Toamasina & East

A unique travel experience planned by a destination expert

Toamasina (commonly known as Tamatave) is Madagascar’s second city, the site of the most important national seaport and with (all be they broken) rail-links to the capital, it is a busy coastal city with many economical activities. Being tropical, it is a hub for spices and tropical fruits, the famous lychees being exported to Europe every year. It is the jump-off point for south-bound trips down the Pangalanes Canal, or north-bound to the port that leads you to Sainte Marie Island, and for the most intrepid travellers, it is the departure point heading north on the treacherous National Highway 5 (RN5).
A haven of greenery, the east coast of Madagascar is full of exceptional sites for lovers of seaside and ecological tourism.
With its magnificent beaches, its natural reserves, its profusion of tropical fruits and the Pangalanes canal, the province of Toamasina is a destination particularly appreciated by nature lovers.
On the fringe of this coast is also the island of Sainte Marie, with her romantic history and the possibility of observing humpback whales up close.
When visiting the province of Toamasina from the city of Antananarivo, the first part of the discovery will be the road trip.
All along the national road N° 2, visitors will be able to marvel at the green landscapes, the fruit sellers, and the “trano falafa” – these small houses made with the stems of the traveller’s tree – which line the roads.
For road-trip enthusiasts, the national road is also the access path to many seaside villages, including Manambato, a coastal town with a paradisiacal setting with many comfortable hotels. Nature reserves are also present on the RN2, for unparalleled proximity to the lemurs of Madagascar A visit to the city of Toamasina is also recommended. Main port city of the country, Tamatave will enchant you with its dynamism and the many entertainment options it offers. Whether it’s a short trip in a rickshaw or tuk-tuk, tasting the famous local soup or exploring its local markets, exploring the city is a delight. The discovery of the east coast can also be done by waterway, in particular by taking the Pangalanes canal. Nestled in lush vegetation, this canal is located just a few meters from the Indian Ocean and allows you to discover the tiny fishing villages and, in many places still intact natural forest, that border it.

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