We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Calm place.” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Ambohimanga

Ambohimanga
23 km north of Antananarivo, Antananarivo, Madagascar
Improve this listing
Type: Historic Sites, Flea/ Street Markets, Cultural
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: The former royal capital and its palace on a steep hill offer stunning views overlooking rice terraces.
Valga, Estonia
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
4 attraction reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
“Calm place.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 1, 2014

We hired a car to get there and back. Looking around this royal settlement takes about 1,5 - 2 hours. We took a guide who spoke very good English. Also he had good knowledge of history and Madagascar. Inside the Kings house you get real feeling of simplicity of malagasy life. Behind the buildings is nice park and terrific view from cliff. Some chameleons, butterflies and birds. Near entrance you can buy refreshing drinks. Recommended.

Visited November 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

105 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    42
    35
    23
    4
    1
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Korean first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
San Francisco
Top Contributor
127 reviews 127 reviews
24 attraction reviews
Reviews in 84 cities Reviews in 84 cities
79 helpful votes 79 helpful votes
“Gives good historical perspective”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 20, 2013

A visit to the old capital of Ambohimanga is maybe the best thing to do if you have a day in Tana. As it is approximately 20 km NE of Tana, the operation takes half a day (but a taxi ride out and in again is cheap). A local guide will provide good information about the early days of Madagascar prior to 20th century and insight into the various tribes, dialects and cultural changes that have occurred in Madagascar. The palace complex itself is also interesting and photogenic.

Visited September 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Friday Harbor, Washington
Top Contributor
285 reviews 285 reviews
49 attraction reviews
Reviews in 159 cities Reviews in 159 cities
207 helpful votes 207 helpful votes
“Interesting HillTop Palace”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 11, 2013

This world heritage site is relatively small and can be visited in a half hour. There are some interesting old style buildings and some interesting artic=facts that used to belong to the Royals. the architecture is probably the most interesting aspect along with the commanding views.

Visited September 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
South East England
Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
12 attraction reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
“Well worth the effort of getting there - excellent, knowledgeable guides”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 8, 2013

We used public transport, easy enough if you have language skills and a good sense of adventure, but you can easily take a guide and taxi from Tana. Either way, the journey provides a charming view of rural life outside the "bustling" capital. If you're using public transport (taxi-brousse), there's a bit of walk up the hill to the Rova, but, of course, that means you get fabulous views once you're there. We engaged a guide provided by Ambohimanga and she was absolutely superb, providing a really interesting insight into life in the palace. Her English was pretty good too! Public transport back is dead easy - just walk down the hill and there'll probably be one waiting to take you and a dozen school kids back to town. Highly recommended if you have time to make the journey.

Visited June 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sequim, WA
Top Contributor
112 reviews 112 reviews
32 attraction reviews
Reviews in 53 cities Reviews in 53 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
“Definately worth a day trip”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 24, 2013

The trip out there is half the experience. Scenes of village and rural life are abundant.

The rova at Ambohimanga is only interesting if you have read some of the history or you have a guide to explain it to you. I would recommend a guide who also speaks Malagasy. The guide can ask questions to the caretakers who can greatly enrich your experience.

There is an old gentleman who sell beautiful musical bamboo instruments at wonderful prices on the steps up to the rova. Recommended.

Visited August 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Ambohimanga also viewed

Antananarivo, Antananarivo Province
Antananarivo, Antananarivo Province
 
Antananarivo, Antananarivo Province
Antananarivo, Antananarivo Province
 

Been to Ambohimanga? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage Ambohimanga, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.