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This trip is done in small groups; however, we can also arrange private departures to suit. On a typical trip, you will be sharing the experience with between 6 to 12 like-minded bikers as well as a cycling tour manager. Whether you decide to travel alone or with friends, this trip is a great way to explore Madagascar. Although the itinerary is scheduled there will be some room for flexibility. This cycling trip will appeal to keen travelers of all ages who enjoy socializing with new people, as well as having a taste for experiencing new cultures. This itinerary is very well-balanced, mixing cycling, wildlife, and culture as well as having a mix of tarred road and dirt road.  

There is no other place like Madagascar, it really is a remarkable place. Its animals, plants, and landscapes are incredible and the people of Madagascar are like no other that you will meet. Located near the equator and various habitats, ranging from mangrove swamps to mountain tops and deserts to rainforests, it really is one of the most pivotal countries for biodiversity. The Madagascan climate has meant that the variety and richness of life have flourished beyond belief.  

Cycle Madagascar: From the Highlands to the Coast

This trip is done in small groups; however, we can also arrange private departures to suit. On a typical trip, you will be sharing the experience with between 6 to 12 like-minded bikers as well as a cycling tour manager. Whether you decide to travel alone or with friends, this trip is a great way to explore Madagascar. Although the itinerary is scheduled there will be some room for flexibility. This cycling trip will appeal to keen travelers of all ages who enjoy socializing with new people, as well as having a taste for experiencing new cultures. This itinerary is very well-balanced, mixing cycling, wildlife, and culture as well as having a mix of tarred road and dirt road.  

There is no other place like Madagascar, it really is a remarkable place. Its animals, plants, and landscapes are incredible and the people of Madagascar are like no other that you will meet. Located near the equator and various habitats, ranging from mangrove swamps to mountain tops and deserts to rainforests, it really is one of the most pivotal countries for biodiversity. The Madagascan climate has meant that the variety and richness of life have flourished beyond belief.  

Duration

16 days

Price

£2,495

Difficulty

Medium

Day by Day

Highlights:

  • Hike in the outstanding Ranomafana National Park – home to 12 lemur species.
  • Cycle as part of a small group as we experience a different side of Madagascar in a completely unique way, through remote villages & sensational settings.
  • Close unforgettable lemur encounters. Potential of seeing Madagascar’s largest lemur, the mighty ‘Indri’.
  • Experience a perfect ending to your trip in the stunning Indian Ocean coastal town of Ifaty.

Day 1: Tongasoa eto Antananarivo!

Once arriving in Antananarivo – known by the locals as Tana, you will be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel. The rest of the day is spent relaxing or taking a wander around the hotel and local surroundings. 

Antananarivo is both the largest city in Madagascar and the capital. It is always buzzing with activity and flooded with people, selling everything that you could imagine! Tana resembles a Mediterranean hill town so exploring the architectural sites and rich culture on foot is somewhat easy (as long as you are willing to climb hundreds of ancient stone steps). It can be quite hectic so we do recommend a driver/guide if you decide to explore this city. 

Day 2: Heading south to the charming town of Antsirabe

 Transfer by car to Antsirabe. On the way, we will pay a visit to an aluminum pot-making factory in Ambatolampy. The drive takes us along a gravel road, past rice and fruit fields. (about 16km cycling).

Day 3: Cycling Lake Andraikiba – Lake Tritriva – Betafo and back to Antsirabe for the evening.

 Today we visit Andraikiba and Tritriva, the two most known crater lakes in the region. On the way you are able to enjoy the typical landscape of the Merina ethnic group; we first pass by Andraikiba (7km from the city). The area has an approximate circumference of 5km which can easily be cycled around. We will continue the fun with our mountain bikes, biking along tracks that reach a lake, even more, magical and full of myths, Lake Tritriva. We can spot Mount Tritriva from the village of Belazao before even reaching it. This is where we will enjoy our picnic before returning to Antsirabe.  (about 63km cycling, mostly dirt roads).

Day 4: Cycling south toward Ambositra and its picturesque surroundings

Once we’ve had breakfast we cycle on the hilly road, further south to Ambositra, passing rice terraces that are harvested by farmers up to three times a year. Ambositra is the home of the Zafimaniry carving, we will visit a carpenter whilst there. Tonight we stay in a lovely hotel, with rooms that have been decorated by local artists. (about 95km cycling).

Day 5: Heading through valleys and villages to the wonderfully green Ranomafana National Park

Our vehicle will transfer us to the small village of Camp Robin. From this rural village, we take a journey through a beautiful valley that lays below towering granite boulders to Ambohimahasoa. After a couple of climbs on the short tar section, we begin to ride again through villages and eucalyptus forest until we arrive at the rainforest of Ranomafana National Park. The final few miles are a descent down to our lodge where we will be staying for the night. (about 64km cycling, including 25km of dirt road).

Day 6: Exploring the magnificent Ranomafana National Park

You will be given the opportunity to explore the enchanting Ranomafana National Park and search for lemurs whilst on a trek through lush rainforest, this will be a full day.  

Ranomafana is a mountainous subtropical park which is houses lowland moist forest, cloud forest, and high plateau forest all of which are home to 13 different lemur species, over 70 amphibians and reptiles, and 118 birds, making it the ideal place to see some unique species.

Day 7: Leaving Ranomafana behind for Sahambavy, famed for its tea plantations! 

Once we have had breakfast, we take a drive back up again to Andovoka, where we begin our cycle. Whilst on our journey we will see women weaving baskets and locals selling sand that would have been collected from the nearby river. Traveling along a good gravel road we reach our hotel, located in the center of a tea-growing area. It is the only tea plantation in Madagascar and if there is enough time, we will be able to visit. The tea estate was created in 1970, set amongst a valley beside Lake Sahambavy, the estate produces large quantities of tea for both export to Mombasa in Kenya and for local consumption.  

We will stay at the Lac Hôtel, providing great views of the 520 hectares of tea plantation, spreading as far as the eye can see. The stunning landscape, teamed with a charming lake, makes this the perfect destination for a relaxing stop-off. (about 44km cycling, including 22km of dirt road). 

Day 8: Goodbye Sahambavy. Hello Ambalavao!

We cycle to the former spiritual center of the country, Fianarantsoa. We rest here for a while so you will have the opportunity to get souvenirs if you choose to. We then head on further, mostly downhill to Ambalavao. It is a very scenic ride with views into the valleys. Shortly before we arrive there are a few more hills.  

The alternative would be to cycle to Ambalavao from the hotel Sahambavy, a 54km cycle that is mostly on a difficult dirt road. The car is not able to follow here. We are going to cross several small valleys with rice and cassava plantations, as well as some eucalyptus forests. The children will undoubtedly be curious about us, tourists do not come here and it is rare for them to see light-coloured people. The 9km long descent to Ambalavao rewards us for the steep climb. Once here, we will visit the traditional Antaimoro papermaking. (about 85km cycling, including the alternative of 51km easy dirt road).  

Day 9: Journeying to the incredibly striking Tsaranoro

There is a craft shop near to our hotel which produces the infamous Antaimoro paper. We leave the busy town behind and make our way further south. You will see the landscape change into open grassland savannah that is dotted with huge granite mountains.  Landscapes of towering cliffs await us in the Anja nature reserve, as well as magnificent scenery, caves, plants, tombs, Betsileo history, and ring-tailed lemurs (Catta lemurs). It takes us an hour to walk into the park before leaving the road and entering  Tsaranoro Valley leading on into the Andringitra Mountains. We stay over at a rustic camp for two nights. (About 54km cycling, including 20km dirt road).

Day 10: Hiking into the dramatically stunning Andringitra Massif   

There are several tours that are available to you on the ascent of Mount Tsaranoro. Once the villages, rice fields, and hills have been passed, we arrive at a sacred forest. This area is particularly known for the lively Catta lemurs. Today we will walk to find traditional villages, located in secluded valleys. The mountains here are volcanic and consist of strongly fissured granite. The Andringitra massif sits at an extending length of 100km. 

Day 11: Setting off to Ranohira, located on the edge of Isalo National Park.

We ride back along the tarred road to Ankaramena, well-known for the popular mango and papaya fruits. We take our support vehicle and drive to Ihosy, from there we continue our journey to the plateau of Horombe. To get a more fulfilling experience of this amazing landscape we ride our last 20km on the edge of the Isalo National Park. (about 85km cycling, including 20km dirt road).

Day 12: Unearthing the wonders of the remarkable Isalo National Park

We begin with a short ride on the tarmac followed by a smooth, sandy path to the National Park.  

We hope to spot the lemurs and marvel at the magnificent views of the region. Later on, you will be given the chance to take a bath at ‘Piscine Naturelle’. Following our hike, we cycle to the ‘Maison du Tourisme’, only a few kilometers on the RN7. We will have a great view of the Islao Mountains. The bike tour ends here. (about 32km cycling, including 20km dirt road). 

Day 13: Making our way to the gorgeous coastal town of Ifaty via Tulear

The support vehicle takes us to Tulear. Whilst on the way you will notice baobab trees scattered across this wild environment. We also take a look at the tombs of the Mahafaly and Antandroy 

The area that surrounds Tulear is the home of the Vezo ethnic group. They use fishing as a way to earn a living. We have a short stop in town before driving to a small fishing village called Ifaty. The warm Indian Ocean calls for a swim. Once the evening arrives, we forget all the hardships that our journey through Madagascar has given us and celebrate the end of our bike ride. The tour manager will leave you after dinner.   

Day 14 & 15: Discovering the African paradise of Ifaty and its surrounding fascinations

Today you can spend the day at your leisure. Explore the beautiful Ifaty and discover what its surrounding areas have to offer. 

Day 16: Back to Antananarivo and End of Trip  

 Today we catch the Air Madagascar flight from Tulear to Tana where this trip sadly ends. If required, we can arrange an additional night’s accommodation.  

 

Area Map

Gallery

Chameleon Madagascar
Bamboo Lemur Madagascar

Booking Process

For many trips, especially tailormade and private trips, we will already be in contact, however if you are interested in joining a group trip, booking your place is simple:

Check the availability

Call us on +44 (0)20 3086 7245 or email us to check the availability of your chosen expedition and reserve a place. We can hold you a provisional place for two weeks. At this stage we can check availability of flights. Visas are required for some expeditions, please ensure you are able/have time to obtain your Visas prior to your departure date.

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    Who we are

    Blueco Holdings Ltd, t/a Rubicon 3 Adventure
    20 – 22 Wenlock Road, London, N1 7GU

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