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Tulear to Morombe


map Tulear to Morombe
  © University of Texas

 Ifaty/Mangily  |  Salary Bay  |  Andavadoaka  |  Lac Ihotry  |  Morombe

Ifaty - Mangily

What to see and do  |  Where to sleep   

The quiet coastal area of Ifaty, featuring the villages of Ifaty, Mangily and Mandio Rano is only some 25km north of Tulear, but the road is so bad that it takes about two hours to drive there! Compared to Anakao, which almost has the same characteristics, Ifaty has an easier access (and is more beautiful too). There are numerous hotels, mainly built out of  traditional materials.

sunset at Mozambique channel
Sunsets at Mozambique Channel can be so spectacular!
© Madagascar Travel Guide

For travellers, this place is synonymous for relaxation and beautiful beaches, mostly welcomed after a long trecking tour.  Indeed the beaches are beautiful and its closeness to Tulear, where most trips to the South end, make Ifaty a well worth trip to lay down on the beach and do some snorkelling. The reef does not look in great shape but beginners can still enjoy (you can observe wrasse, box/cowfish, parrotfish, angelfish and pipefish).

A further attraction for those missing Sainte Marie are the whales passing by in July and August, as well as an amazing spiny forest along the road just north of Mangilly is well worth a look. If fact, we still prefer the more untouched and pristine beaches of the northern coast (Sakala Bay until Belo su Mer), but Ifaty will also do for a couple of days of complete relaxation. Locals will offer you boat rides on the lagoon, but do not choose your guide  Do not choisisssez your guide to the light, trust your hotel who knows the good plans a priori. A half-day on the water is gone quickly!


What to see and do


  • Ambotsibotsike

This village on the road to Tulear deserves a visit, because of its superb mangrove. You can go on horseback, mountain bike on a quad. You can come here with a traditional vezo dugout.

  • Reniala Private Reserve

Located just 800 meters from the sea, Reniala is a small reserve managed by a local organisation which protects a baobab and spiny forest where visitors can observe rare birds and reptiles.
For further information see Reniala Reserve 

  • Ranobe Lake

A rallying point for local wildlife visited regularly by NGOs environmental protection.

  • Diving

The southwestern coast of Madagascar is, together with Nosy Be and Sainte Marie islands, the best place to practice diving and snorkeling in Madagascar. You find a detailed list of tour operators and diving centres based on this area on our section Diving and Snorkeling.

  • Horse riding

The Ranch Solaris (http://www.ranch-solaris.com, mail: ranch@atimoo.com) offers horse rides and treks  along the lagoon, to the Bay of Sainte Augutin and through a beautiful baobab forest.

Where to sleep (Hotels in alphabetical order, prices from 2013)

Budget  |  Middle-class  High-end

Budget accommodations

Chez Alex
Phone: 032 04 098 29
Different types of bungalows with sea views and a nice garden. Food is average. Some activities arranged. Price for two people between 20,000 Ar and 40,000 Ar, depending on facilities and location.

Chez Daniel
Small bungalows complex with hot water and shared toilet. Quiet atmosphere and basic meals.

Chez Micheline
Simple bungalows with no running water or electricity. Restaurant with basic meals. Very cheap!

Reniala Nature Reserve
Basic bungalows with cold water and shared toilet. Recommended for bird watching.

Mora Mora
11 simple but well maintained bungalows on a beautiful site with a nice garden  and a pool, with shared or private facilities. A double bungalow between 20,000 Ar and 50,000 Ar

Middle class hotels

Chez Cécile (Sur la Plage)
Phone: +261 20 94 907 00
Mail: surlaplagechezcecile@yahoo.fr
Web: http://www.surlaplagechezcecile.com
Formerly Chez Freddy, very nice set of welcoming basic bungalows with a popular beach bar and a great and cheap restaurant, ideal to meet travellers. Friendly atmospehre and fair prices.
Many activities offered. They work together with a local organisation. Very good price-quality relationship. Recommended.
Double bungalows from 22,000 Ar to 38,000 Ar, triple from 47,000 Ar to 78,000 Ar with kitchen.

Hôtel Vovo Telo
Phone: 94 439 69 / 032 02 62 148
16 traditional, comfortable bungalows on a nice beach with coconut trees. Good service and tasty meals in a charming restaurant with sea views. There is also a disco. Small bungalows for 30 € and big bungalows from 34 €.

Hôtel Le Tonga Soa
Phone: 032 02 788 98
Web: www.hotel-letongasoa.com
Mail: contact@hotel-letongasoa.com
15 comfortable, traditional and pleasant bungalows with hot water, private bathroom, safe and terrace on a beautiful location. There is a pool, a tee lounge bar and a small library. Delicious meals. Very good value. Recommended.
Price for two people between 28 and 37 €, suite bungalows from 49 €

La Voile Rouge
Phone: 032 04 31 142
Mail: lavoilerouge@moov.mg
Pleasant and comfortable bungalows in a quiet and wild location. Friendly atmosphere and excellent food. A lot of excursions arranged.
Price for two people from 41000 Ar to 60000 Ar, depending on the facilities



High end hotels

Bamboo Club
Phone: 94 902 13 / 032 04 004 27
Web: www.bamboo-club.com
Mail: 
bambooclubifaty@gmail.com
24 pleasant, comfortable and well equipped bungalows in a fantastic location right on the beach with a marvellous garden. Pool and dive centre. The restaurant serves really good food. Recommended!
Price for a double bungalow from 37 €, a familiar bungalow from 60 €

Ifaty Beach Club
Phone: + 261 20 94 914 27
Web: www.ifaty.com
Mail: 
ifatybeach@ifaty.com
Beautiful high standard bungalows complex on a nice setting. There is a great pool surrounded by palm trees, hammocks, a dive centre, quads to rent and other activities. The food is great. Good value
Double bungalow for 41 €, triple bungalow 46 €, familiar bungalow 64 €

Hotel de la Saline
Phone: 94 417 03 / 032 07 531 93
17 high standard and comfortable bungalows next to the beach, some with fan and some with AC. Stunning views and delicious meals.
Price for a double bungalow 84000 Ar
Price for a familiar bungalow 178 000 Ar

Hôtel Lakana Vezo
Phone: + 261 032 04 097 98 (book trough Hôtel Capricorne in Tulear)
Web: www.madagascar-resorts.com
Mail: lakanavezo@madagascar-resorts.com
7 bungalows, 10 rooms and two studios of different categories and prices, all of them large and pleasant with lots of comforts. The hotel is located on a beautiful beach with a tropical garden. Many excursions and sea activities organised ( great Club Nautique). Good food.
Bungalows from 30 € for one person to 55 € for four people, a studio from 33 € for one person to 69 € for five, rooms from 34 € for one person to 48 € for three.  

Les Dunes D’Ifaty
Phone: 20 94 914 80 / 20 22 376 69
Web: www.lesdunesdifaty.com
Mail: dunesifaty@shgi.mg
19 luxurious villas up to four people and 22 rooms (11 standard and 11 luxury) in the middle of a marvellous garden with an incredible pool. Really sophisticated: lounge bar, disco, library, beach ball, horses, excellent service. All type of trips and activities offered. Fantastic restaurant serves superb meals. It is the best hotel in Ifaty.
Price for a villa between 93 € and 125 €, depending on the season
Price for a standard room between 64 € and 86 €, depending on the season
Price for a luxury room between 77 € and 105 €, depending on the season
Half board 23 €  Full board 37 €

Le Jardin de Beravy
Phone: + 261 (0)32 40 397 19
Mail: jardin.beravy@yahoo.fr
Web: http://www.hotel-jardindeberavy-tulear.com
5 charming rooms with private terrace on a quiet and beautiful location, ideal for families with little children. The restaurant is really fantastic. Several excursions, transfers to the airport in Tulear and diving offered. 
Double rooms for 36 €, triple for 43 €

Le Paradisier
B.P. 490 Tulear 601
Phone: 032 07 660 09 /  20 94 429 14
Web: www.paradisier.net
Mail: paradisier@paradisier.net
21 high standard, large and bright bungalows and one luxury suite very well equipped on a huge beach surrounded by a forest. Magnificent location for animal watching and relaxing. Friendly atmosphere and a great pool. The nice restaurant serves delicious meals.

Mangily Hôtel
B.P. 333 Tulera 601
Phone: 94 421 97 / 32 02 554 28
Mail: info@mangily-hotel.com
20 charming, comfortable, bright and well equipped and decorated bungalows right on the beach. There is a fantastic dive centre (Atimoo) that organises all kind of diving and sea activities. Recommended!

Nautilus (Deep Sea Club)
B.P. 519 Tulear
Phone: 20 94 418 74
25 very comfortable, modern and well equipped bungalows on a beautiful beach with a brand new spectacular pool. Ideal for diving lovers (the team is really professional). Very good food.
Price for  a single bungalow 58 €, a double 65 € and a triple 78 €


Those who prefer a rather quieter environment can chose some of the excellent accommodations offered further north by the village of Ambolimailaka:

Mira de Madio Rano
Mobile: + 261 (0) 32 02 621 44
e-mail:
lamira.hotel@moov.mg
Web: http://www.hotel-lamira.com
Well equipped hotel and restaurant with remarkably comfortable rooms and a nice panoramic view over the beach. Menu costs about Ar 30,000. A motor boat is available for fishing trips. 
Single room 60 €, Double room 67 €, triple 80 €. Basic rooms with shared toilets for 18 €

Mangosteen
A set of small very basic bungalows at Ar 10,000 for two.

Au soleil couchant
Phone: +261 (0)32 47 360 15
Mail: mailto:hotelsoleilcouchant@moov.mg
Web: http://www.hoteltulear-ausoleilcouchant.com Brand new bungalow complex on a wonderful location, all bungalows are nicely decorated and comfortable, the restaurant serves good meals and many activities are offered: treks, diving, water sports

Hotel Bellevue
Mobile: + (261) 32 04 647 22
e-mail: hotel_bellevue2@yahoo.fr
This new nice complex overlooking the Vezo village of Ambolimailaka offers seven rooms with fan and private facilities (with hot water), all set in a green garden planted with flowers. Prices are Ar 90,000 a double, Ar 117,000 for three and Ar 126,000 for four guests. Meals cost Ar 25,000.

Hotel de la Plage
Mobiles: + 261 (0)32 04 362 76 / + 261 20 94 90 692
e-mail
hotelplagetulear@blueline.mg
Web:
www.hotelplage-tulear.com
Shortly after the village this charming hotel offers fourteen high standard  very comfortable bungalows. Menu costs Ar 25.000. Transfers provided to Tulear. You can take advantage too of the many activities proposed like quad rides, horse-riding, fishing, diving (the hotel has an own fully equipped sailing club is), windsurfing etc.

A bungalow costs between 49 and 83 €


Heading further North

The coastline sand track from Ifaty to Morombe is probably one of the best rides you will ever take in Madagascar. But of course, a 4x4 is indispensable! There is a taxi-brousse connection to the tiny villages further north, but this can turn into a real adventure. A comfortable way to travel is taking the scheduled shuttle connection offered by Madaconnection (see under the chapter of Morondava). No matter which mean of transport you choose: your trip along this western wild coast will become memorable.

Ankasy Lagon Lodge & Spa
Phone: +261 (0)32 05 400 42
Mail: resa@ankasy-lodge-spa.com
Web: http://www.ankasy-lodge-spa.com
Brand new luxury accommodation opened in 2010 and still being built. The huge  bungalows are just superb, the location spectacular, the meals delicious and all kind of activities and water sports arranged. Everything semms to be perfect here!

Chez Odilon
Phone: +261 (0)32 04 105 45
This much basic set of bungalows is located on the village of Tsiandomba, another little vezo community. The hotel is simple and the meals very cheap, so this is a good choice for budget travellers. 

Salary Bay

Salary is a true gem with probably the nicest totally wild beach of the whole country. It takes about 4 hours to get here from Tulear on a 4x4. Though of course you can hire here a pirogue from Ifaty, though the piroguier will definitely charge you much more than someone from Salary (which is by far less touristy) will do. The best way is hiring a 4x4 or travelling by taxi-brousse to Salary and then hiring a pirogue for the return way (which is likely to be done in two days)

Salary
The beach in Salary © Madagascar Travel Guide

If you are on a short budget and decide that taking the taxi-brousse is the best option, truck-brousses head to Salary making a two-hour stop in Manombo, where you'll have to change the car. If you're lucky, you can do it the same day (check in Toliara station). If not, you can find accommodation in Manombo. It should take about 12 hours.

The taxi-brousse ride ends in Salary Atsimo (Salary South), where there are some overpriced basic bungalows (Chez Jean Louis) belonging to the local kingpin, who is unfortunaltey said to make some tourist exploitation, inflating prices and even charging of items never consumed by the guests. A much nicer place to overnight both for the superb location of the bungalows, set over white-sanded dunes, as also for the five kilometres of pristine beach is Salary Avaratra (Salary North). To get there just walk the two kilometres on the seaside track and ask for Francesco’s home (salaryfrancesco@yahoo.it). Francesco, an Italian fishermen married who is living here for 15 years, has built 5 nice bungalows on the seaside with either private or common facilities. He will help you organizing expeditionary trips to Mikea villages 5 kilometres inland. You can also accompany him on fishing trips aboard his Vezo pirogue and even sail north to the nice Baie des Assassins (where many galleons stranded here long time ago) and even further north to the main village of Andavadoaka (such a return trip will take about 4 days and will lead you through some extraordinary diving places). His Malagasy wife Claire is an exceptional cook and bakes break herself. A really (still) untouched place to discover by individual travellers…

However, the wild beauty of this unspoiled place at the very end of the world has already been discovered by some bigger enterprises. A new hotel of the luxury price class mostly attracting couples on their honey moon has been opened recently:

Salary Bay Hotel
Tel
: + 261 (0)32 49 120 16
e-mail: salarybay@malagasy.com
Web: www.salarybay.com  
The hotel owners are the same that the Cotsoyannis in Fianarantsoa. It offers full comfort in ten nice bungalows, which all of them have a private veranda overlooking the blue lagoon. Prices range between 74 € and  84 € a double depending on the season. A meal costs around 17 €. Half-pension is compulsory! Activities offered are canoeing and diving.

Of course you can also bivouac on the beach… If you intend to do so, bring your own bottled water! You can buy fish from the villagers and even let your meal prepared by a Vezo woman (for a fee). We really do not have to mention that it is absolutely essential that you take your rubbish with you!!

At the small vezo village of Ambatomilo, just on the half way between Salary and Andavadoaka, there is a new accommodation. 

The Floma Hotel Ambatomilo (http://www.hotel-floma.com) is simple, pleasant, comfortable and inexpensive: a double room costs 20,000 Ar. The location is as spectacular as in other points of this region, but maybe even more peaceful. It is a very good place to practice snorkelling!


Andavadoaka

Andavadoaka is a “large” Vezo village counting about 1,200 inhabitants and a big market that attracts Mikea farmers coming to sell some of their crops. Its setting on a really nice bay makes a large part of its attractive, though the authentic Robinson Crusoe feeling is gone long ago. Three tourist complexes and an increasing number of Vazaha visitors have contributed to the lost of some of the old charm of the village.
 It is still however a well-worth place to hang around a couple of days, explore some fabulous diving-sites and walk through a fantastic baobab forest, where these amazing trees grow in the most incredible shapes. Andavadoaka is also the base place for the research activities conducted by the NGO Blue Ventures (www.blueventures.org), dedicated to the development of sustainable conservation programs for the unique reef ecosystem of the lagoon.
vezo fisher in Andavadoaka  Vezo fisher with his boat
© Madagascar Travel Guide

(Hotels in alphabetical order, prices from 2011)

Coco beach
The owner is the same Indian that owns the two hotels in Morombe. Basic accommodation that usually hosts volunteers coming to work for Blueventures.

Manga Lodge
Phone: + 261 (0) 32 05 330 09
E-mail: madamangalodge1@yahoo.fr
Another welcoming lodge of the high price standard. Comfortable bungalows with views over the lagoon in a isolated and wonderful place. Restaurant serves good meals.

Single bungalow for 26 €, double for 30 €, triple for 38 € and familiar for 47 €

Since diving is of course the priority of most visitors, the italian couple Italo and Nina  manage the diving center Madablu, which works together with both hotels Manga lodge and Coco beach  (See www.madablu.com Phone: +261 (0)34 3819236) Tours to the baobab forest and to the Ihotry lake (see below) are also proposed.

Lake Ihotry

Lake Ihotry is the second largest lake in Madagascar. It is a large basin that holds fluvial runoff before it subsides through the sand into the sea. Depending on the year the salty waters of the lake full of algae attract a few to thousands of flamingos.The waters of the lake and creek permit a variety of agricultural crops that grow with greater difficulty elsewhere. The residents of these villages are mostly Mikea, with historical roots in the Namonte Basin. They were forcibly relocated to these villages in the early 20th century as a result of French colonial policies. One hundred and six species are known from this site, of which 23 are endemic to Madagascar. During the dry season, muddy areas attract large numbers of waders, and the site is also a dry-season refuge for waterbirds that use the seasonal wetlands between Morombe and Toliara


Morombe

Morombe, a small city enclave between Toliara and Morondava, is the capital of the Vezo people and its economical centre. It is located some 350 km north of Toliara and its relatively inaccessibility makes it to be a rarely visited town by foreigners. It is connected to the capital (via Toliara or Morondava) twice a week (check with Air Madagascar), though most travellers opt for the 4x4 option from Morondava or for a long pirogue ride from Belo sur Mer. If you land with an aircraft, you’ll need to walk the two kilometres that separate the landing strip from the town, as there is no taxi service known. You can stay at a few places (Hotels in alphabetical order, prices from 2010):

Hotel Baobab
Tel: + (0)
261 20 22 427  01
e-mail: luxxor@blueline.mg
Twenty nice bungalows on the seaside

Le Crabe
Phone: + 261 (0)32 48 411 45
Mail: baynbb@yahoo.fr
More basic bungalows by the sea 

Pirogue d’Or
Tel: (+ 261) 32 02 147 24
 
e-mail:
morombe98@yahoo.fr
Web: http://www.piroguedormorombe.com
Probably the best hotel in Morombe. The 16 bungalows have hot water and some of them private facilities, the restaurant serves local and french food.

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