I would like to thank the whole JENMAN team for voting me as the “Guide of the Year” in 2012! The prize for this was an amazing round trip for two from South Africa to Madagascar. I took the opportunity to use it as a honeymoon trip as I recently got married towards the end of 2012!
The trip to Madagascar was very special for me and my wife, the prize for the guide of the year award became a great opportunity to use this trip for our honeymoon which was very fitting due to the natural beauty of Madagascar along with its flora and fauna. Also, having been a guide for the past few years it was a different experience for me to be the guest for once on our trip instead of guiding it. In addition to this, and Snodia (my wife), were both setting foot on the shores of Madagascar for the very first time. We were wrapped up in anxiety and curiosity to explore this new territory.
Personally, with my guiding background, my main curiosity was to see how different the tourist attractions, infrastructure facilities, people &culture, as well as flora and fauna were different from what we had in the Southern African countries which I had extensively toured through over the past several years.
From up above aboard the new Air Madagascar Airbus from Johannesburg to Antananarivo, as well as in a smaller plane from Antananarivo to Nosy Be, we could see that the island was densely vegetated as evidenced by the numerous mountains and hills punctuated by vivid red soil gaps from the landslides, probably created from the past rainy season as well as the tropical cyclones. The eye-capturing lush green dense vegetation left us wondering what kind of wildlife and animals could be found down below us and for sure it did not take much time to discover the wealth of Madagascar’s abundant wildlife as we had a great time interacting with the various species of Lemurs. We saw tortoises, lizards, chameleons, crocodiles, snakes, various bird species and an amazing variety of sea life.
The crystal clear warm ocean waters were another attraction in addition to the lovely beaches on the various islands surrounding Nosy Be, which made our trip so fantastic as we could go swimming, snorkelling, or simply splashing around in the water if not then relaxing by the beach was yet another energising experience, which was very fitting to our honeymoon trip.
More surprises were in store as an upgrade to the honeymoon suite at the beautiful Vanilla hotel made our stay even more special. The very friendly and welcoming Sakatia Lodge where Josef, Jacques and their whole team delivered par excellent service… that will be difficult to surpass. The wide range of local and foreign dishes on the menus in the restaurants in Madagascar were also something to write home about and all this contributed to making this the perfect and most romantic honeymoon.
All in all, this was a fantastic and lovely honeymoon trip for us, all as a result of very hospitable people, beautiful country and the amazing accommodation we stayed at. We fell in love with the country such that we would surely like to go back again and explore the other areas of attraction in Madagascar.
– Thomas (Operations Manager, Zimbabwe)