Overview – Nosy Mangabe SR

Philip Briggs
Expert
By Philip Briggs

Philip is a renowned Africa expert and author of many guidebooks to African destinations, including the Insight guide to Madagascar.

Philip is a renowned Africa expert and author of the Insight Guide to Madagascar.

Philip is the author of the Insight Guide to Madagascar.

Nosy Mangabe Special Reserve (Réserve Spéciale de Nosy Mangabe) is nowadays an idyllic wildlife destination. The island was once a refuge for pirates and later, a slave-trading center. It covers the largest island in Antongil Bay, which is known as a breeding site for several thousand humpback whales from July to September.

Best Time to Go August to November (Less rainfall)
High Season July, August and December (The park doesn't get busy)
Size 5km² / 2mi²
Altitude 0-332m / 0-1,089ft

Pros & Cons

  • Adventurous, off-the-beaten-track destination
  • Arguably the most beautiful park in Madagascar
  • Exciting hiking opportunities
  • Kayaking available
  • Primary forest
  • Expensive destination
  • Accessible by chartered boat or on foot only
  • Wet climate

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Wildlife

The island is famous for its population of introduced aye-aye, but these weird-looking lemurs are rarely seen since they are only active at night and night walks are no longer allowed. Two other introduced species you’re more likely to see are black-and-white ruffed lemur and white-fronted brown lemur. The tropical island is also a refuge for lots of chameleons, frogs, leaf-tailed geckos and snakes including the Madagascar tree boa.

Scenery

The special reserve covers the whole island with very little concessions made towards development. There are several well-maintained trails, including one to the summit, but otherwise, this is pristine nature at its best. Sandy beaches are fringed by dense rainforest, the canopy of which protects the island and its inhabitants from the piercing sun.

Weather & Climate

Nosy Mangabe’s tropical climate is wet and humid. There is a drier period from August to November. At this time, the average daytime temperature is 25°C/77°F, while nights cool down to about 16°C/61°F. The rest of the year is hot with an average temperature of 29°C/84°F. February to March is cyclone season and visiting during these months is not recommended.

Best Time to Visit

Rainfall is high throughout the year, but the drier spell from September to November offers the best hiking conditions. July to the end of September is a special time, as this is when humpback whales come to the bay to have their young. Nosy Mangabe is known for its large numbers of amphibians and reptiles and they are most active from September to February.

Want to Visit Nosy Mangabe SR?

Nosy Mangabe SR Safari Reviews

  • Expert Rating
    0.0/5
    0 Reviews
  • Wildlife
  • Scenery
  • Bush Vibe
  • Birding
  • User Rating
    0.0/5
    0 Reviews
  • Wildlife
  • Scenery
  • Bush Vibe
  • Birding