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Guest post: Madagascar – 7 useful resources to discover this wonderful island (not the movie)

September 1, 2009

This guest post was written by Hery Zo Rakotondramanana (@saveoursmile) who runs a blog called

When Matt Parsons asked me to guest post on his blog and talk about Madagascar while he enjoyed his honeymoon, I didn’t think twice and accepted it. Then came the moment of choosing the topic: a dilemma as there’s too much to cover. Shall I talk about the social media efforts Madagascar has to give as this blog is about travel and social media?

Shall I talk about Madagascar as a destination as Matt loves this country? Then, during a tweet-up with @acaciaAfrica, Matt asked for online ressources available for showcasing the Madagascar destination: I think that’s a good question to expand on for covering a major list of items.

Madagascar is a little paradise for professional photographers as wellas point-an-shoot photographers given the endemicity and variety of its flora and fauna, but also for the smile of its people as well as its specific daily life sceneries. A lot has been published about Madagascar but for finding photos you want to reuse, there’s no better place than a search for Creative commons madagascar photos.

If you want to showcase (or appreciate) professionally-shot collection of photos on Madagascar, then Pierre-Yves Babelon’s collection is worth a visit. You can also pay a visit to Rhett A. Butler’s photos.

For some fit-it-all (user-generated photos) about Madagascar, browse the following FlickR resources Madagascar tag or Madagascar FlickR group.

Videos are one of the best media to showcase a destination. And although a lot of professionally-edited videos have been made about Madagascar, it’s also interesting to browse through the user-generated ones (we’re in a social media area, aren’t we?). That’s the goal of, a community-feeded collection of any embeddable videos available online related to travelling to Madagascar.

I personally find interesting exchanges on the Madagascar tripadvisor
forum, even though it’s not the only place where Madagascar-interested people meet. Lonelyplanet’s Thorn tree forum is also a good place to ask for advice.

I’ll be more than happy to read on your comments any indication of other active forums about Madagascar

Interesting online places where Malagasy locals hang out
If you want to interact with Malagasy people (BTW people from Madagascar are called Malagasy, not Madagascans), feel free to stop by on the following malagasy-maintained blogs: Tahina’s madagascar, not the movieAriniaina’s Dago Tiako. Dago is a short name often used by Malagasy people to call Madagascar; Patrick’s blog – a tour guide blogging from the east coast of Madagascar; and – this is a shameless self-promotion.

Feel free to comment on those blog to encourage them posting more about this lovely island. Other Malagasy fellows/lovers are also active on twitter or on friendfeed.

Directory of Madagascar-related websites
For a not-always travel-related website directory, is a Malagasy-maintained directory that is worth a search.

Official websites
Then finally, it’s almost impossible to talk about online ressources about Madagascar without mentioning the following websites: the national tourism board of Madagascar and the Madagascar national park. This website also gives you a link to some specialized national parks or reserves’s websites.

Fit-it-all news – not always about Madagascar-travel/tourism
In order not to be perceived as one who only promotes his island, and to be quite transparent about what’s going on in Madagascar (yes, we are still under a political crisis that we expect to calm down soon), you can find real-time user-generated (and links to professionaly-edited news) by searching for the #madagascar hashtag on twitter. Go and check by yourself, or ask for more informations if need be.

As you can see, those are almost “independent” not always synchronized
initiatives that all aims to give you and any potential tourist a place to ask for informations about this wonderful island. This list can’t be exhaustive,you probably have other ressources you want to share, or experiences about Madagascar to tell. Feel free to bring in your findings on the comments section.

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