A Guide to Madagascar: The West Coast, Like a Setting in a Fairytale

If you follow National Geographic on Instagram (or some form of social media) or any general travel accounts, you are bound to have seen the infamous Avenue of Baobabs posted once or twice. I have seen the same couple of photos posted numerous times, as Madagascar isn’t a destination that many people I know, or follow on social media, have had the opportunity to travel to. The reason I chose it as our winter holiday destination stemmed from my boyfriend’s love of the book The Little Prince (Le Petit Prince). In that book, the baobabs represent the obstacles of life. Anyways, he loves them, so what better place to see them than the infamous avenue of baobabs.

I was prepared for them not to look quite as the photos I have seen show, as a photographer myself, I know that certain edits can be done to make places seem a certain way, when to other eyes it’s not all that similar. But I booked our trip anyways, centering our tour around the fact that we needed to get to the Avenue of Baobabs at some point.

Our second destination on our tour was Morondava, we had no expectations for the place other than being able to see the baobabs and it did not disappoint. Everything from the hotel, the food, the guides, and the locations explored, was incredible.

Accommodations 

We stayed at the Palissandre Cote Ouest Resort (booked through our tour) and were pleasantly surprised with how amazing it was. We had a beach front bungalow, with incredible view of the ocean. The resort itself was also a spa, which I regret not taking part in a massage of some kind while staying there. The food (breakfast and dinner included in our stay) was unforgettable; I am a foodie and care about these things. Specifically our Christmas dinner was absolutely delicious; it may not have been the turkey dinner I am used to but chicken sure was nice. And then the picturesque swing on the beach to watch the sunset just made it even better.

Kirindy Forest Reserve

I am not going to lie, I really wanted to see a Fosa here. After reading how this is the most likely place to see them of where we were going, I got my hopes up. But apparently they make appearances more during the dry season than the wet. So I was let down. But the incredible lemur spotting more than made up for that. We saw both the sifaka and the brown lemurs, on a walk with our incredible guide Ludo. He was so entertaining, and pleasant to spend our day wandering around the forest and pointing out all the creatures we came across.

Avenue of Baobabs

So technically we were at the Avenue of Baobabs three times. First we stopped on our way to Kirindy Forest for our hike, since we had to drive through anyways. And we arrived again after our hike at around 3pm… and sunset was at 6:30pm, but there was not really enough time to go back to the hotel and drive back, but I really wanted to see the sunset. It was worth killing time for 3 hours, as the sunset did not disappoint. I could not have asked for a better Christmas Eve. And then we even came back the next morning for sunrise (5am sunrise, means waking up at 345am). Both equally worth it. I’ll let you judge for yourselves.

 

So basically, if you are going to Madagascar, yes Avenue of Baobabs is worth the trip to Morondava (we had to take two planes from Antananarivo to get there). But if you have more time than we did, I also suggest checking out Tsingy Bemaraha, as we were unable to get there due to time constraints and being there during “rainy season”.

 

 Pinterest-Baobabs

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34 thoughts on “A Guide to Madagascar: The West Coast, Like a Setting in a Fairytale

  1. First time I saw Lemurs was Earth planet documentary and then your pictures. This trip must be incredible. I really can’t wait to go there you made me fall in love with it ❤

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  2. I saw some boababs in the Northern Territory in Australia and really enjoyed these unique trees. I think the sunset and sunrise were definitely worth it for such a beautiful experience. I also loved your photos of the lemurs. Seeing the local wildlife is always such a highlight for me when I travel.

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  3. It’s fantastic that your guide was able to help get that near to see the lemurs. Love the towering baobab tree photos! They look even better and more magnificent towering over the rest of the landscape from afar. 🙂

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  4. Lovely photos, brought back memories 🙂 I’ve been to Madagascar few years ago and I really enjoyed this country and I loved the Alley of the Baobab; the sun is low on the horizon, a soft glowing light, smooth trunks reflect the orange rays. Baobabs become shadows accentuating their particular shape, the sun slips between these shadows and eventually disappears. The light remains magic even after the disappearance of the solar star.

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  5. Wow, you’re so correct in saying it’s like a fairytale! Madagascar has been on my list for so long now, and after reading this it just makes me want to go even more! The scenery, the wildlife, and those classic baobabs are incredible!

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  6. Wow this place is amazing! I’ve never heard of it but it looks like something otherworldly. I would love to visit someday!

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  7. I have a friend visiting Madagascar right now and I’m so jealous of both of you. Also seeing lemurs in the wild like that is on my bucket list (weird, I know). Beautiful photos!

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  8. Love the photos! The avenue does look like something from a fairytale. The wildlife at the Forest Reserve all look so cute and interesting too.

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  9. Thank you so much for sharing this beautiful post and I love that a book inspired your travels. Madagascar has been a dream of mine since I was a kid so I hope I get to visit soon and enjoy the Baobabs like you did!!

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  10. Avenue of Baobabs pictures always fascinated me. You have captured the trees beautifully. Apart from that you seems to enjoyed the trip as I can make out from your pictures.

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  11. I love your pictures! The circle pics just look so cute to me :D! Since I’m a big fan of cartoon, I have dreamed to visit Madagascar for so long! The nature there is so lovely and fresh. Hope I can go one day!

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