Madagascar Baobab

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A varied journey through lonely lowlands and magnificent mountain areas!

Pricing

Price
per rider in shared twin/double room: €3,695.00 $4,110.53 ?
per pillion passenger in shared twin/double room: €2,795.00 $3,109.32 ?
single room (supplement): €520.00 $578.48 ?

Features

Features
Transfers airport Antanarivo to the hotel and back
All hotel stays
Rental motorcycle Honda XR 250 ccm, incl. liability insurance
Multilingual tour guide on the motorcycle
Support vehicle and luggage transport
Mechanic
Travel security note
Travel guide
Not included features
gas
entrance fees
optional excursions
food and drink
insurances
pocket money: 600 Euro (This amount is an indication of how much money you will need for this trip). It includes food, drink, souvenirs, optional excursions and gasoline.)
Scheduled flight - Antanarivo and back

More details

More details
Minimum number of participants: 8
Maximum number of participants: 10
Maximum number of passengers: 2
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Motorcycles:
During this trip we ride with Honda XR 250ccm motorcycles
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Difficulty level of the tour:
During the trip we do not reach high altitudes or extreme weather conditions, but there are sometimes days with very difficult off-road routes.
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Offroad:
The distances are not great, and there are not very long distances in the journey. But we have four difficult offroad days. These are in the southeast of the country and the difficulty level depends on the weather. If it is very dry, the subsoil can consist of loose sand and when it rains, the subsoil becomes soft and smooth, the roads are difficult to travel. We also have to take a ferry from time to time.
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Overnight stays:
In the larger towns (and these are the fewest) the hotels are good. In the smaller villages, even the best hotels are simple and basic. One should be prepared for this.
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Climate:
The rainy season in Madagascar is mainly in December to February. June to September are dry and very hot. The best months to travel are October and November as well as April and May. However, the climate varies greatly from region to region. The main wind current, which carries moisture to the east coast all year round, runs from east to west. The central highlands are mild, in the evening the temperatures can drop below 10° C.
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Clothing:
Helmet and motorcycle jacket with protection, gloves and good (motorcycle) trousers with protection or loose knee pads and sturdy (mountain) shoes are mandatory. A summer (air permeable) motorcycle jacket with protection is also advisable. On colder days in the mountains you can - if necessary - wear extra clothing under your jacket. Good sunglasses are important and a helmet with visor or cross glasses against dust and sand is recommended. The trip takes place during the dry season. But especially in spring you have to expect a rain shower.
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Visa:
On arrival at the airport, you buy a visa for about 25 Euros (80,000 ares).
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Pocket money and money matters:
Only in the big cities is it possible to withdraw money from ATMs in local currency. It is best to take enough cash with you when you travel.
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Safety:
The political situation is stable at the moment. In Antananarivo, you have to watch out for pickpockets. In the capital there is a lot of traffic but here the riding is slow, outside the capital there is hardly any traffic, that makes riding a bit safer.
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More details about the trip and what to take with you can be found in the manual that you will receive about 1 month before departure.
Mobility: The offer is not suitable for people with reduced mobility. Please contact us for more information.

Madagascar is known for its funny cartoons. It belongs to Africa, but most of the population is of Asian origin. It was sailors from Borneo who first settled on the island. It is also a country of extremes in terms of climate. In the mountainous areas there is a humid climate, while in the lowlands it is very dry. We start the journey in the capital Antanarivo, after a day trip to the Makis and an old palace we head east. We visit the beautiful parks of Tsingy and Isalo, ride long off-road tracks on the west coast, take a boat trip to the whales and through the Tsiribhina Gorge and mainly ride adventurous routes on our Honda XR250 cc motorcycles.

Day 1 - Arrival - Antanarivo

A transfer brings us to the hotel in the centre of the lively and colourful capital. Antanarivo is located in a mountainous area and you can see that in the city. All paths run diagonally and are connected with stairs. In the centre of the city is the Square of Independence, actually more a two-lane road separated by a green strip. There is always a lot going on here, but also in the streets around there is a lot to experience. All this is about 5 minutes walk from our hotel. Apart from Asian and African influences, you will notice remains of the French colonial period in many places.

DAY 2 - ANTANRIVO - DAY TRIP

We get on our bikes for the first time and make a nice day trip. First we ride a great route through full, narrow streets in Antanarivo. We ride through market alleys and probably get stuck in traffic jams several times. Once out of the city, the traffic gets a bit quieter. About 20 kilometers outside the city is Royal Hill. On this hill there are several temples, these were built by the first immigrants from South East Asia and are comparable to the temples found in Indonesia and Malaysia. The place is still very valuable for many Malay people and is a kind of relationship to their ancestors. The place is protected by UNESCO as a heritage site. Going back to the city is an adventure in itself, certainly at the end of the afternoon. There is traffic jam everywhere. Thank God we can ride our motorcycles through the narrowest streets and markets.

DAY 3 - ANTANARIVO - AMPEFY

In the lively morning traffic we ride out of the city. We cross the main road and take a well paved road westwards. After an hour we arrive at the Lemur Park also called Maki Park, this is a lemur sanctuary. In the park there are many different kinds of lemurs and with a guide we walk around the park and get explained the species and their characteristics. Here we can stay for lunch. It is then about 2 hours ride to Chute de Lilz. This waterfall is one of the biggest in Madagascar. After the visit we will go back a bit and then continue south. We spend the night in a very small village, Ampefy in a hotel on the shore of the lake.

DAY 4 - AMPEFY - ANTSIRABE

After about 50 kilometres we meet the first piece of offroad of this journey. It is a distance of about 80 kilometres. The whole day we ride through beautiful hilly landscapes with some rice fields every now and then. In the humid period it is green here, in the long dry months it is brown and dry. The last 40 km to the beautiful city of Antsirabe in the central highlands we ride on asphalt. Because of the cool climate and the thermal baths here, this city was a luxury health resort for the French. The many dilapidated colonial buildings still bear witness to this today. The city is primarily inhabited by the Merina, a population group with a strikingly Asian appearance. Antsirabe is the capital of the Pousse Pousse, a colourful rickshaw. It is a pleasant place to stop on the way south.

DAY 5 - ANTSIRABE - MIANDRIVAZO

Today we have a short ride of about four hours on the program, but at the destination there is still something to experience. We follow the asphalt road westwards and leave the highlands and continue into a slightly hilly area. It is still 200 km before we arrive in Miandrivezo. Here we park the bikes, take time for lunch and ride through the valley in a traditional dugout canoe. At the end of the afternoon we are back in Miandrivezo and enjoy the evening.

DAY 6 - MIANDRIVAZO - MORONDAVA

We keep going down into the valley. First 120 kilometres to the south, then we have lunch in Malaimbandy. These are all small manageable places we pass. Fortunately the local cuisine has had many good influences. Firstly the Asian cuisine, secondly of course the French cuisine and thirdly Madagascar is an island where there is a lot of fish but also cows (zebu). Thus, one can also eat deliciously in the small villages. In the afternoon we ride down the tarred road towards the coast. Morodava is a sociable coastal town with a small beach. We now have the first four days of riding on mainly tarred roads behind us. This will change for the coming days.

DAY 7 - MORONDAVA - BEKOPAKA

We're leaving early because it's gonna be a long day. We ride through the famous Baobab Alley and on to the Kirindy Private Nature Reserve. After 90 kilometres of dirt and dusty roads we arrive in Belo Tsiribihna, situated on one of the widest rivers in the country. Here we have to take the ferry. After lunch, another 100 kilometres of gravel roads follow to the entrance of the Tsingy National Park, where we spend the night.

DAY 8 - BEKOPAKA - DAY TRIP TSINGY

The Tsingy National Park is the most fascinating park in the country. It consists of innumerable pointed limestone rock spires, which have bizarre forms up to 30m high. There is a hiking route in the park, which connects the different peaks with suspension bridges, this is not for people with fear of heights. If we still have time, there is a second hiking route through the park a little further north. In the evening we spend the second night in Bekopaka.

DAY 9 - BEKOPAKA - MORONDAVA

We have no choice and go back the same runway we came. For lunch we stop again in Belo Tsiribihina and take the ferry again. One of the most beautiful impressions we get in the evening when we enjoy the sunset at Baobab Alley. . For the photographers among us this is a real chance. The motorbikes in the dust of the dirt roads, together in the orange light of the sunset and in the background the beautiful Baobab trees....................that's a photo! That means taking nice photos but also arriving late at the hotel.

DAY 10 - MORONDAVA - REST DAY

Today is a day of rest. While the mechanic is doing major maintenance on the bikes, we can enjoy the beach and laze around on the sunbeds or explore the various restaurants and bars that are available in Morondava. Those who want to can watch the sunset at Baobab Alley.

DAYS 11 AND 12 - MORONDAVA - MANJA, MANJA - TOLIARA

These will be the 2 most difficult days of the trip. We ride through an area where there are no main roads and where there are only very small villages. Depending on the condition of the roads we will either stay overnight in Manja or in another village that is easier to reach, depending on how far we get. The first part of the completely unpaved route runs along the coast, but we don't get to see the sea. Then it leads slowly inland, following the river. Manja is a piece inland about 150 km from Morondava. The second part of the route remains in the lowlands and leads us over the Mangoky River. We have to cross this river by ferry. Then it's another 180 km before we reach the coast. It's two long days, the severity of the route also depends on the weather, will it be mud or loose sand, and how much water is in the river we have to cross? In the harbour place Toliara we have in any case a nice hotel with hot showers and a good restaurant. We stay here for 2 days.

DAYS 13 AND 14 - MORONDAVA - MANJA, MANJA - TOLIARA

DAY 15 - TOLIARA - REST DAY

This day is used in July and August to make a boat trip to the whales. But we need luck to see them, there is no guarantee that we can actually watch them. The boat trip starts in the south of the village where we take the motorcycles. The other months there are no whale watching tours. We will then visit the caves of Sarodrane or a beautiful arboretum.

DAY 16 - TOLIARA - RANOHIRA

We follow the super good highway no. 7, which leads us slowly up into the mountains. We climb a pass of 1.056 meters height. We have lunch in Ilakaka, this place is famous for its sapphire stones and mines and we can visit a workshop. Nowhere else in the world can you find sapphires in all colours of the rainbow. Afterwards it is another hour ride to Ranohira, where we spend the night.

DAY 17 - RANOHIRA - VISIT ISALO NATIONAL PARK

Isalo is a park that resembles the Grand Canyon in America. It is not only about the animals, but also about the landscapes with its rugged rock massifs and extraordinary fauna and flora, such as the Pachypodium, which literally means elephant's paw. Gorges, waterfalls and small oases, various endemic plants, but also lemurs can be seen here. The whole day we are on the way with a guide and will enjoy a picnic in the magnificent landscape.

DAY 18 - RANOHIRA - AMBALAVAO

Today we continue on the main road no. 7, and along the way we will see wonderful landscapes. We have time to take pictures and stop in small villages. At noon we check in at a nice hotel near the park Anja. The Anja Park is especially known for its catta lemurs, a variety of chameleons and some endemic plants. The Catta lemurs have long curly tails and live together in groups.

DAG 19 - AMBALAVO - RANOMAFANA

Today we will continue to the highlands of Madagascar. Winding roads lead us north. Lunch will be approximately in Fianarantsoa.

North of this town we turn east and stop at the Namorona waterfalls. We spend the night in the small village of Ranomafana.

DAY 20 - RANOMAFANA - ANTSIRABE

This morning we visit the rainforest of Ranomafana. After the visit we take a different way to the main road than we came, but it is unpaved. Then we return to Highway 7 and continue north. After lunch in Ambositra we have another 90 kilometers to go. We ride all day long through the highest parts of the country and enjoy magnificent trails and very nice views.

DAY 21 - ANTSIRABE - ANTANANARIVO (DEPARTURE)

A beautiful winding route leads us back to the capital. The closer we get, the more traffic there is. Hopefully we arrive in the centre without traffic jams. We leave the motorcycles at the hotel and say goodbye to the rider and mechanic. Since most of the time the departure is late at night, we have the whole afternoon to stroll through the city and do some shopping. In a nice restaurant we finish this impressive trip and in the late evening we ride to the airport for the return flight. In some cases the return flight can take place in the afternoon. In this case we will check if the program has to be adjusted a little bit to arrive in time in the capital, so that there is still enough time for showering, changing clothes and checking in.

Changes to the route can be adapted to the current conditions on site