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Antananarivo offers many terrains to hike on. Escape the hassle of the city center & head to any coutryside. My favourite & natural area is the one past Anosy Avaratra (Northwards, on the way to Ambohimanga). There, hills alternate with plains, that makes your trek interesting, exercise-wise. Nothing complicate: one foot before another, then walk! On your own, with friends, with your partner... on your rythm.
Even for who doesn't like endurance exercise, the trek cannot be boring. You could discover fauna elements. This yellow frog: a miracle sight as I long longed to see one on my own & in the wilds. The spiders: various colours, not dangerous, just amazing! The many bird species & their distinctive chants. The trees, apart from the usual eucalyptus & pinetree, can still be a curiosity. At the relatively new & not yet fully operational Soavinandriamanitra park, you could already bond with lemurs. Not interested in any of those ? Think pure air, pick-nick in grass, plains that don't contain any poisonous animal. Leave scorpions for coastal jungles. Just choose the shade of a pinetree forest to reward your hiking effort. Or, choose the top of a rock for a bonefire while enjoying terrific views. Just be sure you could light a fire at that place.
Historical villages, picturesque landscapes of this Northern area ! Namehana, Ambohidrabiby... all historical. The Royal Ambohimanga hill surroundings boast with trails to hike & hills to climb for superb views. Click!
Peasants invectivating zebus in ploughing their ricefields. Those women chatting joyously, laughing while busying themselves transplanting rice springs from a plot to another. Herdsmen running after their cattle whilst the latter get crazy & run in every senses. Cultivators pampering their vegetable patches. Kids, with their smiling faces, are the easiest to get in touch with. However, adults would be glad to chat up.
Equipment: - Walking boots. I'm in favour of this as sneakers are not comfy to walk with for hours. Plus, boots have this advantage to maintain your ankle at the right place. Sandals, forget it! The feet could simply get sunburnt without you could even notice it.
- Garnment, I'm still in favour of linen as it is the most comfy material you could get in summer. In cooler season: layered & more technical material.
- Water (1.5 l is enough for a 2-hour trek. More if it's hot & if you plan to walk longer)
- Cookies (for me, banana at 10 am if I start the trek at 7am).
- Cap (a large hat in summer and, more overall, when the sun is bright & strong)
- Sunlotion on the face & neck & its back, on your arms & handsRelated to:
- Adventure Travel
- Hiking and Walking
Biking is another simple sport activity that many tourists do in Madagascar.
What appears as simple in good road conditions can be really tricky in remote areas where dirty roads are still ruling. But you asked for some adventure, no ? You'll have it. Then, go to Madagascar in rainy seasons, head off urban areas and especially, in some humid Ranomafana area and go biking there, skirting the primary South-eastern forest, "wrestling" with your bike and your boots in the mud.
OK, if this is not the type of sport you are looking for, you can cycle on macadam roads in Imerina region, for instance. Quite good and with the advantage of an ever-changing landscape on RN7 (Tana-Antsirabe or Tana-Fianar). Sometimes lunar, sometimes inviting. Check the other tips and the travelogues to see what i am talking about.
For food: whenever you pass Ambatolampy, do not forget to try the restaurants there. One thing though: my memory of restaurants in Ambatolampy is rather blurry. For one reason: Ambatolampy ended up to be a passage for us sine most of times, our purpose was to have lunch in Antsirabe. Last time I ate in an Ambatolampy restaurant was it was good but long time ago. So, would you blame if I don't give you any name of a specific restaurant there ?
Of course, Antsirabe is not a place to miss for food as well. If you could make it to there, you'll deserve a good treat, then ? Ok, try Les Agapes (Arotel restaurant). Check my Antsirabe page to know more.
Same for Moramanga, with exception that I can recommend you one restaurant: le Coq d'or, a good Cantonese cuisine.
Now, you can also decide to visit Tana surroundings like Ambohimanga area by bike, the view from the top of the hill is nice as well. Hehe, it looks on my little village. OK, there are Ivato too, Ambohidratrimo...
Equipment: Bike (would advise you where to rent. Still, I'll advise to bring yours from abroad if you are used to it)
all you need to bike (i think the ones which intend to bike the island are wise enough to know what to bring ???)
water & food & safety kit
windbreaker in case you are there during rainy seasonRelated to:
- Adventure Travel
Faritanin' Antananarivo Hotels
La Varangue was a beautiful and peaceful place to rest in busy Antananarivo. We has 2 short stays...more
Lot 66 B Antanetibe Ivato, Antananarivo, 105, Madagascar
Good for: Solo
Rue Pierre Stibbe Anosy, (formerly Hilton Madagascar), Antananarivo, 101, Madagascar
Good for: Business
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