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When to visit Madagascar

The best time to visit Madagascar is during the dry season from April to October, with fewer rain showers and optimal conditions for seeking out wildlife, hiking and enjoying the beach. Whilst Madagascar holidays can be enjoyed year-round, the principal wet season is from late December through to the month of March; often involving cyclones so is probably best avoided! Madagascar is a huge country and therefore the climate varies and weather patterns do not necessarily stick to the traditional seasons, you should be prepared for all weather conditions.

Lemurs are more active during these months, making it simpler to see these endearing animals in national parks and reserves. This time of year is ideal for birdwatching because so many different bird species are on full display. Whether you're diving in pristine marine reserves or hiking through the Avenue of the Baobabs, Madagascar's incredible wildlife awaits you throughout the dry season.


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The Best Time to Visit Madagascar

  • JAN
  • FEB
  • MAR
  • APR
  • MAY
  • JUN
  • JUL
  • AUG
  • SEP
  • OCT
  • NOV
  • DEC

From south to north, the temperature ranges from about 33 to 27 degrees Celsius, cooling slightly the further north you go, with heavy rainfall spreading unevenly across the country. Rains are heavy and more prolific in the north, with the south remaining much drier in comparison. There is a risk of cyclones in January, although this peaks in February.

We do not recommend travel to Madagascar in January as certain lodges and local operators will be closed. The weather is hot and very wet, turning some roads into deep mud, making some national parks and accommodations inaccessible.

If you prefer to travel out of season and don’t mind some heavy rains, travel to Madagascar in the shoulder seasons of April or December.

April to November - Winter

The Madagascan winter runs April through November and this drier milder season is the best time to visit, especially to see lemurs. July and August specifically are the coolest months of the year, as well as the busiest. September to November is an excellent time to visit, as it marks the end of the cool, dry season albeit before the rainfall increases. April and May are noticeably greener months with verdant countryside following the rainier months.

December to March - Summer

December through March is Madagascar’s tropical summer and the hottest and wettest period, with January to March being particularly wet with heavy rains and cyclones. Travel in the northeast and east during these months can be notoriously difficult, with roads sometimes impassable and muddy. We usually would not recommend travelling at this time as often lodges will be closed or inaccessible.

Madagascar climate guide

Andasibe-Mantadia temperature25°C25°C24°C23°C22°C20°C19°C21°C23°C26°C27°C26°C
Sainte-Marie Islandtemperature29°C29°C29°C28°C26°C25°C23°C24°C24°C26°C27°C29°C
Nosy Betemperature29°C29°C29°C29°C28°C27°C26°C27°C27°C28°C29°C29°C

What to see and do in Madagascar

Madagascar Wildlife

If you want to see humpback whales, travel from July to September when the whales arrive into Madagascan waters off the east coast, to give birth and nurture their calves.

Generally, lemurs can be seen all year round but travel in October or November to see baby lemurs during their birthing season.

For the highest chances of spotting fossa, it is best to travel between September and October which is their mating season, they tend to be found using the same tree year after year.

Avenue of the Baobabs

Visit the well-known Avenue of the Baobabs, a stunning location with age-old baobab trees lining a gravel road that makes for wonderful photo opportunity.

Tsingy de Bemaraha

Explore Tsingy de Bemaraha National Park's surreal limestone formations, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It's a great location for rock climbing and trekking.

Island Hopping

Explore Madagascar's many offshore islands, each with its own unique charm and attractions, including Nosy Be, Île aux Nattes, and Île aux Cerfs.

Avenue of the Palms

Discover the Avenue of the Palms, a charming avenue near Morondava that is bordered with tall palm trees and offers a tranquil and picturesque experience.

Biosphere Reserves

For a look at Madagascar's unique habitats and fauna, visit the UNESCO Biosphere Reserves Mananara-Nord and the Tsingy de Bemaraha.