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Key Info

Price & Hours

Free

Details

Natural Wonders, Free, Parks and Gardens, Neighborhood/Area, Recreation, Swimming/Pools Type
Half Day to Full Day Time to Spend

scorecard

  • 5.0Value
  • 2.0Food Scene
  • 4.5Atmosphere

When you're in need of a break from Madagascar's parks and forests, head to the quaint island of Nosy Sakatia. This tropical oasis – which measures just 1 square mile – boasts an array of orchids but is best known for its water sports activities. Everything from sailing to fishing to snorkeling and diving is offered here, and you can even spend a night or two at one of the island's hotels.

Past visitors loved scuba diving and snorkeling in Nosy Sakatia's waters during half-day excursions. Many, in fact, saw sea turtles grazing in shallow areas. However, a few travelers were less than impressed with the island's beaches and desired more things to do on shore. If you do decide to visit Nosy Sakatia, consider booking a half- or full-day tour through companies like City Discovery and Les Baleines Rand'eau. Tour rates start at $50 per person and generally include snorkeling equipment rentals and lunch.

If you are not part of a tour, Nosy Sakatia can be reached by flying into Fascene Airport or taking a motorized pirogue (boat) from the mainland to Nosy Be, a large island situated next to Nosy Sakatia, before hiring another pirogue at Nosy Be. Although charges will vary by boat operator and route, expect to pay a few thousand Malagasy ariary (or a couple dollars) for transfers. Nosy Sakatia is free to visit 24 hours a day, but charges apply for water sports activities. (If you stay at Sakatia Lodge, snorkeling equipment is complimentary to use.)

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#1 Tsingy de Bemaraha Strict Nature Reserve

Situated along Madagascar's west coast, Tsingy de Bemaraha Strict Nature Reserve is home to impressive geological structures and a variety of endangered species. More than 328 miles of forests make up this UNESCO World Heritage site, where 11 kinds of lemurs, 17 types of reptiles, 6 bird species and more reside. But the standout here is the park's towering gray limestone pinnacles, which stand up to 328 feet tall.

Past visitors said Tsingy de Bemaraha Strict Nature Reserve is a "must-see adventure" that's "definitely worth the drive." Although the locale can be a bit challenging to traverse – some former travelers reported crawling through tight gaps and lots of climbing – many described the views from the top of the pinnacles as "spectacular."

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