Tsingy de Bemaraha

Useful Information

Location: From Morondava 150 km to the north.
Open: APR to NOV (dry season). Big Tsingy: JUN to OCT. [2013]
Fee: One Day Ar 25,000, Two Days Ar 37,000. Guide fees depend on the chosen route. Day trips by tour operators include all fees. [2010]
Classification: KarstStone Forest
Light: bring torch for caves
Guided tours: self guided
Photography: allowed
Accessibility: not accessible, except outlook
Address: Madagascar National Parks Mahajanga, 14 Rue Philibert Tsiranana, Mahajanga, Madagascar, Tel/Fax: +261-20-6222656, GSM: +261-32-5234900, +261-33-0986656 E-mail: contact E-mail: contact
Parc National Bemaraha, BP 7 – 406 Antsalova
Ravelomanantsoa Hery Lala, Directeur du Parc, Tel: +261-34-4940130. E-mail: contact E-mail: contact
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.


1990 inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.


Tsingy de Bemaraha, Madagascar. Public Domain.

The Tsingy de Bemaraha is a karst area with extraordinary and weird karren formations, the area is also called the stone forest. There are actually two areas with those limestone pillars named the Great Tsingy and the Little Tsingy. There are two different parks protecting this area, the Tsingy de Bemaraha National Park and the Tsingy de Bemaraha Strict Nature Reserve. The site is also on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

The word tsingy is an indigenous Malagasy term which means where one cannot walk barefoot. It is a common term for such karst badlands, and so it has become a synonym for the extraordinary karren structures. The the area and in the east at the Bemaraha Cliffs which rise up to 400 m above the Manambolo River. In the south is the Manambolo Gorge with spectacular waterfalls. Beneath the geologic importance and the aesthetic value, the are is also of great bilogic importance. Caused by the barren rocks, there are various rare habitats which are the home of endemic plants and animals. Most spectacular are probably the 11 lemurs, but there are also 100 different birds and 45 reptiles and amphibians.

Various tour operators have started to off tours into the park. Typically there is a three night, two day schedule, arrriving on the first day and leaving on the fourth. The visits include the Big Tsingy, with hanging bridges and caves, the Petit Tsingy, and the Manambolo Gorge by canoe. The trails require surefootedness and tke between 3 and 6 hours across difficult terrain. The visit is not suitable if you cant walk that well, actually there are a few outlook platforms, but the geology and the animals are not visible from a single spot.

Tsingy de Bemaraha, Madagascar. Public Domain.