Madagascar in two weeks sunset avenue of the baobabs

Post Updated Jan 2024

Some of your days will purely be spent just travelling from one place to another as the roads are terrible here and this country is huge.

We had 16 days to spend in Madagascar and we wanted to see as many highlights as possible.

We decided to explore the East and West Coast of Madagascar in two weeks.

Our itinerary was busy, yet we found time to see the major highlights such as the Avenue of the Baobabs, Tsingy National Park, Ill Sainte-Marie Island, and lemurs in Andasibe National Park to name a few. 

If you only have time to see Madagascar in two weeks, here is our daily itinerary. This includes some great tips for getting around, where to stay, where to eat, and what things cost.

The currency used in Madagascar is the Malagasy Ariary. At the time of writing, 1 USD = Ar 3,728.

We visited Madagascar in November 2019

Let’s Go! The Perfect Itinerary for Madagascar in Two Weeks

Day 1 – Antananarivo

Our flight arrived at the airport in Antananarivo at 6 pm. In the evening, a taxi from the airport costs Ar 50,000 ($13). There is an ATM in the arrivals hall to withdraw local currency. There are also two places here selling local sim cards. Orange store quoted us Ar 80,000 for a 2GB sim card.

The other place called ‘Telma’ has a sim card for Ar 500 and an additional Ar 25,000 for 2GB data (ours also came with a bonus 2GB data to use between 18:00 – 06:00 only). It took about ten minutes to register, the guy just needed a passport to do so.

We asked our taxi driver to stop at the Cotisse transport office in the city on the way to our hotel. And it was the smart thing to do, as we scored the last two seats to head to Morondava the next morning at 06.30. Tickets cost Ar 45,000 each. 

The office in Tana is located here. You will need your passport to book a ticket and make sure you have local currency too. If you don’t get local currency from the ATM at the airport, there is an ATM just across the road from the Cotisse transport office.

Our hotel in the capital city

We stayed at Hotel Tana Jacaranda. This budget hotel is a traveller’s favourite, and rooms are affordable at Ar 57,000 per night (USD 15). The hotel is in a good location in the centre of Tana. The rooms are pretty small, yet clean and comfortable, with a separate private bathroom.

The great service here is why this place is so popular and why it fills up quickly. We ordered some food at the hotel when we arrived as it’s not recommended to walk around in the evening here. We paid Ar 10,000 for a lentil curry with rice which was good.

The hotel booked us a taxi for the following morning too. I’d say that being super organised is the key to enjoying your trip in Madagascar in two weeks.

Day 2 – Antananarivo to Morondava 

The taxi picked us up from the hotel at 05.30, the price was Ar 27,000. We checked in at Cotisse Transport at 06:00, they tagged our luggage and we grabbed some simple pastries and coffee from the small cafe attached to the station that was just opening up. It was going to be a long day, so it’s important to have some food or at least have some snacks for the drive.

Cotisse Transport is THE COMPANY that you want to try and travel with as much as possible to get around Madagascar. Especially if you’re backpacking Madagascar and trying to keep the budget down.

The transport is affordable, reliable and they depart and arrive on time. The alternative, unless you have the money to pay for a private driver and car for your trip in Madagascar will be taxi-brousse (shared taxis). These are the opposite of Cotisse Transport and you want to try and avoid using them if you want to maximize your precious time spent in Madagascar.

The journey took 13 hours and 15 min. There were only a few 5-minute stops for a toilet break and one 30min stop at a local restaurant on the way. You can eat a local dish of a mountain of rice and some meat curry for Ar 4000 each.

Madagascar in two weeks Cotisse transport
Cotisse Transport van – Comfortable and well organised company to get around in Madagascar in two weeks

We arrived at 7.45 pm. The Cotisse office is conveniently located right near the beach with a few budget/mid-range hotels close by. We stayed at Jean Rasta (also known as L’Oasis), a Bob Marley-looking bar/restaurant that has only two small bungalows with fans and a bathroom, it’s about 7 min walk straight down the road from Cotisse Transport office. The price is 50,000 per night (two people).

It’s worth noting that this place has live music from 8 pm each night. The rooms are very close to the bar area, so it’s not a place to get rest. No wifi here either.

Next time, I’d make a reservation at Select Hotel. This new hotel has rooms from USD 30 per night. It has fabulous reviews, and all the amenities you need for a comfortable stay. It is located on the main street (further from the beach).

Once you arrive at the Cotisse transport station, or the shared taxi station, just take a tuk-tuk to Select Hotel for about Ar 4000-6000 (about $1-2), depending on how good your negotiating skills are.

Click here to see the availability of other hotels in Morondava.

We walked for 5 min to a restaurant called Les Bouvillers. They serve decent local Malagasy dishes for Ar 6000. (the zebu coco curry is tasty). They have good wifi and cold beer here too.

You’ll learn to appreciate these things after many long travel days in Madagascar in two weeks. The food we ate during our Madagascar itinerary seemed to get better and better – it may be a surprising highlight for you too.

Day 3 – Morondava

We woke up and enquired at our accommodation about taking a trip to visit Tsingy National Park. We were in luck, as Jean, the guy who ran the accommodation used to be a guide there years ago and he can arrange trips for tourists to visit.

I wrote a detailed post about how to get to Tsingy National Park, so check it out. 

We spent the afternoon exploring Morondava and finding some more people to fill our 4WD for the trip to Tsingy. (more about that in the above post) Morondavea is small so it’s easy to find your way around. The main street has small shops, markets, a great bakery where you can buy amazing baguettes and lots of pharmacies too. Once we confirmed a French couple to take the trip to Tsingy with us, we paid for the trip (in EUR or local currency is ok).

We returned to the Cotisse Transport office and booked our return transfer to Tana for 3 days’ time. This is highly recommended as seats fill up very quickly. The cost was Ar 45,000 each and it was going to be another very early departure.

This Madagascar Travel Itinerary in two weeks is busy.

This Madagascar itinerary in two weeks is going to be busy – but the key to making your trip run as smoothly as possible is to be super organised.

At the same time as booking the above tickets, we also booked the next leg of our trip with Cotisse Transport for the day after our arrival into Tana. We were heading to Tamatave for the next morning.

We paid for these tickets, Ar 20,000 each.

Tamatave is a town that breaks the journey – as we wanted to get to the beach, Ill Sainte-Marie for some beach time.

I’d recommend that you buy any food, baguettes, cream cheese, biscuits bananas etc for the trip to Tsingy. There are very few places to get food and snacks and fresh bread is not available anywhere there. Obviously, you can purchase all meals from your accommodation in Tsingy National Park.

TIP: The accommodation isn’t included with the Tsingy trip, so you need to book this separately. 

We stayed at a lodge called Tanankoay. We didn’t have a reservation, but we were lucky they were able to offer us a simple bungalow for 15,000 per night (less than EUR 4). They also have upgraded bungalows for 25,000 and more expensive ones too. This is THE place you want to stay at.

Reservations are highly recommended as this place books out regularly with tour providers using it to accommodate small groups. All details, including phone and email information, are available on their website here.

Day 4- Morondava to Tsingy National Park

Our driver arrived at 07.00 and we left soon after. We shared the ride with a young French couple. The journey today is very bumpy and it takes about 9 hours. This includes one long ferry ride (30-40min) and one short one. The 4WD is driven onto a huge wooden raft/ferry placed over motorised boats. It’s quite clever.

In between ferry rides, we stopped for lunch in a town called Bel Sur.

Madagascar in two weeks
Madagascar in two weeks. The car and passenger ferry on the way to Tsingy National Park

There are lots of places to eat here, tourist restaurants where you can buy an expensive plate of food for Ar 30,000 or you can choose to eat street food for as little as Ar 100- 500 for deep-fried sweet potatoes or small plates of simple noodles. We arrived at the lodge at 4 pm.

We stopped at the entrance to the National Park to pay entrance fees and our guide for the following day. Prices are noted at the end of our detailed post about how to get to Tsingy National Park.

It’s up to you how you spend your time once you reach this lodge. You can relax here or walk back into the small town if you like, it takes about 20 min. This lodge has good wifi between 5.30-9 pm and great food in the evening. They offer a plate of the day for Ar 19,000 and the food is very good.

Day 5- Exploring Grand Tsingy & Small Tsingy

We departed at 07:15 am in a convoy with all the other 4WDs and passengers from our lodge and a few others. We drove for about 45 min – to 1 hour to Grand Tsingy. First, our guide helps us put on our harness, then we walk in. We walk around and explore the forest first, spotting our first lemurs and a mongoose.

Then the fun begins. We enter a small cave and start clipping on /off to ensure our safety. (Exploring Grand Tsingy requires you to climb a protective climbing route called via Ferrata). It is here that you see all the other small groups of people on the route and you must wait for each other to climb safely and clear the route so you can ascend.

I’d say that the climb is a little difficult, yet safe. If you suffer from vertigo, you may not enjoy this activity. The limestone rocks you are climbing are sharp, so it takes quite a bit of concentration.

Epic views from the top!

Once you climb to the top, the view is awesome. There are a few different platforms to look out for these incredible rock formations. You’ll cross a very cool bridge, one person at a time, and see more platforms. Then it’s time to climb down using ladders and lots of clipping on/off for safety. There is a part where you pop down inside a chasm or slim rocks and caves.

There are a couple of different circuits to take to visit Grand Tsingy. We chose Andamozavaky, as it’s the most popular circuit and the one that most visitors take. It is around 4 km long and you will spend approximately 4-5 hours inside the park.

Madagascar in two weeks
Madagascar Travel Itinerary – The view after we climbed to the top of Grand Tsingy.

Exploring Grand Tsingy requires you to be climbing over very sharp rocks, so you need to wear good footwear/hiking shoes.

NOTE: The route will take you through some very slim openings in the rocks, therefore it would be difficult for larger people to complete the route.

We returned to the car park (with everyone else) and had half an hour or so to eat lunch.  There is an option for the lodge to prepare a pre-packed lunchbox for you to take today for Ar 16,000. You can choose to take your own (baguettes, cheese & jam you bought from Morondava perhaps) or some people return to the lodge to enjoy a hot lunch and take a break there. We drove past the lodge to get to the small Tsingy, so it’s entirely up to you or your group.

We then drove to Small Tsingy. This circuit is a much easier option. If you’re not a very fit person or if you carry a lot of weight, I’d recommend only exploring the Small Tsingy. This route does not require any harness, you won’t be doing any difficult climbs except for a few ladders to reach a couple of great views.

Again, there are a number of different circuits you can do in Small Tsingy. Our circuit was 1.7 km, it took around 1.5 hours. Once we finished, we dropped our guide in town and we returned to camp in the late afternoon. You will definitely need a shower as it is a hot and sweaty day.

Madagascar in two weeks tsingy national park
On the bridge inside Tsingy National Park. A must-visit place on your Madagascar in two weeks itinerary

Day 6 – Tsingy to Morondava

Our departure was 07:00 am. We drove back to Morondava today. I noticed again that all the other 4WDs leave at the same time, so you kind of follows each other along the bumpy, dusty tracks. We stopped again for a lunch break in Bel Sur town.

This time I found a local restaurant called ‘Hotel Renala’, with a menu for local plates of food for Ar 6000. It looked good, I’d eat there next time. All other options to eat are expensive and clearly geared at the tourists passing through on tours.

Then we drove towards the big ferry crossing. This took some time today as new people and vehicles are being ferried over and it takes time to fill up the ferry with all the 4WDs on our side. We hung around in the shade for about 1 – 1.5 hours.

The crossing takes about 45 min. Once we unload from the ferry, we continue driving. Around 3.30 pm, we approached the baobabs. First, we stopped to check out a ‘sacred baobab’ and then a ‘love baobab’ on the way.

We arrived at the Avenue of the Baobabs at 4.15 pm. The driver will park and wait for you (and request Ar 4000 from you to pay for the parking fee). Here you can wander down the avenue, take photos and chill out. There is a nice cafe here serving large THB beer for Ar 7000.

Madagascar in two weeks. Avenue of the baobabs
Sunset at the avenue of the baobabs. A highlight of our Madagascar Itinerary in two weeks

We sat down and enjoyed the moment for a while with a beer, it had been a busy few days. There are lots of people here at this time of the day. The best photos we took are from standing on the opposite side facing the sunset with a line of trees and the sun is setting just behind them. It was a nice moment, except for the 4 drones flying above our heads the entire time.

Our driver dropped us at our accommodation for the night – Select Hotel.

Related Post – How to get to Tsingy National Park – Where to Book, Costs, and what’s included

Day 7 – Morondava to Antananarivo

An early start again, we checked into the Cotisse Transport office at 05:00 am. Our departure at 05:30 was on time, just as the sun was rising. This was another 14-hour drive day. We stop at a small town where we ate breakfast at a very simple stand serving big sweet bread rolls and small black cups of coffee. Each was only Ar 1000.

Our lunch stop was somewhere in the lush green part of the country for a plate of rice and vegetables. We got back in the van and arrived in Tana at 7.30 pm.

A taxi to our hostel, Madagascar Underground was Ar 15,000.

This time, we booked a private room for Ar 84,000 and ate some dinner upon arrival at the hostel. The staff was very good here and this was one of the most comfortable beds we had during our whole time backpacking Madagascar.

Day 8 – Antananarivo to Tamatave

This morning we took a pre-booked taxi from the hostel at 07:00 am. The cost was Ar 20,000. We checked in at Cotisse Transport again and had our luggage tagged. There’s a small cafe here where we ate some fresh pastries at Ar 1500 each and fresh black coffee for Ar 1000. Our departure at 08:00 to Tamatave was right on time. This drive would take most of the day again.

We stopped at 1 pm for lunch and ordered the standard rice and sautéed vegetables for Ar 4000. You can order meat with rice, but from my experience, you get very little meat in the portion, mostly just bones. This was a nice spot, with tropical surroundings and the food was very good.

On the journey today, we experienced many curving and winding roads. I felt sorry for the small boy sitting across from me that vomited in a bag the entire trip.

We arrived at 5.00 pm. We initially went to the Eden Hotel as it is marked in the guidebooks as a good budget option. I’m sure that this information hasn’t been updated for a very long time because the rooms are very old and tired.

Sure, they’re cheap (Ar 20,000 for a room) or Ar 30,000 with an old shower inside the room, but we just couldn’t do it.

We walked down the road and found the Java Hotel. They offered a room to us for Ar 110,000 per night (USD 30). This hotel is very nice, modern, has a good bed, was clean and the wifi was fantastic (something that is hard to find in Madagascar).

Click here for the best prices and availability for other hotel options in Tamatave.

As we arrived quite late at this hotel and it was also Sunday, so everything was closed. We asked the guys in reception to help us arrange a transfer to get to Ile Sainte-Marie the following morning. They booked us two seats with the company, Cap Sainte Marie. and our pick-up was for 04:00 the next morning. One thing you will get used to when travelling in Madagascar in two weeks is that everything starts super early.

Go and eat dinner at La Terrasse, a restaurant that is about 5 min walk down the road. This place is busy with locals and tourists. They have good food starting from Ar 11,000 mains and the beer is cold and cheap too. 

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Day 9 – Tamatave to Ile Sainte-Marie

We were picked up at 04:15. The van then drove us ten minutes to the Cap Sainte Marie office in Tamatave.

We paid Ar 80,000 each for a one-way ticket. This includes a van transfer to Soanierana – Ivongo, and then a boat transfer from here to Ile Sainte-Marie. The larger minivan was filled with other passengers and we left at 4.45 am.

The roads are dismal along the way, it is very slow going. We got to see the coast and watch the sunrise on the water to our right in between the huge potholes in the road. The very bumpy ride lasts for several hours. Soon it gets a little better and a few small towns and villages pop up amongst the tropical surroundings and vibrant green rice paddies too.

We arrived at Soanierana – Ivongo at 10 am. We had to check in with the guy at the small Cap Sainte Marie office, then show your passport to the Police, just across from this office. I picked up a few baguettes and some bottled water and then headed through the busy little laneway to get on the boat.

Life jackets are provided and I was happy to see that the boat isn’t overcrowded. It fits about 25-30 people. We left at 10.30 am, arrived at 12.30 pm.

When we arrived at the small port, we booked our boat back in a few days to ensure we didn’t miss out. It was the same price, Ar 80,000 each.

Ile Sainte-Marie should definitely be included in your itinerary 

To get a bit of a break, we pre-booked our accommodation and stayed at Hotel Paradise Club. We loved our stay here, so quiet and the beach is gorgeous and blue. We paid Ar 130,000 or $30 per night for our stylish bungalow right on the beach.

This place has a French owner, so it is very well run. This is also where we ate some of the best food during our whole time in Madagascar.

The plate of the day (main only) costs Ar 23,000 per person and we enjoyed delicious fish each night. You can also order the complete menu (3 courses) for Ar 50,000 each or $13. The 3-course menu we ate on our first night was something to talk about.

Our starter was a French salad with dressing, the main course was a huge plate of fresh fish brochettes and vegetables. We finished with a dessert of toasted coconut balls with fresh mango.

It was so delicious and then we just wandered back to our beach bungalow to relax with the sound of the waves crashing nearby. Bliss. 

There are many fantastic accommodation options at Ile Sainte-Marie. Click here to see rates and availability for some other properties to compare.

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Day 10 – Rest day in Ile Sainte- Marie

Today we had our first sleep-in since forever! It was so nice to wake up to the sounds of the ocean and have no plans but to chill! We made our own chilled espresso using our trusty portable coffee machine and sat on our porch overlooking the palm trees for the morning.

It was nice to read our books and take a dip in the blue water just footsteps from our bungalow. In the afternoon we walked through the small village to the main road and checked out some of the island. 

It has a nice atmosphere on this island, locals are going about their day, small shops have small fried snacks and fruit for sale, and tuk-tuks and motorbikes whiz past. We walked back to our bungalow before it got too dark and enjoyed another fresh fish dinner at our hotel. We figured the food was too good not to do it again.

Madagascar in two weeks hotel Ile saint marie
Our beachside bungalow – Hotel Club Paradise in Ile Sainte-Marie. A relaxing few days on our Madagascar Travel Itinerary

Day 11 – A day trip to Ile Aux Natte

We woke this morning and packed our large bags, checked out, and left them at reception. We flagged down a tuk-tuk to go to the small island of Ile Aux Natte today. The tuk-tuk drops us off around 4km away at the tip of our island.

Here you will find many small pirogue boats that take you across to Aux Nattes for Ar 4000 for a return trip. The island is literally a stone’s throw away – you can also walk or wade across here in low tide, but for a $1 return, it’s a fair deal.

Ile Aux Natte
Ile Aux Natte – It’s beautiful here. A few days rest on our Madagascar in two weeks itinerary

This island is very cute with a really beautiful beach to your right as you’re crossing over. In some parts, you can see that a recent cyclone has hit as some places are cleaning up.

Again, there are a number of good accommodation options for very affordable prices. The most popular options here are:

Baboo Village – A beautiful resort from $27 p/night. They offer a delicious breakfast for $5 and this is the perfect place to relax and get away from it all.

Residence Monique – Beachfront accommodation from $30 p/night.

We walked around the island today, then relaxed and swam in the gorgeous blue water. Later in the afternoon, we caught a pirogue across the water, and negotiated a price of Ar 20,000 for a tuk-tuk to return to Club Paradise to pick up our bags and drop us 10km away in Ile Sainte- Marie town.

The reason we are moving to town and staying the night here is that we needed to check in for our ferry at 04:00 am the following morning and our original hotel is too far. We didn’t want to risk something going wrong at that time in the morning and we needed to be on that boat transfer.

We checked in Hotel Freddy – This place is located two streets back from the main street of Ile Sainte-Marie and only a 7 min walk to the boat port. The rooms are very clean with good beds and a hot water shower for Ar 40,000 p/night. A good deal. We dropped our bags and went to explore the town.

There are a few markets and restaurants where you can get local or Western food. We saw ladies setting up street food on the side of the road, so we decided to try some. We ate small plates of simple noodles with vegetables, mashed potato and mayonnaise (for Ar 500 or 0.15 cents a plate), and some fresh zebu brochettes (small skewers of meat that the lady grills when you order it). These were Ar 400 per piece.

We ordered a cold beer at one of the restaurants/bars on the main road and used their wifi for a while before we returned to our hotel for an early night.

street food madagascar
Eating street food in Ile Sainte-Marie. Backpacking Madagascar requires eating lots of local street food.

Day 12 – Ile Sainte Marie to Tamatave

We woke up at 3.45 am, then walked down to the port to check in for the boat. It’s already quite busy at this time of the morning. The boat is booked for a 4.30 am departure, we sailed at about 05:00 am. This time the crossing took 1 hr 45 min.

On the other side, we were informed that the half-sized comfortable bus we arrived on had a problem with the brakes, so this vehicle wasn’t working. Instead, we were squashed into quite possibly the oldest and rustiest minivan in Madagascar. Both of us, plus the other 22 passengers. The van had no suspension, no padding on the seats and surprisingly, the windows didn’t open so it was stifling hot.

The next 6 hours driving back to Tamatave on the bumpiest road in the country. We arrived at Tamatave at 1.15 pm.

Our initial plan was to continue on further and try to get to Andisabe National Park today, but it just wasn’t to be. Today was one of those days when you just can’t catch a break. Our visit to Madagascar in two weeks was getting a little tiring from all those early mornings and long drive days.

We searched for another ride to Andisabe or Tana (to get off halfway), but Cotisse Transport was booked out today and all of tomorrow.*sigh*

After asking around, we learned that all of the shared taxis going in that direction weren’t leaving until evening. We walked around in the shared taxi area of Tamatave in the scorching weather, dust, and rubbish for a while. A cycle driver walked us to a small place close to the Cotisse Transport office. Here we spoke to the lady here who said that their van departs for Andisabe today at 6.00 pm. 

We booked two seats and decided we needed lunch and a drink, so we took a tuk-tuk to La Terrasse for food. We sat here for a few hours using their wifi and planning our last few days in Madagascar. At 5.45 pm, we returned to catch our van to Andisabe for the 6 pm departure. There was very little movement here. No passengers filling up the van and no sign of it beginning to load with luggage.

This wasn’t a good sign and we knew exactly what was happening here. We got very used to being told these little white lies from our travels in West Africa. This van would depart when enough people arrive to fill it.

We asked the woman in charge why it wasn’t departing at 6.00 pm, then she claims it will leave at 6.30 pm. Then at 6.30 pm and with no movement, we ask her again, and she says maybe 7.00 pm.

We explained to her that we needed to leave earlier and close to 7.00 pm, we requested our money back as we had to try and catch another form of transport that might actually depart in the next hour or so.

She didn’t like this much, but after some more explanation, she returned our cash.

transport in tamatave
Waiting for our van to leave from Tamatave. It was scheduled to leave at 6 pm. Travel in Madagascar requires some patience for sure.

We ran around the corner to the Cotisse Transport office to check if there were any no-show passengers to Tana. We thought it was a chance that two passengers didn’t show. No, the van was full.

After walking around in dark asking if any vans were departing now and everybody giving us random information, we decided we had been defeated. We hailed a tuk-tuk and returned to Java Hotel

This had been one of the toughest days of travel in Madagascar and we needed a clean and comfortable room to wash the day off and get some rest. The plan was to wake up very early again to return to the taxi station to try and get a ride to Andisabe tomorrow morning.

Day 13 – Tamatave to Andasibe National Park

We woke at 07:00 am, checked out soon after, and caught a passing tuk-tuk (price is Ar 1000 per person for any ride within the town) to the taxi-brousse station. We were directed to a small office called coTrans in the middle of the chaos that is the taxi-brousse station.

They offer good, reliable sprinter vans to Moramanga (the town is 25km after the turnoff for Andasibes National park, so it’s cheapest to take this route/van).

We arrived around 08:00 am and the lady here said departure for this van is at 8.30 am. The price would be Ar 15,000 each. Great, we thought, but in reality, we should have known better that it wouldn’t leave at this time after our experience last night. We were right, it didn’t. We eventually left around 10.00 am, which wasn’t too bad.

This route has many bad roads and lots of trucks. We arrived at the small turn-off for Andasibes National Park at 4.30 pm, we told our driver earlier that we’d like to get off there.

It’s only a 5 min walk down the road, and you’ll see a few budget hotels right there. Popular choices for many travellers are Maria Guesthouse and Hotel Luc.

We stayed in Feon Ny Ala Hotel. They offer basic bungalows for Ar 50,000 per night and a range of nicer bungalows depending on what you want to pay. It looks like all the tour groups and Europeans stayed here as it was quite busy, yet it was well organised. 

If you’d prefer to stay in something a little nicer, I’d recommend this property – Andasibe Lemur’s Lodge. Great service, fantastic food, and very comfortable rooms.

Day 14 – Andasibe National Park

This morning we woke at 07:00 am and we could already hear the call of the Indri (the largest lemurs in Madagascar).

We checked out and ate an average breakfast at our hotel before leaving our bags at reception whilst we went to the park. We walked along the road, about 15 min or 1.5 km to the National Park. It’s busy with people and small groups at this time of the morning.

A guide is compulsory inside the park, so if one approaches you outside (and providing they can speak your language), bring them with you inside to purchase tickets to enter. You’ll need a guide with you to do so, the prices are set.

It’s very busy in the mornings here and there doesn’t seem to be enough guides to fulfill the number of people entering the park, so take a guide when they approach you.

The entrance fee is Ar 45,000 each. Guide for 2 people costs Ar 40,000 total (which you must pay to your guide directly). The price is a bit cheaper if your group is a little larger.

Andasibe national park prices
Andisabe National Park prices for entrance and guide

You can choose the circuit that you’d like to do, prices are based on this. We chose the Indri 2 circuit which is about 3 hours long.

Inside the park, we saw three different species of lemurs over the next couple of hours. The Indri lemur, some common brown lemurs with babies, and the Diademed Safika (otherwise known as the dancing lemur). 

Sifaka lemur
Sifaka lemur

After our tour finished, we walked back to our hotel, collected our backpacks and made our way to the intersection to try and catch a passing van to take us to Antananarivo. The timing was perfect as it was midday and many vans and vehicles were here taking a break for lunch.

After asking around for 15 minutes, we found a nice Sprinter van with two spare seats available, heading directly to Tana. We agreed to pay the driver Ar 10,000 each and we managed to get two of the best seats in the van, right behind the driver.

Only 3.5 hours later, we arrived at Tana. The minivan stopped at a random outdoor bus station and we had to take a taxi from here to our hotel.

We wanted something a little more comfortable for our final two nights in Tana, so we booked a room at Le Manoir.

The rooms are from USD 55, it’s lovely, and it’s in a good location close to the city.

Day 15 – Antananarivo

Today we explored more of Tana. It’s only a 10-15 min walk into the city from our hotel. We stopped at a bakery for coffee and some delicious pastries.

We returned home before dark after exploring the city and some ramen noodles for lunch.

We also recommend this Walking Tour of Antananarivo with a Local.

Day 16 – Departure

We left Tana this morning on an early flight to Mauritius. The taxi to the airport was Ar 50,000 at 04.00 am.

Travel Insurance for Madagascar in two weeks

Travel Tips for Africa

And, if you enjoy discovering new food when you travel, then you may find our ULTIMATE Africa Food Map interesting.

Don’t miss our recap of our travels across West Africa in 2019 for even more helpful tips.

If you’re unfamiliar with this region’s cuisine, we wrote a post about the 8 most delicious West African foods we tried along the way.

If you’re keen to travel West & Central Africa, then it’s worth reading these 17 ESSENTIAL Things to know before travelling to West Africa. 

We spent a great deal of time travelling overland in this region on Africa on our journey to visit EVERY country in the world. (We completed our goal in Nov 2022 – read more about it in this article from CNN).

Honestly, this was one of the most challenging regions of the world to travel independently – but we’ve got some amazing memories. Our ESSENTIAL Packing List for Africa may be helpful to you.

And finally, read our best travel tips from 20+ years of travel here and for our ultimate travel resources to travel the world, head to our Travel Resources Page.