Antongona UNESCO World Heritage

Antongona UNESCO World Heritage

Antongona consists of two main groups of archaeological sites dating from between the 16th and 18th Centuries AD, spaced roughly 300 m apart. These are two massive natural rock formations which tower the surrounding landscape allowing a complete 360 ° long-distance view. Its strategic value and inherent defensive qualities was augmented by the construction of stone walls and doorways. The approach to the entrance is narrowed by trenches the entrance itself protected by seven gates. Everything has been designed to restrict the attackers’ progress and to undermine their moral to invade.

The site tells the past of the Madagascan kingdom, its strategies of protection through the remains of its buildings, the ancient walls, the two royal boxes built on the model of those of King Andrianampoinimerina and the tomb of King Andriambaoka.

But there is a further mystery: A proverb, 'efa ho lava ny afon'Antongona' (we are tired of Antongona fires), recalls the history of the village. Fearful due to frequent Vazimba and Sakalava attacks, the villagers overused the distress signals to the neighbouring villages. Often, these inhabitants came to their rescue and went away deceived and disappointed. So one day they did not come anymore and the village, invaded by enemies, was taken.

Antongona UNESCO World Heritage

Antongona is located in the Imamo Region of Madagascar, roughly 36 km west of Antananarivo and 6 km north of Imerintsiatosika. The place is one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Madagascar Besides all ancient history, Rova d'Antongona is a superb excursion where a large part of the lush Imerina can be seen.

Useful Information

When to go

The visit to the Antongona site is possible in any season. The rains are more numerous between November and April.

How to get there

The Antongona site only 36 km away from the Madagascan capital. Take Highway No. 1., turn right at the junction to Imerintsiatosika. For international connections to Antananarivo check Air Madagascar. But to enjoy the panoramic view of Avaradrano and Antananarivo, you will have to walk 7 km to the top of the hill.

Where to stay

You can stay at the "Green Spring Vontovorona", located near the site of Antonogona or continue the road to Ampefy and book your rooms at the hotel "La Chaumière d'Itasy" or at the hotel "The terrace". However, if you want to sleep in Tana, the hotels "Colbert", "The Louvre" or "La Ribaudière" are most recommendable.

Where to eat

Enjoy dishes based on Tilapia, a freshwater fish, a regional specialty at the "Petit Manoir Rouge" or at the hostel "La Tapia".

What to see

In addition to the "sporty" side of the tour and its historical interest, (do not forget to take a tour through the museum), it is interesting to make a trip by Ampefy, nearby, and visit the Islet of the Virgin and the Fall of the Lily. What about having a picnic or a barbecue there?