Nosy Be is an island off Madagascar’s northwestern coast. In the southeast, the forests of Lokobe Reserve shelter chameleons, geckos and frogs. The capital, known as Hell-Ville, has French colonial buildings and a covered market. Lemuria Land is home to a variety of lemurs, plus reptiles. Also in the park is a 19th-century distillery still used to extract essential oils from the native ylang-ylang tree.
Hotel Le Grand Bleu**
A small hotel at the top of a hill with the most amazing view. The service is incomparable and the food is homemade and from their own garden. But, the best thing about this hotel is the owners. Celine and Jacque, a French couple, has devoted their lives to Nosy Be and the small hotel, and this engagement is visible in all details of the service, entertainment, excursions, food and architecture. If you visit Nosy Be it is a must to stay at Le Grand Bleu and discover its unique personality. ?
Hotel L’Heure Bleu****
Beautiful hotel located at Ambatoloaka beach. We were so fortunate to stay in a seaside bungalow, which is just a picture-perfect. The hotel is incredibly beautiful and has the sweetest staff and delicious food. It is ideal for romantic getaways or honeymoons. However, one complaint is that Ambatoloaka is a village known for its nightlife and parties, and unfortunately, this can be very noisy for the hotel guests.
Nosy Sakatia – Snorkeling with Green Turtles
An unbelievable experience. The excursion starts at Ambataloaka beach were you sail to Sakatia island with a motorboat. The water is 27 degrees Celsius and you are guaranteed to see the enormous turtles. After the snorkeling, you enjoy a lunch prepared of the locals at the beautiful island and then sail back to Ambataloaka beach. Everything is well organized by a local guide in cooperation with the excursion bureaus.
There is one and a half hour of motor sailing from Ambataloaka Beach to Nosy Iranja, but it is so worth it. The little bounty island is awarded as one of the world’s top 10 most beautiful islands. After enjoying the beautiful nature and a taking a walk in the local village, the locals will prepare lunch for you. After lunch you return to Ambataloaka beach.
We actually discovered this island accidentally on a fishing trip with some locals. We arranged the trip the day before with some Malagasy we met, and the planned the whole day for us. They picked us up in the morning in a car, drove us to Andilanna Beach, where a motorboat was ready to take us fishing. After an hour on the boat, we sailed past Nosy Fanhy while fishing and asked if we could make a quick stop at the sacred island. The island consists of nothing but corrals, a couple of trees and turquoise water, beautiful!
The excursion starts at Ambataloaka beach were you sail to Nosy Komba Island with a motorboat. Nosy Komba offers a nature reserve, where you can see and touch lemurs, land-turtles, snakes, chameleons, vanilla plants, ylang-ylang, and so on. A very entertaining day, which also includes lunch and a walk in the local village. The boat ride is about 30 mins forth and back.
10 mins away from Nosy Komba lays the island Nosy Tanikly. If you like snorkeling this tour is ideal for you. The water is so clear and warm that you can stay in there for hours. The corals and fish are compareable with Great Barrier Reef in Australia, and it is also possible to see sea turtles, rays, and zebra sharks. Lunch is also included in this daytrip.
Another very exiting excursion is to the nature reserve of Le Kobé. The reserve is located in the north of Nosy Be, and you get there by driving and cannoning in a traditional Malagasy canoe. The nature reserve is a very real and impenetrable jungle, so it is a good idea to make sure that you have a local guide with you. A good tip is to wear long trousers, tops, and good walking shoes since there is mosquitos and spiders everywhere. In the jungle you see lemurs, spiders, snakes, rare frogs and tiny chameleons etc. etc. Ideal for pretentious and amazed photographers and animal lovers.
Exiting and funny quadbike excursion from hotel Le Grand Bleu to Mont Passot in the centre of Nosy Be. This tour is a must! You drive through all kinds of off-road terrain; fields, jungle, dustroads, beaches, while getting a good presentation of the culture from Jacque, the owner of Le Grand Bleu. When you reach the top of Mont Passot you will be blown away by the most beautiful view in the world. Be sure to visit Le Grand Bleu for this unique experience.
Vaccines: – Hepatites A – Hepatites B – Tetanus – Yellow Fever – Typhoid
Visa: It’s very important to apply for a visa before your departure to Madagascar. It takes approx. 1 week for the consulate at Frederiksberg in Copenhagen to prepare the Visa for you. You can download the form at this link: http://www.madagaskar.dk/doc/visum.pdf
*NB* It’s important to make 2 copies per person including pictures.
Currency: Remember to bring cash to Madagascar. It’s impossible to find an ATM and if you find one, they might not work. Most often the EURO has approved but more local places they might only accept their local currency AriAry.
3500 AriAry = 1 Euro = 7,5 DKK
Gifts: Madagascar is the 14th poorest country in the world. Therefore all gifts are highly appreciated. If possible bring stuff like: – Toothbrush/Toothpaste – Clothing – Glasses – Balls – Pencils
Flight & Accommodation Flight: Often it is possible to fly directly from Milan to Nosy Be with the airline company “Meridiana”. The flight is approx. 10 hours outbound and 14 hours homebound(the route home is through Mauritius). The prices variates between 400-2000 euros, depending on the departure date, so pay attention when you are searching for flights! They serve 1-3 meals during your flight, depending on the hours.
Transfer: It’s important to arrange a transfer with your hotel. If it’s your 1st time in a 3. world country you might get a culture-shock when you arrive at the airport, and therefore it’s nice to have a person waiting for you with a sign. The price is between 20-30 euros, one-way per person depending on the location of your hotel.
Language: The primary spoken language is Malagasy and French, so it is an advantage to know a little French. If not, you will manage fine with English or Italian.
Food and Drinks: The most common food served is fresh seafood and organic vegetables. They do also serve Zebu meat (big bulls). The Malagasies love their THB (Three Horses Beer) and their local rum with heaps of different flavors. All alcohol is very cheap. 1 beer = 1 euro
Valuta: The used valutas are Euro and their local Ariary. It’s a good idea to bring cash to Nosy Since, since there are only about two ATM’s in Nosy Be, in Ambatoloka and Hell-Ville. (give some money to the person in front of the ATM if you want to withdraw money)