Boutique Travel Experts

Highlights of the West

The Highlights of the West Tour is a 09-day nature and sightseeing circuit in Madagascar, an off the grid itinerary exceptionally designed for explorers and adventure seekers. It is a private guided tour. Hike in the majestic national park of Tsingy de Bemaraha, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, discover azure waterfalls, enjoy sundowners at the famous Allenue of the Baobabs in Morondava and take a river cruise deep into the countryside. The program involves 4×4 driving and sleeping in tents during the river cruising portion. Enjoy romantic dinners by the campfire in the middle of nature. The itinerary offers a slow-paced journey into the western region of Madagascar, the land of Sakalava and Menabe tribes. The trip is suitable for fit travellers, who enjoy hiking. The program includes accommodation at small rustic hotels and two overnights in comfortable tents. We can tailor this itinerary to suit your plans by changing the length of the trip or the order of activities. You can also choose to do the trip the other way around.

09 Days – From £1,200 per person 

*equivalent in USD, EUR accepted

Itinerary: Antananarivo, Miandrivazo, Tsiribihina River Cruise, Bekopaka, Morondava

  • Price is per person, based on two people sharing in a double room
  • Accommodation with breakfast and picnic lunch on day 6 and 8
  • Dome tent with a foam mattress and blanket during the cruise
  • Tsiribihina River Cruise on a FB 
  • All the excursions mentioned in the itinerary on a private basis
  • All transfers on a private basis
  • Entrance & guiding fees to all the mentioned National Parks
  • English speaking driver / guide 
  • All mandatory local taxes
  • Visa, where applicable
  • International Flights (See Flights to Madagascar)
  • Domestic Flights 
  • Personal Expenses
  • Insurance
  • Tips & Gratuities
  • Meals not mentioned in the description

International flights are not included in the package price. We give you the freedom to book the flights yourself, use miles and choose your preferred airline, and if you are stuck we can help you find the right connections. Return flights to Madagascar start from £700 per person, depending on the connections and time of the year.

For families and groups (starting with 5 pax), we can book domestic flights in Madagascar, during the high season, and if the trip is part of a more complex itinerary. This is to ensure a seamless travel and no complications.

Send us a message on WhatsApp or Email us to check availability, discuss your preferences and get a quote.

This is a sample itinerary and prices are correct at the time of writing. We can tailor it to suit your plans by changing the length of the trip or the order of activities. More days can be added. Other hotels can be chosen, according to your liking. For more travel inspiration check these itineraries.

To avoid unpleasant weather surprises, we recommend to check our Madagascar Weather Guide to plan your trip in the right season. Click on the month you want to travel in and see the tours which are best for each month of the year. 

Day 1 - Antananarivo

Today you will arrive in Antananarivo Ivato International airport (TNR) where you will be met and transferred to the hotel. Antananarivo means “City of thousands”, the place which unified the tribes of Madagascar about 500 years ago. The city is built on 3 levels: the high city where the queen’s palace is situated, the mid-city with nice boutique shops and all the administrative buildings, and the bustling low city with the markets. Time permitting, visit the markets in the low city, then catch a splendid sunset from one of the cafes from the upper part of town. Overnight at Le Belvédère Hotel.

Antananarivo City View

Day 2 - Drive to Miandrivazo

Today prepare for a full day on the road through the Malagasy countryside till you reach Miandrivazo, starting with the highlands with beautiful rice fields and continuing through an area of barren hills. There are several interesting places on the way to break your journey for some rest. The first one is Ambatolampy, a village known for its aluminium workshops. Further on, the provincial town of Antsirabe is a good place to stop for lunch. As you continue to the west passing by barren hills, there are a few local markets worth to stop for.  You will arrive at your destination towards the evening. Overnight at Eden de la Tsiribihina.

Malagasy Village

Day 3 - Tsiribihina river cruise

After an early breakfast, depart to Masiakampy (30km/2h). Board a barge for the river cruise. As you drift along the river, you might catch the flash of a kingfisher from the reeds, hear a zebu being driven down to drink or lemurs staring out from the branches of the forest. During the cruising you will see luxury forests. The boat is equipped with a rooftop, tables, benches and a small kitchen where the crew will prepare food for the guests. Start descending following the current of the river on the plain Betsiriry. Later on the boat will begin to enter a small limestone gorge of Bemaraha. Full board on the boat in provided. Camping overnight.

Madagascar

Day 4 - Tsiribihina river cruise

In the morning, after a delicious breakfast, you will visit a waterfall and a natural swimming pool where you can refresh in the clear waters. Continue navigation through basalt cliffs richly decorated with aloe and other succulent plants. The walls of these buttresses are sometimes inhabited by bats. Down the river, you will see plantations of sugar canes, tobacco, dense forest, gorges, cliffs, immense sandbanks and the first baobabs. You can also visit traditional villages, such as Begidro. Watch the picturesque countryside and the slow pace of life here. Full board on the boat is provided. Camping overnight.

Madagascar

Day 5 - Belo to Bekopaka 

After breakfast, head to Belo sur Tsiribinha. The boat will start entering the plains of Menabe, the land of huge baobabs and the territory of the fishing eagle, humpback ducks and the ash-colored herons. Stop in a charming baobabs village.  After that you will arrival in Tsimafana around noon. Cross to Belo on Tsiribihina, where a 4×4 vehicle will be awaiting for you. Drive to Bekopaka (115 km / 5 hours). There will be a small river to cross on a ferry in Manambolo, just before Bekopaka. Arrive in late afternoon. At night you may well hear people singing in the distance – a really lovely atmosphere. Overnight at Soleil des Tsingy.

the views of the sharp stones in Tsingy de Bemaraha national reserve in Madagascar

Day 6 - Tsingy de Bemaraha

After breakfast, spend the whole day visiting Tsingy de Bemaraha National Park with a guide. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, this national park is a huge massif, spectacularly eroded into a chaos of karsts pinnacles. The high rocky plateau is made of deep cracks, labyrinths, canyons, covered with a dry forest. The park is a shelter for many species of lemurs and reptiles which can only be found here. Spend the day trekking in the park with an experienced guide who will tell you about the rocks and its inhabitants, guiding you across beautiful trails. You can stop for a picnic lunch whenever you feel it is time for some rest. Overnight at Soleil des Tsingy.

Trekking in Tsingy de Bemaraha

Day 7 - Manambolo & Small Tsingy

After breakfast, embark in a traditional pirogue and sail to the spectacular Gorge of Manambolo, located in the cliffs, upstream of Bekopaka. Rare combinations of unique geological colors decorate the gorges. After this refreshing morning trip, visit the Small Tsingy, located  at the entrance of Bekopaka village. Here you can spot different plants, reptiles, birds and even the sifaka lemurs. The circuit lasts around 2 hours and passes through a labyrinth of limestone with two view points over the impressive pinnacles. Return to the hotel and spend the relaxing afternoon at the pool. Overnight at Soleil des Tsingy.

Manambolo Cave, Madagascar

Day 8 - Avenue of Baobabs

After breakfast, take the dirt road to Morondava via Belo de Tsiribihina (225 km/9h).  This is a whole day transfer with picnic stops and is the only way to connect to Morondava. The view of the majestic baobabs at the end of the trip will be a great reward for the long drive. Enjoy a splendid sunset at the Avenue of the Baobabs. The majestic Grandidier’s baobabs are aligned along the road, wowing anyone passing by. There are said to be very old, millenniums old. Don’t miss out the Baobabs in Love, two hugging baobabs growing together through centuries. Enjoy a spectacular sunset over the trees. Overnigth at Chez Maggie.

Sunset at the Avenue of the Baobabs

Day 9 - Fly to Antananarivo

At sunrise, if you wish, take another trip to the avenue. An absolutely breathtaking moment! Most likely you will be the only one there, able to enjoy at your own pace. The sun rises on the right side, between some baobabs in the distance. It’s more mystical than the sunset as there is usually a little bit of fog, the village awakens and locals are passing wrapped in their clothes, carrying things on their heads. Return to the hotel for breakfast, then transfer to the Morondava Airport (MOQ). Fly to Antananarivo. Alternatively, spend a few more days in the region and visit Belo sur Mer, as well as the baobab forest in Kirindy Mitea.

La Varangue in Antananarivo, Madagascar

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