Île Sainte Marie

Île Sainte Marie

Île Sainte-Marie, is a very long and very thin strip of tropical beach and turquoise sea paradise in the heart of the Indian Ocean. The former pirate’s hideout is 7km wide and 58km in length – and between June and September, visited by humpback whales. Its soft beaches are lined with coconut palms, coral reefs for snorkelling and diving, inland waterfalls and basalt rock formations; an invitation for exploration.

Known locally as Nosy Boraha, the island also boasts forests with characteristic lemur species as well as sand dunes and mangroves. Fishing villages exhibit local tradition, complete with a pirate cemetery fulfilling one’s cultural curiosity! A variety of accommodation choices will satisfy a range of budget options. Most of the hotels are dotted on the coast south of Ambodifotatra. The north west of the island is more quiet but less accessible. The east coast is relatively rugged and, until recently, undeveloped, maintaining the natural authenticity of this treasure chest.

When to Travel to Île Sainte Marie

From late August to late November, Nosy Boraha experiences a period of reduced rainfall. During this time, the island enjoys a relative respite from heavy downpours, making it an appealing time for outdoor activities and exploration. This season is often preferred by those seeking sunny days and clear skies to fully appreciate the island’s natural beauty.

From December to March, the island enters a different phase as cyclone season takes hold. Cyclones can bring heavy rains, strong winds, and potential disruptions to travel plans. Travelers should exercise caution and stay updated on weather forecasts during this time. The island’s lush vegetation is replenished during these rains, resulting in even more verdant landscapes once the storms pass.

Ile Sainte Marie, Madagascar

Antanandava Waterfall

In the heart of Nosy Boraha’s lush interior, the Antanandava Waterfall stands as a hidden gem, shrouded by the verdant embrace of the rainforest. The sight and sound of the cascading waters provide a serene escape from the bustling coastal areas, where you can immerse yourself in nature’s tranquility. Hiking through the rainforest to reach the waterfall is an adventure in itself, allowing you to encounter the island’s unique flora and fauna.

South of the Island

Venturing southward, you’ll find the pristine Île aux Nattes and Ilôts aux Sables, two idyllic islets blessed with pristine coral reefs and frequented by graceful sea turtles. Snorkeling and diving in the crystal-clear waters surrounding these islands offer unparalleled opportunities to witness the vibrant marine life of the region, making it a must-visit destination for aquatic enthusiasts.

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