Madagascar is a country that occupies a large island of the same name, located in the Indian Ocean off the eastern coast of Africa.
As large as France, the country also includes smaller islands just offshore form the mainland, including Nosy Be and many smaller islands such as Nosy Iranja, Nosy Tanikely and Nosy Boraha. Due to the size of the island, the country boasts a plethora of different landscapes making it the perfect destination for adventurous divers. From dense jungles, to open plains, dry shrub lands and beautiful beaches, you'll be amazed with the diversity you can find with the right guide to help you make the most out of your trip.
Despite Madagascar's beauty, it is the 4th poorest nation worldwide. For that reason, it is not recommended to head off the beaten track alone, or stroll around at night. However, if you can stick to some basic safety precautions, a trip to this remote country could be one of the best natural adventures of your life!
The best diving is to be had around the islands and islets surrounding Nosy Be on the north and west coasts. There are also some good diving sites in the south of the island and dive operators operating there, mainly around Ifaty. However, this area is generally preserved for coral protection and conservation research, with significant international research going on in the area.
Every year, 10% of the world's population of humpback whales migrate to Madagascar's waters. From June to September, the whales come from the Antarctic to breed in Madagascar's warmer waters. During this time they provide viewers with a magnificent mating display. By the end of August females give birth, and it is not unusual to see the mothers swimming with their calves.
These are a few hotspots that any thorough diver would not like to miss;
The Wrecks - a shrimp fishing boat sunk between Nosy Be and Nosy Tanikely, teeming with colorful reef fish.
Shark Point - a deep dive site with a submerged plateau. A great dive for deep divers, as you can hover below the strong currents and watch great numbers of sharks glide by.
Nosy Tanikely National Park - a protected island and surrounding reef teeming with healthy corals and all manner of vibrant reef life.
Further to the above, keen divers may be interested in researching;
For better readability of the table, pass into the landscape mode.
Madagascar is rich in unique flora and fauna, whether it's the cute limas, iconic boaab trees or expertly disguised chameleons, its worth taking some time to explore above land as well as below the waves. Those staying on Nosy Be in search of forgotten paradise should also make time for a day trip to Nosy Tanikely Island, or the sand bank at Nosy Iranja. Both islands are without any real tourism infrastructure, and offer a true escape complete with fine white sand, lush vegetation, friendly locals and many excellent snorkelling opportunities.