28 Day Tanzania & Madagascar Tour

With Zanzibar
TOURCODE: TZ2

Duration:
28 Days

Activity Level:
3

When To Go:
Sep

Countries Visited:
3

Arrive In / Depart From:
/

Max Group Size:
Never more than 18

Tour Style:
Cultural

Price From:

  Overnight in: Nairobi, Amboseli National Park, Lake Manyara, Serengeti National Park, Ngorongoro Conservation Area, Arusha, Zanzibar, Antananarivo, Antsirabe, Ranomafana, Fianarantsoa, Ranohira, Toliara, Andasibe-Mantadia, Berenty

Discover the country's true culture with the help of experienced local guides.

  • Small group sizes to help escape the beaten path.
  • All-inclusive with top-rated restaurants and hotels.
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Tour Overview
Tour Overview
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Countries Visited: 3 Activity Level: 3 Tour Style: Cultural

A special treat before we head into the heart of Tanzania on this adventure-packed Tanzania & Madagascar Tour, we have time to explore Kenya's capital, Nairobi, a city that displays a charming blend of British colonial and traditional and modern African influences.

We also get a taste for the breathtaking natural environment in Kenya by heading to Amboseli National Park, famous for its massive herds of roaming elephants that cover themselves in red dust, and keep a lookout for jackals, wildebeest, lions and Maasai giraffes on the open plains.

Crossing the border into Tanzania, we travel through lush, green fields and traditional villages to Lake Manyara, an area renowned for its unique rainforest micro-climate, before journeying on to reach the rim of the incredible, volcanic Ngorongoro Crater.

Our descent into the heart of the crater, which is the largest unbroken caldera in the world, yields the opportunity to witness a microcosm of East African scenery and game, with teeming wildlife ranging from gazelle, flamingos and wildebeest to lions and hippos.

From here, it's on to the Serengeti, translated as 'The land without end' in the Maasai tongue, and into Serengeti National Park, which is the largest national park in Tanzania and undoubtedly the most well-known wildlife sanctuary in the world.

Despite its fame, Serengeti National Park retains the features that first attracted travellers to its borders and built its reputation as the ultimate safari destination, namely that it remains unspoiled and remote.

Spending time investigating the excavation site at Olduvai Gorge means we have the chance to tread the grounds that are proven to have been inhabited over 1.8 million years ago by some of the earliest species of hominids.

We leave the Great Rift Valley area and Tanzania, bound for Zanzibar, where we spend five days exploring historic Stone Town - an historic area laden with winding alleys, bustling bazaars and colourful mosques - seeing endemic monkeys and beautiful flora in Jozani Natural Forest Reserve and embarking on a spice tour, one of the must-do activities when visiting the 'Spice Island.'

Via Kenya, we fly to Madagascar, an island whose long isolation from the mainland has meant that it has benefited from a wholly unique evolution; evidence of which being that over 80 per cent of life on the island is endemic.

We travel past sceneries of brightly coloured houses stacked upon hillsides, rice paddies that fringe the edges of towns, fort remains, rugged green mountains and hilltop palaces as we immerse ourselves in the sights, sounds and cultures of this inimitable destination.

Steeped in fascinating history and offering a cultural experience like no other, Madagascar is the perfect finale to this first-rate tour.

 


 

Dates & Prices
Dates & Prices

 

Prices below are per person, twin-sharing costs in US Dollars (USD). Pricing does not include airfare to/from the tour and any applicable taxes. For single supplement rates and taxes (if any), please refer to below Prices & Dates table. For general information on flights to/from the tour, click here.

 

Select a date below to reserve your spot:

 


The above prices are subject to an additional $148 for taxes/fees levied on flights that occur as part of the tour. The internal airfares ARE included (any exceptions are listed in red below), but we list the taxes separately on your invoice as they are beyond our control and can change at any time.

Optional Single Supplement: $1900 USD (number of singles limited).
This tour may require a mandatory single supplement charge of $610 if you join our share program and we are unable to pair you.

 


 

Full Itinerary
Full Itinerary

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Day 1 Arrive in Nairobi
Today we arrive in Nairobi, the capital of Kenya.

Part of Maasai land when the British arrived, this modern capital grew with the development of the railway. Derived from a Maasai word meaning "Cold Water," Nairobi is a pleasant mix of colonial British with modern and traditional African influences.

Overnight in Nairobi.

Included Meal(s): Dinner



Day 2 Nairobi - Amboseli National Park
Today we travel south from Nairobi to the Amboseli National Park.

Just across the border from Tanzania, this park is situated on the African plain at the foot of snow-capped Mount Kilimanjaro, the continent's tallest mountain at 5894 m (19,300 feet). Here the cone-shaped mountain seems to hover majestically over the shimmering African plains.

The Amboseli National Park is also famous for its large herds of elephants. Here they cover themselves in red dust, giving them an even more imposing appearance. On this afternoon's game drive we hope to view animals grazing on the open plain with Mt Kilimanjaro providing the classic backdrop (weather-permitting).

Overnight in the Amboseli National Park.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner



Day 3 Amboseli, Kenya - Lake Manyara National Park, Tanzania
This morning we cross the border into Tanzania at Namanga and travel to Lake Manyara National Park via the town of Arusha, the starting point for the northern safari routes of Tanzania.

Manyara is the smallest of the northern parks in Tanzania (330 sq km, of which two thirds is the actual lake) hosting a wide variety of vegetation, ranging from savannah to ground water forest to riparian habitats. The park is host to thousands of pelicans, ibis and flamingo that can be heard from afar. Other common visitors to this beautiful lake are hippos and the majestic African fish eagle, which can be seen swooping down from its perch to snatch a fish from the still waters of the lake.

After lunch at our lodge we will have an afternoon game drive in the park, located at the base of the Great Rift Valley escarpment and comprising of forest, woodland, grasslands, and swamps. Wildlife interest at Lake Manyara is not confined to bird life only; animals such as buffalo, elephant, giraffe, impala, hippo and a great variety of smaller animals also inhabit the park.

Overnight at Lake Manyara.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner



Day 4 Lake Manyara - Serengeti National Park
This morning we enter the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, a beautiful rolling landscape with periodic views over the Ngorongoro Crater. Before descending onto the Serengeti Plain, we'll stop at a viewpoint overlooking the crater. The name "Serengeti" derives from a Maasai word meaning "Land-without-end." This is a land of superlatives, both in the vast landscape that surrounds you and the incredible biodiversity it supports. It is here that you have a chance to witness one of the most compelling natural dramas on earth -- the annual migration, a sight unparalleled anywhere in the natural world. Our afternoon game drive provides an excellent introduction to this fantastic
landscape and the biodiversity it supports.

Overnight in the Serengeti National Park.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner



Day 5 Serengeti National Park
Today we have a full day of game viewing on the Serengeti. We will visit the "kopjes," a series of low, incongruous hills dotting the open landscape that often provide a vantage point for hungry predators contemplating the endless stream of hoofed animals parading past them. Depending on the season and the timing of the rains, up to 1.5 million wildebeest and a half a million zebra embark on a single-minded and perilous quest for water and grazing land. Following this spectacle, of course, are the meat-eating opportunists, hoping to capitalize on the physical toll this journey exacts on the desperate grazers. Even outside of "migration" time, large herds are still seen as they bear their young and feed, gaining strength for their annual return to the park's northern reaches. Resident species that do not migrate make for rewarding animal viewing in any season.

It may be possible to take an optional hot-air balloon safari over the plains at daybreak; today is the best day to participate in this activity -- details will be sent sent upon booking.

Overnight in the Serengeti National Park.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner



Day 6 Serengeti - Olduvai Gorge - Ngorongoro Conservation Area
Travelling back to Ngorongoro today we make a stop at Olduvai Gorge, site of the Leakey excavations in the 1960s and 70s that established this region as the prehistoric habitat of some of the earliest species of hominids with some finds dating back 1.8 million years. Experts in the life sciences have argued that the Olduvai contribution to the story of human origins remains unsurpassed by any other prehistoric site in the world. A small museum on site outlines the unique geological and human history of the area.

Called the 'eighth wonder of the world' and stretching across some 8300 sq km, the Ngorongoro Conservation Area boasts a blend of landscapes, wildlife, people and archaeology that is unsurpassed in Africa. The volcanoes, grasslands, waterfalls and mountain forests are home to an abundance of animals and to the Maasai. Ngorongoro Crater is one of the world's greatest natural spectacles and its magical setting and abundant wildlife never fail to enthral visitors.

Overnight in the vicinity of Ngorongoro Conservation Area.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner



Day 7 Ngorongoro Conservation Area
Today we enjoy a half-day tour in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area.* After an early breakfast we descend into the crater far below for a game drive in this incredible setting, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. We explore the Ngorongoro Crater, 20 km (13 miles) wide and 700 m (2,300 feet) high where we may see the "Big Five" as well as many herbivores like wildebeest, gazelle, zebra and hippopotamus, as well as thousands of flamingos on Lake Magadi.

* In order to reduce congestion and stress on wildlife, the Tanzanian government limits
visitors to half-day visits of the crater. Depending on what time "window" we are assigned, our excursion may take place first thing in the morning, or later in the afternoon (both of which are equally advantageous for game viewing, given the relatively mild climate at this altitude).

Overnight in the vicinity of Ngorongoro Conservation Area.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner



Day 8 Ngorongoro - Gibb's Farm - Arusha
This morning we descend the Ngorongoro Highlands, retracing our steps back to Arusha via a lunch stop at Gibb's Farm. Founded during German colonial times and still privately owned, Gibb's Farm is now a small hotel perched on the outer slopes of the Ngorongoro Highlands, surrounded by coffee plantations with long views over lush and beautiful agricultural country.

We pass again through the town of Mto Wa Mbu ('Mosquito Creek'), famous for its lively cosmopolitan atmosphere and red bananas, which taste the same as regular bananas but their skins are a startling bright red.

We arrive back in Arusha later this afternoon.

Overnight in Arusha.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner



Day 9 Arusha - Fly to Zanzibar: Town Tour
This morning we fly to Zanzibar and transfer to our hotel in Stone Town.

Zanzibar is an archipelago made up of Zanzibar and Pemba Islands, and several islets. Zanzibar Island is 96 km (60 miles) long and 32 km (20 miles) wide, occupying a total area of approximately 1040 km sq (650 sq miles). It is characterised by beautiful sandy beaches with fringing coral reefs, and the magic of historic Stone Town -- said to be the only functioning ancient town in East Africa.

Zanzibar's local people are an incredible mixture of ethnic backgrounds, indicative of her colourful history. Islam is the dominant religion, and practiced by most Zanzibaris, although there are also followers of Christianity and Hinduism. Population is estimated at 800,000, with the largest concentration being Zanzibar City, which has approximately 100,000 inhabitants. Zanzibaris speak Swahili (known locally as Kiswahili), a language spoken extensively in East Africa. Many believe that the purest form is spoken in Zanzibar as it is the birthplace of the language.

This afternoon we have a walking tour of Stone Town, the old city and cultural heart of Zanzibar, little changed in the last 200 years. It is a place of winding alleys, bustling bazaars, mosques and grand Arab houses whose original owners vied with each other over the extravagance of their dwellings. This one-upmanship is particularly reflected in the brass-studded, carved, wooden doors -- there are more than 500 different examples of this handiwork. Our tour takes us to the House of Wonders, the Palace Museum (People's Palace), the old slave market, the Arab Fort, and the Hamamni Persian Baths. Stone Town has some excellent gifts shops with plenty of souvenirs and handicrafts to choose from.

NOTE: The exact order of our Zanzibar sightseeing may vary depending on variables such as weather and other logistical considerations.

Overnight on Zanzibar (Stone Town).

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner



Day 10 Jozani Forest & Stone Town
This morning we visit the Jozani Natural Forest Reserve located in the central east region of Zanzibar Island, home to the rare red colobus monkey, endemic to Zanzibar. These monkeys are full of character and roam freely. They can also be seen at very close quarters just outside the reserve's perimeter and are incredibly photogenic. Jozani is home to other species including Syke's monkeys, small buck and bushpigs.

This afternoon is free to enjoy Stone Town. Most of the houses that can be seen today were built in the 19th Century when Zanzibar was one of the most important trading centres in the Indian Ocean region. The coraline rock of Zanzibar was a good building material, but it is also easily eroded. This is evident by the large number of houses that are in a bad state of repair. Several buildings have already been renovated and the Stone Town Conservation Authority has been established to coordinate the restoration of the town to its original magnificence.

Overnight on Zanzibar (Stone Town).

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner



Day 11 Spice Tour - East Coast
Today we check-out of our town-based hotel and travel to the island's east coast.*

En route we enjoy some touring along the way. The history of Zanzibar would be incomplete without a 'spice tour' -- cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon, pepper and many other spices were as important to the Sultans of Oman as the infamous slave trade. They can be seen in the plantations just outside Zanzibar town, and our morning tour includes opportunities to dazzle the senses with fresh spices. A detailed description is given about a variety of spices and their uses in cooking and cosmetics. It is fascinating the sheer number of spices produced and their incredible value for many ailments and culinary applications.

We then travel to our resort-style hotel located on a beach outside of Stone Town.

* PLEASE NOTE that local government on Zanzibar has levied a tax of US$1.00 per person for every night spent on the island. This amount is payable, in cash, directly to each hotel upon check-out. We regret that we are unable to pay this in advance on your behalf.

Overnight on Zanzibar.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner



Day 12 Zanzibar: East Coast Resort
A day at leisure to enjoy the beach and to rest up after our journey…

Overnight on Zanzibar.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner



Day 13 Zanzibar: Beach to Stone Town
Today we transfer back to Stone Town in order to better place ourselves for our flight to Antananarivo tomorrow.

NOTE: Due to ever-changing flight schedules to Madagascar, we may have to leave Zanzibar a day earlier or later in order to make the connection; the routing may also go through Johannesburg or Dar es Salaam instead of Nairobi. Final arrangements will be advised closer to departure. Due to a lack of air connections in the region, we regret in advance if this journey is somewhat convoluted.

Overnight in Zanzibar Stone Town.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner



Day 14 Zanzibar, Tanzania - Antananarivo, Madagascar
Today we fly from Zanzibar to Antananarivo, the Malagasy capital city (via Nairobi).

Antananarivo means ‘City of the Thousand', supposedly because a thousand warriors protected it. Until the French conquest in 1895 Madagascar's history centred around the royal palace or rova, and the rock cliffs near the palace became known as Ampamarinana, ‘the place of the hurling', as Christian martyrs met their fate at the command of the Queen. There was no reason for the French to move the capital elsewhere: its pleasant climate made it an agreeable place to live, and plenty of French money and planning went into the city we see today.

Overnight in Antananarivo.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner



Day 15 Antananarivo - Fly to Taolagnaro - Berenty
Today we fly to Fort Dauphin (Taolagnaro).* On arrival we drive (on a very poor road, approx 4 hours) to Berenty through beautiful landscape (mountains, endemic plants, baobab, cactus, sisal). The reserve lies some 80 km to the west of Tolagnaro, amid a vast sisal plantation, and the drive there is part of the experience. For the first half of the journey the skyline is composed of rugged green mountains, and "Travellers' trees" (ravenala) dot the landscape. Near Ranopiso is a grove of the very rare three-cornered palm, Neodypsis decary.

Before reaching the spiny forest we will stop at an Antanosy 'tomb' (actually the dead are buried elsewhere) known as the tomb of Ranonda. It was carved by the renowned sculptor Fiasia. The artistry of this unpainted wooden memorial is of a very high standard although the carvings are deteriorating in the frequently wet weather.

The following species of lemur are often seen: brown lemur, ring-tailed lemur and sifaka. The lemurs here are well-used to people. There are approximately 350 ring-tailed lemurs in Berenty, and the population has stayed remarkably stable considering that only about a quarter of the babies survive to adulthood. The young are born in September and at first cling to their mother's belly, later climbing on to her back and riding jockey-style.

* Due to frequent changes to air schedules, lodge availability, and seasonal variations, the final order of our overnight points often change from one departure to another. Overall content will remain the same, but there may be some adjustments prior to your chosen date.

Overnight at Berenty Private Reserve.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner



Day 16 Berenty Private Reserve
We have a full day to experience Berenty.

Berenty is famous for its population of ring-tailed lemurs and sifakas. Henri de Heaulme, and now his son Jean, have made this one of the best-studied 260 hectares of forest in Madagascar. Although in the arid south, its location along the river Mandrare ensures a well-watered habitat for the large variety of animals that live there. In previous years the forest itself was threatened by the rampant spread of the cactus-like 'rubber vine', Cissus quadrangularis, but this is being vigorously tackled.

NOTE: There are some moderate to strenuous walks on this tour that, though optional, are an integral part of experiencing the highlights of the country. Reasonable level of physical fitness and steadiness on one's feet is important for the participant to fully and comfortably enjoy such tour activities.

Overnight at Berenty Private Reserve.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner



Day 17 Berenty - Taolagnaro - Fly to Antananarivo
Today we drive back to Taolagnaro (Fort Dauphin), on the same bad road, to connect with our flight back to Antananarivo where we spend the night prior to our onward road journey to Andasibe tomorrow.

Overnight in Antananarivo.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner



Day 18 Antananarivo - Andasibe: Mantadia/Analamzaotra
Today we travel by road to Andasibe and the popular rainforest reserve of Andasibe-Mantadia. The drive over the highlands and escarpment is pleasant and the scenery is stunning. Since this is in the eastern escarpment, the climate is cooler and the rain falls mostly at night. Please note that this is a full day of travel.

This area is home to at least nine species of lemur (including the recent discovery of the Aye-aye). Our most likely encounter will be with a troop of grey bamboo lemurs, which are diurnal and sometimes feed on the bamboo near the warden's house. On a nocturnal lemur hunt one should also look for mouse lemurs and the greater dwarf lemur, which hibernates during the cold season. After dinner we'll have a night walk in order to experience the sights and sounds of the forest after dark.

Overnight in Andasibe.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner



Day 19 Andasibe: Mantadia/Analamzaotra
Today we have a full-day visiting Analamazaotra Special Reserve (walks/hikes in the reserve).

This reserve protects the largest of the lemur family, the Indri. It stands about three feet high, with a barely visible tail, and black and white markings. Most visitors see Indris in Analamazaotra Special Reserve, and if they don't see them they definitely hear them. It is their voice that makes this lemur extra special: while other lemurs grunt, the indri "sings." It is an eerie, wailing sound somewhere between the song of a whale and a police-siren, and it carries for up to two miles as they call to each other across the forest. There are various legends connected with the Indri, which reveals the esteem in which the local people hold them. A popular tale tells of a man who climbed a forest tree to gather wild honey and was severely stung by the bees. Losing his hold, he fell but was caught by a huge indri which
carried him on its back to safety.

This is also a good place for bird watching. There are flowering trees of a species much favoured by the Madagascar green sunbird, which has an iridescent green head and throat. There are also plenty of the cuckoo-like blue couas, blue pigeons, paradise flycatchers, two species of falcon (Newton falcon and Madagascar falcon), two species of black vasa parrot, and many others.

This afternoon we have a leisurely nature walk in the area.

Overnight in Andasibe.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner



Day 20 Andasibe - Antsirabe
We depart by road for Antsirabe, founded in 1872 by Norwegian missionaries attracted by the cool climate (1500m / 4,700 ft) and the healing properties of the thermal springs. Along the crest of the island lie the central highlands, a plateau region of red soil giving the country the nickname, "the Red Island."

Antsirabe means "place of much salt," and is the agricultural and industrial centre of Madagascar. This is the centre of a rich agricultural area lying on the slopes of the island's second highest peak. During our time in Antsirabe, we should be able to take a ponsee ponsee (rickshaw) ride.

Overnight in Antsirabe.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner



Day 21 Antsirabe - Ranomafana
This morning we depart for Ranomafana.

The village of Ranomafana is situated by a river in the lush greenness of the eastern rainforest. The name Ranomafana means "hot water" and it was the waters, not the lemurs, which drew visitors in the colonial days to this place. Today the draw is the Ranomafana National Park, a fragment of high altitude rainforest that first came to world attention with the discovery of the golden bamboo lemur in 1986.

Overnight in Ranomafana.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner



Day 22 Ranomafana National Park
Today we enjoy morning and evening walks/hikes.

Hidden in these trees are at least 12 species of lemur: diademed (Milne-Edwards) sifaka, red-bellied lemur, red-fronted lemur, ruffed lemur and three species of bamboo lemur. At night you can add mouse lemur, avahi, lepilemur, fat-tailed dwarf lemur, and even aye-aye. Then there are more than 110 species of birds with 36 endemic; reptiles, butterflies and other insects. There is also much variety in the vegetation and scenery, all of which can be observed from well-constructed trails.

During our walks we are most likely to see red-fronted brown lemurs and perhaps the rarer red-bellied lemur. The golden bamboo lemur is less easily seen. The most memorable of the easily found lemurs is a subspecies of the diademed sifaka, Milne-Edward's sifaka. Unlike the more familiar Verreaux's sifaka which is largely white, this is dark brown with cream-coloured sides.

This evening we experience the park after dark with a night walk.

Overnight in Ranomafana.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner



Day 23 Ranomafana - Fianarantsoa
This morning we journey by road onward to Fianarantsoa. On our way we pass forest, open country, rice paddies modest country homes.

Fianarantsoa means 'Place of good learning'. It was founded in 1830 as the administrative capital of Betsileo and is one of the more attractive Malagasy towns. The Upper Town, with its narrow winding streets and plethora of churches, is one of our stops today. Fianarantsoa also has a wonderful market, which features a great variety of herbal medicines and dried fish brought up by train from Manakara.

On arrival we'll have an informal panoramic tour of the town including a walk up to a viewpoint overlooking the city. We'll have a walk though the old town and hope that the colourful market is on.

Overniht in Fianarantsoa.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner



Day 24 Fianarantsoa - Ranohira & Isalo National Park
Today we travel by road to the vicinity of Isalo National Park. En route we stop at Ambalavao to visit the traditional weaving atelier, Antemoro. We also visit Anjaha Park hoping to spot the ring-tailed lemur.

In Isalo, we encounter the the warm weather of the south amidst a different kind of scenery -- the savanna of the vast plateau of Ihorombe, near the Massif of Isalo. The Isalo National Park was created in 1962 to preserve the ancestral beauty of the site. Archaeological relics and funeral sanctuaries create a magical atmosphere made of strong contrasts. Lemur calls and bird chirps are heard in this green oasis along rivers filled with lush plants. While the sandy cliffs with rare riparian vegetation complete the picture.

Overnight Ranohira.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner



Day 25 Isalo National Park
Today we spend exploring the Isalo National Park on foot.*

Established in 1962, the Isalo National Park protects 815 sq km of sandstone massif wildly eroded by wind and rain into bizarre ridge featuring wild forms, impressive gorges and canyons, and tiny stalagmite pinnacles. The climate is dry tropical with warm temperatures all year around. One of our options today is a walk to the Piscine Naturelle where a natural stone cave overlooks a crystal-clear waterfall flowing into a deep green pool surrounded by leafy pandanus trees. This tranquil pool is a virtual oasis in the heat, and offers a welcome relief after the long hike to get there.

* NOTE: Due to the nature of the terrain and the heat in this area, the walks here are more difficult on average than others on our program. By now your Tour Leader will have a good sense of overall group abilities and individual limitations and can provide advice on your suitability for today's excursions.

Overnight in Ranohira.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner



Day 26 Ranohira - Tulear
Today we travel by road to Tulear (Toliara) to better place us for tomorrow's flight back to 'Tana.

Overnight in Tulear.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner



Day 27 Tulear - Fly to Antananarivo
Today we fly back to the capital. Ever-changing flight times-permitting, we may be able to accomplish some sightseeing upon arrival.

Tana will surprise you with its rice paddies, pollution, Asian influences, lots of stairs up steep hills, palaces, cobbled streets, and churches. This is not Africa or Asia, Madagascar is totally unique. This is a bustling place with lots of churches, a mosque, a zoo and plenty of markets. The capital is basically built on 12 hills and steep steps lead to the main Independence Square in the town center. The architecture is a mixture of old wooden houses, modern offices and French colonial style buildings.

Tana does not have much in the way of "tourist attractions" per se, but we hope to take in the highlights, including the Rova, the shell of the Royal Palace built in 1864 for Queen Ranavalona II by the Scotsman, James Cameron. Everything that was wooden burned in 1996, but the imposing stone fortress of a shell still stands.

Overnight in Antananarivo.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner



Day 28 Departure
Departure from Antananarivo.

BON VOYAGE!

 


 

Trip Info
Trip Info

Inclusions
Breakfast and dinner daily, also most lunches in Tanzania (local restaurants and hotels). All accommodation, transport, sightseeing and entrance fees for sites noted as 'visited' in the detailed itinerary. Two bottles of bottled water per person daily in East Africa. Gratuities for drivers, local guides, restaurant staff, porters. Airport transfers for land & air customers arriving / departing on tour dates and for early / late arrivals / departures for land & air participants who book their extra nights through us.

Exclusions
International airfare to/from the tour. Tour Leader gratuities, one lunch, drinks, personal items (phone, laundry, etc), international (if applicable) an domestic air taxes, visa fees, and any excursions referenced as 'optional'. Airport transfers for Land Only customers. Optional trip cancellation insurance. Our post-reservation trip notes offer further guidance on shopping, visas, and locally paid departure taxes.

Seasonality and Weather
TANZANIA: June-Sept coincides with the coolest and driest period.

MADAGASCAR: Dry season: Apr-Oct. The south and west regions are hot and dry. Monsoons bring storms and cyclones to the east and north from Dec-Mar. The mountains, including Antananarivo, are warm and stormy from Nov-Apr and dry, cool and windy the rest of the year.

Transport and Travel Conditions
TANZANIA: Some road journeys are very long and very rough, possibly dusty (especially June-October). In Tanzania we travel via well-maintained, rugged minivan with six passengers each. At the Tanzanian border we switch to 4x4 Land Rover/Land Cruisers. The same vehicles, with roofs that pop up, will be used for our game drives in parks and reserves. Please note that air-conditioned safari vehicles are non-existent in East Africa.

MADAGASCAR: The #3 difficulty rating on this tour refers specifically to the Madagascar section, on which, in order to fully enjoy and experience what Madagascar has to offer, one must be prepared to hike over uneven terrain, perhaps with mud and rocks and roots and heat. The lodge properties we use are also very spread out and the distance from main building to guest rooms may be considerable. There are also plenty of stairs throughout. Of course we do not "force" anyone to participate in activities listed in our itinerary; however, if one chooses to skip walks, one will miss most of what the country has to offer the visitor.

Am I suitable for this tour? Please refer to our self-assessment form.

Accommodation
TANZANIA: Hotels and lodges are 4-5 star properties with hot water, electricity, mosquito netting, dining areas, bar, swimming pools. Remote lodges are not air-conditioned though many are at higher elevations where heat is not a factor. Many lodges are quite spread out and you will need to be able to walk up to 10 minutes from public areas to your room.

MADAGASCAR: 3-4 star hotels and lodges have hot water, electricity (maybe part-time), mosquito netting, dining areas, bar, sometimes swimming pools. Remote lodges are not air-conditioned though many are at higher elevations where heat is not a factor.

Hotel porter service is available throughout (see 'Inclusions'). Single rooms are limited and likely smaller than twins. Many lodges are quite spread out and you will need to be able to walk up to 10 minutes from public areas to your room.

Staff and Support
Tour Leader, drivers, local guides.

Kenya / Tanzania: Groups of six or fewer participants (one vehicle), will be led / guided by one of our local driver-guides. Only multi-vehicle groups will be assigned an Adventures Abroad Tour Leader.

Groups of 7 or less in Madagascar may be led / guided by one of our local Madagascar-based personnel.

Group Size
Maximum 18 (plus Tour Leader)

Tour Extensions
This tour is part of a series that can be upgraded to make for a longer trip. For more options, please refer to tour code/s:

32 Day Rwanda Travel Uganda, Kenya & Tanzania
JAN
TOUR CODE: UG4
Tour Overview
32 Day Kenya Tour, Southern Africa & Tanzania
SEP OCT
TOUR CODE: SA4
Tour Overview
32 Day Egypt Tour, Kenya & Tanzania
JAN OCT
TOUR CODE: E19
Tour Overview
33 Day Kenya Tour, Tanzania & Southern Africa
JAN OCT
TOUR CODE: KT3
Tour Overview
35 Day Kenya, Tanzania & Madagascar
SEP
TOUR CODE: KT2
Tour Overview
37 Day Southern Africa Tour & East Africa
SEP OCT
TOUR CODE: SA7
Tour Overview

 


 

Map & Hotels
Map & Hotels

Regions visited: East Africa
Countries visited: Kenya; Tanzania and Madagascar


*The red tour trail on the map does not represent the actual travel path.


The following is a list of sample hotels at some locations included on this tour. The hotels shown here are meant to provide a general sense of the standard of hotel we usually aim for; they are not necessarily confirmed for your chosen departure.


Nairobi Serena Hotel
5 Star Accommodation 5 Star Accommodation 5 Star Accommodation 5 Star Accommodation 5 Star Accommodation
Location: Nairobi
Country: Kenya
Nairobi Serena Hotel, a 5 star hotel in Nairobi, is a celebration of sophistication and a rich fusion of design influences from Ethiopia, the Maghreb, West Africa and East Africa. The warmth ... a friendly smile, a superlative eye for detail and gracious service at our Nairobi hotel envelop you from the moment you arrive. While the Nairobi skyline glitters just beyond your windows and the Central Business District is just a stroll away, you’ll feel worlds removed from urban distractions in this peaceful setting.
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Lake Manyara Serena Safari Lodge
4 Star Accommodation 4 Star Accommodation 4 Star Accommodation 4 Star Accommodation
Location: Lake Manyara
Country: Tanzania
Tanzania’s towering Mto wa Mbu escarpment provides a remarkable backdrop for a one-of-a-kind visit. Lake Manyara Serena Safari Lodge welcomes you with a peaceful location amidst the rich wildlife and unsurpassed tranquillity ... Lake Manyara National Park. The lake is home to over 300 migratory birds including flamingoes, long-crested eagles and grey-headed kingfishers; the lodge is designed to mimic this extraordinary birdlife, with an architectural motif featuring swooping avian curves and vibrantly coloured wall frescoes depicting the intricacy of bird migratory patterns.

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Serengeti Sopa Lodge
4 Star Accommodation 4 Star Accommodation 4 Star Accommodation 4 Star Accommodation
Location: Serengeti National Park
Country: Tanzania
Nestled in the acacia woodland on the edge of the escarpment overlooking the plains of the south-western Serengeti. 69 standard rooms, all with 2 queen size beds, carpeted, and tastefully furnished with ... fabrics and pictures. The rooms have en-suite bathrooms and hairdryers.

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Ngorongoro Sopa Lodge
4 Star Accommodation 4 Star Accommodation 4 Star Accommodation 4 Star Accommodation
Location: Ngorongoro Conservation Area
Country: Tanzania
Facing the always magnificent sunsets to the west, and located at the highest point on Ngorongoro crater’s entire rim, Ngorongoro Sopa Lodge stands well over half a kilometre above the crater floor ... offers unparalleled views across this enormous caldera.

Themed around traditionally circular African houses with conical roofs, and decorated with examples of Africa’s rich tapestry of artistic traditions by way of rich woodcarvings and sculptures, the lodge harmonizes perfectly with its dramatic surroundings. But the drama does not just stop with the great outdoors: it also flows through the split-level interiors of the main building which all offer an unsurpassed generosity of space while somehow managing to combine an almost magically welcoming ambience of both warmth and cosiness.
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Zanzibar Serena Hotel
5 Star Accommodation 5 Star Accommodation 5 Star Accommodation 5 Star Accommodation 5 Star Accommodation
Location: Zanzibar
Country: Tanzania
A stunning oceanfront setting. Interiors adorned in Arabic and Swahili opulence. Warm, gracious hospitality and alluring culinary journeys. Zanzibar Serena Hotel in Stone Town offers all of this and more.

The
... is tucked into the Zanzibar seafront, amidst the exotic sultan's palaces, Portuguese forts, ancient dhow harbours and bright bazaars of Stone Town. Comprised of two historic buildings designed in traditional Swahili style, this lavish retreat captures the elegance of a grander era since passed.
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Sultan Sands Island Resort & Spa
4 Star Accommodation 4 Star Accommodation 4 Star Accommodation 4 Star Accommodation
Location: Zanzibar
Country: Tanzania
Sultan Sands Island Resort & Spa is situated next to its sister property, Bluebay Beach Resort & Spa on the wide, sparkling beaches of Kiwengwa on the east coast of the island. ... Sands Island Resort, 4 star+, has its own unique and very charming character. An inspired blend of Swahili and Arab architecture and décor creates a relaxed ambience, while first-class amenities and facilities ensure complete comfort.
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Le Louvre Hotel & Spa
4 Star Accommodation 4 Star Accommodation 4 Star Accommodation 4 Star Accommodation
Location: Antananarivo
Country: Madagascar
The Louvre Hotel & Spa was established in a building built by the engineers of Gustave Eiffel in 1930. Rich in history, the building is part of the great buildings of the ... having a historical past.

In the modern style, The Louvre Hotel & Spa remains a reference in the Malagasy hotel industry.

A must-see place for your leisure and business trips, located in the business district of Antaninarenina. It offers a breathtaking view of the Capital.
Ideal crossroad for tourists looking to discover Malagasy heritage, and especially a meeting point for lovers of art and culture of Madagascar.
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Setam Lodge
3 Star Accommodation 3 Star Accommodation 3 Star Accommodation
Location: Ranomafana
Country: Madagascar
Setam Lodge is at the entrance of Ranomafana National Park and makes the most of its location, with each of the spotless, but simple chalets, taking advantage of the fantastic views over ... forested river valley over which it looks
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Satrana Lodge
3 Star Accommodation 3 Star Accommodation 3 Star Accommodation
Location: Ranohira
Country: Madagascar
The hotel Satrana Lodge is located at the edge of the famous national 7 in the heart of Madagascar, at the entrance to the Park of Isalo. You will be transported by ... supernatural beauty of the landscapes and the amazing life that has adapted to this mineral universe.
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Vakona Forest Lodge
3 Star Accommodation 3 Star Accommodation 3 Star Accommodation
Location: Andasibe-Mantadia
Country: Madagascar
The design of the bungalows has been conceived in the respect of the local Malagasy architecture. Each of the double rooms has its own terrace with an outside little living room, ... with warm water, individual toilets, a personal safety deposit box and mini-bar.

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Berenty Lodge
3 Star Accommodation 3 Star Accommodation 3 Star Accommodation
Location: Berenty
Country: Madagascar
Since 1937, this has been a private reserve in the ancient tamarind forest of the Mandradre River, now of world renown and also featuring an Atandroy museum. Since that day, lemurs living ... have mostly lost their fear of man, and are easier to observe. Rooms and bungalows are equipped with a fan and mosquito nets.
Room amenities: Fan, private bathroom with shower, hot and cold water, mosquito nets.



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Frequently Asked Questions
ASK A QUESTION
FAQ
Frequently Asked Questions
ASK A QUESTION
01. What is the maximum number of participants on a trip?
Most of our tours carry a maximum of 18 participants; some tours (ie hiking tours) top out at 16. In the event that we do not achieve our minimum complement by our 60-day deadline, we may offer group members the option of paying a "small-group surcharge" as an alternative to cancellation. If all group members agree, we will confirm the trip at existing numbers; this surcharge is refundable in the event that we ultimately achieve our regular minimum. If the small group surcharge is not accepted, we will offer a refund of your deposit or a different trip of your choice.
02. Can I extend my tour either at the beginning or end? What about stopovers?
Yes, you can extend your tour either at the beginning or the end and we can book accommodation in our tour hotel. Stopovers are often permitted, depending on air routing. Stopovers usually carry a "stopover" fee levied by the airline.
03. How do I make a reservation? How and when do I pay?
The easiest way to make a reservation is via our website; during office hours, you are also more than welcome to contact us by telephone. A non-refundable deposit is payable at the time of booking; if a reservation is made within 60 days, full payment is required. Some trips require a larger deposit. If international airline bookings require a non-refundable payment in order to secure space or the lowest available fare, we will require an increase in deposit equal to the cost of the ticket(s). Early enrolment is always encouraged as group size is limited and some trips require greater preparation time. Once we have received your deposit, we will confirm your space and send you a confirmation package containing your trip itinerary, any visa/travel permit related documents, invoice, clothing and equipment recommendations, general information on your destination(s), and forms for you to complete, sign and return to us. Your air e-tickets (if applicable), final hotel list, final trip itinerary, and instructions on how to join your tour, will be sent approximately 2-3 weeks prior to departure.
04. What about cancellations, refunds, and transfers?
Please review our cancellation policy page for details.
05. I am a single who prefers my own room. What is a single supplement?
All of our tours have a single supplement for those who want to be guaranteed their own room at each location. This supplement is a reflection of the fact that most hotels around the world do not discount the regular twin-share rate for a room by 50% for only one person occupying a room. Most hotels will give a break on the price, but usually in the range of 25-30% of the twin-share rate. This difference, multiplied by each night, amounts to the single supplement. The conventional amount can also vary from country to country and some destinations are more expensive than others for single occupancy. In order to be "single friendly," the supplements we apply are not a profit centre for us and we do our best to keep them as reasonable as possible. On most tours we limit the number of singles available, not to be punitive, but rather because many hotels allow for only a limited number of singles; some smaller hotels at remote locations also have a limited number of single rooms available. Please note that most single rooms around the world are smaller than twin-share rooms and will likely have only one bed.
06. Do you have a shared accommodation program?
Yes! If you are single traveller and are willing to share, we will do our best to pair you with a same-gender roommate. On most of our tours, if we fail to pair you, we will absorb the single supplement fee and you will default to a single room at no extra charge. At some destinations, however, where single rooms are not significantly discounted, or not at all, we may apply a "mandatory" single in the event that we cannot find you a share partner. This is usually 50% of the usual supplement, but can be as much as 100%. If applicable, this proviso will be noted on each tour page on this website, on your invoice, and in our tour date/price book (available for download under "Resources").

 

What People are Saying
Jane H.
Edmonton, AB - CA
Feel very privileged to have had these amazing opportunities to travel in these countries. The fauna and flora were incredible, but the best part about these countries is the wonderful people who live there! Too many highlights to choose from! Balloon excursion over Serengeti and wildlife on both sections of the trip were extraordinarily wonderful. Local guides were extremely good. All bus drivers during the entire trip were truly fantastic. They were not only expert drivers on very difficult roads, but were also amazingly knowledgeable, spotting and identifying wildlife, birds, animals, geographic features etc. We were so fortunate to have tour leaders with such depths of experience and such a passion for sharing their knowledge and ideas, plus they are both always extremely concerned with the welfare of everyone on the tour.
June S.
Mississauga, ON - CA
Trip was excellent. Enjoyed seeing all of the animals. Long drives but enjoyed seeing the scenery, the villages and the people and animals on the roads. We enjoyed the game drives in Tanzania and the walks to see the lemurs in Madagascar. The local guides were all knowledgeable and helpful. On Madagascar, the local guide went out of the way to be helpful. Hotels were excellent overall. I would recommend this trip.
Brian H.
Edmonton, AB - CA
The entire TZ2 was outstanding. Highlights that stand out include: the hot-air balloon safari over Serengeti (our pilot was terrific and the management of the champagne breakfast was beyond anything of this sort I have ever had before); the visit to the garden—and the spectacular lunch—at Gibb's Farm was excellent; all the wildlife viewing throughout both parts of TZ2 (E. Africa/Madagascar) was excellent—with outstanding local guides and, on the Tanzania safaris, especially good driver/spotters; the spice farm on Zanzibar was singularly interesting and made extremely enjoyable and informative by the two excellent young men who served as the hosts/guides; the visit to the ValBio Centre at Ranomafana was an unexpected, and most worthwhile, treat. Both tour leaders were excellent! The local guides (including the driver/guides in KE and TZ) were without exception outstanding; in my experience it is rare that they are all of so consistently excellent a standard). They were all extremely adept at game spotting, very knowledgeable (lots of proper Latin binomials, which given my personal bias is a big plus)and friendly, helpful, and vigilant when participants needed a hand up or down or around a rock. The transportation on the tour was all good. The safari vehicles were especially good, and internal flights were all excellent. The meals all met my expectations and some of them were exceptional. The hotels were excellent overall.
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Countries Visited: 3

Kenya; Tanzania; Madagascar.
Activity Level: 3

These tours are considerably more strenuous than our Level 1 & 2 "cultural" tours and feature walks/hikes on undulating and uneven pathways for 3-7 hours at a leisurely pace. We don't hike every day, but participants should be fit and active and accustomed to trail walking, possibly in remote locations, and be prepared to engage in a conditioning regimen prior to the trip. Altitude may also be a factor on some tours, though none of our hiking tours currently occur above 3000m/10,000 ft. These are hotel-based tours with no camping, and you are required to only carry what you need for the day.
Tour Style: Cultural

These three- and four-star hotel-based, "soft adventure" trips concentrate on the culture, history, and natural attributes of our destination. Though there are no strenuous activities built into these tours, you need to be prepared for some full days with some early starts, plenty of walking on uneven surfaces through villages, cities and archaeological sites, and not a lot of "down time." Independence, reasonable fitness, and an ability to be steady on one's feet are critical in order for you to get the most out of these programs.
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