Andry, our nice driver for the first part of our trip
Arriving at the Palmarium, the beach was flooded
Leaving from Manambato with the boat to the island with the Palmarium
Our bungalow with views over the sea
Dance Show in the evening with the wifes and children of the hotels' employees.
The aye-ayes: The aye-aye (Daubentonia madagascariensis) is a long-fingered lemur, a strepsirrhine primate native to Madagascar that combines rodent-like teeth that perpetually grow and a special thin middle finger. It is the world's largest nocturnal primate. It is characterized by its unusual method of finding food: it taps on trees to find grubs, then gnaws holes in the wood using its forward-slanting incisors to create a small hole in which it inserts its narrow middle finger to pull the grubs out. This foraging method is called percussive foraging, and takes up 5–41% of foraging time. The only other animal species known to find food in this way is the striped possum. From an ecological point of view, the aye-aye fills the niche of a woodpecker, as it is capable of penetrating wood to extract the invertebrates within. (Wikipedia)
Close-up of the hand showing the elongated digits and the thinner third digit.
Friday 10 May 2019: Andasibe - Manambato - Palmarium/Akanin'ny Nofy: ±150 km (5 hours drive + 1 hour boat) -
Departure from our hotel at 8:00 to Manambato. Andry, our excellent driver and guide, had a hard time driving down the N2 behind lots of trucks, so we arrived at around 13:00 in Manambato where we took a boat (that was supposed to leave at 12:00) to the Palmarium at Akanin'ny Nofy. This is a beautiful place with lots of lemurs running around freely. First thing we had a delicious lunch outside on the terrasse. In the evening at 17:30 (then it starts to get dark very quickly) we went to the Aye-Aye Island. It was an amazing experience, these animals are so cute! After coming back we had a drink with Andry watching the folkloric show by the women and children of the hotel staff. We went to bed just before the generator was turned off (it went on in the morning at 5:00 to 9:00 and from 17:00 to 21:00 h).
Saturday 11 May 2019: Palmarium - wonderful weather
After a really good breakfast (much better than all the hotels we had so far), we went for a tour with a very nice guide, Mario (like my son, he loves to just sit in front of the television and watch football ;o). He showed us the native plants, a carnivore plant, a small snake and many lemurs -he even imitated the sound of the black and white lemur when they then start screaming!). We walked through staff village where we could see how people live here. After a light lunch, Volker and I walked alone to the view point where we could see the Indian Ocean and a big snake along some pineapple fields and other lush vegetation. In the evening Volker had dinner along with me not eating anything but drinking cinnamon tea and and rhum arrangé with coconut. Tomorrow we have to get up very early, so we paid our bill tonight (269.000 ariary*).
Sunday 12 May 2019: Palmarium - Antananarivo: ±250 km ( ) - very nice and sunny day
At 7:00 we left with the boat and arrived at 8:10 in Manambato. There we took the car and drove to Andasibe where we had lunch for the 3rd time and at 12:15 this time at the Marie Lodge (52.000 ariary*). No problem this time, almost no trucks on our way, so we got at at our hotel Le Chat'O (basic, with open toilet to the room :(
* 40.000 Aryari = ± 1 Euro