Marojejy national park is also referred to as Marojevy National Park. This is a rugged and untamed mountainous area of 600 km² and 75-2.200 m altitude. Marojejy National Park is one of the most strikingly beautiful wild areas of the country. The magic of this beauty lies on its Jurassic park character.
90% of Marojejy national park is covered with original primary forests. There are voluptuous hillsides, completely carpeted by a lush green rainforests. Here shrubs, ferns, feathery mosses and lichens hang from the tree branches in the search of light, extend onto the horizon.
The inaccessibility of the area has created a natural laboratory that hosts a unique flora and fauna. For a long time Marojejy National park, created in 1952, was reserved exclusively for scientists until it finally opened to the general public.
In June 2007, it was officially declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in recognition of its unparalleled biodiversity and stunning landscapes. Hopefully these two significant events will become a turning point for the park’s major threat.
The threats are the traditional slash and burn method (called tavy) practised by the Tsimihety people. It has been reported that during the political crisis of 2009 precious woods have been illegal cut within the National Park boudaries.
Flora and Fauna in Marojejy National Park
There is a rich list of plants and animals in Marojejy National Park. Most of these are endemic to the area and is truly impressive.
Flora Biosphere in Marojejy National Park
At least 275 species of ferns and more than 50 species of palms have been catalogued in the different types of forest depending on the altitude.
In the low altitude rainforest it is dominated by palm tress up to 800 m. The montane forest from 800 to 1500 m where 300 epiphytes species grow together with bamboo, mosses and lichens.
We have the sclerophyllous forest up to 1800 m where the lichens and mosses are most common, and moorland mountain vegetation from 1800 upwards.
Fauna Biosphere in Marojejy National Park
Concerning the fauna, 150 species of amphibians and reptiles live in Marojejy. They include 60 frogs such as the green climbing mantilla, leaf-tailed geckos, brookesia chameleons and lot of leeches.
There are 45 mammal species, among the 11 lemurs. The most representative is the critically endangered silky sifaka. This only occurs here and in Anjanaharibe-Sud Reserve.
Another lemurs found here are Indri, red-bellied lemur, Eastern woolly lemur, aye-aye, bamboo lemur or Weasel sportive lemur.
Birds are also very well represented with 118 species have been observed so far. They include the helmet vanga, Madagascarserpent-eagle, velvet asity, cryptic warbler, short-legged ground roller or Scaly ground-roller.
And yet, the park still remains considerably unknown. Virtually every expedition up the slippery slopes and the roaring streams succeeds with the discovery of new species, mainly invertebrates.
Where is Marojejy National Park
Marojejy national park is located in northeast Madagascar. This Madagascar national park is on the sacred mountain’s slopes of same name inside Sava province.
The “capital of vanilla”, Sambava, is about 60 km eastern to Marojejy. From there, a street passing the national park reaches to Andapa in Madagascar’s northwest. Due to its isolated location and lack of infrastructure.
It is quite challenging to travel to Marojejy national park. The one and only safe way there is flying from the capital, Antananarivo, or Maroantsetra to Sambava. You can continue from there via car (relatively good road condition from Sambava until park office).
Take the overland road from Ambilobe to the East via Vohémar at northeastern coast. Go further on to Sambava mainly consists of dirt tracks, which are hardly drivable.
Periodically, this route is not drivable at all and lots of unforeseen events (broken bridges, sloughs and swelling rivers after rain) discourage any traveller from trying this way.