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trekking Makay

South Makay Trekking – 15 days

From 4 to 12 people.


© Malagasy Tours | Carte It is a site of the most surprising that we make you discover with this journey. The massif of Makay is reserved for the big amateurs of trekking and adventure. Makay is far from everything and its approach is delicate. It is from Tana that we begin this circuit with a hike in villages near Antsirabe then in granite rocks near Ambalavao. After a visit in lemurs in the reserve of Anja and several hours of track from Ranohira? by following the massif of Isalo, we finally reach the Makay. It is there that everything begins!


  • Hiking trails in the villages the highlands;
  • The discovery of the region of mountainous massif of Andringitra;
  • The rise in 4×4 along the plateau of Isalo and ferry crossing on the river Mangoky;
  • Trekking and exploring the Massif du Makay.

Travel identity card

  • Duration: 15 days (from Tana to Tana)
  • Days of walking: 6 days of hiking
  • Participant: In group – minimum 6 persons
  • Accompaniment: English speaking Malagasy Guide
  • Accommodation: hotel (4 nights) and camping (10 nights)
  • Travel: 4×4 Vehicles
  • Service: Full board
  • Period: From April to November
  • Effort = 4

    Days are from 5 to 7 hours of walking and these during several days in a row (5 to 10). No technical difficulty, but the elevation changes can be consequent: from 800 to 1200 m certain days. In Madagascar, the height is not a determining factor but it is to be considered. Your bag contains your personal belongings for the day.
  • Confort = 2

    Majority of of nights under tent (camping) with hotels and / or hostels where possible.
    In camping, meals are prepared by the Malagasy Tours team with fresh products, even in trek.
    Attentive service in bivouac. Frequent showers, but not daily.
    Travel by all-terrain vehicle on tarmac roads and / or tracks.

D 1: Antananarivo > Antsirabe > Manandona

Meet your guide and start heading to the south. Once we leave the capital, typical villages of the highlands and rice fields draw well the landscape of the countryside. We stop in Ambatolampy to discover the impressive work of aluminum cooking pot artisans, pots people use all over the country.

We drive on south to Antsirabe which is situated 170 km away of Antananarivo. Then a little bit further on the road 7 we reach the village of Manandona at Mont Ibity foothill, it is a massive rocky mount.

We stay in a simple rural gite.

  • Duration: +/- 4h drive
  • Distance: 170km
  • Meals: Lunch included / Dinner included
  • Your hotel: Manandona. Gîte Bakobako.

    Gîte BakobakoGîte BakobakoA village surrounded with rice fields, a traditional house slightly apart from the village, a family on the threshold of the house. It is the gîteof Jean Gustave – the Old Cock – who makes us a simple and warm welcome. Dormitories of 4 beds at the top of a very steep staircase, showers with a bucket and the toilet at the back of the garden.Romazava for dinner and with a lot of people around the table.

D 2: Climb Mount Ibity

The Mount Ibity is at the heart of the Highlands of Madagascar. From the small gite of Bako Bako in the village of Manandona, we leave making the ascenssion of this big granite block. The walking is easy and does not present major difficulty. Along the way, we meet endemic pachypodiums of this zone. Of the summit we contemplate a landscape which looks like no other, with hills and ridge lines, villages clinging to the slopes, tall brick houses with thatched roofs, rice fields in the valleys and these colors: red, ocher, beige…

  • Duration: from 6 to 7h of walking
  • Meals: Picnic lunch included / Dinner included
  • Your hotel: The same as the day before

D 3: Antsirabe > Anja Reserve

We stay on road N7 and progress towards the south. We shop around and visit Zafimaniry artisans workshop, trying to find carved wood or a piece of marquetery box finely done. We stroll around in town and head to Fianarantsoa where we get lunch with Malagasy specialities and then go on till Ambalavao.
The landscape changes as we leave gradually the highland. We set up our camp in a spectacular granite mass foothill. Anja reserve is situated between two domes in a specific setting of forest and big rocks where different groups of Lemur catta live and are there protected.

  • Duration: +/- 6 h
  • Distance: 275 km
  • Meals: Lunch included / Dinner included
  • Your hotel: NIGHT IN TENT.

    Nuit sous tenteNuit sous tenteA night under the stars around campfire, in the nature,… we like it !We provide SVALBARD brand FERRINO tents. These tents are for 3 persons but we only put 2 persons inside. Both sides have access door with mosquito net and the entrances are a kind of apse where we put a mat for your bags.We also provide a 5 cm thick foam mattress.You should take your sleeping bag.

D 4: Visite and walk in the Anja Reserve

Anja Reserve is located at twenty kilometers south of Ambalavao. Groups of lemurs live in a nice forest at the bottom of a huge granite rock blocks. We learn about local customs of Betsileo and also Bara tribes. The latter bury the deceaseds inside natural caves in the rock cliff after fairly complex rituals. The local guide will give us more details.
We climb rocks without difficulty until the pass. Many interesting hikes are possible around.
This Reserve is run directly by villagers. All profit goes to improve the local people’s life conditions in the surrounding.

  • Duration: from 5 to 6h of walking
  • Meals: Picnic lunch included / Dinner included
  • Your hotel: The same as the day before

D 5 and 6: Anja > Ranohira > Beroroha

These are two big days of steps that await us! We continue the RN7 until Ranohira then follow the massif of Isalo, pass by villages. The track  is sometimes difficult, we “navigate” in the shrubby bush, some villages: Iloto and Menamaty situated on the road breaks a little the unlimitedness of this dry zone. Arrival by the river Mangoky, one of the most important of Madagascar. We approach the massif by lowering the river in dugout. Already some canyons draw the landscape. We leave our paddlers and we sink in in the massif. For lack of time of course, but also by concerns of preservation, we shall visit only a small part of this immense site of about 4000 km ².

  • Duration: +/- 15 h
  • Distance: 400 km dont including 150 track
  • Meals: Picnic lunch included / Dinner included
  • Your hotel: The same as the day before

D 7 to 11: The Makay mountain

We should embark on this discovery with a pioneer mind. We are the first tour operator to frequent Makay region; you are privileged to be amongst some rare persons to go into those mountains.
As you will notice, access is difficult and there is a lack of any infrastructures,  that is precisely what best protects this exceptional site, with its countless canyons, streams and summits.
With trackers and porters we go in the heart of this mineral universe made ??of soft sandstone strata penetrated by hard silicified fractures and layers of pebbles. The hike might be qualified as “aquatic”, we follow flows of pure and transparent water in the deep gorges of those cliffs. We regularly go up to the top to enjoy this disturbed setting where water is the main cause of this rugged landscape.
We progress slowly and hardly sometimes inside rivers with the heat above us. Some lakes full of crocodiles are hidden between two mountains.  The porters are trying, often successfully, to eel fishing. Lemurs are wild here, so will be difficult to approach them, parrots are everywhere their calls echoing on the walls. Some birds of pray soar above the mountains as buzzards, kites  and Sparrow Hawks.
We visit little caves or excavations where drawings, presumably old, are adding to the mysteries of the place.
Watchful guards, the bats keep an eye to visitors.
We put up our tents on the white sandy beach at the foot of vertiginous cliff.
Makay will reveal us its beauty and will opens a bit up to us during those few days, and then return back to its quietude and loneliness.

  • Duration: 6 to 8h walk a day
  • Meals: Picnic lunch included / Dinner included
  • Your hotel: The same as the day before

D 12: Makay > Beroroha > Ranohira

We leave Makay mountains behind us after   having crossed the Mangoky river.

  We are rushing straight ahead towards the road N7 …

We stop in Ranohira for the night.

  • Duration: from 6 to 7h
  • Distance: 150 km of track
  • Meals: Lunch included / Dinner included
  • Your hotel: Ranohira. Hôtel Isalo Ranch.

    Isalo RanchIsalo RanchLocated in 5km to the south of Ranohira, in the savannah of Isalo massif foothill. Bungalows are simple and made in traditional way, they have private or outdoor bathroom, swimming pool is also available.The straw hut restaurant offers local and European dishes. One among those good hotels we like.
    View site on:

D 13: Ranohira > Tuléar > Ifaty

We progress to the south west towards the Mozambique Channel.
Drive on 245 km from Ranohira to Tuléar through different botanical settings in the morning.
We stop on the way to see Mahafaly tribe typical tombs so nicely painted and decorated, on which are erected some amazing wooden sculptures. The sea can be seen from far away before we reach Tuléar.
Walk around to the market before taking lunch.
Road along the coast leads us to Ifaty. Installation to the hotel, almost feet in the water.

  • Duration: +/- 6h
  • Distance: 280 km
  • Meals: Lunch included / Dinner included
  • Your hotel: LA PLAGE HOTEL.

    Located at 40 km north of Tuléar, the hotel has 12 comfortable bungalows with private bathrooms and hot water. Its restaurant prepares French and Malagasy foods pecialties, zebu and grilled fish and seafood…
    View site on:

D 14: Day at leisure at Ifaty

You can explore different activities from the hotel during the day at leisure on the edges of Mozambique channel.
If you want to take advantage of the sea and the lagoon: diving, dugout ride with Vezo fishermen, swim or just idleness.
Hikers can discover the inland, a specific and extraordinary vegetation composed of euphorbia, baobab, didieracea, aloes … , those with thorns are kings in the south.

  • Meals: Lunch not included / Dinner included
  • Your hotel: The same as the day before

D 15: Ifaty > Tulear > Antananarivo

Morning at leisure and transfer to the airport organised by the hotel.

End of Malagasy Tours services.

Fly to the capital.

  • Duration: 30mn drive and 1h15 flight
  • Meals: Lunch not included / Dinner not included

Price includes:

  • The English speaking drivers guides,
  • 4×4 vehicles,
  • Accommodation in the hotels listed in the program,
  • Camping equipment and food (bring a sleeping bag),
  • Full board,
  • The entrances fees in the sites listed,
  • Local guides and porters during the trek,
  • All transfers.

Price does not include:

  • The international and domestic flights,
  • Tips and beverages,
  • The insurances for cancellation, repatriation and expenses of first aids.
  • Visa: +/- 35€


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Price for this trip: from 1 799 €

Price per person | For a group of 4 people

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