Most visits to Madagascar are trouble-free. If possible, you should travel with established organisations or travel companies who know the terrain and have the capacity to warn of potential hazards. If hiring a guide in country, the National Tourism Office advises visitors to use the services of members of the Professional Tour Operators Association PTO.
President Rajoelina was inaugurated on 19 January following two rounds of elections. Whilst violence during the elections was low, political demonstrations and other protests may still occur. Due to the possibility of violence at these events, you should avoid all protests and demonstrations, including those taking place in the area around Independence Square (“La Place du 13 mai”) and the Town Hall in Antananarivo.
Take great care and follow local advice in the south-east of the country. In the southern triangle between Ihosy, Toliara/Tuléar and Fort-Dauphin the security situation remains tense and the roads are in very poor condition. If travelling in the area you’re advised to use a recognised tour operator and to avoid travelling at night. You’re advised not to travel by taxi-brousse (bush taxi). Avoid overnight stays in the countryside.
Seek local advice and guidance before visiting beaches. You should remain vigilant when visiting beaches to the South and North of Toliara (Tuléar) as there have been attacks and robberies. Avoid visiting isolated and remote beaches, especially alone.
The cyclone season in Madagascar normally runs from November to April. Coastal areas are particularly affected, and remote areas throughout the country can become inaccessible and suffer damage and contamination to water supplies.
You should avoid travelling at night on Route Nationales (RNs) particularly RN 13 between Ambovombe and Ihosy and on the RN 10 between Betioky and Andranovory (the western route to Toliara/Tuléar). There have been several attacks on vehicles. If you’re planning to travel to Fort Dauphin you should travel by air instead of via the RN 13.
Crime, particularly robbery and theft is widespread in Madagascar. Be vigilant in the capital Antananarivo particularly in markets and busy areas and especially vigilant at night. Don’t touch any suspect packages.
Maintain a low profile while moving around the country. You’re advised to use a recognised tour operator. You should monitor the local media closely for the duration of your visit.
Piracy remains a significant threat in the Gulf of Aden and Indian Ocean, and has occurred more than 1,000 nautical miles from the Somali coast.
If you’re abroad and you need emergency help from the UK government, contact the nearest British embassy, consulate or high commission. Consular support may be limited in parts of Madagascar.
Take out comprehensive travel and medical insurance before you travel.