Cycle Madagascar

Cycle Madagascar

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14 Days |
From
$5049
$4809

Cycle Madagascar

14 Days Starting and ending in Antananarivo

Visiting:

Madagascar

Tour operator:

Exodus

Physical rating:

Moderate / Challenging

Trip Styles:

Activities:

Tour code:

MZG3

Group size:

4 - 16

Age range:

18 to 99

From:
$5049

$4809 (USD)

tourhub discount: $240

See local operators tour description
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Tour Overview

Madagascar, the fourth largest island in the world, offers a cycling adventure like no other. We journey on largely quiet roads through a landscape of dramatic highland plains, unique rock formations and natural swimming pools. We pause to visit the lush chain of rainforest in the Ranomafana National Park with deep canyons and huge waterfalls. Apart from its natural treasures the nation is also rich in culture and the many ethnic groups with fascinating traditions contribute to the melting-pot that is Madagascar. Our cycling is rewarded by a day to relax on the idyllic white sand beach of Ifaty on the coast, scattered with palms and protected by an offshore coral reef.

Highlights

  • Lush agricultural land of the north with paddy fields and fruit orchardsAmbositra, the arts and crafts capital of MadagascarIsalo National Park, with its amazing rock formations, and natural swimming holesDense rainforest and cascading falls of Ranomafana National ParkWhite sand beaches of the fisherman’s village of IfatyCycling through vilages

  • — Lush agricultural land of the north with paddy fields and fruit orchards — Ambositra, the arts and crafts capital of Madagascar — Isalo National Park, with its amazing rock formations, and natural swimming holes — Dense rainforest and cascading falls of Ranomafana National Park — White sand beaches of the fisherman’s village of Ifaty — Cycling through vilages

Itinerary

Expand All
icon Day 1 : Start Antananarivo.

Our adventure starts in Antananarivo. There will be a group meeting and briefing in the evening followed by an optional group dinner in the hotel for those that would like to join.
Accommodation: Au Bois Vert Lodge or similar Comfortable Hotel

icon Day 2 : Transfer to Lemur park; continue along wide open roads, cycling the best sections, to Ampefy.
Meals Included:

  breakfast


Leaving the hotel after breakfast we transfer out of the busy city to the Lemurs Park to encounter these primates which are endemic to Madagascar. Lemurs Park is a private park with a few species of lemur living freely in a forested area. After the visit to the park, we start cycling through scenic farmland with plenty of rice paddy fields. After lunch in Arivonimamo, we will transfer through a highland region to the top of a mountain pass before continuing the ride downhill to Miarinarivo, the capital of the Itasy, a region known its volcanic activity. The road levels out and the following 32km to Ampefy offer reaching views and are a real joy to ride. In Ampefy the lakeside hotel is our base for the next two nights.
Cycle approx. 72km.
Accommodation: Hotel Kavitaha or similarStandard Hotel

icon Day 3 : Ride to dramatic geysers of Analavory; to waterfalls of Lily river.
Meals Included:

  breakfast


We start today by cycling to the geysirs of Analavory. These limestone mounds are similar to geysirs found in Utah and Nevada; volcanic activity encourages bursts of warm water to cascade down the bright yellow stone and create a series of pools, often used by the locals for swimming due to the belief of the healing powers of the water. The ride starts on a decent road but the 16km route out and back to the geysirs is along a bumpy dirt track, linking up some fascinating small rural villages. Re-joining the new tar road we head back towards Ampefy, but before reaching the hotel we will take a small detour to the Liliha waterfalls, a dramatic series of cascades that provide a perfect way to refresh near the end of a full day of cycling. This stretch is also on dirt road.
Cycle approx. 54km (26km on dirt road).
Accommodation: Hotel Kavitaha or similarStandard Hotel

icon Day 4 : A long day cycling through traditional towns and villages; overnight Antisirabe.
Meals Included:

  breakfast


Although relatively short, today’s ride is fairly challenging with varied terrain. We cycle the first 20km to Soavinandriana through scenic landscape with some hilly sections, including a steady 4km climb up to the town itself. The road levels out and we continue our undulating ride through spectacular scenery before a great descent which crosses the river at the small village of Kelivody. Here we will load up the bikes to drive across a high mountain pass to the town of Faratsiho. From here the road deteriorates dramatically and we will need 4X4 vehicles to pass the 47km stretch to Sambaina. This is an adventurous drive passing through a region that is rarely visited by tourists and provides a unique insight into the lives of those who live along the route. From Sambaina we re-join the tarmac for the final drive to Antisarabe. The entire transfer is likely to take up to 5 hours, but we will stop regularly to stretch the legs and have a look around. Antsirabe is an elegant city founded by Norwegian’s in 1856. It has a temperate climate and has a very European look and feel about it, including the local beer industry that makes it famous.
Cycle approx. 38km.
Accommodation: Plumeria Hotelor similarStandard Hotel

icon Day 5 : Ride to Ambositra, famous for its craft and woodwork.
Meals Included:

  breakfast


Departing Antsirabe we start with a very short transfer to Vinanikarena to avoid the hectic morning traffic within the city. This is a long day’s cycling with a few undulations including a 4km climb to the ‘Col de Tapia’, a type of tree resistant to bush fires that makes for some interesting scenery. The support vehicle is with us all day so a rest is available if needed. Today’s destination is Ambositra, the centre of Madagascar's wood carving industry. The highlands are characterised by its architecture; the houses are made with ornately carved wooden balconies and shutters with bright colours. Upon arrival, depending on timings, we may visit a Zafimaniry woodcarving workshop to learn all about this local art that is listed on the UNESCO’s list of Intangible Cultural Heritage (if there isn’t sufficient time today then the visit will take place the following morning).
Cycle approx. 84km.
Accommodation: Artisan Hotel or similar Standard Hotel

icon Day 6 : To Ranomafana; thrilling descent through ravine canyon and rainforest.
Meals Included:

  breakfast


We have a lot of ground to cover today to get to the famed Ranomafana National Park. We’ll start the day with a transfer to Camp Robin before riding towards Ambohimahasoa. The landscape is still dominated by rice fields, pine forests, eucalyptus trees and jagged mountains. The last section, from Vohiparara, cruises downhill through a ravine canyon, with a tremendous view of the Namorona River and the rainforest, to our final destination of Ranomafana, our base for the next 2 nights.
Cycle approx. 74km.
Accommodation: Hotel le Grenat or similarStandard Hotel

icon Day 7 : Full day to explore the national park by foot; natural thermal baths and nocturnal walk.
Meals Included:

  breakfast


We have a day off the saddle today to explore Ranomafana National Park (approximately 40,000ha). With its rain-forested hills and abundant wildlife this has long been considered one of Madagascar’s highlights, and is one of the most heavily visited of the country’s national parks. Its entrance lies about 7km from Ranomafana village. Altitudes in the park range from 800m to 1200m. In addition to its densely forested hills, Ranomafana’s terrain is characterised by numerous small streams, which plummet down to the beautiful Namorona River. Although much of the region has been logged, the easternmost part of the park retains relatively large areas of primary forest. The morning will be spent walking through the park, learning about the abundant flora and fauna and in the early evening there will be the chance to go on a night-walk in the hope of spotting some the nocturnal lemurs and chameleons.
Accommodation:Hotel le Grenat or similar Standard Hotel

icon Day 8 : Cycle to cottage industries en route to the red-dust roads of Ambalavaro.
Meals Included:

  breakfast


We’ll start today with a 2 hour transfer to Fianarantsoa, which literally translates into ‘good education’ and is known locally as ‘the City where one learns good things’. It is regarded as the cultural and intellectual centre of Madagascar and is home to some of the oldest Protestant and Lutheran cathedrals on the island. We’ll start cycling here following a windy road to Ambalavao. Ambalavao is the centre of the Madagascan wine industry - the climate is said not to be ideal for grape vines but it is a tradition left by the priests and monks who lived in the area of Fianarantsoa. We climb a steady pass then enjoy a fabulous descent with great views before arriving in Ambalavao.
Cycle approx. 56km.
Accommodation:Tsienimparihy Lodge or similarStandard Hotel

icon Day 9 : Continue through the hills and rock formations towards Horombe plateau.
Meals Included:

  breakfast


We’ll start cycling from the hotel today and pause to visit the small Anja nature reserve where we hope to see Ring-tailed Lemurs in their natural surroundings. Continuing on a straight road flanked by mountains we’ll head towards Ihosy, the capital of the Bara tribes. This nomadic tribe are shepherds to the prized Zebu cattle recognisable by their large horns. We’ll pass through the mountain chain of Andringitra, which serves as a transition between the dry south and the green highlands, with its famous ‘3 hillocks’ and its huge ‘archbishop's cape’. Along the way we’ll pass the ‘Bishop’s Hat’, a sacred place for local people as it is a place where their ancestors chose a collective suicide rather than to give in to the Merina tribes. On reaching the town of Zazafotsy we’ll jump on the bus for a transfer over the mountain-pass and then through the huge dessert-like ‘Plateau de Horombe’ famed for its deep red soil and sprawling savannah. Beyond the plateau we arrive in Isalo, our base for the next 2 nights.
Cycle approx. 95km.
Accommodation: Isalo Ranch or similarStandard Hotel

icon Day 10 : Full day trekking in Isalo N.P.; explore canyons and cool off in natural waterfalls.
Meals Included:

  breakfast


Today we take a break again from our bikes for a hike in the stunning Isalo National Park. We spend the day exploring this vast region of wind-polished and water-scoured rock towers, deep canyons, gorges and oases often described as Eden. During our time we will go walking in the magnificent Canyon des Makis in search of cheeky Ring-tailed lemurs and the Verreaux's Sifaka. The eroded mountains also served as a place where the Bara kept their dead before they could bury them in their actual tombs. We start our walking and reach the massif after about 20 minutes, where we will have a spectacular view of the huge sandstone mountains with its beautiful colours and its strange and battered formations creating many different images like ‘the tortoise’, ‘the masks’ and ‘the crocodiles’. We also visit the 'Piscine Naturelle' (natural swimming pool), a beautifully lush spot in such an arid landscape, where we mayswim and relax. Perhaps the magic is just to soak up the sheer beauty of the park, the combination of coloured eroded rock forms, strange plants and enveloping silence make this one of the most captivating places in Madagascar.
Accommodation: Isalo Ranch or similarStandard Hotel

icon Day 11 : Cycle through bushland and thick forests; transfer to Tulear on coast.
Meals Included:

  breakfast


Today is our last day cycling and we ride from the hotel through the dramatic rock formations heading out of the national park. Leaving the canyon, the ride continues to the sapphire mining town of Ilakaka and through isolated forests that constitute the most important remnant of dry deciduous forest of Madagascar. After finishing the ride we transfer through Zombitse National Park and through areas known for flamboyantly painted ‘Mahafaly tombs’ and ‘Antandroy tombs’. From Tulear we’ll continue north of Ifaty to Ifaty beach, a seaside beach resort protected by coral reefs. The landscape is dominated by cactus-like plants and mangrove trees line the coast which is used by local Vezo communities that earn their livelihoods through fishing.
Cycle approx. 65km.
Accommodation: Hotel de la Plage or similarStandard Hotel

icon Day of leisure on tranquil Ifaty beach overlooking a vast turquoise lagoon.
Meals Included:

  breakfast


Our hotel lies on the beach and today is a full free day to relax on the beach or take part in some optional activities. From July to mid-September there is the option to go whale watching as the migration of Humpback whales passes through to give birth in shallow warm waters. Situated in the largest lagoon of the country, the area is also protected by a large coral reef, which makes it an ideal place for diving and snorkelling.
Accommodation:Hotel de la Plage or similar Standard Hotel

icon Day 13 : Transfer to Tulear for flight back to Antananarivo.
Meals Included:

  breakfast


Today we transfer to Tulear airport for our flight to Antananarivo which will arrive in the afternoon. Depending on the flight schedule, you may have free time to explore Antananarivo on your own.
Accommodation: Au Bois Vert Lodge or similarComfortable Hotel

icon Day 14 : End Antananarivo.
Meals Included:

  breakfast


Depending on the time of your flight, there may be the opportunity to embark on an optional short city tour of Tana by bus. With its bustling markets and ancient town on a hill with freestone churches and ancient royal palaces, it is unique among the world’s other capitals. Built around Anosy Lake, Tana offers much of interest set against a backdrop of terracing with outstanding views from the Queen's Palace.

What's Included

  • All breakfastsAll accommodationAll transport and listed activitiesTour leader/support staff throughoutFlights from London (if booking incl. flights)

  • All breakfastsAll accommodationAll transport and listed activitiesTour leader/support staff throughout

  • — All breakfasts — All accommodation — All transport and listed activities — Tour leader/support staff throughout

What's Not Included

  • Travel insuranceSingle accommodation (available on request)Visas or vaccinations

  • Travel insuranceSingle accommodation (available on request)Visas or vaccinationsFlights

  • — Travel insurance — Single accommodation (available on request) — Visas or vaccinations — Flights

Food

Food standards in Madagascar can vary and are probably not of the same standard you are used to at home. A one-course lunch/dinner should cost £4-6 while a three-course lunch/dinner should cost £9-12 . Please allow approximately £220 for meals not included, plus a little more if you enjoy a drink with dinner! Malagasy lager is reasonably priced and easily available. Malagasy wine is also reasonably priced but is not to everyone's taste. It is sometimes possible to get hold of French or South African wine. A delicacy in Madagascar is the various flavoured rum’s which are widely sold and very reasonably priced.Please note that if you eat neither fish nor meat, your food options will be rather limited (i.e. omelette, cheese, pasta, vegetables and rice) on this trip. Breakfasts are usually simple, eggs, a baguette, jam and coffee or tea, and sometimes fruit. You may wish to bring something to supplement your morning meal (e.g spread, peanut butter etc).

Accommodation

We use tourist class hotels throughout the trip. The hotels are simple but comfortable. Most of the hotels have mosquito nets in the rooms. Please note that although all of the hotels are said to have a reliable electricity and water supply there may be instances in which you experience some gaps in supply - this is more a reflection of life in Madagascar than the standard of the hotel. Please be aware that some hotels do not have 24 hr electricity, and in some, hot water is not always available. There is WiFi in most of the hotels but often this is only in the communal areas and not in the rooms. Single accommodation is available on this trip for a supplement.

Check out our Q&As

What happens if I need to change my holiday date once I’ve booked?

If you wish to make any changes to your booking, particularly if you need to alter any flights booked through us, please let us know as soon as possible. There is a booking or flight amendment fee of £40 per change and flight amendments often incur extra airline costs depending on the changes to be made and if the ticket has been issued or not.

How long has the tour company been trading?

Exodus has been trading since 1974

What documents will I receive before I travel?

Your final joining instructions and flight details, if booked with us, will then be sent out 2 to 3 weeks before departure. If you would like a hard copy posted, or if you require these any earlier, please contact the customer operations team. We advise that if you are booking connecting travel before receiving these, please ensure you leave plenty of time.

Do you operate a “single share” option and how does it work?

Travellers are welcome to opt to share a room with a tour member of the same gender for no additional charge. If you'd like your own room, we can request a single supplement so that you will have your own room throughout.

Can I join the tour once it has departed?

You are welcome to meet the group after the tour has departed however there is no reduction in rate for joining a tour after the departure date.

Reviews

Cycle Madagascar

An astounding country to visit. The scenery was spectacular and various. The people very friendly and of course the wildlife unique.

An astounding country to visit.

The scenery was spectacular and various.

The people very friendly and of course the wildlife unique.


Cycle Madagascar

Absolutely loved it. My only criticism being that I felt like we should have set the bikes up on the evening of our first get-together. We spent a lot of time ....more

Absolutely loved it.

My only criticism being that I felt like we should have set the bikes up on the evening of our first get-together.

We spent a lot of time fussing with bikes on the first morning.

That way we could have got away earlier on Day 1.

We could have got out of the city earlier and quicker, had more time watching the Dancing Limas at the Reserve and not been biking so long in the hot sun.

Also, the trip to Ramofama was unpleasant - too many tourists all there at the same time and scrabbling through and breaking the native forest.

We saw very little in the way of Limas - saw many more further on in the trip.

The evening event was great so you would really only need to stay there one day.

less....


Stunning

A truly remarkable holiday led by our excellent guide Mel. Unforgettable scenery and perfect balance of cycling, culture and relaxation.

A truly remarkable holiday led by our excellent guide Mel.

Unforgettable scenery and perfect balance of cycling, culture and relaxation.


Cycle Madagascar

Absolutely loved it. My only criticism being that I felt like we should have set the bikes up on the evening of our first get-together. We spent a lot of time ....more

Absolutely loved it.

My only criticism being that I felt like we should have set the bikes up on the evening of our first get-together.

We spent a lot of time fussing with bikes on the first morning.

That way we could have got away earlier on Day 1.

We could have got out of the city earlier and quicker, had more time watching the Dancing Limas at the Reserve and not been biking so long in the hot sun.

Also, the trip to Ramofama was unpleasant - too many tourists all there at the same time and scrabbling through and breaking the native forest.

We saw very little in the way of Limas - saw many more further on in the trip.

The evening event was great so you would really only need to stay there one day.

less....


Dates & Availability

Instant Booking Available

Sunday

May 21, 2023

Saturday

Jun 03, 2023
  • tourhub discount: $240 (USD)

$5049
$4809 (USD)
$5049
$4809 (USD)

tourhub discount: $240

Instant Booking Available

Sunday

Jul 30, 2023

Saturday

Aug 12, 2023
  • tourhub discount: $240 (USD)

$5049
$4809 (USD)
$5049
$4809 (USD)

tourhub discount: $240

Instant Booking Available

Sunday

Sep 24, 2023

Saturday

Oct 07, 2023
  • tourhub discount: $240 (USD)

$5049
$4809 (USD)
$5049
$4809 (USD)

tourhub discount: $240

Instant Booking Available

Sunday

Oct 08, 2023

Saturday

Oct 21, 2023
  • tourhub discount: $240 (USD)

$5049
$4809 (USD)
$5049
$4809 (USD)

tourhub discount: $240

Instant Booking Available

Sunday

Oct 22, 2023

Saturday

Nov 04, 2023
  • tourhub discount: $240 (USD)

$5049
$4809 (USD)
$5049
$4809 (USD)

tourhub discount: $240

Book with Confidence

  • Transfer as credit to Future Tours

    Exodus allows you to transfer existing payments to a future tour to avoid cancellation fees if you can't travel and inform exodus, 43 days before departure.

  • Low Deposit

    Exodus requires a minimum deposit of 25% or the full booking value, whichever is less, with the final balance not due until 90 days before departure.

  • Cancellation Policy

    We don't charge a cancellation fee, here is a summary of exodus charges.

    Up to 42 days before tour starts: 100% of deposit.

    At 20 days before tour starts: 100% of booking price.

Cycle Madagascar

14 Days Starting and ending in Antananarivo

Visiting:

Madagascar

Tour operator:

Exodus

Physical rating:

Moderate / Challenging

Trip Styles:

Activities:

Tour code:

MZG3

Group size:

4 - 16

Age range:

18 to 99

From:
$5049

$4809 (USD)

tourhub discount: $240

See local operators tour description
- Sign In

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  • Favourite Destination:

    London

  • Dream Destination:

    Paris, France

  • About them:
  • "Live once Travel Well", is my main motto for life. I love to travel, go on outdoor adventures & family travels/adventures. When I'm not traveling, I'm busy planning my next adventure ☺️

Yellowstone National Park

United States

@thishomeschoolerslife's Top Tips

"Best time to watch Old Faithful erupt is around sunset, there will be less crowds & beautiful sunset views!"

What do you love most about Yellowstone National Park?

"There are so many natural wonders to observe and amazing places to explore!"

Must pack items for Yellowstone National Park

"Pack for the weather & season, bring layers, an umbrella, a reusable water bottle, comfortable shoes, bear spray and of course, your camera!"

@thishomeschoolerslife's Top Tips

"Plan to visit the North entrance & see the Teddy Roosevelt Archway."

@thishomeschoolerslife's Top Tips

"Keep a keen eye out for abundant wildlife, especially in the Hayden Valley area!"

Benefits of a tour guide for Yellowstone National Park

"They're able to provide tips and insights, and ensure you see the best sights throughout Yellowstone NP!"

Favourite time of year to visit Yellowstone National Park

"Mid-May to early June for great weather & smaller crowds."

@thishomeschoolerslife's Top Tips

"Visit the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone & walk the north rim trail for epic views!"

About Our

  • Influencer
  • Countries Visited:

    4 Countries

  • Favourite Destination:

    London

  • Dream Destination:

    Paris, France

  • About them:
  • "Live once Travel Well", is my main motto for life. I love to travel, go on outdoor adventures & family travels/adventures. When I'm not traveling, I'm busy planning my next adventure ☺️

San Francisco

United States

A 'MUST' whilst you're there?

"Head to the top of Bernal Heights Park for 360° views of the city, bay & Oakland."

A 'MUST' whilst you're there?

"Capture the unique views of Golden Gate Bridge!"

What do you love most about San Francisco?

"Marvel at Redwood trees."

What do you love most about San Francisco?

"Find unique views of San Fran from Sausalito. "

@thishomeschoolerslife's Top Tips

"If you're a move fanatic, you can find the "Mrs. Doubtfire" home and several other film locations around the city."

A 'MUST' whilst you're there?

"Take a relaxing walk around Palace of Fine Arts."

A 'MUST' whilst you're there?

"Visit the Sutro Baths."

A 'MUST' whilst you're there?

"Visit the Japanese Gardens at Golden Gate Park! "

Must pack items for San Francisco

"Pack layers, an umbrella, comfortable walking shoes, a reusable water bottle, sunscreen & a hat or sun hat."

About Our

  • Influencer
  • Countries Visited:

    4 Countries

  • Favourite Destination:

    London

  • Dream Destination:

    Paris, France

  • About them:
  • "Live once Travel Well", is my main motto for life. I love to travel, go on outdoor adventures & family travels/adventures. When I'm not traveling, I'm busy planning my next adventure ☺️

Charleston

United States

What do you love most about Charleston?

"One of the best-kept, charming & quaint historic towns in the USA. "

Benefits of a tour guide for Charleston

"Known as the holy city, there are so many historic churches to explore & a tour guide can provide all sorts of insights & information about the history of Charleston."

@thishomeschoolerslife's Top Tips

"Walk off the beaten path & put down the map, Charleston is a picturesque city with hundreds of quiet little lanes just waiting to be explored."

@thishomeschoolerslife's Top Tips

"Plan to wear comfortable shoes that have grip & can handle cobblestone streets!"

@thishomeschoolerslife's Top Tips

"Head to Callie's Hot Little Biscuit and grab a sample of the delicious fresh-baked biscuits!"

What do you love most about Charleston?

"A plethora of amazing restaurants provide ample opportunities to sample local favourites, such as unicorn grits, fried green tomatoes or fried okra."

A 'MUST' whilst you're there?

"There are 5 historic plantations in the area to tour. "

About Our

  • Influencer
  • Countries Visited:

    4 Countries

  • Favourite Destination:

    London

  • Dream Destination:

    Paris, France

  • About them:
  • "Live once Travel Well", is my main motto for life. I love to travel, go on outdoor adventures & family travels/adventures. When I'm not traveling, I'm busy planning my next adventure ☺️

Savannah

United States

What do you love most about Savannah?

"Explore the historic Wormsloe Plantation: drive the gorgeous tree-lined drive, walk nature trails and observe ruins."

What do you love most about Savannah?

"There are over 20 squares, which function like a park located all around the city. They're perfect for resting weary feet & people watching."

@thishomeschoolerslife's Top Tips

"Head to Forsyth fountain and enjoy the shade while you stroll under the tree-lined path."

@thishomeschoolerslife's Top Tips

"Sample amazing local cuisine at Collins Quarter near Forsyth Park."

Must pack items for Savannah

"Sunscreen, sun hat, bug spray, reusable water bottle & comfortable walking shoes."

A 'MUST' whilst you're there?

"Explore the historic Riverfront area, browse the shops & sample a free praline or grab some gelato at Savannah's Candy Kitchen."

Favourite time of year to visit Savannah

"Spring is wonderful because the weather is perfect, warm but not humid."

About Our

  • Influencer
  • Countries Visited:

    4 Countries

  • Favourite Destination:

    London

  • Dream Destination:

    Paris, France

  • About them:
  • "Live once Travel Well", is my main motto for life. I love to travel, go on outdoor adventures & family travels/adventures. When I'm not traveling, I'm busy planning my next adventure ☺️