10 days from £1375pp plus international flights.
Ending on the beach, this is a classic journey along Madagascar's Route 7 which passes through diverse landscapes and includes some real highlights of the island.
You head off from Madagascar's capital, Tana, with your own private vehicle and driver. You're travelling south west to Tulear on the coast, but you will see some wonderful and diverse aspects of this big island on the way.
The landscape varies from the highlands with its terraced rice paddies and terracotta brick villages in valleys, to the savannah-like plateau of Horombe with huge granite boulders dotted here and there, and then on to the sandstone cliffs of Isalo before dropping down to the arid area of the south west coast including the unique spiny forest habitat with baobabs and euphorbias.
But you will also see a slice of Madagascan life on this trip, as you stop in tiny villages and bigger towns to visit craftsmen and meet some of the ordinary people who make Madagascar so special.
And of course you will visit reserves and parks to see the flora and fauna. Ranomafana, Isalo, Anja and Zombitse are all included, and so you should see a good variety of lemurs (including black and white ruffed, ring-tailed, brown, verraux's sifaka) as well as chameleons and other smaller species.
After about a week's travelling and sightseeing, it's then time to flop. Ifaty is on a lagoon on the southwest coast just north of Tulear. Enjoy the beach and perhaps take time to go snorkelling or on boat trips, there is even humpback whale watching, which is best from about July to mid-September.
You fly back to Tana from Tulear, where you can continue home, or perhaps add on a couple of days in the excellent park of Andasibe if you'd like to see the indri (Madagascar's largest lemur).
For a compact but fascinating look at Madagascar's diversity, this trip is perfect.
Guide price from (pp sharing): £1375 (ex. international flights)
Accommodation on twin share basis
International flights and taxes (we can arrange these)
Getting there: This holiday starts and ends in Tana (Antananarivo). Return flights from the UK cost from around £800 per person, depending on season, airline and availability.
This superb area of indigenous forest is where the critically endangered golden bamboo lemur was discovered in 1986.
The impressive canyons, strange rock formations, dramatic gorges, waterfalls and wildlife including lemurs attract visitors year round, making this one of the most popular parks in Madagascar.
These two hotels share facilities and are set in private grounds just a short drive from Tana airport.
Set in delightful gardens, this hotel is a lovely place to rest and enjoy some delicious, home-cooked food.
Satrana Lodge offers tented accommodation evocative of an African safari and is superbly placed for visiting Isalo National Park.
Find the best time to visit Madagascar
Time: GMT +3 hours
Flight time: Flights from Europe to Madagascar take about 10/11 hours.
Language: Malagasy and French are Madagascar's official languages. English or German is spoken by a municipal workers and guides.A basic working knowledge of French will make communication easier.
Visas: Most nationalities require a Madagascar visa, obtainable from the High Commission in London (or on arrival into International Airport.
Health: Malaria is present in most of the country. No vaccinations are compulsory.
Tribes Travel, The Old Dairy, Wood Farm, Ipswich Road,
Otley, Suffolk, IP6 9JW.
Office hours: Monday - Friday: 9am to 5.30pm
Telephone: 01473 890499