Madagascar small group expedition with Hilary Bradt

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2016: 11 Oct
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Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: Madagascar small group expedition with Hilary Bradt

Environment

Our core focus is providing extraordinary journeys that put our clients in the right place at the right time for life changing and ethically responsible wildlife encounters and natural world experiences.

This tour includes a visit to the Kianjavato Lemur Conservation Project, part of The Madagascar Biodiversity Partnership (MBP, of which we are a core funding partner. In the last 15 years their work have been responsible for identifying 21 new species of lemur and significant efforts to preserve the habitat of all lemurs through reforestation programmes. Kianjavato Ahmanson Field Station (KAFS), created from four shipping containers, has served them as a dorm, kitchen, research lab, office space and headquarters. Centrally located, it serves as a base for all of their research and outreach projects in Kianjavato, as well as projects by partners, volunteers and students. This is the base from which guests on this safari will have the opportunity to track 3 species of critically endangered lemurs, learn about how to help them and delve into the research projects with the local communities. KAFS is not just a base from which to work from, but has seen many changes over the years – now featuring numerous plant nurseries and a working well.

Visits to a series of other community run reserves are also featured on this tour including: The community run Association Mitsinjo, which manages Analamazaotra Forest Station and the Torotorofotsy Ramsar Site and focuses on conservation, research and sustainable development. And Anja Reserve a unique environmental and cultural preservation site most famously known for the ring tailed lemurs living within the rocky outcrops.The proceeds from both are channelled back to the local community, thus providing them with a valuable source of local income as well as an incentive to preserve Madagascar’s wildlife.

On this exclusive small group tour wherever possible, we use locally run and managed accommodation, either in environmentally low impact eco-lodges or small hotels. As a result of this we minimise the impact on the local environment at the same time as providing the traveller with a high level of comfort. This exclusive small group safari is limited to a maximum of 9 ensuring the impact on the environment and wildlife is kept to a minimum at all times.

Community

All our trips are led by highly knowledgable local naturalist guides who share the rich tapestry of this island continents cultural and natural landscape. While the two specialist guides on this expedition (Daniel Austin and Hilary Bradt) know the island well, they and we would never dream of travelling without an expert Malagasy Guide. We are delighted to have worked with many of the islands top naturalist guides over the past decade. We partner with a 100% Malagasy owned ground handler. Through the employment of local staff, money is fed directly back into individual families and villages that would otherwise not benefit from tourism.

The MBP have pioneered sustainable conservation activities that involve and support local communities and have built long lasting relationships with a diverse range of Malagasy people – from village elders to regional Government representatives – in order to embed their impact from a grass roots level up. MBP have also set up the Guide Association which promotes engagement across the entire chain of people that make the projects work. Any tips earned by guides are shared equally among this group and the MBP also match the amount at the end of each year. This work done by the MBP is revolutionising the nature of tourism in Madagascar and We are proud to be an integral part of this process.

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