The Itremo Massif and its protected area

Itremo is an urban community in the center of the Amoron'i Mania region, in the district of Ambatofinandrahana. In this part of the Big Island, a tour to the cradle of Malagasy marbles and the site of Precambrian quartzitic pebbles might enkindle
unforgettable memories. It is a beautiful place, an untouched mountainous wilderness between Ambositra district and Ambatofinandrahana district. At an average altitude of 1900m, this massif is characterized by sheer rocky ridges that alternate with grassy plateaus and areas of quartz sand that shines under the rays of sun. Since 2010, Kew Madagascar Conservation Center, a non-profit non- governmental organization, manages this newly protected area around the Itremo massif. This site provides a habitat to many endemic Malagassy animal and plant species.
Endemic ecosystem
There are 700 plant families, 80% endemic and 33% endangered. Especially the palm tree Cypsis ambositrae is considered a critically endangered plant. Regarding the wildlife, three species of lemurs, 67 bird species, 34 amphibian species and 27 reptile species have been catagorized in this protected area. Discover on this massif the pachypodiums dwarfs or the euphorbia typical for this area, Euphorbia itremoensis. Going downhill, look out for the five-meter-high tapias trees, shrubs that house orchids, also site-specific. Tapias also promote the breeding of wild silkworms.
This article was featured in Prime Magazine August 2018

Useful Information

When to go

A tropical climate of altitude characterizes the Amoron'i Mania region resulting in two distinct seasons: a warm and rainy period from November to April and a cooler period from May to October. This Madagascan region ranks among the coldest next to Vakinankaratra. The average temperature varies between 2° to 16° C during the tropical winter and 18° to 21° C in the hot season.

How to get there

Follow the RN7 to the village called Ivato-center, 15km south of Ambositra, there turn right. Follow this road west to Ambatofinandrahana to reach your destination.

Where to stay

You can stay at the "Auberge du Marble". If you decide to sleep in Ambositra, you can choose between the hotel "Mania", the "Tropik Hotel" or if you prefer a natural setting, opt for "Under the Sun of Mada", near Ivato-center.

Where to eat

The cuisine "Auberge du Marble" is reknown for its Malagasy specialties.

What to see

The visit should not be limited to pass through the massif. Use this exploration the to meet with the very warm and welcoming local communities. Regarding the wildlife, you might cross ways with the Sifaka, diurnal lemurs of Madagascar, in the heart of the gallery forests or, when passing through more marshy spots, to see the two- colored frogs (black and orange) by the name Mantella cawanii – a local species in critical danger.