Situated off the
southeast coast of Africa, Madagascar is the fourth largest island in the
world. It is separated from the coast of Africa by the Mozambique Channel, the
shortest distance between the island and the mainland is 400 km.
Madagascar consists mainly of a block of crystalline rocks. It is generally
described as a plateau, rising sharply from the narrow plain of the east coast
and descending in a series of steps to the strip of sedimentary rocks along the
west coast. The high plateau is much indented and, on the eastern edge, cut by
deep gorges and waterfalls. There are numerous volcanic outcrops that produce
heights over 6,000 ft (the highest point being Tsaratanan, at 9,450 ft) and two
former volcanic areas, Ankaratra and Andringingtra, which are over 8,500 ft.
The eastern coast is almost straight and has very few anchorages.
Behind its coral beaches there is an almost continuous line of lagoons from
Foulpointe to Farafrandana. These are linked by man-made channels to form an
inland waterway called the Pangalanes Canal. The island's major rivers flow
|The Africa Guide's recommended Book
& Comoros - (Lonely Planet - 2008) (amazon.com) - USA (amazon.co.uk) - Europe
Hike through forested canyons in
the Parc National de I'Isalo, where ring-tailed lemurs scamper in the trees
Catch a whiff of cloves, ylang-ylang and vanilla driving north of
Soanierana-Ivango Drift down the Tsiribihina Riverin a wooden pirogue, passing
cliffs carpeted with sleeping bats Gaze into the vast jaws of an insect-eating
plant in Parc National d'Andohahela
|The Africa Guide's recommended
||Madagascar Travel Map (Maps Worldwide)
Published by ITMB Publishing Ltd
specialise in areas that are interesting,
exotic and off the beaten track. In addition to the wealth of detail - many of
the maps are strong on the physical features of the various countries - there
is usually informative text included with the map, dealing with the history,
culture, etc. The maps are light, practical and should be invaluable for the
backpacker, traveller or tourist.