Archive for the ‘Canal des Pangalanes’ Category


Window seat with a view

Window seat with a view

My latest, rather uneventful, 48 hour VERY SLOW barge cruise from Mananjary to Manahoro via Nosy Varika, sat ontop a sack or rice! All rather relaxing EXCEPT for the NON-STOP, slow revving thuds of a chinese industrial diesel engine which were un-escapable.

The crew were a great bunch of Malagasy speaking lads (no english or french) who were hard working and polite, although communication was limited to what we could sketch in my note book and social interaction was based on them choosing music to listen to on my ‘magic’ western Samsung Galaxy Note that they were clearly VERY envious of

The Canal des Pangalanes are a collection of natural rivers and artificial lakes that stretch along the east coast of Madagascar for about 450 miles from Toamasina to Farafangana, of which it can be traversed by barge just north of Mananjary to Toamasina.

The scenery does not change a great deal from start to finish and is comparible to that of south east Asia. A procession boats of vary shaing shapes and sizes carrying bananas, timber and rice, fishermen as well as the ODD crazy back packer!

Along the banks are numerous villages, comprising of wood and straw huts, people drying fish in the sun, local coffee factories and fishermen mending their wooden pirogues (canoes) under the shade of the trees.

A trip that I am glad to have made, but not one I am planning to repeat anytime in the future…