The history of of Nosy-Be island

The history of Nosy Be dates back to the beginning of the arrival of Arabs on the island in the 900s. At this time a city called Mahilaka was created which created the first trading post of the island. These first inhabitants lived on the export of copal, iron, chlorite, rock crystal, gold and slaves, a maritime connection with a large part of the countries of the Indian Ocean.
The trading post of Mahilaka was erected by Ambanoro (also known under the name of Marodoka) in the 1100s. The latter became the commercial centre of the island in 1400. The city was mainly populated by Indians and Antalaotra. This large commercial port has now become a historic site, now called "Ghost Village". Other sites also trace the passage of Arabs and Indians on the island such as the Indian Cemetery, or the first mosque.
In 1650, English people tried to colonise Nosy Be. In 1842, the French seized the island and named it "Nossi-Be" or "The Pearl of the Indian Ocean". In 1920, the island saw the arrival of a tree of Asia origin called "Ylang Ylang" which revolutionised the agricultural production of Nosy Be. Indeed, the island quickly became a major oil producer Ylang Ylang which earned it the nickname of "perfume island".
At the end of the colonisation, Nosy Be was returned to Madagascar. Apart from its cultural and historical riches, the island is now a paradise place coveted by tourists, a dream destination which is also sublimated by the beauty of its landscapes, the diversity of its fauna and flora, the warmth of its population and the splendour of its beaches.
 This article was featured in Prime Magazine February 2018

Useful Information

When to go

The beautiful weather reigns in Nosy be for nine months of the year. Its tropical climate brings rains from December to February. However, it is more appropriate to schedule a trip between March and November.

How to get there

Nosy Be is served daily by a flight departing from Antananarivo. The route also offers a scenic spectacle from the capital. It is up to you to choose the most preferable.

Where to stay

There are many hotels in Nosy Be. Be it Blue Hour, Vanila Hotel & Spa, Anjiamarango Beach Resort, Ravintsara Wellness Hotel, Danae Beach or Ocean Beach Sakatia, these are all idyllic hotels that will liven up your stay in paradise.

Where to eat

At the Clair de Lune restaurant run by a Michelin starred chef. Otherwise, The Pily Pily Restaurant offers Italian and international cuisine with seafood and fish, also offering wonderful views. To discover the local cuisine, we chose "Chez Loulou", a restaurant ideally located near Andilana.

What to see

We suggest you discover the historical monuments of the city: the port, the Russian monument of Hell-Ville, the remains of Ambanoro, the ghost village, the Indian cemetery and why not the market, where all kinds of cultures intermingle.