This high quality tented camp is on the banks on the Mandrare River in southern Madagascar. This is a wonderfully unspoilt location, a great place to unwind, enjoy views of the river and listen to bird song. There are opportunities to venture into the spiny forest both on foot and by vehicle, looking out for lemurs, lizards, frogs and birds, all with the help of an expert guide. You can also visit the local Antandroy tribespeople to learn about their culture, beliefs and ceremonies and witness traditional dance and song.
Mandrare River Camp's tents are large and welcoming, with 4 poster beds, locally made wooden furnture, fans and en-suite bathrooms with round the clock hot and cold running water. All have a balcony with views over the wide river, plains and mountains beyond. Each tent takes insipration from a different wildlife species such as heron, lemur, chameleon, and you'll notice little touches in the decor that reflect that theme.
Meals are eaten communally around large tables on the main deck under the shade of thatch or out in the open. Breakfast includes delicious croissants, pain au chocolat, cereals, jams and fruit juice, lunch is often a barbecue and dinner a full 3-course meal. All drinks are included.
It is little surprise that Mandrare River Camp has earned prasie in publications such as Tatler, Conde Nast and The Times newspaper,
Open: Mandrare River Camp is open from 21 March till 09 January annually.
Location: Mandrare River Camp is in the southeast of Madagascar, about a 3 and a half hour drive west of Fort Dauphin where there is a domestic airport.
Rooms: There are 6 guest tents, all with a 4-poster bed, mosquito net, fans and 24 hour solar power for lighting. Each has an en-suite bathroom with hot and cold running water, and a terrace with chairs and a table. There is ample storage space with a wardrobe, dressing table, bedside tables and a large trunk for luggage. Furniture is hand carved and each room has an individual theme based on local flora or fauna: heron, gecko, chameleon, lemur, radiated tortoise and baobab.
Activities: Exploring the plant, animal and bird life of the spiny forest on foot and by 4 wheel drive vehicle, visiting a local market, meeting the Antandroy tribespeople, sipping sundowner drinks by the Mandrare River, watching traditional dancing.
Facilities: The main area is set on a raised wooden deck and is shaded by a thatched roof, and there are several sofas where you can rest out of the heat of the sun. There is a dining tent, and meals are also served out in the open. The camp has an outdoor swimming pool. There is a laundry service, pay locally.
Dining: Meals are eaten together as a group in the dining tent and al fresco. Breakfast is a buffet, lunch usually a barbecue accompanied by a choice of salads, and dinner a full 3-course meal. Stays are on a full board basis and include all drinks apart from French champagne.
Children: Children of all ages are welcome. 1 child under 16 years can share a tent with 2 adults, with the child paying 50% of the adult rate. 2 children under 16 years sharing a tent pay 75% of the adult price.
Health: This is a malarial area.
Communication: There is no internet access.
Notes: Mandrare River Camp is part of the Madagascar Classic Collection.
"Superb spot by the river. Lovely tent with a large porch. Superb staff who looked after us very well,they even gave me an old table to use for my painting. Good outings including sundowners by a huge baobab tree."
Tribes Travel, The Old Dairy, Wood Farm, Ipswich Road,
Otley, Suffolk, IP6 9JW.
Office hours: Monday - Friday: 9am to 5.30pm
Telephone: 01473 890499