“Madagascar is a curious wonderland. It’s an unrepeatable experiment, a set of animals and plants evolving in isolation for over 60 million years. We’re still trying to unravel its mysteries.” – Sir David Attenborough.
Understanding the geological history of this island country off the southeast African coast, helps explain why Madagascar is such a unique destination. Part of the original land mass of Gondwana land, Madagascar split from India approximately 88 million years ago.
Wildlife has evolved independently ever since. This explains the 80% endemicity and exclusivity of Madagascar’s birds, reptiles and mammals. Nothing bites, stings or eats you which is good news for travellers. Even the snakes and spiders are harmless to humans, making wildlife viewing an anxiety-free affair.
Most see Madagascar as part of Africa however it has only been discovered and inhabited in the last 2000 years. The first people were actually from Indonesia. Today, the culture is an interesting mix of southeast Asia, Africa and most recently French, due to the colonial period. The wonderful fusion of distinctive food, customs and architecture makes Madagascar a feast for the senses.
Magical Madagascar has something for everyone. From pristine beaches and abundant, well protected marine and endemic wildlife, to lush emerald forests and incredible scenery. There are strange plants and creatures, seemingly from a Dr Seuss book, including the famous and magnificent baobabs. It is also home to the infamous and mischievous ‘lemurs of Madagascar.’