With 97% of Madagascar Island Safaris workforce employed locally and a host of support services – including medical care, emergency transport and nutritional natal supplements – provided to neighbouring communities, the operation is understandably well supported by the local villagers.

The company also fundraised and built a school in nearby Bafortika. All accommodation (they have three rustic camps) and boats were also built on site, under local supervision, with materials sourced from nearby Nosy Be further adding to the buy-in from locals. The end result is a top quality, low-impact and low-consumption island experience that’s perfect for eco-minded tourists.

In recognition of its community focus and extremely light footprint, Madagascar Island Safaris has been included as one of David Bristow and Colin Bell’s top 50 sustainable safari operations in their magnificent coffee table book: Africa’s Finest. This important book is a leading resource in distinguishing truly sustainable safari operations from the host of green-washers and eco-pirates that pervade the African safari lodge industry. If you’d like to get hold of a copy of the book then you can order it here.

By Stephen Cunliffe
South Africa ZA

Stephen is a travel writer and avid conservationist whose work appears in prestigious magazines such as Africa Geographic and Travel Africa.

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