Clichés have a hard time in Nosy Be!

travel madagascar

Whether on the backpacker or simply in Facebook comments, I read punctually negative feedback on Nosy Be & Madagascar for points that make me bristle hair. Stop missing your vacation for details!

Nosy Be, it's not authentic

This one always makes me think of fack accounts that have never set foot in Nosy Be! Even without thinking outside the box, authenticity is at every street corner!

Bakchich airport nosybe
Nosy Be Airport

It starts from the moment you set foot in Nosy Be, even if it's not the best part 😉 

Only one track of 2000 m long and no big carriers in Nosy Be, not even treadmill for the rings. A wait in the hall without knowing why, in fact because the counter is not open! Not to mention the final note to the control, once it opens, who asks you a bakchich without even having opened your visa, it's not exotic? 😂

taxi nosy be
Taxi in Nosy Be

You still have to choose one of the taxis waiting for you outside. Not beautiful white or yellow taxis that we can see elsewhere but old cars more or less maintained, the least being able to see the road under your feet.

During the trip to the establishment of your choice, you will pass by a road battered through fields of ylang and sugar cane not to mention pretty views of Hell-city & Nosy Tanikely for example.

hell city nosybe
Hell-Ville, the capital of Nosy Be!

Hell-city, famous big city where everyone goes to change is a place that deserves a visit with its market, these tea sellers colas, its old port without forgetting some good restaurants but also many restaurants and bars totally unknown that I will introduce you in a future article 😉

Touk Touk, @Jean Charles Lavictoire
Old harbor Hell-city

And during your stay, if you come out of Ambatoloaka, you will see beaches with a few fruit sellers who tour the houses & hotels and will come without question to you, not to mention the canoes going to the beach. fishing and sinners on board.

Woman selling fruit on the beach
Woman selling fruit on the beach

All that we have seen so far, you will see in your stay. And if you leave the lambda activities that we will discuss below, you have something to discover. Some examples of day and / or half-day activities in Nosy Be, my favorite 😍

Visit of the sacred tree

More than a tree, it is a place to visit in the presence of its guide, Zeny Jacques, the keeper of the stories & traditions that will make you relive entire times

Lokobe Reserve

Lokobe Reserve

If Lokobe is not the most beautiful nor the largest protected natural reserve of Madagascar, for a first stay and / or first discovery of the Malagasy fauna, you will be delighted


Diving in Nosy Be

If the dive itself is not local, the spots offer a fauna & a beautiful marine flora, you can observe the usual fauna of the tropics but also dolphins, whale sharks and of course the humpback whales during the season . By the way, have you ever heard a whale song? 😍

Discovery of the interior of the land on horseback

Horseback riding in Nosy Be
Horseback riding inside Nosy Be

If you like to put your foot in the stirrup, without hesitation made the circuit of 2 days & 1 nights inland, you will be dazzled 😍

Day in Sakatia

One of my recent favorites, a private bay on Nosy Sakatia, ideal to spend an afternoon or a day with your feet in the sand

Nosy Be is over-touristy, there are too many people !!!

If you have seen the images so far, you have understood, it's just that you stay in a tourist channel proposed by travel agencies / guidebooks (backpacker, etc ...) that offers all the same excursions, I propose the authentic alternatives for each:

Excursion Nosy Komba & Nosy Tanikely in one day

garden vanila hotel nosy be
Nosy Komba

Nosy Komba is an island of 25 km² offering hiking from 2 to 8 hours with magnificent views, and a return to nature where you can find yourself alone. Except that this tour only offers the smallest tour that all other agencies offer so you end up at 2-3-4 boats on a single hike that goes through the main tourist village

Nosy Tanikely
Nosy Tanikely

Then, we take you to Nosy Tanikely, a local marine reserve with a beautiful lagoon but also a short hike to the lighthouse with 360 ° view through the small museum. So you will spend only 2-3 hours on an island as paradise, enough to be frustrated, especially since this island is small and everyone comes at the same time. The idea of the island sur-tourist comes mainly from this moment.

Excursion Nosy Iranja

nosy iranja

The day trip to Nosy Iranja, the second excursion that everyone does, I realized when I first came to STOP

1h30 of boat to go there, 1h30 to come back. And you spend there in the end just 4-5 hours knowing that everyone left Nosy Be at the same time. Indeed Nosy Iranja is overcrowded for 4 hours. And the rest of the time? nobody.

Lunch in Andilana

casa mofo nosy be

Renowned the most beautiful beach in Nosy Be, everyone goes directly to the restaurant by the sea, you find yourself in a restaurant 80 seats that serves 2 services a day with vendors & masseuses next door.

Sunset at Mont Passot

View from mont passot to nosy be

Everyone goes, I myself advised because the point of view is beautiful and shows concretely that Nosy Be is green and authentic with very few homes. The worry is that too many people are going at the same time and that we are left with heads in front of the sunset ...

Nosy Be, it's just prostitution!

I thought exactly the same thing coming to Nosy Be, but living on the spot we realize that there is a good part of intox. I see you coming, no I'm not trying to confuse you, read in full before judging 😉

Let's clarify things, yes you can find girls in Nosy Be, but it's not all girls on the island, only a few girls in a particular place, as in France you have Pigale, but also the forest of Sénart or the Bois de Boulogne 😉 Outside of this district and this beach, which includes all the places mentioned above, girls do not approach you unless you do not go there yourself.
You will be confronted only if you like going out at night, which can be understood! Indeed Ambatoloaka is also the place for good restaurants & nightclubs, so it's hard not to see it at one time or another of his stay, but nothing prevents you from simply saying '' no '' and enjoy of the evening, they are not sticky.

One last word on this point: There is no "Mac", no organization - cartel, no violence, no physical obligation and / or drugs that make them addicted. This is not a job, it is a temporary way to make money, we must not forget that Madagascar remains one of the poorest countries in the world with the only country not at war that continues to see its GDP go down every year.

Nosy Be, it's too expensive

tamana hotel youth hostel in nosy be

Air tickets remain more expensive than elsewhere in the world, however, prices are becoming more affordable with the competition. Indeed to date it is 15 companies that serve Madagascar against 4 in 2016, so you can find plane tickets from France from 500 € depending on the season. To you to search, you can start via this article that I update regularly: Flights to nosy be

On the hotel side, new accommodations are regularly offered, the overpriced side no longer exists in Nosy Be with accommodations from 6 € with youth hostels / camping 😊

And restaurant side, if you go out of vazahas restaurants and you turn to the local restaurants, you can find dishes at 8 000 Ar (2 €), just avoid the raw vegetables and coffee in these places to avoid the tourist.

Madagascar is dangerous

On all the forums, when a tourist says that it does not go, some say that it is Reunion which makes propaganda on Madagascar and when someone defends Madagascar it is automatically a disguised operator ... In both cases anonymous comments! I would like to give my opinion in writing here because I am often asked via Facebook. I specify that I do not speak on behalf of Madagascar or even on behalf of the tourist operators, I give only my point of view on the question, to you to make yours.

Card made with @

First of all, we must stop comparing / generalizing Nosy Be & Madagascar. It's like saying that France is dangerous, do not go to Brittany because the Marseille area is not safe. Thus the message of the French embassy that generalized Madagascar for a time was totally absurd, something they have since updated by specifying according to the regions: 

  • French EmbassyAlthough the security situation has improved, we must remain vigilant.
  • Swiss Embassy : Nothing for Nosy Be
  • Embassy Germany: Nothing for Nosy Be
  • Embassy Canada : Same as France, a generalization of the whole country in Antananarivo & the South ...
  • US Embassy: Same as France, a generalization of the events taking place in Antananarivo in the whole country ...

And when I speak of generalization, of course do not generalize this opinion on Madagascar, it is only valid for Nosy Be or I live since 2012 😉

To talk about Nosy Be and security, the event of 2013 is unavoidable because it is even in the plug Wikipedia of Nosy Be ... Indeed in 2013 we had a most unfortunate event, the death is scary and must not not be forgotten so as not to reproduce it. But should we judge a place on a given event in a particular context?
I will make a comparison again. Should we generalize Corsica to the expectations of 2016 - 2017? Or again France at the 2012 - 2015 -2016 - 2017 (source)? If this were the case, the Wikipedia file and the tourist communication of France is to be reviewed.

Finally, I will say that 2013 is not yesterday, and before and after we did not have other events of this magnitude. I'm not saying that Nosy Be is safe, I'm just saying that it's no more dangerous to come to Nosy Be than in any other country as long as you respect the rules of conduct that are to be respected in any trip 😊

To conclude

Nosy Be is evolving, so the world of old-fashioned tourism rides with a new generation that offers an authentic Nosy Be that we discussed in "Nosy Be is over-touristy, there are too many people! !! But it is also much more to discover at the discretion of this site, such as:
Discover Nosy Be in traditional dhow
Discovery of the sea world in a glass bottom
Stand Up Paddle ride
Hiking discovery on horseback
Live at the local

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Mada reste une destination méconnue et que ce soit au niveau des visas, des vols, des hébergements il est parfois difficile de trouver l’information voulue. C’est la que Live Madagascar entre en jeux

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