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Reviews: Nature & Culture Tour of Madagascar

Nature & Culture Tour of Madagascar

Discover the beautiful Island Madagascar with its unique nature and culture - the only place where you can see Lemurs and other unique wildlife. An unforgettable trip with a competent guide.

star rating Trip rating 5/5 from 25 reviews
Operator rating 5/5 from 42 reviews
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This Trip Reviews

Client: Lois Gahm - from United States
Trip: This Trip: Nature & Culture Tour of Madagascar
Rating: rating 5/5
Comment: The tour company was excellent.

I reccommend them highly.Their prices are reasonable. The only problem is the expense from South Africa to Tana, Madagascar.
Client: Ken Sullivan - from United Kingdom
Trip: This Trip: Nature & Culture Tour of Madagascar
Rating: rating 5/5
Comment: Not much to add to all the other reviews for this company and it's employees.

Despite the best efforts of Air France to disrupt the holiday by changing flight times at the last moment the rest of our time went off without a hitch.

All credit must be given to Fanja and Hiengu (probably spelt that wrong, sorry) for looking after us while we were there to ensure that there were no problems in the rest of our time in Madagascar.

All in all would heartily recommend this company to anyone looking to holiday in Madagascar.
Client: Tom and Carol Warschauer - from United States
Trip: This Trip: Nature & Culture Tour of Madagascar
Rating: rating 5/5
Comment: I hesitate to write a review for this trip because it is hard to express how wonderful it was.

The tour company is small but the care the company director took was very great. First of all our trip was not one of the "off the shelf" variety. They has such things, and I am sure they are wonderful, but we had studied the guidebooks, and had our own ideas of what we wanted, and they accommodated our plans and guided us towards what was possible and desirable.

The company selected our competent drivers and our helpful guides. They selected our hotels and arranged for our inter-country air travel. They saw to every detail. We were always met by folks with our name on a placard and taken to our destinations promptly.

When I got a case of travelers' disease they accommodated the changes to our schedule and insured that the hotel staff took good care of me. I lost my cell in Paris on the way there and Fanja (the tour company director) lent me one of hers for the duration of our travels!

I have written an extensive travelogue of the trip and am very proud of all we saw and did in this very active vacation. There is nothing a tour company could do that was not done and not done well. We will be forever grateful for the caring treatment and the attention to detail that made this complicated itinerary work.

This was a trip of a lifetime for me and my wife. It could not have been done better. Thanks to the Africa Guide for the referral.
Client: Mamta Shah - from India
Trip: This Trip: Nature & Culture Tour of Madagascar
Rating: rating 5/5
Comment: With great sense of satisfaction, we would Like to say that our first trip to Madagascar was fantastic.

All Credit to the tour operator, who has stretched herself beyond to make the group comfortable. The tour Guide Mr Jean Jaques with his unparalleled knowledge of flora and fauna made our trip a super success.

We honour both of them and thank them from the bottom of our Hearts. We would be doing this trip Regularly.
Client: Karin McCollum - from United States
Trip: This Trip: Nature & Culture Tour of Madagascar
Rating: rating 5/5
Comment: If you want to be in the caring hands of someone who meets you at the beginning, explains everything line by line, sends you off with the English speaking driver, meets you again upon your return to debrief you on how things went, sign up NOW with this tour operator, with Fanja as your manager.

Think of a mother sending her children off to camp with love and concern for her dependents. She was every bit as stellar as all the other recommendations stated and leaves nothing to chance. She truly wants to ensure your trip is fantastic and settles only for the best for you.

Thank you, Fanja, and driver Hengu!!
Client: Jo and Howard Fine - from United States
Trip: This Trip: Nature & Culture Tour of Madagascar
Rating: rating 5/5
Comment: Before I begin, I must is impossible to capsulate our experience in a brief paragraph.

We would be most happy to provide you our thoughts on one of the most pleasurable trips we have ever taken. And, thank you, Africa Guide, for providing this most appreciated referral.

First of all, a little background on us. We are certainly globetrotters, seeking to see as much of the world as we can in a lifetime! We have been to 132 countries, and have made a pact with ourselves to not return to any........unless it is passing through, or in conjunction with another "new" itinerary. However.......that may now change!

In 2004, we had watched an episode of "Lonely Planet", now known as "Globetrekkers", on the country of Madagascar. Since seeing that one episode, Madagascar has been on our "short list"! Only now, have we found the time to go and complete our dream!

We love to customize our own tours to each our destinations, thus controlling lost time that might be spent on something we are not interested in seeing. So when we received Africa Guide's referral, that was one of the first issues we discussed with the tour operator. Fanja was every traveler's dream of a tour operator! She truly represents the epitome of "grace"! She began a supportive dialogue with us upon our first contact, and it has continued until this day.

Fanja was diligent in her effort to ensure that we were able to include each of the destinations on our checklist; and that they could realistically be covered in a 10-day itinerary. Ten days, however, was just an appetizer in a land with main courses spread out in so many directions. And, Madagascar just may be the first country in which we break our pact to "not return" to a destination we had previously visited!

We began our tour the minute we were picked up from the airport, heading south to Antsirabe, where we arrived at nightfall. Our driver and English-speaking guide, Mr. Romance, was as positive as his name! He stuck with us the entire trip, and did a superb job of introducing us to his country. He stopped when we needed, or when we asked for a "photo stop". He openly discussed the culture and lifestyle of the country. He was attentive, and strived to keep us comfortable and informed.

One of our most dubious side trips, proved to be the most adventurous and fun! We longed to take a drive into the back country somewhere in Madagascar, and we chose Andringrita National Park! Fanja knew it would be a difficult journey, and was always upfront about this. But, it only intrigued us more! She did not question our enthusiasm, and cheerfully agreed to work with contacts in Ambalavo to arrange a 4Xwheel drive vehicle and driver for us. We set off on a 27 mile see-saw ride, which took 3.5 hours to complete, due to poor road conditions! We spent a few hours enjoying the beauty of the park, trekking the trails, and enjoying a picnic lunch at a view point before turning around to repeat the 3.5 hours in our return.

The operator offers services with a high degree of ethics, cooperative spirit, and an intent to please their clients. Fanja responded to all our pre-trip questions within 24 hours! If we had a lodging preference, she agreed to arrange it. She was there at the airport to meet us when we arrived, she came to the hotel prior to our departure home, and she followed up with us once we returned home. Should we decide to return to Madagascar, Fanja and her agency will be our first contact!

And one final note: One of the most magical places on earth has to be in the area of I'Isalo National Park! The park is studded with rock formations that seem to grow out of the land! Perhaps our most awesome experience within these dramatic "rock stars", occurred during our dusk-time visit to La Fenetre de I'Isalo; a "must do" stop after a day of trekking, to watch the sun set through a natural opening in a large lichen-covered rock. There, we......... by pure happenchance.......... caught a glimpse of the rising full moon, perfectly centered, as we gazed through the opposite side of this interesting geological oddity! What a photo; what a memory! Only timing and luck.......or by good "Grace"??? And the Le Jardin du Roy Hotel, which was just a few miles away, and where we stayed, continued to carry on the spirit of this land. Our room was literally surrounded on two sides by big, beautiful boulders! Waking up in the middle of the night and seeing the moonlight reflecting off the stone boulders, kept this magical park alive! A footnote to the note: Hotel Le Jardin surpasses many 5 star hotels in the US! It is castle-like, built with tons of stone, each placed in an almost artistic pattern. Huge cathedral ceilings. And all the amenities of the finest of hotels; including the food and its presentation!!!

We did see the lemurs, chameleons, zebu, and other endemic animals, but it was the landscapes, the spiky plantlife, and the peoples and their cultures that held the most interest and intrigue for us. Madagascar has something for everyone! But one can't wait too long. Forests are being replaced with rice fields. Natural habitats to wildlife are being lost. But the people and their lifestyle remain largely unaffected by Western influence, for now. It remains a country that is still on the frontier of tourism. And now is the best time to go! The vanilla is the best! And Dzama's Coco to die for!!!

Our tour exceeded our expectations, and it was all made possible by the assistance, the patience, and the expertise of this operator and Fanja!
Client: Don & Cherie Chantler - from Australia
Trip: This Trip: Nature & Culture Tour of Madagascar
Rating: rating 4.5/5
Comment: We had a really great trip through Madagascar. The tour was well organised, the driver was excellent and the itinerary gave us a great introduction to the sights of the island.

Fanja was really helpful throughout, from the initial briefing session to dealing with the chaos at Tuliar airport!

The real downside of the trip was the overbooking of our return flight from Tuliar to Tana. This completely disrupted our holiday and meant that we missed the connecting flight to Mauritius. When we checked in to fly back to Antananarivo on Air Madagascar, we were told that the plane was full (even though we HAD tickets), and there were no other flights back for 30 hours. We believe that there is widespread corruption by Air Madagascar staff at Tuliar airport who take bribes from passengers to ensure their seat on the plane.

The tour operator worked really hard to sort out this problem. The driver came back to the airport to try to help, and they re-scheduled our flights, organised additional accommodation and took us to the Head Office of Air Madagascar (with little result).

Overall a great place to visit, so different and interesting, the operator is a great travel company, would recommend them to anyone, but beware of flying Air Madagascar who have the monopoly for internal flights.
Client: Brian - from United Kingdom
Trip: This Trip: Nature & Culture Tour of Madagascar
Rating: rating 5/5
Comment: We thoroughly enjoyed our tour of Madagascar. The arrangements all worked well and, although there were one or two aspects of the trip where improvements to the itinerary could be made, all in all we thought that our trip was the perfect introduction to an incredibly diverse and interesting country.

We loved seeing all the wonderful animals on our trips into the National Parks, and the guides and in particular our driver were excellent.

We certainly hope to return to see different parts of the island and would definitely use the same travel company again.
Client: Nicholas Hartley - from United Kingdom
Trip: This Trip: Nature & Culture Tour of Madagascar
Rating: rating 5/5
Comment: We had an excellent holiday.

All the contact with the tour operator prior to our trip was very helpful and the organisation of the tour was well planned.

The system of contact via your web site initially but then direct with operator worked well.

Thanks for the contact
Client: Lesley and Nigel - from United Kingdom
Trip: This Trip: Nature & Culture Tour of Madagascar
Rating: rating 5/5
Comment: We, a 50s couple, had an amazing time travelling over 1000km over the 11 days from the capital, Tana, to Ifaty on the south-west coast and then by internal flight back to Tana and a couple nights in Andasibe.

Walked through rainforests - day and night, hiked across the National Park of Isalo, rode in Zebu carts. Hotels were sometimes a little basic but all were charming, can particularly recommend the Hotel l'Artisan, Ambositra and the Ifaty Beach Club (Oh, and the French restaurant at Hotel Grégoire, Tana).

Our driver, Aro, was great even with the challenges of Madagascan roads and in organising good guides at all the national parks. Food was good (Zebu fillet can be delicious) but you need to be constantly aware of taking basic hygiene precautions.

Yes, lots of good memories - not least the friendliness of the Malagasy people.
Client: Janet South - from United Kingdom
Trip: This Trip: Nature & Culture Tour of Madagascar
Rating: rating 5/5
Comment: The operator put together an independent 15-day trip for two of us, travelling south from Tana to include the major cultural experiences as well as some of the nature reserves.

Everything worked very well and we were particularly impressed by our driver, Mamy,

We would recommend this firm to anyone.
Client: Griselda Cacho - from Mexico
Trip: This Trip: Nature & Culture Tour of Madagascar
Rating: rating 5/5
Comment: My trip in Madagascar was fantastic. The service by the operator was excellent.

The places I visited were interesting and the variety of landscapes is amazing. I would have liked to spend more days in Isalo as it has a lot to offer to adventures like me. (I travelled by myself).
Client: Linda Kohl - from United States
Trip: This Trip: Nature & Culture Tour of Madagascar
Rating: rating 5/5
Comment: Our tour was "fantabulous" ("fantastic+fabulous").

Fanja (the tour operator) and our driver were more than willing to help us with our sometimes difficult requests. In addition, Fanja took great care in changing the itinerary to accomodate some of the specific requests that we had. (For example we added a day to the tour, added another national park, and requested a specific lodging at the park.)

We loved our tour: the weather was great, the culture and nature were captivating, the accomodations were very good, and the concern for our enjoyment exceptional. I would recommend the operator to anyone.
Client: Mona Sage - from United States
Trip: This Trip: Nature & Culture Tour of Madagascar
Rating: rating 5/5
Comment: There is so much to say - This was such a great trip!! We will agree that touring Madagascar is not for everyone and needs to really be well thought out before arriving.

Working with Manager Fanja made choosing this tour an easy one. She readily answered any questions we had before and after we committed to the tour. She greeted us at the airport and did a follow up before we left the last day. Fanja is an honest professional willing to assist in any way.

The accomodations were clean, comfortable and very roomy. The itinerary was as it was advertised. Our driver/guide, Olivier, really made our trip memorable. Olivier is honest, patient, professional, knowledgeable about every facet of Madagascar from plants, animals, geology, geography, history, people, etc. He is a safe driver always with a clean car each day and a wonderful smile. He arranged for great local guides and speaks English well. We had a wonderful experience and have nothing but praise for Fanja and Olivier. We are glad we chanced to find this operator!

It is always a concern when one chooses something through the internet - no USA connection or guarantee, but this was better that we could have ever thought. So glad you turned up in our search.

We learned so much, saw so much - are still trying to grasp it all. Thanks.
Client: Martin - from United Kingdom
Trip: This Trip: Nature & Culture Tour of Madagascar
Rating: rating 5/5
Comment: We were provided with a wonderful trip everything worked like clockwork!

This was my third trip to Madagascar so sort of knew the score! Can highly recommend this small but well sorted operator!

This operator will give you a personal tour of this wonderous and unique Island without any peers! after 3 times a visitor they are simply superb and offer you anything you could wish!
Do your research first then give them your rough itinary and they will make your dream come true!

Cannot be faulted
Martin (UK)
Client: Davide and Cristiano - from United Kingdom
Trip: This Trip: Nature & Culture Tour of Madagascar
Rating: rating 5/5
Comment: Two of us took a tour in Madagascar for 13 days between November and December. It was a really enjoyable trip.

The driver (Aru) was really knowledgeable and friendly such as all the guides that showed the beauties of this wonderful country to us. We started from Tana and went down to Ifaty. It was really a diverse holiday between forests, chamaleons, lemurs, unforgettable landscapes, smiles of the people, wonderful beaches .

The hotels we stayed were good and the food delicious. Next year we hope to visit the North. We would suggest this trip to everyone.
Client: Colleen Fry-Preston - from United States
Trip: This Trip: Nature & Culture Tour of Madagascar
Rating: rating 5/5
Comment: I couldn 't possibly say enough good about the office manager and driver we were priviledged to get to know (Fanja and Hon goo (sorry for spelling)- both were very, very helpful and skillful at their jobs, you could'nt ask for better ambassadors to promote tourism in Madagascar.
Client: Mary & Trevor Mowbray - from New Zealand
Trip: This Trip: Nature & Culture Tour of Madagascar
Rating: rating 5/5
Comment: A great welcome and orientation tour from the tour company manager. She went to a lot of trouble to make our stay in Madagascar successful, even extending substantial assistance before and after the actual tour.

For the tour itself we had a comfortable vehicle and a pleasant driver. He adapted the city tour route to go beyond what we had already seen.

The best part were the expeditions into the national parks and animal reserves (one of those was an 'extra') where we had specialist guides. People should be careful to note which meals are included in the tour. The hotels were not always the same as those listed in the original programme; the accommodation varied but was always comfortable and the one at Ifaty Beach was very good.

The roads were better than we had been led to believe and although long distances were covered there was always something of interest.
Client: Gavin Anderson - from United Kingdom
Trip: This Trip: Nature & Culture Tour of Madagascar
Rating: rating 5/5
Comment: We found the operator very reliable.

Everything went to plan and staff were very responsive to our needs both in planning the trip and on the holiday itself.

No hesitation in recommending them.
Client: John Fordham - from United Kingdom
Trip: This Trip: Nature & Culture Tour of Madagascar
Rating: rating 5/5
Comment: Our Tour was both exciting and educational.

We visited parks such as Perinet and Isalo, saw loads of lemurs of different species, and establishments such as a winery and a paper manufacturer. A hugely enjoyable experience.

The Tour was very well organized and our English-speaking driver was both friendly and knowledgeable.

We would recommend this Tour to any small group thinking of visiting Madagascar for the first time.

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Nature & Culture Tour of Madagascar

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