Tell someone “Madagascar” and the first thing that comes to mind is the lemours. Sometimes called the 8th continent because of its size and endemic flora and fauna, Madagascar is a land of diversity and uniqueness. We visited at the end of August (2013) for 12 days. One can easily spend a full month here and see just a fraction of what Madagascar has to offer, even if he is as mobile as we were. We stayed only once in the same place for two consecutive nights and had to fly three domestic flights. We managed to do the south tour – Tulear to Antananarivo – and spend 3 days on the west coast.
If you have been around Africa, you will be pleasantly surprised by how friendly people are here. They always greet and smile back whenever you make contact by saying “salama”. And they rarely deny a photo opportunity. It might be that there haven’t been any wars for the last century or that the island is a cultural fusion point. On the other hand, you see the extreme poverty, the absence of any infrastructure and you wonder what is wrong and what you can you do to help this wonderful people do better.
In the next posts you can read my travelogs from this great trip. If I had to list the most remembered things of these twelve days, the list would look like this:
- The FCE train from Fianarantsoa to Manakara, a truly unique experience
- The Bara annual festivar after the Isalo trek in Ranohira.
- Belo sur Mer, this magical fishing village on the east coast.
- The kids, they are wonderful and everywhere.
- The extreme poverty. Given the size, resources, location and population the country can do a lot better.
- Last, the lemours of course. They are fun and this is the only place to see them.
Here is complete list of the travelogues from this trip. Start reading here or click on any link to read the relevant post.