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The North of Madagascar
General description | Climate | The highlights
The North of Madagascar is a scarcely populated region with an amazing variety of landscapes and ecosystems.
The rainforests of
The biggest city along the North-Western coast is Mahajanga, a port city with a strong Muslim character. If you are an adventurous and wealthier visitor, who longs for a really intimate and laid-back beach experience on a solitary, empty and fabulous coast line can opt to move to one of the two luxury resorts north of Mahajanga, accessible only by boat or light aircraft.
Further north, the course of grey-sailed pirogues languishes on its swing around the colourful islands and islets that compose the postcard paradises of Nosy Be, Mitsio and Radama with their intact coral reefs, white-sanded beaches and sleepy fisher villages.
© Madagascar Travel Guide
Chameleons, with their obvious preference for tree branches and bright-coloured skin which can include the most implausible colours, are the favourite sights among the visitors of the fabulous Ambre (Amber Mountain) National Park, on the Northern tip of the island.
several climatic areas on the northern
part of Northeast, on the opposite coast, the stable
dry climate that dominates
In the north-western coast around Mahajanga there are two clear opposite seasons, a dry and warm period from May to November (20°C average) and a rainy and sometimes much hotter season from December to April, where temperatures reach more than 35°C.
Northern from Mahajanga along the West coast the Tsaranana massif is responsible of a micro-climate named after the main river in this area, Sambirano. Thus, this region and the islands around Nosy Be have the two seasons mentioned above as well, but the rainfalls are more spread during the whole year. That means that is does not rain so much during the rainy season but it does often rain during the dry period. Temperatures are warm all year around, with an average temperature of 25°C.
Only the island most northern tip, the zone around Antsiranana (Diego Suarez), has a much drier climate, with a real dry season from March to November and not so many rainfalls during the rest of the year. Temperatures varies between 27-30°C average between December and April and 18°-25°C from May to November.
Northeast, on the opposite coast, the stable
dry climate that dominates
- Antsiranana (Diego Suarez): located on the windy northern tip of the country, the biggest city of the northern part of the country is the entry gate to splendid national parks, but also an unbeatable hideaway with very nice pristine beaches and wonderful bays ideal for windsurfing.
- The “Vanilla coast” is the name given to the north-eastern coast between Vohemar and Antalaha: solitary white-sanded beaches like in the postcards we use to see and asuperb scenery makes this an unforgettable tour.
- Ankarana National Park: ideal place for speleology enthusiasts with really awesome geological formations that include spectacular karst outcrops, craggy limestone promontories, fissured canyons covered by dense primary forest, and fantastic caves decorated with countless stalactites that hide an unexpected inhabitant: crocodiles.