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We really excel at tailor-making your trip to your needs. You may want to see certain species or visit particular parks, reserves or lodges. You may want a private plane or helicopter and high class car, or need to travel at a certain time of year. Tailor-making works whether you are an experienced traveler or trying out a wildlife holiday for the first time, wanting to enjoy a wildlife experiences as part of an occasion like a birthday, honeymoon or anniversary, or a busy executive in search of a short wildlife fix.
Have you always wanted to design your own tour but let someone else handle all the nitty gritty of organizing it? Do you run specialized tours where you'd like us to put them together for you? Keen birders, scuba divers, conservationists, volunteers, photographers, surfers, medical adventurers, hikers, bikers, historians and geologists – no matter what your specialty is, we can tailormake accordingly! We also offer unique tours which you're more than welcome to join us on!
Do you have a large family or group of friends that you would like to travel? Does your company want to run its own set of branded series tours? The NDAO-i-Travel tailormade services and charter team can do organize all of this for you, and more! Whether it be in an air-conditioned bus, a minivan or a 4 x 4 vehicle, we will tailor a tour for you to ensure that your dream holiday takes in everything you're expecting from it.
Our team of well-travelled and dedicated individuals will provide you with a detailed itinerary, suggested accommodation, professional, friendly service and all the support you need to make travelling in Madagascar an absolute pleasure.
Whether your party is made up of two or two hundred travelers, we'll pull something special out of the bag, just for you!
You can enjoy complete flexibility in planning and booking on all our tours for a truly customized Madagascar holiday that is in your budget and personal style. Traveling around a theme or exploring something in particular? Our tailor-made holiday experts are eager to assist in planning an experience that fits your requirements putting you in complete control of your next Madagascar holiday.
The Canal des Pangalanes is a series of sweet water lakes and lagoons parallel to the coast of the Indian Ocean, separated by a narrow stretch of land. The lakes are connected by a man-made channel system that forms an inland waterway from Tamatave through to Farafangana, making it the longest canal in the world. This trip offers you to live along the spices road from old times! We will use motor pirogues made of wood, 10m length and covered by a removable roof for the part of the channel where nature is boundless. 6 passenger maximum capacity. Meals are served hot, made of fresh products. The super railway from the Coast to Fianarantsoa. This "little train of the cliffs" considered the steepest train in the world, it rushes into the primeval forest, advances on steep rocky slopes, descends along precipices, at a speed of 35 km. It is a long trip but guaranteed sensations.
About this trip: the river trip - 110 km, 3 days of cruise, 3 nights in bivouacs, 3 nights at the hotels, 1 full day trip by train. Discover a wonderful nature, a magnificent spectacle, wild and luxurious. We cruise sometimes in a “green tunnel” to land on crystal waters and other paradisiacal places.
Do not hesitate to visit villages to discover the daily life of the villagers turning mainly on the fishing but also the braiding of mats and the construction of canoes and new huts. On board a traditional dugout canoe, discover a luxuriant and wild vegetation dotted here and there with fruit trees and in the air exotic perfumes mixing coffee, lemon grass, mango, vanilla...
ENJOY THIS... unusual journey:
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Day 1: Ranomafana - Mananjary. Meeting at 9-00 am at your hotel. In the morning we continue our trip to Mananjary, a tropical green town about 3 hours away. The road is lined with the traveller’s palm and the area we drive through is famous for the mining of gold. In the villages you will see women with gold teeth; the sign of wealth. In Mananjary we stay in cottages near the beach. For your accommodation in Mananjary, we suggest you rooms at Hotel Jardin de Mer or Hotel Vahiny Lodge. These hotels offer services which will meet your expectations. A veritable garden of exoticism, Mananjary will delight nature lovers. Mananjary is home to Lake Mahela directly overlooking the sea. To satisfy your escape desires, lose yourself in the plantations of coffee trees and clove trees, and then learn about the region’s biodiversity! Located away from the hustle and bustle of large cities, Mananjary is the perfect place to go for an innovative trip. On the edge of the Canal of Pangalanes, this small village in the southeast of Madagascar will answer all your desires. Enjoy a refreshing treatment at the beach of Sidi Eden! During your visit, you will always be welcomed by the local people with a smile which you will find nowhere else. These people with their exemplary kindness are always ready to serve you. Overnight at hotel.
Day 2: Mananjary - Ambinanin’i Namorona. Today we start our Cruise on the Pangalanes Canal. We will cruise to the south in direction of Manakara. The soft sound of water is lapping against the lake shore. It's wonderful to hear the sound of the nature. Also you will see birds in large numbers - kingfishers, guépiers, fody, egrets and herons, and all the seabirds which come there to make an incursion. Arrival in Ambinanin’i Namorona around 3 pm after 6 hours cruise. This will be our first bivouac.
Day 3: Ambinanin’i Namorona - Ambavan’ny Loholoka. We will cross the mouth of Namorona river and the boat keep on cruising in a Green Tunnel on 8 km! During the 9 hours of cruise, we will cross pirogues and motor barges doing local products freight. They are the only mean of transportation for surrounding villagers. The villagers are more curious to observe us than we are. Each visit stop of the village provokes a gathering of curious people and the ambience is guaranteed! Our camp for today is in a sand lagoon.
Day 4: Ambavan’ny Loholoka – Manakara - Farafangana. We will pass a series of little wild channels. We will travel in the middle of the rich and unique vegetation. After 4 hours cruise, we reach Manakara. After lunch we drive by 4x4 car to Farafangana, a cradle of traditions with a natural and wild décor. Our main luggage we will leave at the hotel in Manakara, taking only the necessary things. Still unrecognized, Farafangana offers a total change of scenery in a grandiose setting. The colonial power has made it one of the pillars of the economy of Madagascar. Farafangana is known for its production of cash crops, mainly coffee, but also pepper and clove, which you can easily find at the market. Shopping is everywhere and you may exchange with a very hospitable population. Take a tour of the town to appreciate, among other things, the architecture of the houses built during the colonization. Dinner. Overnight in a simple but clean hotel.
Day 5: Manombo Special Reserve. This day and night will be fully devoted to the discovery of still unknown but attractive Manombo Special Reserve and the Agnalahaza Forest (formerly the Mahabo Forest Reserve). The unusual tranquility and beautiful scenery in Manombo, where numerous endemic lemurs live (the white-collared brown lemur and the black-and-white ruffed lemur), invite you to stay longer to explore the forest. You will also see a multitude of birds, reptiles, and batrachians which live together in a rich endemic vegetation. This site is a little corner of paradise almost intact. In order to add a little spice to your relaxation in nature and to meet crocodiles of the Reserve aboard a canoe, you need sail down the very interesting rivers Takoandra and Manatsimba to the beautiful Rianambo waterfall. You will walk to the natural swimming-pool where you will have a chance to take a bath on the lonely beach of Takoandra and where you will be able to make a small camp for your day's rest.
Day 6: Agnalahaza Forest – Manakara. As is known,to see most of the exciting things we need get out of the bed early. A light breakfast with coffee and biscuits, and at 5-30 we will go looking for active morning birds and lemurs in the Manombo Special Reserve. After lunch in Farafangana, we will go to Agnalahaza Forest. It covers 1500 ha and is covered in littoral forest, an increasingly rare formation in Madagascar, including some 600 ha of wooded swamp and stands of traveler’s palm (Ravenala madagasariensis). The Missouri Botanical Garden carries out research there, and has already discovered 10 new plant species. Several groups of the white-collared brown lemur (Eulemur cinereiceps) occur in this forest. In the evening we will return to Manakara. Overnight at the hotel.
Day 7: The train ride from Manakara to Fianarantsoa, the Côte Est - Fianar. It is an experience not to be missed. The 163km route takes you through dense rainforest past waterfalls and the photographic opportunities will be excellent. The train between Manakara and Fianarantsoa takes theoretically about 8 - 12 hours, but practically, it could take much longer. One could argue that taking 12 to 24 hours to cover the 163km between Indian Ocean coast and the Madagascar’s highlands is a rather slow and inefficient way to travel. It is, but that is the point. Travelling on the Côte Est - Fianar railway isn’t really about getting from A to B – it’s about the journey. In theory, the departure of the train from Manakara Station is normally at 6-45 in the morning, so we have an early breakfast, and we are on our way! We arrive in Fianarantsoa. Accommodation at the hotel. Then you can continue your Madagascar holidays with us, heading to the South of the island, or to our capital – Antananarivo.
NOTE: The cruise depends on the weather! The guide is the only one to decide to change the program in case of bad weather. As for all river tours, unusual weather conditions can constraint us to change the itinerary to ensure safety for all. If there is too much wind or too much rain, there may be delays.
In theory trains depart from Manakara at 6.45am. In practice, the only sure way of knowing when the train is departing is to be on it when it leaves. In theory, the train should arrive on the evening of the same day. In practice, it rarely reaches the other end until late at night or early the next morning (the scheduled departures from Manakara are optimistic given the usual arrival time from Fianar). It is therefore risky to organize a tour around it, unless you are ready to skip the train ride at the worst case, in order to keep the schedule for the rest of the tour.
This kind of slow (and unpredictable) travel isn’t for everyone. It’s either your idea of an authentic experience, or your worst nightmare in your carefully planned two-week holiday. We won’t judge; all we’ll say is that being prepared for inevitable delays and factoring them in in your itinerary is probably the best way to approach this trip. Certainly the trip is well worth if you bring sufficient time and patience!
About meals: Full Board (except breakfast at D1 and dinner (or breakfast) on the last day) with wine and aperitif during cruise. Meal plan: generous and well-balanced meals with fresh food mixing savors and spices. Meals are served hot. Aperitif and snacks. Generous dinner for a deserved rest. Beverages: bottled water, juice, tea, coffee, wine and aperitif, rums, beer.
About accommodation: In tents, mattress and blankets provided in bivouacs/camps; at hotels in Manakara, Mananjary, Farafangana. Our team takes in charge almost everything in the camp. However, your help may be needed if late arrival during the tour.
This package includes: Full Board (except breakfast at D1 and dinner (or breakfast) on the last day) with beverages: bottled water, juice, tea, coffee, wine and aperitif, rums, beer; Accommodation in bivouacs/camps; The crew: 2 guides, cook, skipper during the navigation, porters; local guide, entry permit to Manombo Special Reserve; rented canoe; All the camping equipment; 4×4 car transportations.
About safety: We always brief our customers before we go on a trek. We strongly advise you to subscribe to an individual insurance more efficient than our local insurance.
Not included: Personal expenses, tips, phone; Sanitary evacuation policy. In option: to be specified during your order.