The economic activity of the city of Ambatondrazaka revolves around rice. It is the largest area of rice plains in Tamatave province. The population lives mainly from agriculture, including the collection and export of products to the capital. The landscape could be described schematically as expanses of rice paddies populated with zebus. 158 kilometers of secondary road separate Ambatondrazaka from the town of Moramanga through which eucalyptus forests succeed to deforested areas. In this corner of Lake Aloatra, hiking is the activity par excellence to discover this region.
A trek on the smugglers' road
To discover the natural beauty of this east coast of the island, a trek of three to six days on the smugglers' road is a must. The road connecting Lake Alaotra and the small village of Anjahambe was once used to smuggle contraband products from neighboring islands such as Reunion or Mauritius. Accompanied by a guide, follow the route through a vast intact rain forest, along a river to meet the small villages of the mountains. An unequaled hike will make you discover the life of these small villagers living essentially of the ground and the hunting.
In the direction of Lake Alaotra
Lake Alaotra is the largest lake in Madagascar. Located about twenty kilometers north of Ambatondraza, the lake currently covers 22,000 hectares. Its red coloration comes from its muddy bottom due to erosion caused by excessive deforestation. The lake is very shallow, about two meters. The region is home to more than 70 species of aquatic and terrestrial birds. This little corner of paradise is surrounded by different tropical forests, mountains and also very hospitable villages. At sunset, the view of the lake is impressive.