highlights and main attractions of andasibe national park

Probably one of the best lemur experiences in the world, Andasibe National Park is the best place to spot the Indri, the largest living lemur!  The park is separated into two distinct areas, Speciale d’Analamazaotra (usually known as Perinet - the old name of a French nearby town and rail station) to the south, and Park National de Mantidia to the north. Created in 1989, it encompasses the same humid lush forest throughout, covered with moss and trees, peppered with over 100 extraordinary orchid species and dotted with lakes. 

Being close to the capital with a good road structure means that this is a popular park, especially as it is open all year round and almost guarantees lemur sightings. The eerie, yet beautiful call of the Indri can be heard over a mile from the park, building up the excitement. Seeing them in the wild is always an exhilarating experience; their strong legs carrying them from branch to branch, feet rarely touching the floor. The Indri will bark when confronted with danger and make kissing sounds when being affectionate, matching its endearing teddy bear-like appearance, similar to a human crossed with a panda. Andasibe is also home to some wonderful reptile and amphibian species, including the enormous Parson’s chameleon and the tiny nose-horned chameleon, as well as the majestic infamous boa manditia and a myriad of frogs. The colourful wildlife is topped off with more than 100 bird species and hundreds of insects, including some amazingly huge, brightly marked butterflies. 

There are another 13 lemur species that live here too, including grey bamboo, brown and woolly lemurs as well as diademed sifaka, red mouse lemur and even the elusive, nocturnal Aye-Aye.

where is andasibe national park?

activities and organisations

Andasibe National Park is great for a range of activities, depending on what you wish to see, your fitness levels and how long you plan on staying. Perinet is relatively flat with a range of similar walking options, the main difference being how long you want to be out. Mantidia is less visited with slightly tougher terrain and more varied routes to trek. For example, the Sacred Waterfall Circuit is a cultural path, traversing past some holy places of ancient inhabitants; the Rianasoa Circuit is fantastic for spotting Indris and orchids, as well as the Sacred Waterfall and nature pool where you can take a refreshing dip.

Mitisingo

The local NGO, Mitsingo, has an office located just opposite the park entrance and offers some great opportunities for spotting habituated Indri families, as well as a range of chameleons and geckos. You can enjoy some rewarding night walks here too for chances of seeing some nocturnal wildlife. Association Mitsinjo is a Malagasy organisation that started as a community initiative. Located in Andasibe Mitsinjo works in conservation, nature-based tourism, environmental education, habitat management, and sustainable development.

Andasibe is a wonderful park for anyone with an interest in flora and fauna, of any fitness level and we highly recommend spending two days here. Easily accessible, it gives fantastic access to some extraordinary wildlife, endemic, endangered and flourishing on the majestic Red Island.

The best place to stay during your time in Andasibe is the comfortable Vakona Lodge or Andasibe Hotel.

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