Madagascar, Andasibe, September 13-14
After a full day of flying we arrived late in Antananarivo, the capital of Madagascar. Tana is not the most picturesque city of them all and we happily left the next morning with Monsieur Mamy, our driver for the first week. Andasibe is our first destination to look for lemurs. And some other wildlife but mainly, LEMURS! The park is a mid-altitude rainforest and home of the indri, Madagascar’s largest lemur. It’s wail is a mixture between a ship siren and a kid dropping his ice cream. We have an afternoon walk on our first day and then a early morning to lunch one on the second day. Beside the indri we get to see common brown lemurs, golden sifakas and woolly lemurs. During our night hike along the road (the park closes at night), we see grey mouse lemurs, a giant leaf-tail gecko and the tiniest short-nosed chameleon. The park guides have prerecorded lemur calls on their phones which helps to find them faster in the dense forest. And even better, you can use it to scare tourists by getting the indris to start wailing with your tourists right next to them. It’s ear splitting loud!
In the afternoon of our second day we visit lemur island. It’s practically a petting zoo for lemurs. Their lemurs live freely on an island which they can’t leave as they don’t like to swim. Neither do their predators, so it’s a win-win situation for the lemurs and us. On the island they have more common brown lemurs, black & white ruffed lemurs and grey bamboo lemurs. All of them love bananas and they don’t mind climbing all over you to get them. Lemurs have very soft and surprisingly soft paws, are as fluffy as expected and politely lick your palm clean after taking the banana piece.