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By No owner — last modified Jan 11, 2019 01:50 PM

 Madagascar - General Info

Time Zone

UTC +3

Yachting Essentials

Electricity:

Voltage: 220 V

Frequency: 50 Hz

Fuel and Water:

As there are only anchorages here, fuel and water are only available by jerry can from shore stations.

LPG:

Refilling of LPG bottles is more commonly done by siphoning from larger bottles.

Getting Work Done:

Good repair facilities can be found at Mahajanga, on the west coast, which is used by many foreign shrimping boats as a base of operations. With the increase in visiting yachts, repair facilities are improving in Nossi-Be and Nosy Hara.

Money

Malagasy Ariary (MGA).

Foreign currency must be declared on arrival. The immigration officer will ask for a currency declaration to be filled in on arrival, and this form has to be endorsed every time money is changed. The form, and the remaining funds, will be checked on departure.

Communications

International Dialing Code for Madagascar is +261.

The cell phone service in Madagascar is excellent and low cost. The main networks are Telma (www.telma.mg), which is government owned, Airtel (www.africa.airtel.com/madagascar) and Orange (www.orange.mg).

Local SIM cards can be used in European and Australian phones; other phones will have to be set on roaming. Local SIM cards needs to be purchased from the mobile company office, but can be topped up pretty much everywhere.

The Peri-Peri Weather Net Station here has now closed.
The Madagascar relay station for the Peri-Peri net has now closed. Although no longer resident in Madagascar, Ex-Net Controllers Des and Nell Cason of SY Gambit are happy to offer advice to cruisers visiting the country. They have sailed this area extensively and welcome the opportunity to stay involved in the well being of fellow sailors. Contact them by E-mail at sygambit@gmail.com

Go here for a list of South African SSB nets.

Last updated:  October 2018

Diplomatic Missions

Emergencies

Emergency services (police, firemen, ambulance) - dial 117.

Publications

EXCLUSIVE BOOK DISCOUNTS FOR NOONSITE USERS
Imray & Adlard Coles Pilot Books can be purchased with an exclusive Noonsite discount of up to 15% by visiting our Imray store if shopping from the UK or Europe.
For North America and the rest of the world visit Bluewater Books & Charts. When ordering through Bluewater be sure to enter the coupon code NOON during checkout to save 10%.

Gone with the Wind in Madagascar - A Cruise to an Indian Ocean Paradise
By Avril Sellars
Publisher: IUniverse (July 18, 2001)
ISBN-13: 978-0595192625
Set sail with Avril and Don on ‘Gone With The Wind’ to discover the exquisite and little-known paradise of Madagascar, lying some 300 miles off the east coast of Africa. Explore its western shores, reefs and off-lying islands. Meet its endearing people with their strange and primitive way of life. Encounter nature at its most weird and wonderful.

Indian Ocean Cruising Guide
By Rod Heikell
Publisher: Imray (2007)
DISCOUNTS available through Imray and Bluewater Books (see details and links above)
A good general cruising guide covering the routes from Europe to Australia and points in between, Indian Ocean Cruising Guide covers all the usual points of interest for cruising yachtsmen, from history to climate, weather patterns, formalities, route planning and so on. The general sections are followed by a country-by-country round up in which key ports are described in detail with the aid of harbour plans and photographs. Information on Malaysia and Thailand, the Seychelles and Chagos archipelago. This second edition has been thoroughly revised and contains a lot of additional information on Malaysia and Thailand, the Seychelles and the Chagos archipelago.

East Africa Pilot
By Delwyn McPhun
Publisher: Imray (996)
DISCOUNTS available through Imray and Bluewater Books (see details and links above)
A complete handbook on the coast of East Africa between Kenya and Durban for both yachtsmen and diving enthusiasts.

National Tourism Office in Madagascar

Cruising Information for Madagascar by SV Ocelot (2007 & 2009).
http://svocelot.com/Cruise_Info/Indian/Madagascar_Cruising.htm
Whilst Ocelot cruised here a few years ago, much of the information on their blog is still relevant. Plus downloadable track files in both MaxSea (.ptf) format and in OpenCPN (.gpx) format are available.

A general cruising guide for the approaches to Madagascar and traveling down the Mozambique channel.

Madagascar Trekking: Climbing Pic Boby

Madagascar: On the hunt for Sharks
As fisheries collapse due to overfishing and climate change, Madagascar fishermen migrate further out to find fish. Interesting article for those planning on cruising here.

Madagascar Cruising Advice
Des & Nell of SY Gambit (and the ex-Madagascar relay station for the Peri-Peri Net) used to be based on Sakatia Island (near Hell-Ville). They have now returned to South Africa, but are happy to continue offering advice to cruisers visiting Madagascar. They have sailed the country extensively and welcome the opportunity to stay involved in the well being of fellow sailors.
Madagascar’s Stunning Barren Islands
South of Madagascar’s Cap St Andre is a sprinkling of islands, around 15 nautical miles off the coast, aptly called the Barren Islands. SV Totem visited in 2015 and remember most the islands' people.
Ocean current data for passages
Ocean currents are a significant factor when planning an Ocean passage, and if researched properly can be used to your benefit. In this report by circumnavigators SY Totem, they outline the considerations for a passage from Madagascar to South Africa and the resources they used.

Update History

January 2019: Clearance, Immigration and Fees checked using official sources.
October 2018: Clearance procedures and fees updated with information from Brian Domander, SV Prince Diamond.
November 2017: Clearance formalities checked and updated.
October 2017: Health section updated following outbreak of pneumonic plaque.
October 2016: Security section updated following armed robbery in Mahajanga.
July 2016: Immigration updates from Tom Patridge of SY Adina.
November 2015: Formalities updated from report ov vist by Jason Trautz of SV Yolo.
July 2015: Publications checked/updated
March 2015: Formalities checked/updated.
August 2013: Report on documents required from Miki Barzam of SV Two Oceans.
July 2013: Formalities checked and fees updated by Des Cason of the Peri Peri Net.
March 2013: Formalities checked/updated, fees updated. Security and local customs information added.

Noonsite welcomes information and updates especially regarding clearance, customs and immigration procedures from cruisers visiting this country.
Please E-mail noonsite with any new information, updates or corrections. Even just a short email confirming that the current data is accurate would be most helpful.

domander
domander says:
Sep 27, 2018 02:34 PM

The 30 day visa into Madagascar is no longer free. As far as we can tell we were treated fairly in all of our dealings with the officials when we cleared into Ambodifotatra.

First we went to the police station who act as Immigration. The 30 day visa cost 115,000 Ariary each person. We paid this to the officer plus 40,000 for a taxi. He took the passports, and one copy of our two copies of the exit zarpe (clearance) from Réunion. We went back at the time he suggested the next day and he returned the passports with the visas attached. I don't know where the copy of the Réunion exit paper went... he said it is no longer required.

We still DID have to go to Îsle Madame (the fishing harbour) to see the Customs office. This is well within walking distance for this old geezer. It is in the first building you come across, like an abandoned hotel. The office is in the west wing, access from the north, outside. There we filled in a crew list/boat info sheet of paper and paid 60,000. We asked him if it was really necessary to visit the Coast Guard office just 20 metres away to the west and while considering it finally said we should.

There at the Coast Guard we paid another 60,000 and filled out another vessel and crew info sheet.

That is what is required to check in when asking for a 30 day visa. I'll come back to post again when we check out domestically on Monday to tell you what we did.

Sue Richards
Sue Richards says:
May 22, 2015 01:49 PM

The Madagascar relay station for the Peri-Peri net has now closed. Although no longer resident in Madagascar, Ex-Net Controllers Des and Nell Cason of SY Gambit are happy to offer advice to cruisers visiting the country. They have sailed this area extensively and welcome the opportunity to stay involved in the well being of fellow sailors. Contact them by E-mail at sygambit(at)gmail(dot)com

Paul Rae
Paul Rae says:
Aug 21, 2014 05:57 AM

Just a word of caution, we are in Deigo Suarez, Madagascar in the commercial port anchorage and had an intruder on our boat around 0200. He was trying to steal our portable generator. He had a knife and was able cut the lines securing it, before he was scared off the boat. He had a friend waiting for him in a small dugout outrigger. He also stole lines off the boat. So please be very careful here.

Madagascar
Ambodifototra (Ile Sainte Marie)
Analalava
Antisiranana (Diego Suarez)
Fort Dauphin (Taolagnaro)
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