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The Road North

MADAGASCAR | Saturday, 19 October 2013 | Views [393]

Ringtailed lemur and baby, Anja Reserve

Ringtailed lemur and baby, Anja Reserve

We were very glad to see Vongy waiting for us when we returned from Anakao.  It took him more than two days to drive down from Antananarivo and it will take us another week to get back via Ranomafana and Andasibe National Parks.

Like driving the Al-Can Highway to Alaska, anyone you meet once along the way from Tulear to Ranomafana you will meet again.  And again.  This especially includes the two buses loaded with twenty-some French and Germans.  Tiny Zombitse NP is the only point of interest between Tulear and Isalo and several groups were already in the forest when we arrived.  I'll wager a bird's eye view would have shown the guides responding to each others bird calls while the actual birds sniggered from the bushes.  


    Connie and her Moses stick

The scenery changed with the elevation as we drove north towards Isalo National Park.  This is a hiker's park, especially the Namaza Canyon.  It was also a good place to find a few of the species that had eluded us and we spent two nights near the park.  Our room at Isalo Motel was cave-like, the most "rustic" yet, but we have had worse.

Several towns flourish between Isalo and Ranomafana since saphires were discovered in the last decade, giving a boom-town feel.  But we don't need jewels so we pushed on to Anja, home of a community run lemur preserve and a great place to see the iconic ring-tailed lemurs.  These guys are so habituated to people that a mother and baby walked right up to Vongy while he was taking their picture.


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