Madagascar Holidays

Discovering Madagascar's eccentricity and charm

Madagascar’s rainforests ring to the calls of lemurs and exotic birdlife, humpback whales breed in its waters and ancient 2 CV taxis ply the streets.

Meanwhile restaurants in the middle of nowhere serve homemade foie gras as good as anything you’ll find in Dordogne. After many trips over the past few years this place has become a firm favourite of ours.

A Madagascar safari holiday offers the sort of eccentric charm it’s increasingly hard to find these days. Not quite Africa, part Indonesia with a dash of Arabic, all overlaid with a French accent. This is a place with the capacity to surprise on many levels, whether it’s the wildlife, the beautiful scenery or the food.

While it may not be the obvious choice for those wanting a sophisticated modern safari experience, it will reward those of a curious nature looking for a bit of adventure in a wildly exciting corner of the planet. And some of Madagascar’s wildlife experiences – particularly the rainforests and coast on the Northeast of the island - are as good as anything you’ll find on mainland Africa. 

Planning a trip to Madagascar? Talk to us

For families Madagascar is a cornucopia of eclectic experiences that will keep children big and small thrilled

Enter the rainforest on foot and you’ll be smitten by the extraordinary endemic species that live their; brightly coloured chameleons that resemble the beaded trinkets for sale in Johannesburg airport or some of the world’s last Indris – sombre looking lemurs the size of a child, with a call like a vuvuzela and the ability to leap 7 metres in a single bound.

Take night walks to discover creatures deeply asleep on the ends of branches, explore massive caves and landscapes that look like they came from a Hollywood set. Head to the coast and the turquoise waters, white sandy beaches and rich sea life are mesmerising. 

Take a look at a Madagascar safari for families

Madagascar's Wildlife

Lemurs, rainforests and humpback whales

Discovering Madagascar's unspoilt forests and coastlines

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If you know where to look Madagascar still contains sensational wild areas

While much of the island has suffered terribly from deforestation, the country’s last remaining rainforests are still cathedrals to biodiversity teaming with colourful mammals, reptiles, birds, insects and plants - many of which remain unknown to science.

In all Madagascar is home to over 100 species of lemur, while stunning islands and beaches offer the chance to see – and even swim with - a plethora of marine wildlife, from humpback whales to whale sharks, manta rays and turtles.

In August and September look out for breaching humpback whales as they migrate to and from their breeding grounds. At Christmas time whale sharks can be found in the islands around Nosy Be, while manta rays and sea turtles are year-round residents.

For those after real adventure consider taking the RN5 “the world’s worst highway” which follows the magical east coast of the island; 5 days of unspoilt beaches and small fishing villages.

Take on the RN5? Read the sample itinerary

It's no mean feat to be able to run a luxury lodge in Madagascar - few people would have the determination to try, but of those that do, a few stand out as remarkable.

Beyond a select handful of properties that we'd advise you to build your itinerary around, it’s sensible to assume that accommodation in Madagascar won’t be highly sophisticated

In many cases there are good logistical reasons for this (it’s pretty hard to get a lot of things in very remote areas), but this aside, the travel market here isn’t as mature as in some parts of Africa and standards reflect this. 

You could however argue that moderate accommodation is the price to be paid for visiting the little visited regions of Madagascar.

In many places – and particularly if you’re driving, there is a reasonable selection of mid range hotels to choose from in places like Andasibe, but styling tends to be functional rather than ground breaking. Go further afield though, for example to the wild east coast and you can expect some quite basic set ups.

However, in our experience, what you will find almost everywhere are enormously welcoming people and very often exceptional food.

All of this said, there are one or two exceptions that prove the rule – truly special small lodges like Masoala Forest Lodge, located in the magical Masoala National Park, that offer exceptional food in a seriously off the map locations and it’s places like this that we’d advocate building your trip around if  you can.

Take a look at a sample trip
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Madagascar Sample Trips



Madagascar's largest unbroken rainforest, endemic lemurs, humpbacks and a stunning beach lodge

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Madagascar Sample Trips



Spiny Forest, Lemurs and Sifakas, varied landscapes, whales and dolphins - all well off the beaten track

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Madagascar Sample Trips



Rainforests, lemurs, dramatic landscapes and the crumbling charm of Diego Suarez. Ending up on an indian ocean island

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Madagascar Sample Trips

Madagascar's Wild east Coast


Not for the faint hearted. A madcap adventure through one of Madagascar's least accessible coastal areas. Whales, lemurs and pristine coastlines

View sample trip

I am not sure if Julien bought us to the lemurs or vice versa, but there they were, astonishing beings, upright, immaculately attired in furs and tails, bouncing through the trees like pianists in white tie and knickerbockers. They had no fear of us. They crooned, chattered, ate, carried their babies — and then they called. I jumped. Lemurs can make a shrieking hoot that vibrates through tree trunks. You would think a troop of yeti were coming for you.”


Madagascar changes you. It made me an evangelist for the country - for the necessity of foreign understanding and support for this vulnerable and still extraordinary place”


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Ankarana National Reserve


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Diego Suarez

One of the world’s largest naturally protected bays

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When’s the best time to visit Madagascar?

As a general rule of thumb Madagascar is best visited from April to December. Although some guide books suggest visiting Madagascar only from...
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Month by month guide to visiting Madagascar

January is the start of a very wet and hot period in Madagascar; rainfall can be as much as 340mm, especially on the east coast. Roads to places of...
Read More

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+44 (0) 1747 830950

Our experienced travellers include:

Alex Edwards
Alex Edwards
Vanessa Janion
Vanessa Janion
Olly Williams
Olly Williams

It takes genuine local knowledge to craft trips that go beyond the ordinary.

All of us at Natural High have over 20 years’ experience in the countries we offer. We’ve lived there, worked there and arranged countless one-off journeys for clients. We live to travel – and love to share our tips on what’s really worth doing. For expert advice (and a traveller’s tale or two), speak to one of our team. They’ll be happy to let you in on their travel secrets, and help you plan a tailor-made trip that’s truly unforgettable.


Outstanding customer service well above the call of duty.

"Natural High arranged a trip to remember ...accommodation first class, transportation on very long road trips was excellent. Spotless . air conditioning .. food and water. Rhino and Tiger sightings to die for.. local agents left nothing to chance ... we felt in the safest hands ... then when we off grid the virus struck... Natural High and their local Agent Banyan took total control and got us from the back of beyond to UK in very worrying and uncertain times. All without us being able to do anything at our end ...outstanding attention to detail. Worth every penny."


Personal service and excellent organisation

"This was our first holiday to be organised by Natural High. We made the enquiry on New Year’s Eve for a departure in February and within a few days they had produced a wonderful-sounding itinerary in Costa Rica. There were helpful notes for packing as they seem to have someone there who has been to any chosen destination. We did do some groundwork for flights but left it to Dial-a-Flight who were also most efficient. We visited the office as it is very local to home and everyone there was cheerful and interested in our upcoming trip. We were presented with a leather file which turned out to be the most useful item en-route for all our paperwork ..... and it smelled lovely!
The holiday was one of our best ever. Not just because we saw a plethora of wildlife, but because there was always someone waiting to whisk us to another destination, be it to the airport, from the airport or a boat to a lodge etc. And they did it with great charm and humour and were always very knowledgeable about any queries we had.
For the last 8 days we had a driver/guide who was just outstanding. He was very familiar with the 3 remaining lodges where we stayed and his rapport with the other staff and guides helped to ensure that we were really well looked after. He was a skilled naturalist, had a great sense of humour and was always putting our welfare first - he made a wonderful companion for the trip.
All of the above meant that it was a really relaxing holiday so that we could maximise our time looking at the flora and fauna of Costa Rica.
We would highly recommend Natural High ...... where next?!"

Ken and Caroline

Natural High

"Brilliant, everything is so well organised. We have had two trips of a lifetime organised by Rod Tether who is also a guide extraordinaire!"

Antony & Jane Braithwaite RT

Fantastic Natural High

"Perfectly organised trip to two great Nomad camps in Tanzania!"


Natural High nailed it again

"Sledding in Sweden was our second wonderful holiday with Natural High. From the moment you speak to them to when you get home the service and attention to detail is wonderful.
Everything is so well planned and organised that you can just sit back and really enjoy your holiday. We couldn’t recommend husky sledding in the north of Sweden more. We all agreed it was one of the best family holidays ever."