We asked Hely Rakotomanantsoa, MD of ICTours to give some tips regarding Madagascar trips.
As you’ll probably know, the island is francophone, so UK clients really must have fluent English-speaking guides, even if they are able to speak French for themselves. Guides are not just there to provide transportation and point out animals; they should be informative, educational and entertaining to clients, sharing about all aspects of Malagasy life. As you’d expect, all of our guides that are allocated to our growing UK business are fluent in English.
WHAT TO SEE
Different clients visit Madagascar for many different reasons and those criteria can hugely impact upon an itinerary. Whilst most British travellers visit to see lemurs and chameleons, many others seek out the diverse culture of Madagascar, our pot-pourri of cuisine styles and influences; the hugely varied landscapes and eco-systems…even the pristine beaches. All of the ICT team are native Malagasy and we’d like to think our product knowledge is second to none.
WHERE TO GO
There are no obvious circuits to Madagascar, other than to the likes of Tana, Perinet and Berenty. So every trip really can be tailor-made with journey times; attractions; environments; trip-length and all budgets able to be satisfied. Transfers can be lengthy affairs so trying to do the entire island in a single trip is probably not that great an option, unless you have a few weeks, of course. Understanding what the client would ideal like to see can ensure we can develop their set of highlights which may differ enormously from even a quite similar client.
WHERE TO STAY
With a few famous exceptions, there is little high-end luxury accommodation available in Madagascar, so be sure that your client is happy to stay at mid-range properties, which are often the only option in the wildlife rich areas. If the client wants experiences rather that pure luxury, then Madagascar can certainly deliver! Thankfully, we’ve been able to negotiate good rates across the board, making us really competitive.
TRY IT FOR YOURSELF
Our beautiful island rarely fails to exceed the expectations of visitors (as long as they accept the points about), so we recommend tour operators come to experience it for themselves. Sadly fam-trips to Madagascar are rarely cheap, but we do our best to keep costs as low as possible, but we do feel them well worth the investment because as soon as you return to the UK, we’re confident that you’ll be hugely enthusiastic about our destination and will sell lots of trips!
For more information on ICTours or if you are interested in the Madagascar sam trip please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.