurs. You’ll also see chameleons and frogs living in the rainforest. You have time to discover some of the pandanus, ferns and orchids. You’ll return to your hotel for lunch. This will be preceded by a city tour of Fianarantsoa. It is the capital of the Betsileo tribe. Fianarantsoa was built on three levels. The highest level and its old and picturesque quarters are classified as a protected area. This is because of its historical and architectural interest. It lies in the heart of the most fertile agricultural area. It is for its vineyards, tea plantations and terraced rice fields.
Day 5: Fianarantsoa – Ranohira
Your Madagascar Budget tour departs Fianarantsoa early to Ranohira. On your way you’ll stop in Ambalavao. This is the commercial centre of the southern Betsileo region. It is renowned for its folks, arts and crafts. Here you’ll visit a wine producer for wine tasting and the “Antemoro Paper” factory. It is where you can watch the paper being made and buy locally. The famous Antemoro paper is a delicate, handmade, flower-decorated paper. It is made of the fibres of a tree called “Avoha”. You’ll continue your drive to Ranohira. Here you’ll visit Anja Park along the way. This is where you can see some families of ring-tailed lemurs in their natural habitat. On arrival in Ranohira you’ll check in at your overnight ranch. You’ll have the rest of the day at leisure in preparation for the next day of trekking.
Day 6: Ranohira
Today we will spend Madagascar Budget tour day trekking in Isalo National Park. This is the second oldest national park in Madagascar. Erosion has carved fantastic figures in the sandstone. This range from sharp needles standing up in the sky to rocky blocs. Isalo National Park is a land endowed with an important network of streams. They feed the tributaries of the river Mangoky. It is a sacred land, as it also shelters the Bara ancestors’ cemeteries. They are dug on the cliff sides to prevent pillage. Your Madagascar Budget tour will discover the massif of Isalo. This will include its canyons and endemic flora such as Pachypodium. There are aloes, and fauna including lemurs and birds. You’ll get a chance to go for a refreshing swim in the natural cascades swimming pool.
Day 7: Ranohira – Tulear
You will start your Madagascar Budget tour with breakfast. This will be followed by a drive along straight road. This is where the landscape is composed of dry and spiny forests. There are baobab trees and some proudly decorated Mahafaly tombs. You’ll visit the Arboretum and an interesting private garden. This was established by a Swiss botanist. It has close to 1000 species of plants. All this are endemic to south-western Madagascar. You’ll then go on a city tour of Tulear. This is Madagascar’s most recently established provincial capital. It is the major town in south-western Madagascar. The city tour also includes a visit to the museum.
Day 8: Tulear – Antananarivo
You’ll begin your Madagascar Budget tour with breakfast this morning. You’ll then be transferred to the local airport of Tulear. This is in time for your flight back to the capital, Antananarivo. You’ll be picked up on arrival and driven to your overnight hotel in the city. The remainder of the afternoon and evening is spent at leisure.
Day 9: Antananarivo – Morondava
You Madagascar Budget tour will start with a transfer to the airport. This will be in time for your flight to Morondava. On arrival, you’ll be met and transferred to the city. Morondava is situated in the heart of Sakalava territory. It is known for the royal sculpted tombs of the Menabe ancestors. These tombs are frequently decorated. This is done with well-executed, often erotic, funerary carvings representing life and fertility.
Day 10: Morondava – Kirindy
Your Madagascar Budget tour takes a day trip to the Kirindy Reserve. This is a dry forest that covers approximately 10,000 ha. You will have the chance to see 6 species of lemurs. They include the fat-tailed lemur and the tiny Microcebus Myoxinus. The latter is believed to be the world’s smallest primate. There are also 45 bird species and 32 reptile species. They include the rare Madagascan flat-tailed tortoise. There is also the side-necked turtle, Madagascar’s only freshwater turtle. You’ll stop to admire the beauty of the famous Baobab Avenue on your way back.
Day 11 – 13: Morondava
You’ll spend the next three days are spent at leisure in and around Morondava. Soak up the sun and enjoy the pristine white beaches. You can explore the area on excursions and day trips. Your Madagascar Budget tour may discover the marine life on deep-sea fishing trips. There are also the diving excursions. On the southern edge of town are tranquil mangrove swamps. Here you can explore by pirogue. You can observe kingfishers, egrets and more along the way.
Day 14: Morondava – Antananarivo
Today you will be transferred to the airport. This is in time for your flight back to Antananarivo. You will be met and transferred to the city. Your Madagascar Budget tour will take a transfer to your hotel in Antananarivo.
Day 15: Departure
Your Madagascar Budget tour will wake up to breakfast. You’ll later be transferred to the airport for your onward flight.