If you ever travel to Madagascar, chances are, you’re there to see lemurs and the famous Avenue of the Baobabs. Near the famous Avenue of the Baobabs is the Kirindy Reserve located in the Kirindy Mitea National Park.
Travelling from the Avenue of the Baobabs to the Kirindy Reserve
We woke up early during our stay in Morondova so we can go see the sunrise at the Avenue of the Baobabs then head our way towards Kirindy Reserve.
The journey from the Avenue of the Baobabs to the Kirindy reserve was somewhat lengthy. It probably took us about 2-3 hours to reach the national park because of terrible driving conditions. We were literally driving on muddy roads where your tires can easily get stuck.
As we were driving, we saw numerous vehicles struggle to get through the mud. We even saw some tourist in small cars and wondered how they can possibly get through these horrible driving conditions without a 4W drive vehicle.
Flooded potholes were everywhere and it’s in these moments that you appreciate having a local driver take you around because they understand how to navigate in such terrible driving conditions.
Arriving in the Kirindy Reserve
After a long and difficult drive, we finally made it to the Kirindy Reserve. We didn’t have that much time to wait around. As soon as we arrived, the local guide quickly grabbed us because a hard to spot wildlife was present nearby,
To our amazement, the Lemur’s only predator, the Fossa, was wandering around the reserve’s premises. We walked closed by and took pictures. The guide was a bit paranoid because apparently, the Fossa is quite aggressive and will attack humans. They made sure we didn’t get too close to prevent any possible attacks on us.
We actually saw two Fossa’s because its their mating season and there was a pair of them hanging out in one of the huts.
After taking some pictures and observing these creatures that looks to be a mix between a cat and a dog, the local guide took us into the forest.
Exploring the Kirindy Reserve
One thing we noticed right away is that the vegetation here in the Kirindy Reserve looks very different from the ones we saw in the east side of Madagascar. In Andasibe National Park, the lemur safari that we did was deep in a lush forest.Here, the climate definitely felt dryer instead of being humid like in the east side of Madagascar.
There was also many Baobab trees present with some having limbs that looks like the male anatomy (our guide was very eager to show us these ones).
Wildlife spotting in the Kirindy Reserve
During our exploration of the Kirindy Reserve, we mainly spotted brown lemurs which we’ve seen plenty back in the Vakona Forest Reserve in eastern Madagascar.
We also saw the hard to spot the Narrow Straight Mongoose. A small group of them was wandering around and we got a chance to follow them for a bit and take videos and pictures of them. These little squirrel looking animals were very quick and before long, they were out of our sight.
We definitely got very lucky in all the safari’s we’ve done because we managed to see many wildlife that are rare and hard to spot.
However, the Kirindy Reserve is actually best explored at night. Apparently, most of the lemurs that reside here are nocturnal so if we want to see them, we needed to come after dark.
So if you plan on coming here, it’s probably best to come here in the evening when the nocturnal wildlife comes out for easy viewing.
Mischievous local guides
After the safari was over, we gave our guide tip of 10,000 Ariary for our entire group. He looked very happy. So happy that he decided to show us a bunch of local statues that were sexual in nature to his great amusement.
The long drive back to Antsirabe
After spending about 90 minutes in the Kirindy Reserve, we had to leave right away because we have a long drive from the reserve going all the way back to Antsirabe. The drive would take about 10 hours to complete.
Our driver was very insistent that we get going right away. He said that the roads we were driving on is not safe at night. Apparently, car jacking is very common the moment it gets dark so it’s very important that we reached Antsirabe as fast as possible to ensure our safety.
After doing some research online, he was right. The western part of Madagascar is known to have a lot of car jacking.
Despite our driver being dead exhausted, he managed to get us back to Antsirabe safely a little after 7pm at night. It was a long journey and our adventure in Madagascar is quickly coming to an end. There’s just one more painful adventure left before Madagascar will let us leave for good.