Masoala National Park

Masoala National Park, Maroantsetra: Address, Phone Number, Masoala National Park Reviews: 5/5

Masoala National Park
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5 National Road, Maroantsetra 512 Madagascar
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96 reviews
Very good

Antananarivo Province, Madagascar68 contributions
Masoala, you will enjoy it for sure!
Aug 2021
Masoala National Park is accessible from Maroantsetra and from Antalaha. The most practical way is from Maroantsetra and stay in the bay of Antongil where the sea is calmer.

Think about travelling by high lifted 4x4 from Antananarivo to Maroantsetra if you are looking for very unique adventure that you should do once in your lifetime. From Soanierana Ivongo to Maroantsetra, you will travel along an extremely difficult road with maximum speed of 100Km in one day. Sometimes, depending to the season, you will do only 50Km in one day.

Most of people opt for easy way : transfer by boat from Maroantsetra to Masoala with a visit of one-two days in Masoala. Then, back to Maroantsetra by boat with stop in Nosy Mangabe.

It is possible to do a full tour trek of Masoala Peninsula : it can starts from Maroantsetra but we recommend to reach Ambanizana by boat and walk from there.

The second trek across Masoala is a three days trek from Maroantsetra to Antalaha. This is shorter but there is a smaller chance to see animals due to the deforestation. Some guides are able to connect the two itineraries depending to your length of stay. It requires a good knowledge of the trail to be negotiated at the national park with the guide before your departure

Remember that Masoala is much better than Andasibe National Park. You will enjoy much more wildlife and it is different experience too!
Written October 3, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

2 contributions
Great experience at Masoala National Park
Feb 2020
During our trip to Madagascar last year, my husband and I visited some of the National Parks. Although it is off-the-beaten-track (or maybe exactly for that reason), we decided to go to Masoala, a patch of primary forest with amazing biodiversity and very few tourists. We contacted Lauriot from Visit Masoala, who organised the tour for us with professionalism and kindness. They have multitude of options (including hikes, etc.) and they all seem to be interesting but due to our schedule, we chose to stay 3 nights in Masoala and 1 night in Nosy Mangabe. It was one of our best experiences in the trip. In Masoala our lodge was just a couple of meters away from a beach that belonged to the lodge. You could listen to the waves from our room, it was mind blowing. We did day excursions and saw lots of animals thanks to our very knowledgeable guide. There was also time for relaxing and to swim and snorkel. Food was delicious. Nosy Mangabe is a tiny island covered by primary forests. The accommodation is very basic (tent) but they provide everything you need, so it is really easy.

So, if you want to visit Madagascar, Masoala is one of the must see places and you can contact Lauriot on if you need help with the organisation.
Written February 18, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

1 contribution
Masoala with Elysee
Aug 2019
Masoala is a great place to visit if you want real wilderness and amazing wildlife especially with the right local guides to share the knowledge of the native flora and fauna and i was lucky enough to find Elysee through this site who was highly recommended. I also highly recommend Elysee as i am quite used to guides from different places around the world being ok at best at the job of finding and identifying wildlife to people and explaining in a simple and effective manner the species, habits, habitats of them but Elysee was great at all of this never being without an answer to what bird is that or what season does something do something etc. and finding signs like fallen fruits to try find the location of different animals like aye aye and others. Elysee can also help to arrange or accompany you throughout the entire island should you wish too. We went to a few different locations in Madagascar but Masoala with Elysee is a true highlight of my travelling memory bank.
Written January 18, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Canterbury, UK137 contributions
Depends a lot on your guided
Dec 2019 • Couples
We visited 2 locations in the Masoala park and our experience couldn’t have been more different. In one case, although we were promised small groups, all of these coalesced and we were pretty much frog marched around an area. Our guide did not engage at all, in fact marched ahead of us and told as nothing, pointed nothing out, and as a result we felt it was a disappointing visit. The second location could not have been more different. Small groups kept well apart, guide showing us lots of interesting things and making a real effort to help us see tricky to find chameleons. Really good experience.
How do you manage to get assigned to a good guide - no idea unfortunately.
Written January 10, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

5 contributions
1 week in the Masoala rainforst
Nov 2019
We were in Madagascar last November. Among other things we spent a week in the Masoala rainforest. We hired our Guide Elysee thanks to his many good reviews. It was great! He not only learned us a lot about the flora and fauna, but was also very committed. In the evening we had very exciting discussions about politics, education, culture and other social topics. This allowed us to look at our stay in Madagascar from a different perspective. He fully responded to our wishes. He speaks English, French and even a little German. Every day he taught us a little Malagasy. Babousse and Paul were also in the team of Elysee, they took care of the catering. The food was very good. During 7 days there were practically no repetitions in the menu. The accommodation in the village was simple but very lovingly furnished and extremely clean. Elysee is working with a lodge run by Madagascans, so they support the village a bit. Dear Elysee, dear Babousse, dear Paul! We will never forget this beautiful week in the Masoala rainforest and thank you for this wonderful experience. With many kind regards, Katrin

Contact of the Guide:
Written December 11, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelling Zoologists
St. Petersburg, Russia34 contributions
Our visit to Masoala NP and other area reserves
Sep 2019
Our trip to the parks in Antongil bay we organized with the great help of a local guide - Emile Rafaralahy emilesrafara at . Emile has organized various tours in north-east Madagascar and it seems he knows everyone in the region :) thanks to his 15-years experience of guiding. Not a common thing among guides – he is ready for almost any duration of a walk (both day and night) - all depend on your wishes and, of course, park/forest rules and within the price agreed upon. He has deep
knowledge about where and when to look for a particular species of frogs, birds and mammals. Do not be surprised with his letters inside a word document - this is a result of using an internet cafe in Maroantsetra. We really enjoyed his style of walking through the forest quietly and slowly. Many of the younger guides of the tourist groups we met were too loud or too fast (or both) for full
immerse in nature and high-quality wildlife watching.

Maroantsetra town is not only a gateway to reserves in the area but also home to a Madagascar tomato frog - a terrific species inhabiting the town trashy streams (ask Emile to show the best place to look for).
During the walks with Emile in Masoala National Park, we had great views of greater dwarf lemur, Masoala sportive lemur, white-fronted brown lemur, red-ruffed lemur, ring-tailed mongoose and lowland streaked tenrec. In Nosy Mangabe, we saw black-and-white ruffed lemur, white-fronted brown lemur, brown mouse lemur. Madagascar flying foxes were also possible on the way to the island but this was cancelled because of a rough sea. Birding here is also great with various couas, vangas including bizarre helmet vanga! And of course, dozens of frog species, which are almost everywhere in the forest.
In beautiful Farankaraina Forest, we finally saw wild aye-aye, western grey bamboo lemur, white-fronted brown lemur, greater dwarf lemur, eastern woolly lemur (avahi), MacArthur's mouse lemur. Farankaraina actually exceed our expectations: with quite a small territory it has an impressive number of mammals (all of which, with maybe an exception of eastern woolly lemur, are guaranteed to see in two-three days of stay). The forest is undoubtedly a great place to see truly wild aye-ayes (note that so-called Aye-aye Island - is just a fraud with the animals taken from nature, which do not reproduce there and are used only for owners profit). In two nights we were lucky to see four (!) aye-ayes at the same tree at the same time. Albeit high in a Canarium tree these fantastic nocturnal lemurs were fully at open at some moments. Farankaraina seems to be a reliable place to see aye-ayes at least when Canarium trees are fruiting there. The boat trip from Maroantsetra town is actually very affordable. Non-expensive camping shelters and old but nice bungalows facing the sea are available. And the beach is beautiful for swimming what is much appreciated after jungle walks.
Written December 9, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Raleigh, NC11 contributions
A true adventure of a lifetime with Elysee!
Oct 2019
My partner and I visited Masoala National Park and Nosy Mangabe in October 2019, and it was the absolute highlight of our one month in Madagascar, large in part thanks to our excellent guide, Elysee (elyseeguide at yahoo dot fr). We considered the Cap Est trek but were very glad to instead do 5 days/4 nights with one of those nights in Nosy Mangabe. DO NOT fall into the trap of thinking Masoala Forest Lodge is the only accommodations at the park, nor is Nosy Mangabe the same. Nosy Mangabe is the only guaranteed way to see the leaf-tailed gecko and smallest chameleon (the size of your fingertip!), and it's more likely you will find an aye-aye given the smaller hectare size. And our guide Elysee hooked us up with the only eco-lodge right next to the park entrance, which is 100% run by and benefits the local fishing village. It was an absolute pleasure of a stay with food just as good as the other more expensive, European-run lodges. We also learned that the Cap Est trail would have only actually been 3 of the 9 days in the park itself. Having more time allowed us to see most everything in Madagascar's most dense, pristine rainforest, diving into waterholes, waiting out rainstorms, snorkeling by "secret island", spotting the red-draft lemurs and infinite other species in the true wild. I.e., this is not tourist-filled Andasibe with lemurs wearing tracking collars or Vakona Reserve lemur captives jumping on your head. Masoala is a real rainforest experience. We didn't run into a single other tourist in the park the entire time. Elysee was one of the few fluent English speakers we met in all of Madagascar, and his team provided truly 5-star eco-friendly service. He's extremely knowledgeable about the park and wildlife, and you can tell it is his true passion. He even kindly welcomed us into his family home and gave us a tour of Maroantsetra on our last night. Finally, do yourself a favor and book flights. We looked up the Melissa Express ferry and considered hiring drivers. Both are an absolute pain with no guarantee of making it to Maroantsetra. This is partly why the rainforest is so dense. It's hard and more expensive to get there, but it's SO worth it. Enjoy!
Written October 29, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Darja A
11 contributions
Incredible stay with Jean Emile
Oct 2019 • Couples
We (4 people) visited the masoala national park with our tour guide Jean Emile from 01.10.2019 until 05.10.2019. Our whole tour was organized by Emile in advance, according to our wishes. He was always available via whatsapp (+261324403928) and email ( We stayed 3 nights in a lodge in masoala and 1 night camping on nosy mangabe.
Emile arranged the transfer from the airport (maroansetra) by car to the harbour and the boat to our lodge in masoala. Everything went flawlessly.
Emiles' wife cooked for us the entire time.
At masoala national park we did several day and night treks in the jungle to spot many different kinds of animals (To name some we saw: Parson's Chameleon, red ruffed lemures, white headed maki, helmet vanga, kingfisher, leaftailed gecko and many other). We also spent one day at the marine park to go snorkeling and to enjoy the beautiful beaches.
After our 3 nights in masoala national park we visited nosy mangabe and stayed there over night camping. On our way to nosy mangabe we stopped at the small neighbor island to see the flying foxes. Our highlight at nosy mangabe was spotting the rare Aye Aye and the smallest chameleon on earth.
After our arrival back at maroansetra, emile took us on our last tour to see the city and the tomato frogs.

We had an awesome stay at masoala national park and would recommend Emile (fluent in german, english and french) to every visitor. He is a very experienced guide and talented at spotting rare animals.
Written October 5, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

8 contributions
Breathtaking scenery
Aug 2019
I did the walk from Cap Est to Maroantsetra through Masoala National Park. Although it was tough at times it was fantastic and I would definitely recommend. The views from the top of the hills were incredible and it was so interesting walking through the dense jungle and seeing how local life works in the villages. My guide Jean-Emile was amazing and I would thoroughly recommend him. +261324403928
Written October 4, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Florence, Italy21 contributions
It’s a paradise !
Sep 2019 • Couples
Masoala National Park is wonderful: beautiful beaches, wildlife and untouched rainforest scenery. We very much enjoyed our staying at the park and we had an amazing tour-guide named Velomasy Elysée ( )
He organized everything perfectly.
Written October 3, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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