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Sainte Marie Island Beach Holidays

Key attractions


The island of Sainte Marie and its small surrounding islands are a true jewel and very rich in terms of terrestrial and marine biodiversity. Nosy Boraha also offers a stunning landscape: majestic waterfalls, clear natural pools, preserved tropical forests and - of course - fine sand beaches that face the turquoise sea. Its seascape is equally impressive thanks to its coral reef and its waters filled with fish.

Key infomration

Price on request
Duration 11 days
Transport A car, jet
Distance about 950 km
Camp No
Difficulity Easy peasy
Regions East

Day by day

Arrival at Antananarivo

We hope you enjoyed your international flight. We will be at the airport to welcome you and transfer you to your hotel, where you will stay overnight. Let’s start by learning a new word: “Tongasoa”, read it Toongasoo, which means Welcome. Our tour will begin in Antananarivo, where are we will depart by car, but before catching a hotel we will visit in the Ivato crocodile farm, also called “Croc Farm”. Spanning three hectares, this lush green oasis is ideal for you to relax.

From the “Croc Farm” we will transfer you to your hotel, where you will stay overnight. Do you want a piece of advice? Choose a light meal for dinner. You will feel more comfortable during your overnight stay at your hotel. In the evening after dinner, over cocktails we discuss our program. From the first day to the last day our experienced and professional guide and the driver will be next to you, so don’t worry about it, they are near to make sure you have everything you need. We are leaving tomorrow.

Arriving in Tana;

Visit in the Ivato crocodile farm, also called “Croc Farm”, lunch and cocktails;

Accommodation at the hotel, Bed & Breakfast;

Dinner and discussion our program.

Antananarivo - Andasibe

During the course of the morning you travel to Tsarasaotra which means birds‘ island, a small green oasis in the north of the city. The park is a refuge for many birds that can be easily watched and photographed here – among them 14 endangered species that only occur in Madagascar.

After visiting Tsarasaotra Park, we will drive along a scenic road to Andasibe. Here the adventure really starts. You will notice that the landscape changes. The road in comparison to many Malagasy roads is in excellent condition but with many uphills/downhills, many curves. In general, it is a beautiful landscape, composed of small villages, rice paddies, tropical plants and forest.

En-route we will stop at a farm specializing in Madagascan reptiles and butterflies, before arriving at our lodge. You visit the exotic farming centre of Mr. Pereyras, Marozevo, where you will see chameleon species of Madagascar, butterflies, lizards, snakes and other interesting animals.

We arrive just after noon in time to stroll in the Analamazaotra Special Reserve. Inside the most famous national park of Madagascar, we will try to find the Diadem sifaka and visit the largest lemur of the Earth, the “normally coloured” Indri. Nature provides an unbelievable diversity here and is home to an enormous richness in species.

Soon after sunset and after dinner we will visit the Vondron’olona Miaro Mitia Ala Reserve. It is full of nocturnal species of lemurs and chameleons, and is run by the village community. This evening will delight in late-night strolls. The VOIMMA Park is an untouched paradise for endemic animals and plants. For reptiles and amphibian lovers, the reserve offers countless number frogs along its crystal clear river and amazing chameleons can be found in the forest. Truly, it is a wonderful tour!

Distance: about 160 km;

Drive time: about 4 hours;

Visit in the Tsarasaotra Park;

Visit in the exotic farming centre of Mr. Pereyras;

Lunch en-route;

Walks in the Analamazaotra Special Reserve;

Click here to learn about IBA Triger species of birds for this area;

Late-night strolls in the VOIMMA Park;

Accommodation at the hotel, Bed & Breakfast.

Lemurs Island - Toamasina

Early in the morning you'll wake up in the Mantadia NP to the characteristic cry of the indri. The sound carries for kilometers, and is intended to delineate their territory. Sometimes you hear ten different families, some distant, others nearby.

Before breakfast, just a snacking, we will get a visit to the lovely private reserve of Vakona lodge known as the "Island of lemurs" to take part in their feeding and to meet some of the friendliest primates of the island. You'll be keen to experience this unique activity! The lemurs - brown, ruffled, dancing, lemurs galore - they will want our bananas, willing to do whatever it took to get them. Including  jumping on our heads, shoulders, arms, and gouging our eyes out. Get ready! - many lemurs will be intent on boarding a canoe! Lemurs pirates!

After a leisurely breakfast we leave the rain forest of Andasibe and continue way to the east. It is interesting travel through stunning natural scenery on very beautiful and photographic paved roads. You make your way to Toamasina, to join the speed boat to Sainte Marie Island.

During this drive, you cross a myriad of villages and get acquainted with the traditional lifestyle of the Malagasy people. 225 km to enjoy pretty golden grasslands, amazingly abundant rice paddies, chimneyless long clay red houses and millions of roadside markets displaying a variety of colourful and gorgeous handicrafts, fruits and flowers.

Distance: about 225 km;

Drive time: about 4 hours;

Unique activity in the private reserve – Lemurs Island;

Lunch en-route;

Accommodation at the hotel, Bed & Breakfast.

Toamasina - Sainte Marie Island

At about 7 am we continue northwards to Soanierana Ivongo approx. 3 hours by car. In Soanierana Ivongo we join the speed boat to Sainte Marie Island, departure on the speed boat at 11-00.

Whether you call it island of Sainte Marie, Nosy Boraha or Ile Ste Marie, it won’t change the fact that it is a unique tourism spot that resembles no other and it is, besides Nosy Be, one of the most visited islands of Madagascar.

Let’s enjoy it. After about a one-hour journey, you will arrive at the lodge or hotel. Discover this amazing place where you’ll stay for few days! Start gathering highlights from today on: enjoy exploring the beaches, swimming in the sea before going for a walk along the coast. Relax. Delight and don’t worry, we took great care of everything. You will enjoy your lunch and dinner at your hotel, where you’ll stay overnight.

Distance: about 200 km;

Drive time: about 4 hours;

Accommodation at the hotel, Bed & Breakfast.

Sainte Marie Island

What do I do once there? As said before: “Doing everything or doing nothing, both are great and possible.” Nosy Boraha has enough to do that you can fill many days here.

The island of Sainte Marie and its small surrounding islands are a true jewel and very rich in terms of terrestrial and marine biodiversity. Nosy Boraha also offers a stunning landscape: majestic waterfalls, clear natural pools, preserved tropical forests and - of course - fine sand beaches that face the turquoise sea. Its seascape is equally impressive thanks to its coral reef and its waters filled with fish.

You can of course, and we recommend it, do fishing in the Deep or soak up the sun, enjoy  beaches and kaleidoscope of the local cuisine, get a cocktail in a bar or on the beach between palm trees – or have fun in the local discotheque. Ile Ste Marie has everything for everyone.

To whet your Island hopping appetite, we offer to look at four of the most popular things you can do together with us on the lush and charming Ile St Marie.

ENJOY THESE... experiences:

*The adrenalin rush of humpback whalewatching;

*The pedestrian walks;

*Remember ancient rogues in the pirate cemetery;

*Scuba diving and Snorkeling;

*Visit the islet aux Nattes;

*Cycling is the most popular means of transport of getting around;

*Another way to move further is on board of a traditional pirogue.

Sainte Marie Island - Îlots aux sables

Let yourself be enchanted by the beauty of nature: beautiful landscapes, idyllic spots and a chic lagoon with a magnificent coral reef! Ride a boat on Îlots aux sables.

As the name implies, this island is formed only of sand. This is an unexpected place, surrounded by the Indian Ocean, and with a stunning view of the island of St. Marie. And it is captured by numerous birds!

Surrounded by three coral islets, the islands of aux Sables are located 4 km off the east coast of Sainte-Marie. You will find all kinds of seashells. (But do not pick up them in accordance with the law on the seashells). The lagoon with magnificent coral reefs surrounded by sands and islets is an ideal place for diving and snorkeling.

Departure from the hotel 9-00;

Picnic on the sandy island;

Return to the hotel by 17-00.

Sainte Marie Island – Grand East circle

Discover Sainte-Marie by quad, 4×4 or motorbike. Explore the most beautiful landscapes of Sainte-Marie during a day of adventure. With our guide, you will come across small villages, forests, wild beaches, mangroves, rice fields and so much more. You will learn everything about vanilla, cinnamon, clove and orchids, and the Malagasy way of life… Between breathtaking scenery and turquoise lagoons, you will find beautiful places in a lush nature.

Immediately after breakfast we set off to the beautiful and unique forest d’Ambohidena and to its black lake. In addition to eucalyptus, lemurs and chameleons, this forest is famous for paradise orchids, some of which are endangered, like Reine de Madagascar and orchidée noire (black orchid). It will be an easy hike with a local guide from 1 to 2 hours, after that we will go to Paradise Ampanihy-mangroves and make another easy hike to get to Ampanihy Bay for a picnic, swimming and relaxing in this magical place - a long beach with white sand, a lagoon with emerald bursts.

Baie d'Ampanihy is a wild and untouched place where country life goes on, as it had been for centuries. In this vegetation temple, herons catch crabs and fish. Not a sound, except for a dull roar of waves that break a coral reef in the distance. It is one of the most popular tours in Saint-Marie.

Every year from mid-November through December enormous sharks, larger than your pirogue (dugout canoe), enter the mostly shallow bay through a very deep channel in order to give birth. They never attack anyone, although their young are sometimes netted by accident, and the sight of a huge dorsal fin can prompt an early bathroom break.

Departure from the hotel at 9-00;

Excursion La Grande Boucle de l’Est and its beaches, lagoon and gulf of Ampanihy, eucalypt forest d’Ambohidena and black lake;

Lunch on a picnic of the freshest seafood. The food is fresh here from the sea, and fabulous. It means that you will have wicker baskets of live fish and crabs from the mangrove forest in a nearby creek, while the morning shrimp catch is still wiggling. Ask about coconut milk and the cook will go to the next palm to get it for you.

Return to the hotel at 17-00

L’île aux nattes

Nut Island is located south of St Marie, an easy trip on a boat in the turquoise waters of the lagoon will be enough to get us there. We offer you a tour of the island in 3 hours of walking; in stages we will discover this tropical Eden and its beaches with white sands. Swimming and lunch on site and then back to your hotel. L’île aux Nattes is a must for any visit to Sainte Marie. With a ride in the traditional dugout canoe, the wind in your hair, aromas of tropical flora promise you a unique moment of escape in nature.

After about 4 km of quiet canoeing you will discover L’île aux Nattes, with its paradisiacal beaches, lemurs, traditional villages. One of the characteristics of the island is the Blévec lighthouse, where you will have a magnificent view that extends to the reefs and East Coast. The guide will explain to you about their daily life, customs and habits (Fady and  flipping  of the dead), the discovery of flora. After visiting with a guide for 3 hours, you will have a free walk.

L’île aux Nattes or “Nosy Nanto” is separated from the island of Saint Marie by a magnificent lagoon of clear blue water. It completely surrounds the island and separates it from the Indian Ocean by the important and magnificent barrier reef.

Nattes has an endemic orchid. This is Eulophiella Roempleriana, which blooms in September and October and grows in swampy areas especially on pandanus. Its characteristic pole can be up to 1.50 m. Very rare species are protected, and their collection is strictly prohibited.

Departure from the hotel at 9-00;

A picnic on a beautiful beach in the shade of coconut trees;

After lunch, you will discover and swim in the turquoise waters of the lagoon;

Return to the hotel at 17-00

Sainte Marie Island – the Grand Nord circle

Let yourself be seduced by the charm of this wonderful Sainte Marie Island on your final day here.

After breakfast, we head to Forêt d’Ikalalao. This is a tropical forest. The way will be a little hilly pleasing us with gorgeous panoramic views: in height, there is a breathtaking view to the west on the tip to Larrey, and the beautiful lagoons of the East. The landscape is dominated by lush green vegetation common to the eastern rain forests of Madagascar. A true sanctuary of reptiles is home to both the smallest and largest chameleons in the world: the Brookesia minima and the giant chameleon Parsoni. The chameleon is the king of the forest, there are  different chameleons Pardalis furcifer, Parsoni Calumma, le phelsuma madagascariensis.

We will complete a walk in this forest in the cascades of Antanandava. The combination of water and nature, this beautiful waterfall is beautiful a place to freshen up. Quiet little place, a bit wild and preserved. A short path will take us to the foot of the waterfall.

Immediately after that we will go to the extreme north of the island to the Natural pools. In the far north of the island you will find the hostile coast of Saint-Marie and its majestic waves, underlined by natural pools for a refreshing swim. A magical place, live by the feeling of "being in the end of the world." This is not one, but several "natural pools". These basins of sea water are a hundred meters long and are created by a rock barrier, into which the waves crash with foam splashes and then turn into a peaceful space. The Antsarikelitry Pool is a sacred place where offerings are made by throwing coins into the hollow of a rock on the occasion of a vow. The “pool” of Antsarirabe has calm and clear waters. Then we will find a small protected lagoon in a place called Satsikôza. Nearby, on a hill, a sacred pole or "Fanasina" is erected. It is here that the “Lojoharo” or sorcerer performs the ritual of re-sacrifice in the event of desecration of a sacred place. Therefore, it is important that locals accompany us at these sites in order to be informed about the nature of Fady (taboo).

The final visit of this day will be Cocobay Coconut Grove, where black granite rocks gently rest in crystalline waters, surrounded by thousands of coconut palms. This combination creates an exciting atmosphere. Your Cocobay program is snorkeling, barbecue fish under trees, idleness, walks and, of course, breathtaking and spectacular views.

Departure from the hotel at 9-00;

A tour of Le Nord de L’île and its magnificent creeks, as well as the natural pool, the d’Antanandava waterfall and the Cocobay coconut grove;

Picnic "feet in the water" on the edge of the waterfalls and swimming in the rapids;

Picnic and snokeling in a coconut grove;

Return to the hotel at 17-00

Sainte Marie Island - Antananarivo

Today, depending on the flight schedule, you will proceed to your transfer to the airport and prepare yourself for a safe flight to Antananarivo. Departure time depends on the day of the week. Transfer in your hotel in Tana.

Excursion "Tana-city" and Goodbye-dinner in the cozy atmosphere of the Le Restaurant «La Varangue». We also can make visit the Chocolaterie Robert factory and Chocolatière boutique. Chocolaterie Robert is a traditional cocoa producer and chocolate maker using Trinitario and Criollo cocoa beans organically grown in the Sambirano region (Ambanja). The result is an irresistible range of pralines and chocolate bars made by ancient recipes containing only natural Malagasy ingredients. Prize-winner "GOLDEN BEAN AWARD 2017".

Flight to Tana

Distance: about 350 km;

Drive time: about 2 hours;

Excursion Chocolaterie Robert factory and Chocolatière boutique;

Excursion "Tana-city";

Goodbye-dinner in the Le Restaurant «La Varangue»;

Accommodation at the hotel, Bed & Breakfast.

Flight Home

Today your tour ends. A transfer back to the airport Ivato. We wish you a comfortable journey home and are sure you will take with you some wonderful memories of Madagascar. Experienced travelers are used to goodbyes, but that doesn't mean they get any easier. When the time comes to depart the wonderful Madagascar, we wouldn't be surprised if you were already planning a return trip!

Transfer to the airport Ivato.

Extend this tour:

Akanin’ny nofy (Palmarium), known as the ‘nest of dreams’, this peaceful and relaxing haven is home to white sand beaches, forests, scattered orchids, strings of lakes and mangroves, all factors that have made the reserve to one of the most popular visits in the Canal des Pangalanes.

For years, Akanin’ny nofy (Palmarium) has been famous for its many very tame lemurs. Ten species of lemurs live in freedom in the reserve, as well as reptiles, amphibians and crocodiles. Visitors can watch Indris, black and white ruffed lemurs, crowned lemurs and black lemurs count among the curious inhabitants of the reserve. This is even a place to watch the rare bizarre Aye-Aye (Daubentonia madagascariensis) with a portion of luck.

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Included in price

PLEASE NOTE: The price indicated is per person sharing room (DBL or TWIN), it is based on 2 Persons. If the group is of 4, 6, 8, 10 Persons, the price decreases.

*Pick up and drop off;

*Accommodations in standard hotels/bungalows (similar to European hotels 3*), bed & breakfast;

*Car 4x4 with a driver;


*Rent of boat;

*Services of your professional, experienced, English-speaking personal guide-escort (French or Russian language);

*Entrance fees to parks and reserves and the services of local guides;

*Picnics in the stipulated places at the program;

*Excursions and visits as per itinerary (Unless labeled as optional or additional)

*All transfers, including water transport;

*Government taxes and fees, including TVA and tourist tax at hotels;

*Bottled mineral water in the vehicle.

Not included in price

*International air travel;

*Air Madagascar Internal flight (Booking only. If NDAO-i-Travel Madagascar is responsible for issuing domestic flights, payment for all flights will be requested in order to confirm them);

*Visa fee (single entry 1 month visa currently 30 Euros, issued on arrival);

*Your medical insurance;

*Personal items and expenses;

*Soft and alcoholic drinks in hotels;

*Lunches en-route, lunches and dinners (except in places mentioned half or full board), Goodbye-dinner, Lunch in the crocodile farm;

*Additional activities and excursions (for diving, cruising, fishing etc, pre-booking is required);

*Special Requirements: to be specified during your order.

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