Blog about Underwater Life and Scuba Diving

Diving Holidays in Madagascar

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Located in the Indian Ocean off the eastern coast of Africa, Madagascar is the fourth largest island on our planet and a popular tourist destination that conjures up many visions of adventure and discovery. While fabulous unspoiled beaches, fascinating landscapes and lush evergreen rainforests that whoop and holler with diversity make Madagascar an eco-tourists’ utopia, life underwater off the Madagascan coast offers unique opportunities for divers looking for a rich and varied sea life.

The vivid multi-colored corals and majestic sea grass beds provide exclusive feeding grounds for an extraordinary array of unique reef fish, rays, sharks, dolphins, octopus and even sea turtles.  So head to Madagascar for a diving experience of a lifetime!

Here, in this truly picturesque getaway the infrastructure for divers is concentrated around three main points: the islands of Nosy Be in the northwest; Isle Sainte Marie in the east, and Tulear in the south.

Nosy Be

Many experienced divers say that the sea life found in Nosy Be is a complete ‘summary’ of the marine life. Here there is a large coral diversity and a wealth of marine life from all over the Indian Ocean. The sites between Nosy Be and Sakatia are ideal for novice divers because they are protected. On the outer reefs divers will find beautiful wall dives and often currents making for comfortable drift diving. Expect to encounter ‘pelagic’ and black tail sharks, as well as white tip reef sharks. The main dive site for corals near Nosy Be is the island of Nosy Tanikely; moreover, Nosy Be has also a set of interesting fishing boat wrecks.

Isle Sainte Marie

A 57 km-long island off Madagascar’s east coast, Sainte Marie is a picture-perfect tropical paradise of coconut palms, amazing beaches and bays protected from sharks by coral reefs. And it no wonder while the island offers an impressive and undisturbed diving extravaganza with a diversity of coralline formations, abundant tropical fish and pirate ships wrecks. The island is also famous for its whale watching; the channel between Sainte Marie and Madagascar is a hot spot for substantial groups of humpback whales migrating from the Antarctic to this wondrous breeding place.

South

Along this coastal area there is one of the biggest coral barriers in the world. Ifaty, 26 km to the north of Tulear, is one of the best south dive sites, where a major attraction is the white-tip and black-tip reef sharks, which are regularly seen at spring tide at Le Balcone. A highly recommended diving center in Tulear is L’Ancre Bleue at the Mangrove Hotel, organizing diving tours for both beginners and advanced divers.

When to go

The best diving season in Madagascar is between May and December, when the visibility is 20 to 30 meters, while during the rainy season (December through April) it can be reduced to nearer 15-20 meters.

Photo credits to 1,2,3


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