Best time to visit Madagascar
Madagascar has a surprisingly diverse climate, thanks to its immense size and wide variety of habitats
The best time to visit Madagascar is generally from July to October when it’s quite dry and mild – though much depends on the reason for your trip. The Central Highlands are cold and wet between May and October, but these months are ideal for exploring Madagascar’s arid southwest, where summer temperatures (November to January) are unbearably hot. July to December is the best time to visit Madagascar for wildlife, with baby lemurs on display from October, birds breeding between September and December, and humpback whales arriving at Ile St Marie in July and August. Rainy season in Madagascar is January to March, with cyclones likely in February.
When to visit Madagascar, month by month guide
Our Madagascar Holidays
Antananarivo & highlands Weather Chart
Responsible travel recommends
Laurenne Mansbridge, of our supplier Pioneer Expeditions, shares with us her best time to visit Madagascar:
"My favourite time of year is May because the rains have finished so everything is lush and green. You don’t see many other tourists as they tend to go in September and October, but everything is just beautiful – it’s pretty perfect."
Our cultural pick
Theatre, dance, storytelling and music are combined in these traditional Malagasy performances. Held each July, particularly by the Merina of the highlands, the tradition began in the 1700s when the royals appointed troupes to perform for their subjects. The audience participates, showing their approval – or disapproval! – for the troupes.
If you'd like to chat about Madagascar or need help finding a holiday to suit you we're very happy to help.
Festivals & events in Madagascar
Nosy Be’s Donia Festival
in May or June is one of the best opportunities to enjoy homegrown music as well as sporting events. The carnival-like celebration takes place at the Hell-Ville stadium over four days.
Since 1988, Antananarivo’s Madajazzcar Festival
This festival has united jazz musicians from the Indian Ocean and across the world for 12 days each October, inspiring fantastic musical fusions.
Did you know about...?
Festival of the Lobster
Lobster-lovers should get down to Fort Dauphin on the south coast in June for the annual Feria Oramena – the Festival of the Lobster. Eat grilled spiny lobster while listening to traditional music, and watching a local wrestling match – called ‘ringa’
More about Madagascar
Every country is unique, but Madagascar is more unique than most with flora, fauna and culture unlike anywhere else in the world...
Which reserve is best for ring tailed lemurs? Where can I trek? And can I kayak inland or around the coast? Our interactive map reveals all...
Meet lemurs, hike through Tsingy pinnacles, paddle down rivers or give something back by volunteering. There's an activity for everyone in Madagascar...
We've picked out key lemur species - from dancing sifakas to gremlin-like aye-ayes - and explored which forests, reserves and parks they inhabit...
Any trip to Madagascar will include a selection of its national parks, introducing the incredible scenery and unique wildlife that it is famous for...
The island is rightly famed for its unique flora and fauna, but the culture and traditions of Madagascar always add plenty of local colour to your trip plans.
Madagascar has wildlife like nowhere else on this planet, and if you want to really appreciate its vibrant diversity, then the best way is definitely on foot.
Travelling in Madagascar with kids is extremely rewarding, but best wait til they are a bit older to make the most of this life changing experience...
From potholed roads to a lack of tourism infrastructure and the language barrier, the difficulties of travelling around Madagascar are something that no operator can avoid talking about.
If you're wondering how to plan your itinerary, how to get around or what it's like for hiking - look no further for top Madagascar travel advice...
Travelling responsibly is better for the lemurs, better for the Malagasy, and - we believe - a much more memorable holiday for you...