Saga Holidays - Escorted Tours Sep 2019-Nov 2020 TRADE
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Madagascar The Lost Continent

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MADAGASCAR Madagascar: The Lost Continent 14 nights from £2999 Including optional travel insurance or from £2928 without insurance§ There is no place on Earth like Madagascar, the world's fourth largest island and home to an incredible array of flora and fauna evolved from 80 million years of isolation in the Indian Ocean. Nowhere else will you find such weird and wonderful wildlife, or the 2,000-year-old Malagasy culture, steeped in taboo and magic. Ring-tailed Lemurs ACTIVITY LEVEL Day 1: UK- Madagascar. Fly overnight to Madagascar. Day 2: Antananarivo. Arrive in the capital of Madagascar for an overnight stay. Relax after your journey, with dinner at the hotel tonight. D Day 3: Antsirabe. Enjoy a city tour of Tana ­ the local name of Antananarivo ­ taking in the upper town, Independence Avenue, Anosy Lake and the flower market. Afterwards, take a scenic drive south to Antsirabe, where you'll stay for two nights. En route stop for lunch in Ambatolampy, the town known as the `capital of aluminium' and see the processes involved in making pots and pans. Continue to Antsirabe, where you'll visit workshops to see the production of jewellery, boiled sweets and decorative artefacts created from animal horns. B, L, D Day 4: Antsirabe. Discover daily life in rural Antsirabe on a walking tour with a local guide, where you'll meet local people going about their work at home or in the rice fields. Stroll on the lake shore to meet the traders and browse their offerings of handicrafts and gem stones. The afternoon is at leisure. B, L, D Day 5: Sahambavy. Continue your journey south towards Sahambavy, through changing landscapes. Pause in Ambositra, a centre of woodcarving, for lunch. You'll stay near Fianarantsoa for two nights, in stilted houses set in Sahambavy Lake, surrounded by a tea plantation. Close to the hotel is the railway station, where you may see local traders meeting the train with food or handicrafts for sale. B, L, D Day 6: Ranomafana. Visit Ranomfana National Park for a walking tour through the forest trails. The local guides will head off track if necessary to show you the flora or fauna, including golden bambu lemurs which are endemic to this Park. B, L, D Day 7: Ranohira (for Isalo). Continue south towards Ranohira, the gateway to Isalo National Park, through sapphire mining villages and the Ambalavao rice-growing region. Stop for lunch then visit a women's paper-making workshop. Call in at the Anja Reserve, managed by the Betsileo people as a conservation site for ring-tailed lemurs, chameleons and a host of birds and plants. Arrive in Isalo for two-night stay. B, L, D Day 8: Isalo National Park. Isalo National Park is a vast sandstone massif, divided by a canyon and eroded into distinctive strata and weird formations by wind and rain. The Bara tribe here regard the mountain as sacred as they bury their ancestors' bones in the highest rock clefts they can climb to. Bara people farm local cows, called zibus, and such is their value that cattle rustling is common. Explore the Park with a guide, keeping a lookout for an array of birds, reptiles, frogs and the Verreaux's sifaka or `dancing lemur'! B, L, D Day 9: Ifaty. Head south, passing through the dry Spiny Land to the former fishing villages of Ifaty and Mangily, on the south west coast of the island. Stay two nights at a beach-side hotel. B, L, D Day 10: Ifaty. Visit Reniala Private Reserve, to see plants used for medicinal purposes and statuesque baobab trees, one of which is 1200 years old! You'll be amazed by the variety of birds you'll spot here, along with chameleons, geckos and insects. B, L, D Day 11: Andasibe. After breakfast, fly back to the island's capital, Antananarivo. After lunch, drive to the centre of the island and Andasibe National Park where you will stay for two nights in Lodge bungalows. B, L, D Antananarivo Madagascar Andasibe National Park Peyrieras Reptile Reserve Ambatolampy Antsirabe Ambositra Ranomfana National Park Sahambavy Anja Reserve Ranohira (for Isalo) Ifaty nights in hotel 142 To book, please visit your Travel Agent