Madagascar parks and game reserves

The world's fourth-largest island

Madagascar safari guide

Companies: 131 operators
Tour packages: 59 tours
Parks: 5 parks
Currency exchange
Capital: Antananarivo
Population: 20 million
Total area:587,040 km² (226,657 miles²)
Languages: French
Airports: Antananarivo (TNR)

Recommended vaccinations


Voltage and plug type

Type C (220V)

Type D (220V)

Type E (220V)

Type J (220V)

Type K (220V)

About Madagascar

Madagascar is located off the southeastern shore of the African continent in the Indian Ocean. It is the fourth largest island in the world, after Greenland, New Guinea and Borneo. Madagascar has two distinct seasons. Its rainy and warm season runs from about November through April and its dry and cool season runs from May through October.  The topography and climate varies greatly asone travels across the island. The western part of the island is generally drier and sunnier, with the landscape becoming greener and the soil becoming redder as one heads inland towards the east. The capital, Antananarivo, is situated in the center of the island and consists of many hills, with much of the housing built up on the sides of the city. The temperature is noticeably cooler than that of the western regions and as one continues east, the rainfall increases while the temperatures level out.  

Its diverse ecosystem is home to a wide array of plant and animal life, with 90% of the animals and over 80% of the plants endemic to Madagascar. The most noted animal endemic to the island is the lemur. As there are no monkeys or other primates to compete with them, the lemur has continued to live throughout the island. It is estimated that over 100 species exist on Madagascar; however their population has declined drastically due to hunting and loss of habitat and many of the species are now considered endangered. Over 65% of the world’s chameleon species are also found here, along with many different kinds of frogs, geckos and lizards.

The flora of Madagascar is truly stunning and one can find over 800 species of orchid (Wikipedia) here. Six of the world’s eight baobab trees are also located here and photographers seeking unparalleled photo opps won’t be disappointed at Avenue des Baobabs near Morondava on Madagascar’s western coast.  

While Madagascar is not a destination for a traditional safari, it has much to offer for those wishing to see flora and fauna that cannot be seen elsewhere. It has 20 national parks and six nature reserves with different species of lemur found in nearly all of them. It also is an excellent location for those wishing to combine a ‘safari’ holiday with other activities such as snorkeling, diving, kayaking and hiking. The conditions of Madagascar’s rain forests can be uncomfortable, with leeches and mosquitos in abundance, but if the necessary precautions are taken, Madagascar is highly recommended as an alternative safari destination. 

Andasibe-Mantadia National Park includes two distinct areas in terms of terrain and activities available, covering a total of 155 km² (60 miles²) east of Madagascar’s capital, Antananarivo. T… read more

In 2002, two parks bisected by the NR 4 highway in the Boina region of Madagascar were combined into what is now known as Ankarafantsika National Park. Spread on a surface of almost 1,350 km², Anka… read more

Spanning 182 km² amongst the dry deciduous forests of northern Madagascar, the Ankarana Special Reserve is characterized by picturesque karst topography featuring large limestone pinnacles called t… read more

Berenty Reserve, established in 1936, only spans about 250 h (617 acres) at the southernmost point of Madagascar, along the Mandrare River. Because of the park’s proximity to water, it consists in part… read more

Located on the southwestern coast of Madagascar is the tiny Kirindy Mitea National Park. The park is a mere 722 km² (280 miles²) in size and is far enough from the capital city of Antananarivo that… read more

For an island off the east coast of Africa, Madagascar is surprisingly easy to get to. Most major European cities are 1-2 flights away, with the exception of Paris, which offers direct flights. If you are flying from New York, South African Airlines has a flight that goes directly to Johannesburg and then on to Antananarivo, and will get you there in under 20 hours. If you're flying from the Middle East or Asia, it's still possible to reach Madagascar with only one plane change. Those flying from Dubai will most likely want to change in Nairobi and then fly on to Antananarivo. Even Sydney, Australia has a flight that only requires one change, and is 34 hours in duration. From within Africa, Kenya and South Africa both offer direct flights. 

Getting to Madagascar by boat

It is possible to reach Madagascar by boat from mainland Africa, but unless you have ample time, it's in your best interest to fly, as most of the boat options involve cargo boats. 

The following airlines travel to Madagascar

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The French flag carrier. Air France, stylized as AIRFRANCE, is the French flag carrier headquartered in Tremblay-en-France,. It is a subsidiary of the Air France-KLM Group and a founding member of the SkyTeam global airline alliance. As of 2013 Air France serves 36 destinations in France and operates worldwide scheduled passenger and cargo services to 168 destinations in 93 countries (including Overseas departments and territories of France. Visit website

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National air carrier of Madagascar. The Air Madagascar network covers 21 destinations from Madagascar to the Indian Ocean, Africa, Europe and Asia. Since 1961 Air Madagascar has been the reference airline to fly to 11 Malagasy cities. Visit website

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Major American airline, with its headquarters Atlanta, Georgia. What started as a humble, little aerial crop dusting operation called Huff Daland Dusters in 1924 has now grown into one of the world’s largest global airlines, helping more than 160 million travelers get to the places they want to go to each year. Delta flies to more than 350 destinations on 6 continents, serving more than 160 million passengers each year. It's an important job, that's why we have 70,000 dedicated employees who are up to the task every day, on every flight. Visit website

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The second largest airline of the United Arab Emirates. Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates, has in just ten years established itself as the world’s leading airline. “Etihad” is the Arabic word for “union”. Etihad Airways was established by Royal (Amiri) Decree in July 2003. It commenced operations in November 2003 and has developed into one of the fastest growing airlines in the history of commercial aviation. Visit website

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The flag carrier of Kenya. Kenya Airways was established in February 1977 following the breakup of the East African Community and subsequent disbanding of the jointly-owned East African Airways. KQ now flies to over 60 destinations around the world with over 40 being in Africa. The network expands to many more destinations with partnerships from Codeshare partners. Our Vision is to consistently be a Safe & Profitable Airline that Guarantees World Class Service. Visit website

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The flag carrier airline of the Netherlands. KLM Royal Dutch Airlines was founded on 7 October, 1919 to serve the Netherlands and its colonies. KLM is today the oldest airline still operating under its original name. KLM has been part of the AIR FRANCE KLM group since the merger in 2004. KLM is the core of the KLM Group, which further includes the wholly-owned subsidiaries KLM Cityhopper, transavia.com and Martinair. Visit website

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Regional services in South Africa. Choose Airlink to connect you to 35 destinations in 9 African countries. With more than 21 years of of customer focused experience along with the widest network and choice of flights, you get where you want to be, when you want to be there. Visit website

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At evoJets, our charter specialists are available to ensure your itinerary is as personalized as possible, to suit the needs of your party. Many of the island’s national parks are highly distinguished sites to fly over and observe from a bird’s eye view. Visit website

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Airlink is a privately-owned, BBBEE Level 4 business and regional airline serving a comprehensive network of smaller destinations throughout Southern Africa. We are now operating independently under our own unique 4Z flight code offering more freedom, more choices and more travel opportunities. Visit website

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Madagascar map
Articles on Madagascar

Madagascar Classic Collection

When: Nov. 10, 2020

Lemurs of Madagascar

When: Oct. 14, 2020
By: Sambell

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