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Friday: dreamy travel day!
A first look at Miavana, a sensationally beautiful new private-island hotel that’s very possibly the most exclusive castaway escape ever.
On this strange and captivating island there are invisible worlds and disgruntled spirits to appease. Sacrificial ceremonies are practised as they were centuries ago, the rules passed down through generations, along with taboos that govern what is, and is not, acceptable behaviour. In some places there are tribesmen who fear that white men will eat their hearts. In others, the bones of ancestors are regularly exhumed from their tombs to be danced around the village. Madagascar is abundant with intrigue and legend, and tales of terrible storms and churning seas.
Known as The Great Red Island, it lies just 250 miles off the east coast of Africa, but the language spoken here has its roots in south-east Borneo, 3,500 miles away across the Indian Ocean. The interior is home to the Merina tribe, descendants of Indonesian colonisers who arrived sometime in the 16th century. Nobody knows exactly how or why, although there is a huge amount of speculation; oral accounts have created a multitude of slightly differing truths based on similar themes.
Located on Nosy Ankao, an unspoiled island off the northeast coast of Madagascar, Miavana is a new ultra luxurious lodge. There are fourteen one, two and three bedroom villas strung along the western side of the island, stepping right onto the powder-soft sand and enjoying spectacular Indian Ocean sunsets. This is not simply an exquisite beach lodge on an untouched island, it offers all the adventures you’d expect on a safari, with wildlife, activities and adventures galore – something which truly sets it apart as a destination.
Any time of year is fine for a visit and unlike other parts of northern Madagascar which often experience heavy rainfall and cyclones from January to March, these months are a good time of year to be on Miavana for fishing and the waters are clear for snorkelling. You can expect a bit of a breeze and the rainfall is usually overnight. If travelling around Madagascar, in general, the best time to travel to most areas is April and October/November with warm days and less chance of rainfall. The coolest time to travel anywhere is during the dry season (May to October). Average maximum temperatures average around 30°C in coastal areas (higher in summer).
It’s the perfect time to visit this perfect place.