Madagascar holidays, The lost continent

Hello. If you'd like to chat about this holiday or need help finding one we're very happy to help. Rosy & team.

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Date
Price
Basis
09 May 2018
£ 2745
including UK flights
On Request
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01 Aug 2018
£ 3235
including UK flights
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15 Aug 2018
£ 2965
including UK flights
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05 Sep 2018
£ 2805
including UK flights
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12 Sep 2018
£ 2749
including UK flights
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19 Sep 2018
£ 2725
including UK flights
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03 Oct 2018
£ 2835
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Full
 
10 Oct 2018
£ 2815
including UK flights
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17 Oct 2018
£ 2735
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24 Oct 2018
£ 2739
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31 Oct 2018
£ 2739
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07 Nov 2018
£ 2760
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21 Nov 2018
£ 2739
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Our top tip:
A budget of around £7-£12 is recommended per extra meal on this trip.
Trip type:
Small group. Av. 10-16 people.
Activity level:
Moderate.
Accomm:
10 nights standard hotels/lodges, 1 night simple community house, 3 nights simple hotel.
Solos:
Solo travellers welcome. Single rooms available with surcharge.
Included:
Accomm, transport (minibus, flight), tour leader, guides, listed activities. Intl. flights if booked. Sleeping bag not included.
Meals:
13 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 7 dinners.
About this holiday company:
The intrepid founders led overland trips across Africa in the 60s and 70s before creating this company in 1981.
Vouchers
Accepted
Holiday type
Small group holidays
Small group travel is not large group travel scaled down. It is modelled on independent travel – but with the advantage of a group leader to take care of the itinerary, accommodation and tickets, and dealing with the language. It’s easy to tick off the big sights independently – but finding those one-off experiences, local festivals, travelling markets and secret viewpoints is almost impossible for someone without the insider knowledge gained from years in the field. If you’re heading off on a gap year your, perhaps – but for those with a two-week holiday, a small group tour will save valuable planning time.

The leaders are not guides – they’re not there to shepherd you around. Instead, they’ll let you know which local restaurant serves great value food – without running the risk of travellers’ tummy. They’ll allow you to avoid hour-long queues at train stations and attractions.

We like to think of small group travel as the Goldilocks option. It is independent travel without the fuss, worry and bunk beds – and organised travel without the coaches. And it’s cheaper than a tailor made tour. It’s sits somewhere in the middle – and we think it’s just about right.
What are the main benefits?
Big experiences
Have big, life-enriching experiences that would be impossible to organise without lots of time and insider knowledge.

Simplicity
Make the most of your holiday time by letting someone else do the hard work and boring logistics!

Peace of mind
Small group tours take care of the security aspects – and provide a safety net should anything unexpected happen.
Who is it ideal for?
Travellers who are short of time
If you don’t have three months to spend exploring, small groups trips let you cover more ground in less time. Your days are not spent queuing for tickets or finding hotels – so you can squeeze more into your holiday.

Solo travellers who’d like company
Likeminded travel companions plus peace of mind for those travelling alone. Single supplements are usually available – providing privacy if you want it.

Less confident travellers
Stray from the tourist trail without worrying about getting lost, and meet local people without dealing with the language barrier.
Mythbuster
“I won’t get any privacy!”
Couples and friends have private rooms, and you can choose to eat alone or not. Single supplements give solo travellers their own room.

“There won’t be any free time”
Free mornings or afternoons let you explore on your own, or just relax.

“The accommodation will be basic”
Trips are as high or low end as you like. Though off the beaten track destinations won’t have luxury hotels, this is all part of the adventure.

“I won’t like the other travellers!”
Tour operators try to create groups with a similar demographic – age, families, activity levels... Chances are, you’ll even make new friends.

“Will we be following an umbrella?”
No.
Meet a local guide
No matter how experienced your group leader, they can never make up for the knowledge gained from a lifetime in the destination. That’s why many of our trips work with local guides around the world – who invite you into their homeland with pleasure.

Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: Madagascar holidays, The lost continent

During our journey through Madagascar we stay in predominantly locally-owned accommodation and employ the services of local guides within the parks we visit. The tour leaders are Malagasy, offering in depth insight into the local culture, great knowledge of wildlife and an understanding of the people which they will be happy to share with you.

In addition, the park fees we pay are used by the Malagasy authorities to fund and benefit the protected areas we visit. On one night of the tour we stay at a development centre close to the town of Ambositra in the highlands. The centre is part of the FJKM (Fiangonariny Jesosy Kristy eto Madagascar) church, established in 1973, and aims to educate the local population in practical topics from sex education to farming skills.

As well as financial support from our stay, there is the opportunity during our time at the centre to interact and learn more about the everyday lives of the local people. We limit the group size on this tour to 16 to assist in reducing both the potential negative cultural and environmental impact of our visit.

In addition to the above, we are continually looking for ways to improve and are proud to be ‘Responsible in everything we do’. Education is key and so all staff, Tour Leaders and partnering suppliers are trained in responsible and sustainable tourism. At our Head Office, we continually strive towards a sustainable and planet-friendly working environment, including having solar panels installed and a company commitment to reducing our plastic usage. As well as this, we have valuable and longstanding partnerships with UK charities Toilet Twinning and Send a Cow, plus many smaller initiatives and projects around the world. We’re members of UK travel industry bodies Tourism Concern and AITO because we believe it’s important to share our knowledge and experience, as well as learn from other operators. We acknowledge that air travel has a negative impact on our environment, so we work together with Cool Earth to offset carbon and protect our important rainforests.

5 Reviews of Madagascar holidays, The lost continent

3.5 out of 5 stars
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Reviewed on 24 Nov 2013 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


Visiting the rain forests! Breath taking in the early morning mist, the haunting lament of the Indri echoing across the hill side. The ever smiling children and vibrant colours at the local market places.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


It is not an 'easy' tour, lots of very early starts, long hauls over less than smooth roads and you will get a funny tummy!
But it's worth every dawn wake up and trip to the WC!

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


Yes, I believe it did!

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


A once in a lifetime experience to a country of extremes that will change rapidly and much of the wildlife and unique plants is about to disappear for good! Go while it's still there!

Reviewed on 23 Nov 2013 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


Seeing lemurs, chameleons, birds, other creatures, the landscape - rainforest /though I didn't do walkings because of my broken foot/, desert, rice terraces, daily life of the malagasses,

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


I highly recommend Madagascar as a holiday destination, perhaps include some national parks in the north and west of the country

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


Yes, I think it did.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


Because of my broken foot I couldn't see the highlights of the trip so is difficult for me to give any rate.

Reviewed on 25 Sep 2012 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


Seeing a lemur defecate on my husband whilst he was standing under it to take a photo - he had been warned. Otherwise, just the whole experience. The leader was fantastic, an enthusiastic, knowledgeable man with great people skills. He had a love of his country that shone through. I have been on many holidays both with this operator and other companies. I am convinced - as is my husband, that Rivo is quite the best we have met by far. He is simply outstanding.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


The first 3 days are chilly and wet in the rainforest so bring waterproofs and something warm. The rest of the holiday was hot. Bring walking stick or poles as very useful where some paths are a bit difficult. Be tolerant of those begging, but don't give to them. Contributing to the local economy by buying local goods, even if you later give them away - they are very, very cheap by our standards - helps far more.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


Yes. The leader was very much in favour of education for local people and showed how tourisim, when not intrusive, was a very good way of getting across that there were other ways to make money than by cutting down the forest.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


It was educational and I enjoyed it very much. Whilst Rivo was the best leader we have ever had we did find local guides also excellent. The driver and his assistant were also friendly and very helpful. We had a different leader for 2 days towards the end of the holiday. He was also very good, though as we had bonded with Rivo we were very glad when he was able to rejoin us for the last day or so.

Reviewed on 02 Dec 2011 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


Seeing the lemurs and all the other wildlife and swimming in the natural rock pool. The speedboat ride to Anakao. Having a rescued lemur jump on my shoulder and lick my nose-such beautiful gentle creatures and so many more. The Malagasy guide Claude and Fi Fi and Damar the drivers couldn't have been more friendly, knowledgeable and hard working.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


Take plenty of suncream and deet. Some of the terrain was bit tricky in the heat and some of the older members of the group struggled at times-perhaps the activity level should be moved up one star.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?


I hope so. Our tips kitty was a good idea as the tips were allocate by Claude, so the porters, local guides and hotel staff all received a reasonable amount. I believe the tour operator supports the local community where we had our homestay.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


I had a great time. The guide and drivers were fantastic and the group great. The accommodation was superb, much better than I expected.

Reviewed on 14 Nov 2011 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


Crossing the High Atlas, walking in the valley of the Todra Gorge, the souqs of Fes Medina, the Djemma-El-Fna in Marrakesh's Medina, dawn camel ride in Erg Chebbi and watching the sun set on the ramparts of Essaouria.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


Arrive a day early in Casablanca to visit the Hassan II Mosque.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?


Both our tour leader Ali and driver Ahmed were locals (they were both excellent) and we visited various local cooperatives/workshops and ate in local restaurants, so yes, I would say that the holiday benefited the Maghrebians. Our impact on the environment was possibly the least possible, considering that it wasn't possible to use public transport due to the distances we covered and the amount of time we did it in.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


The holiday was excellent. Maghreb is a beautiful country and there were some magnificent views on our travels. I had glimpses of the local culture as we walked in the various medinas and towns; and our tour leader was a fount of information on everything Maghrebi.

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