Madagascar Africa: Simply Splendid

Southern Africa | 0 Comments | January 3, 2011 at 9:53 am



Madagascar is located in Africa’s southeast coast. Madagascar Africa ranks at fourth position when it comes to world’s largest islands. The Mozambique Channel separates the island from the coast of Africa. The distance between the mainland and island is shortest at 400 km.

Madagascar Africa is predominantly comprised of crystalline rocks. It is often regarded as a plateau. It rises sharply on the east coast’s slender plain. It descends on the stretch of sedimentary rocks that lie by the west coast. There are several indentations in the high plateau. It is home to steep gorges and waterfalls. The plateau has witnessed numerous volcanic eruptions. Ankaratra and Andringingtra are two primary volcanic regions.


There is a dearth of anchorages on the eastern coast. Besides the coral beaches, there is a continuous stretch of lagoons, especially in Foulpointe and Farafrandana. Several channels link with these to form a waterway known as Pangalanes Canal. The majority of rivers in the islands flow toward the west.

Hollywood fripperies aside, Madagascar is beyond comparison. It is seldom regarded as a part of Africa. Hundreds of kilometers of sea separate Madagascar from Africa. The two are also separated by 165 million years of continuous evolution. Madagascar Africa is home to more than 70 species of lemur. One such species give out a cry sounding like a siren. The world’s largest chameleons are found here. It contains the last traces of the elephant bird, which is the largest bird that lived. Ifaty, located in Southern Madagascar, is home to wobbly and twisted ‘octopus’ trees. Avenue du Boabab, situated near Morondava, is home to baobabs in the shape of a bottle. Ranomafana is famous for its pitcher plant that is carnivorous in nature. This plant has more than 60 sub species. Due to these unique species, Madagascar Africa is regarded as a foremost conservation spot.


The inhabitants of Madagascar are equally intriguing. They arrived nearly 2,000 years back, primarily inhabiting the trade routes along the Indian Ocean. They survived by growing rice in the terraced paddies. Their language resembles those from Southeast Asia. Magic and taboo are crucial to their culture. The caves, animals, waterfalls, and other material objects are regarded as possessing supernatural properties. ‘Turning of the bones’ is a popular ceremony, where the inhabitants dance with ancestors, who have been dead for a long time. There is an abundance of brick houses with balconies that are carved.


Madagascar is often associated with pirates. There is also an abundance of ship wrecks on the island. The inhabitants are warm and hospitable.

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