Early last month I wrote about how to figure out the best places to travel on a weak dollar and Madagascar came up. I had read about the political instability there and wanted to learn more about visiting and traveling in the island. I came across Lee Abbamonte‘s post on his recent trip through the island and decided to ask.
What’s your traveling background?
I want to travel everywhere and be the youngest person to visit every country. (Here’s a bit more about Lee.)
When and where in Madagascar did you travel?
In January 2010, Tana (Antananarivo) and around the city.
How easy is it to move in and about Antananarivo?
Very easy on foot or by taxi-if the taxi works!
How were the prices?
Did Madagascar’s political instability hamper your travels at all?
Not at all.
How safe did you feel in Madagascar?
Very safe although it was a little seedy after dark with tons of prostitutes and no street lights.
What was you one favorite thing about Madagascar?
The food in Tana and the lemurs.
Any other recommendations or advice for people considering a trip to Madagascar?
Budget several days and see the actual native lemur farms and head up to Nosy Be.
Thanks again Lee for answering some questions about your recent trip. Lee is attempting to become the youngest person in the world to travel to every country on Earth. You can read more about his travels in Madagascar on Lee’s travel blog, LeeAbamonte.com.
[photo by: robynejay]
loved loved loved this blog entry- informative and practical! I laughed at the answer “very easy on foot or by taxi- IF THE TAXI WORKS” hee hee!! 🙂
Thank you for this information- will store it away for future reference.
My favorite comment as well. I’m glad you enjoyed this post, it was a real treat to catch Lee on his trip. Good to know it helped cleared up the question from the previous post.
I like the snippets presented here in the Q&A and the collage!
Thanks Gourmantic – yes, Lee certainly has made me very curious 🙂
My next door neighbour from Vancouver has been living in Madagascar for almost a year and on balance has thoroughly enjoyed the experience. However, getting to Madagascar is another matter. Her son came to visit at Christmas and his journey must come close to setting a record for number of travel days.
Day #1 – Calgary,Alberta to London,England – miss connection on Day #2 due to snowstorms – rebooked to fly on Day#3 – slept in and missed flight (only 1 per day) Day#4 – flight to Africa(don’t recall which city), missed connection Day#5 Arrive in Madagascar.
I suggested an alarm clock as a Christmas gift.
haha, seems like many of those extra days could have been avoided!
Very cool. This is somewhere I have always wanted to visit and I don’t know anyone else that has been there so this was cool to read. Great Job Anil! – Beth
It took me a while to find someone who had recently been there, guess not too many travelers there. Thanks Beth!
It’s a hard place to love in just a day or two, but with the right dose of touristy mixed in there it can be amazingly fun! 🙂
Have you been?
I could sit here gazing at all the pictures in the collage. I love Q&A blog posts as they give a glimpse of the personalities behind the stories. Thanks, Anil!
Thanks Shannon, was nice to get to know a bit more about Lee as I was getting the interview together. An interesting fellow, glad I was able to share a bit of his story here.
Insightful article, Anil! I’m happy to discover your blog, brother.
Keep exploring, keep sharing!
Thanks Pres, nice to meet and connect with you too here and via your site.
What would be closer alternative to Madagascar? For someone from the US or Canada, which country would be a much closer alternative to Madagascar?
In terms of? Geography, culture, etc? A tough question to answer. What puts you off from going to Madagascar, time or the prices? Sorry for all the questions, just trying to get you the best possible answer.
In terms: all of the above
Puts me off: Time it takes to get there and the stops you have to make, read lots of terrible reviews about the airlines that go there. lots of delays. expensive to fly there.
A non stop flights from North America to Madagascar will probably never happen.
I hate to say it but you’ve got to go to Madagascar for the culture of the place. As for alternatives based on that criteria, I recommend you get in touch with Lee (http://www.leeabbamonte.com/contact-lee-abbamonte/) who can probably answer your question better.
Sorry I couldn’t be more help..
How about for just biodiversity?
thanks for the link
No problem. For “nearby” biodiversity I’d go with the Amazon. Ecuador (has some of the most bio-diverse forests in the world) and Brazil would be great destinations and you could probably find direct flights from North America.
Wouldn’t Costa Rica and the rest of Central America have alot of biodiversity as well?
Absolutely – closer too 😉
Is there anything like the stone forest in the Western Hemisphere?:
Not that I’ve come across, I can ask around though and see if there’s anyone else with experience with something similar.
What’s the total number of suspension bridges at the Monteverde and Santa Elena Cloud Forest Reserves in Costa Rica?
Not sure but sure you can easily find out with a Google search.
I was just wondering if people were actually allowed to go explore the stone forest or if its off limits to tourists? And if you can go, do you have to have a guide, or can you go on your own?
I haven’t been, but just asking around it seems you can do tours. Not sure if you can go on your own but Lee might be able to help answer your question. Get in touch with him through his website and I’m sure he’ll be give you the information you need:
Hope this helps – are you planning a trip there?