Madagascar Tailor-made Holidays

Reef & Rainforest is the UK's longest-established specialist for Madagascar, having operated there since 1992

Madagascar

Often referred to as the “Eight Continent” and “The Big Red Island”, Madagascar is the world’s oldest and fourth largest island and after millions of years of isolation, a holiday there is truly unlike anywhere else on Earth.

Reef and Rainforest is the United Kingdom’s longest established and most experienced specialist tour operator for Madagascar. It takes a long time to truly know the island, which is bigger than France with many hidden attractions, and our knowledge leads to superlative tailor-made and group tours there.

Our director, Alan Godwin, first went to Madagascar in 1992 when it was still a rigid communist dictatorship with few visitors, awful roads and hotels, abject poverty and clapped-out Citroen 2CVs literally held together with rubber bands. He clearly saw the potential, however, and persevered: now Madagascar has improved infrastructure and a good range of high-quality accommodation. And of course, its unique wildlife is as wonderful as ever.

Wildlife tourism has emerged as a major source of foreign income for Madagascar. By visiting Madagascar, you contribute directly to the conservation of its precious remaining forests with their unique wildlife, and the welfare of its people who are among the poorest (yet friendliest) in the world. Your presence facilitates the hiring of park rangers who guard the precious reserves from illegal logging, slash-and-burn farmers and bush-meat hunters. Fees paid to local guides and hotel staff salaries percolate down through the poor communities near the parks. Isolated lodges such as Anjajavy and Eden Lodge fund local schools and clinics. It all adds up.

Wildlife-wise, Madagascar must be one of the most extraordinary destinations in the world for those interested in natural history. There is a vast range of ecosystems to explore: wet rainforest, dry tropical deciduous forest and the unique spiny forest found only in Madagascar’s far southwest. In addition, there are also coral reefs and stunning white sand beaches to enjoy along the coast, plus unique stone forests known as tsingy and fascinating cultures to discover.

Nearly all of Madagascar’ staggering biodiversity is found nowhere else on the planet and much of it is sadly threatened with extinction. Wildlife highlights undoubtably include the mysterious nocturnal aye aye, iconic ring-tailed lemur, the beautiful sifaka family, huge tail less indri, tiny mouse lemurs, charismatic fossa, both giant and miniature chameleons, camouflaged leaf-tailed geckos, colourful frogs and its fantastically varied endemic birds.

Our expert English-speaking guides are all tried, tested and trusted to deliver to you a marvellously memorable journey to a country that really could be the Eight Continent.

Come with us to Madagascar and you will see in the best possible way what makes the “The Big Red Island” so special.

Madagascar Wildlife Holiday Ideas

# Tailor-Made Tour

Quest for the Aye Aye and Undiscovered Masoala

Discover the Reefs and Rainforests of wild Masoala National Park and go search o...
# Tailor-Made Tour

Beaches, Tsingy and Wildlife of Northern Madagascar for Families

A well-paced itinerary showcasing many wildlife and landscape highlights finishi...
# Tailor-Made Tour

Madagascar’s Endemic Birds

A comprehensive itinerary taking in all of Madagascar's main ecosystems and focu...
# Group Tour

The Wildlife of Madagascar’s Magical Forests with Oliver Smart

Discover the unique and photogenic wildlife of Madagascar's three key forest eco...
# Group Tour

A Magical Overland Journey in Madagascar (Small Group Tour)

Our ever popular magical overland journey through Madagascar taking in all its i...
# Tailor-Made Tour
# Family Holiday

Madagascar in High Comfort for Families and Couples

A luxury Madagascar holiday with plenty of lemurs, chameleons and other wildlife...
# Tailor-Made Tour

Wild Madagascar in Comfort

An extra-special itinerary crafted to take in all the top wildlife, cultural and...
# Tailor-Made Tour

Highlights of Madagascar for the Active and Adventurous

This adventure will reveal the hidden charms of a Madagascar that few are lucky ...
# Tailor-Made Tour

Best of Northern Madagascar and Perinet

An ideal trip for those wishing to travel in a good degree of comfort at a gentl...
# Tailor-Made Tour
# Family Holiday

Madagascar’s Whale Sharks, Lemurs and Tsingy

This gentle itinerary showcases Madagascar’s most exciting underwater life alo...
# Tailor-Made Tour

Best of Natural Madagascar

A breath-taking natural history programme featuring exceptional wildlife and rem...

Featured Accommodation

Domaine de Fontenay

Colonial style lodge on the edge of Montagne d'Ambre National Park and with acce...

Sahamalaza Campsite

Very simple tented campsite in the remote Sahamalaza-îles Radama, famous for it...

Le Camp Tattersali

Simple accommodation run by the local community in the land of the rare golden-c...

EcoLodge Chez Arol

Rustic bungalow accommodation on the edge of the wonderful Masoala National Park...

Arotel, Antsirabe

Recently upgraded, the Arotel offers the most luxurious accommodation in Antsira...

Le Royal Palace

A smart and modern business style hotel, located in central Antsirabe. ...

Destination Map

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Madagascar: -18.766947, 46.869107

Best Time To Visit Madagascar

Travel between the end of April and end of November is preferable to avoid the wet season, with September, October and November being the very best months for animal activity. Notwithstanding some geographical variations, June to September normally offers dry, cooler weather. From September to November, many bird species are displaying, nesting and in breeding plumage, and baby lemurs can be seen clinging to their mothers. Try to avoid late December to early April – wet season.

Travel Info

Flight Time
11 Hours

Time Zone
GMT +2

Best Visited
April to November

Language Spoken
Malagasy & French

Population
22.92 Million

Area Specialist

Ian Loyd

There is one main bugbear when travelling to Madagascar – Domestic Flights. The main domestic airline, now called Tsaradia has in the past and to a lesser extent these days had a habit of frequently changes its schedules. Sometimes the schedules are last minute, which potentially can cause distruption to an itinerary. The good news is that we are so experienced in sorting out the ensuing problems that most tours still run very smoothly. It takes years to “know” Madagascar, and you can be 100% sure that we do.

If you have any questions regarding travel to Madagascar please feel free to contact me on +44 (0)1803 866965

Loved it all! 17 species of lemurs, loads of reptiles and endemic birds. Did masses of photography. Highlights included male giraffe necked weevil, witnessing an indri howling and Verreauxs sifakas jumping through the trees in gorgeous early morning light. [Our guide] was great as were local guides. Very happy with the itinerary. We wanted it to be a wildlife holiday as that is our primary interest, but found the landscape variety and tribal dimensions very rewarding too.

Mr & Mrs S - Chichester