Nowadays, Madagascar is home to more than 300 species of amphibians and 400 species of reptiles in which over 90% are endemic. This rate increases continually due to discover of new species in different places that have not been explored before. About half the world's chameleons are unique to Madagascar - currently more than 70 species have been identified - and new ones are still being discovered. The smallest chameleon of the world has been discovered measuring 20mm without the tail (Brookesia micra). The leaf-tailed or fringed geckos (genus Uroplatus) are amongst Madagascar's most amazing wildlife, showing an extraordinary control of camouflage. On land, there are no front-fanged venomous snakes (which means, in effect, no deadly species such mambas, vipers and cobras) and no pythons. Actually, some families have their closest relatives in South America: the iguanid lizards and the boas. The frogs in Madagascar represent near 300 species and new ones are being discovered all the time: in the past 15 years, at least 20 new ones have been described. 99% Madagascar's frogs are endemic. Therefore Madagascar is a wonderful place for herpetologists.
- The Madagascar exotic Farm (by Pereyras): many different species of reptiles and amphibians from different regions of Madagascar. A must-have-seen for herpetologists;
- The special reserve of Analamazaotra and Mantadia National Park in Andasibe/Perinet: beautiful place to discover amphibians and reptiles in their natural habitat;
- Adrenaline at the Pangalanes Canal: a night expedition with the canoe through lake and stream for crocodile spot, the experience is already worth it;
- Maroantsetra neighborhood (National parks of Masoala and Nosy Mangabe): Experience the camping in extraordinary and astonished biodiversity on an amazing peninsula/island, "where the forest meets the see";
- The Ranomafana National Park enables to observe endemic species of frogs, snakes and chameleons.
Departure for Andasibe. Stop at Marozevo to visit Pereyras Park where you can find several species of reptiles and frogs. Nocturnal visit to VOI of Andasibe. Night at the hotel.
Visit to the Analamazaotra Special Reserve. You can absolutely find different species of frogs, reptiles, lemurs, birds.
Full day visit of the Mantadia Park. Another park beside Analamazaotra Special Reserve.
Drive to Manambato, where a boat is waiting for you. Transfer by boat to Akanin'ny Nofy. Night at the Bushhouse.
Visit of the Palmarium Private Reserve. Late in the evening, canoeing to see (with luck) crocodiles around the Lake. Night at the hotel.
Transfer by boat to Tamatave. Flight to Maroantsetra. Short walk in the area to see the special red toads of the region (Dyscophus antongilii). Night at the hotel.
Transfer by boat to Tampolo. Night in Tampolodge.
Visit Masoala Park. A good chance to discover the famous Leaf-tailed Geckos and Boas.
Transfer to Nosy Mangabe. Overnight stay in Camping.
Visit of Nosy Mangabe Island and transfer to Maroantsetra by boat. Night at the hotel.
Flight to Tana and drive to Antsirabe
Drive to Ranomafana. Nocturnal walk on the edge of the road: you should have a very nice opportunity to see different species of amphibians.
Morning visit of Ranomafana Park with its birds, lemurs, other mammals, reptiles and amphibians. In the afternoon, a visit of a place named Vohiparara gives us the chance to see special amphibians of the region.
Drive back to Tana.
Visit the Crocfarm. Flight to Europe.
Madagascar is the fourth biggest island of the world from its size and the origin of this unclassifiable land is in itself a travel. From Africa, from which it separated 165 million years ago, it kept the red earth. From Asia, where a large part of the population came from, it inherited the rice fields. However, Madagascar is neither truly Asian nor totally African; its original culture makes it the only "Afro-Asian" land on the planet. Eighteen populations share this territory of tropical forests, spiny deserts, and beaches with white sand, lateritic soil, lagoons and rock formations. This ethnic mosaic has forged over the centuries a system of authentically Malagasy values. Rites associated with the cult of ancestors such as famadihana, or the presence in the same country of African agrarian tools, and words of Asian origin, are found only in Madagascar.
Welcome to the country of endemism! Madagascar is home to a unique flora and fauna found nowhere else: 85% of the 12,000 island plant varieties live on its soil. The Malagasy territory has distinct natural environments that correspond to as many types of vegetation. The east coast, resolutely tropical, is characterized by vast rain forests and a wide range of palms, bamboos, ferns and orchids. The drier west is the country of baobabs. Seven of the eight different species of baobabs in the world are found in Madagascar. One specie (Adansonia digitata) exists in Africa, another species (Adansonia gregorii or gibbosa) is found in Australia and the other 6 endemic species (Adansonia grandidieri, Adansonia madagascariensis, Adansonia perrieri, Adansonia rubrostipa, Adansonia suarezensis, Adansonia za) in Madagascar with one who is present in Africa (Adansonia digitata).
Madagascar was separated from the rest of the African continent 160 million years ago. This results in the country's unparalleled biodiversity and endemism. Ninety-six percent of the fauna and flora is endemic in Madagascar and is found nowhere else. Covering an area of 587,000 km2, the country is the 4th largest island in the world (after Greenland, New Guinea and Borneo), so its environmental diversity rivals that of an entire continent (rainforests in the east, deciduous forests in the north and west, dense xerophytes' forests in the south, and forests of the high mountains inside the island). Madagascar is home to one of the most unusual collections of mammals in the world and has a remarkable diversity in terms of habitat and associated flora.
South-East exploration by train (12 days/11 nights)
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