NOSY VARIKA - An enchanted oasis

 
The impression of finding yourself at the ends of the earth, nestling in the midst of exceptional enchanting scenery. Nosy Varika is the ideal place for finding serenity and inner peace. The subtropical vegetation remains one of Madagascar’s most varied environments.
 
Two main types of vegetation can be noted. In places, it is Savannah grassland, while in others it is meadowland and low forest. Endless stretches of luxurious vegetation can be found here, with forests, bamboo, palms, ferns, pandanus, raffia, giant taro, aquatic plants and Angraecum or comet orchid (a rare species growing in Madagascar) as the predominant species of fauna.
 
Nosy Varika is an absolutely charming enclave on the east coast of Madagascar, 115 km from Mananjary. It was built on the Sakaleona River, surrounded by the freshwater channels of the Pangalanes Canal. It used to be called ‘l’ile aux Makis’ (lemur island), but without there being any lemurs! It is actually inhabited by extremely friendly human beings: a population totally dependent on what mother Nature has to offer. Agriculture, fishing and crops provide subsistence for the inhabitants. Rice, tropical fruits, food crops and seafood ensure self-sufficiency for the population, which has developed an essential element of the society: sharing. A stay on Nosy Varika is a step back in time, to a primitive but extremely enriching way of life, far from the cares of our urban society.
 
This article was featured in Prime Magazine January 2019

Useful Information

When to go

Nosy Varika has an equatorial climate with a lot of rainfall, to the extent that even in dry periods, there can be showers. However with the average temperature being 24.1°C, the weather is often sunny, particularly between June and November.

How to get there

Nosy Varika cannot be reached directly by road. The road is practicable from the capital as far as Mahanoro. From Mahanoro, it is best to take the ferry.

Where to stay

The only accommodation in Nosy Varika is ‘La Petite Oasis’, ideal for short stays. Around Mananjary, visitors can stay either at the ‘Vahiny Lodge’ or at ‘Le Jardin de la Mer’.

Where to eat

Experience the unique village atmosphere, tasting dishes prepared with love using exclusively local products in the little snack bars of Nosy Varika. The restaurants of the ‘Vahiny Lodge’ and ‘Le Jardin de la Mer’ serve a more refined cuisine.

What to see

Nosy Varika itself offers a wealth of undisputed beauty. The Pangalanes Canal provides scenes of daily life taking place in communion with a natural environment steeped in legends and beliefs. Along the way, you can stop off for a picnic in the village of Ampandomana, before visiting Jean Laborde’s anchor at Mahela. 100 km to the west of Nosy Varika, a must is the waterfall of Sakaleona, the highest in Madagascar.