|Ankarana National Park was created in 1956 and lies about 90 km south of Antsiranana covering an area of 182,5 km². It is a spectacularly eroded limestone fortress of sharp ridges, patches of dense tropical jungle, deciduous forest, deep caves and canyons (actually the biggest underground network of Africa) and rushing rivers. With an annual rainfall of almost 2000 mm, the underlying rocks undergo a heavy erosion producing an amazing karst topography, being its most known result the fantastically eroded limestone spires, known as “tsingy”. The Park is in fact one of the most visited specially among hikers: it offers incredible trails, unique and terrific landscapes and a lot of animals!|
|This reserve contains one of the highest
primates of any forest in the world. Its dense forests support one of
largest and least disturbed populations of crowned lemurs.
|| Thousands of bats
share this cave complex
plant species grow in Ankarana. The luxuriant forests around the gorge
are always green and are the richest ones in number of
Some significant species are the "vazaha tree", pandanus, ficuses ad
the endemic baobab Adanson
Visitors need to bring in all of their food and equipment.
The famous hanging bridge of Ankarana © MauritsV
- The circuits
The classic 6-hours circuit from Mahamasina includes the visit of perte de riviere, the Chauvessouris cavel, petit Tsingy, the Ambahibe cave and the panoramic point of Ambohimalaza. Including the Lac verd and Grand Tsingy will involve a more strenous trekking, which is however extraordinarily rewarding.
From Matsaborimanga several half-day trails of average difficulty will include the cages of Milainteny and Andrafiabe, the "Cathedral", the Lac vert and the grand Tsingy.
In Amboandriky the cave of the crocodiles and Lac Mangily are the main interesting points.
A three day tour will combine the Matsaborimanga with either the Mahamasina or the Amboandriky circuit.
If you are
travelling with public transport the taxi-brousses making the route
Diego can drop you out at the entry of the park. The
service from Ambilobe to Ambatoharanana passes by the Western entrace
park. If you are on a tight budget you can try this option and camp on
two of the campsites of the park while crossing the whole park
from West to South. This option will enable you to visit of most
sights of the park on your way to the exit point at
Most visitors book the whole trip through a local travel agency in Diego. This is by far the easiest and most comfortable way to visit Ankarana.
three different entry points to the park. The most accessible one is
the town of
maintains four camping sites near all three entries. If camping is too
for you, you can stay overnight at one of the basic bungalows at
Chez Aurelien is a roof over your head for Ar 10,000 for two. Chez
Goulam is another basic set of bungalows inside the park with shared
faciltiles for also 10,000 Ar.
7 km before reaching Ambilobe at a place called Isesy there is a place called Tsingy Relais (also known as Chez Robert, phone: 261 20 82 065 65), which offers simple bungalows at 20 € / night with half board.
The most comfortable options are:
Relais de L´Ankarana: (http://relaisdelankarana.unblog.fr/ firstname.lastname@example.org). This brand new hotel is located in the village of Mahamasina and offers 6 large and welcoming bungalows with private facilities, electricity and hot water for 32 € for two people. The restaurant serves international and local meals.
Tsingy Lodge: (www.kingdelapiste.de email@example.com) This ecolodge lies in the middle of the wild nature about 1 km from the Park entrance. There are high standard tents for 29 € and rooms from 35 to 49 €, depending on the facilities.
The entry fees cost Ar 25,000 for one day and Ar 37,000 for two days. The guide tarifs will depend on the circuit chosen. The guide fees for a three-day-circuits cost about Ar 40,000 for a group of one-six persons.