• Ankarana National Park
  • Ankarana National Park
  • Ankarana National Park
  • Ankarana National Park
  • Ankarana National Park
  • Ankarana National Park

Ankarana National Park is one of the oldest Parks in Madagascar. This Madagasar national park was founded in 1956. Ankarana National Park is located next to the Amber national park.

The name Ankarana was derived from the local people the Antankarana that live in the area next to the Park. The word Antankarana is a Malagasy word which can loosely be translated as the people from the rocks. This is due to the rocky nature of the landscape where Ankarana National Park is located.

Ankarana National Park

Ankarana National Park is one of the few parks in the country that is surrounded by the rivers. This gives those on Madagascar tours a beautiful scenery to look at. The rivers are joined with different gorges, rocks that are made of limestone and other amazing things to look at.

Ankarana National Park is filled with numerous plant species that spice up the vegetation of the Park and some of these include the peeling trees, baobab trees, Adenia trees and others which offer a good backdrop when it comes to taking photographs.

Ankarana  is one of Madagascar’s most rewarding hiking destinations. The trails lead to awesome viewpoints on ridges above hundreds of limestone needles.

Getting into the centre of Ankarana National Park requires a guide and coping with high temperatures. This can go up to 37° in March and April. There is an unpleasant high number of scorpions.

When to Go to Ankarana National Park

The best time of year to visit Madagascar to Ankarana National Park is during the dry season, from April to November.

It is considered the best because then the roads will not be too slippery. You will be able to view the different wildlife better during the dry season. It is important to note that it is always extremely hot during the afternoons and therefore the best tie to go around the Park is in the mornings and evenings.

Ankarana National Park

You can also visit the Park during the wet season although it will not be conducive due to the slippery roads. The rainy season normally happens between the months of December to March.

If you are to visit Ankarana National Park you need to pack some warm clothes as it will be extremely cold due to the heavy rains although it can get extremely hot too during these months.

How to Get to Ankarana National Park

Ankarana National Park is located along the high way and it can easily be accessed by car and flights. The flight from Antsiranana to Ankarana takes over four hours and there are local flights that can take you to Ankarana National Park at a given fee.

The road transportation that leads to the park is a bit bumpy and not pleasant like any other road in Madagascar. They have not been worked on even with the increase in tourists visiting Ankarana National Park.

But the bumpy ride will be worth it when you get to the park and get to see the magnificent rocks that are found in the area and the wildlife that you will not see anywhere else in the world.

Activities in Ankarana National Park

Ankara Wildlife Safaris

There are numerous animal that are found in the Ankara National Park. All these can be viewed when you visit Ankara National Park. There is a recorded number of 96 bird species, 11 lemurs, snakes and bats.

Most of the wildlife found in Ankara National Park is endemic to Madagascar. It is not always about the number of animals that you can see but about their uniqueness from the rest of the world.

Ankarana National Park

The different species of lemur that can be seen include the crowned lemur, the nocturnal sportive lemur, and the Eulemur lemur.

The reptiles that can be found also include the rare panther chameleon, day geckos, golden hook nose snake, Henkel’s leaf tailed geckos and the Nile crocodiles that live in the caves found in Ankara National Park.

Hiking in Ankara National Park

Ankarana reserve offers a lot to all those who visit and the best activity that you can carry out is hiking. When it comes to hiking, the Ankara is divided into three parts to suit the hiker’s interests and these are:

The Big Tsingy Ankara

The Big Tsingy Ankara hike is one of the most frequented parts of the forest during a hike. This is because it offers one a good view of the forest including caves and other things along the way like the different Lemur species, the birds, various reptiles and the suspension bridge.

You can also enjoy a picnic along the way after along hike but you should be aware of the sharp stones so that they do not cut you. The hike in the big Tsingy will take you an hours’ time although you can take the whole hike in two days.

The Tsingy Rouge

The Tsingy rouge is found between the Ankara National Park and the Diego Suarez. It is different from the rest of the Tsingy because they are extremely sharp especially at the edges.

These were formed due to the increased erosion that took place leaving behind stones that varied in color between a reddish brown and vanilla color. The trail can be traversed for almost an hour and you get to see the beauty of the limestone stones and take wonderful close up pictures of the trail and the surroundings.

The small Tsingy Ankara

This is also a commonly used route when it comes to hiking and it is a much shorter one as compared to the rest. The starting point of the trek is on a flat surface but after passing through the smaller part of Ankara National Park.

You start the climb up the stones and while here, you will get to view the different species of Lemur, birds, bats when you visit the caves and many more other beautiful things that can be seen in the Park.

After looking at the three segments that are found in Ankara National Park. There are some major trail treks that are normally used by those on Madagascar safari tours and these include the following:

  • The first route is just 6 kilometers long and it lasts about three full hours before the trek is complete. The trail goes up to the Panoramic which is located at Ambohimalaza. This trail however is not commonly used by tourists and therefore if you are not a fun of crowd, this is the best trek trail for you.
  • The second route that can be used leads through the hanging bridge to the millions of limestone spikes. They have become a major tourist attraction to many. You get to see them at a close range and take as many photos as you want and also learn about their history form the tour guides.
  • The other route that can be used when it comes to hiking is the route that goes through the big Tsingy Ankara. It passes through a place known as the sinkhole to the perte de Rivieres. The Perte de Rivieres normally appears during the rainy season making this route a water bed but the water is mysteriously sucked into the ground and the reappears in Mozambique.