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Landscape near Andreba, Sofia Region of Madagascar.
Landscape near Andreba a town in the Sofia Region of Madagascar.
Image: Arnaud DG
Flag of Madagascar
Flag of Madagascar
where in the world is Madagascar?
Location map of Madagascar
Destination Madagascar, the big red island. Madagascar is the largest African island situated in the Indian Ocean, about 450 km (280 mi) east of the coast of Mozambique.

The fourth largest island in the world has been isolated for about 88 million years and many of its plants and animals are unique to the island. The prehistoric breakup of the supercontinent Gondwana separated the Madagascar-Antarctica-India landmass from the Africa-South America landmass around 135 million years ago. Madagascar later split from India about 88 million years ago, allowing plants and animals on the island to evolve in relative isolation.

With an area of 587,041 km2, the island is slightly larger than France, or almost twice the size of the US state of Arizona.

Madagascar is geographically relative close to: the Comoros, Mauritius, Mozambique, Réunion, and South Africa.

Madagascar has a population of more than 22 million inhabitants. Capital and largest city is Antananarivo. Spoken languages are Malagasy and French.

Republic of Madagascar | Repoblikan'i Madagasikara

Country Profile

Madagascar, the Red Island, the Rainbow Island, the Eighth Continent, there are many names for the world's 4th largest island. Madagascar is situated in the south western area of the Indian Ocean east of the coast of Africa about 400 km off the coast of Mozambique. The island is recognized as one of the world's top ten hotspots for biodiversity.
Madagascar is inhabited by various ethnic groups of Malayo-Indonesian, mixed African and Malayo-Indonesian, and Arab ancestry. Five centuries before the Europeans discovered the island Malayo-Indonesian seafarers arrived in roughly the first century A.D., the Arabs followed in the 6th century to establish trading posts.
Since the 16th century French and British influence left its mark.
In October 1958 the Malagasy Republic was proclaimed as an autonomous state within the French Community and gained full independence in June 1960.
Like many former colonial countries Madagascar went through various political states like uprisings, provisional governments, single-party rule, socialist economic policies, and threat of secession.
Today the country is on a slow and steady economical and political growth path from an extremely low level.

related countries: France, United Kingdom

Official Name:
Repoblikan'i Madagasikara
Republique de Madagascar

short form: Madagascar
int'l long form: Republic of Madagascar
former: Malagasy Republic

ISO Country Code: mg

Local Time = East African Time (UTC +3h)
Actual Time: Sun-Nov-8  06:23

Country Calling Code: +261

Capital City: Antananarivo (Tananarive)

Other Cities:
Antsirabé (about 500 000), Mahajanga (about 400 000), Toamasina (about 450 000)

Type: Republic
Independence: 26 June 1960 (from France)
Constitution: 19 August 1992 by national referendum

Location: Southern Africa, island in the Indian Ocean, east of Mozambique.
Area: 587,040 km² (226,658 sq mil.) about the size of Texas or France.
Terrain: Mountainous central plateau, coastal plain.

Climate: tropical along coast, temperate inland, arid in south, periodic cyclones.

Nationality: Malagasy
Population: 21 million (est. 2014)
Ethnic Groups: 18 separate tribal groups of Malayo-Indonesian, mixed African and Malayo-Indonesian, and Arab ancestry, French, Indian, Creole, Comoran.
Religions: Indigenous beliefs 52%, Christian 41%, Muslim 7%.
Languages: Malagasy (of Malayo-Polynesian origin), French, (both official), English
Literacy: 70%

Natural resources: Graphite, chromite, coal, bauxite, salt, quartz, tar sands, semiprecious stones, mica, fish, hydropower.

Agriculture products: Coffee, vanilla, sugarcane, cloves, cocoa, rice, cassava (tapioca), beans, bananas, peanuts; livestock products.

Industries: Meat processing, soap, breweries, tanneries, sugar, textiles, glassware, cement, automobile assembly plant, paper, petroleum, tourism.

Exports - commodities: coffee, vanilla, shellfish, sugar, cotton cloth, clothing, chromite, petroleum products

Exports - partners: France 15.2%, US 12.7%, China 7.1%, South Africa 5.9%, Japan 5.5%, Netherlands 5.4%, Germany 5.1%, Belgium 5%, India 4.4% (2015)

Imports - commodities: capital goods, petroleum, consumer goods, food

Imports - partners: China 24.8%, France 10.3%, Bahrain 5.6%, India 5.5%, Kuwait 4.5%, Mauritius 4.5%, South Africa 4.3% (2015)

Currency: Ariary and Malagasy Franc (FMG)

Note: External links will open in a new browser window.

Official Sites of Madagascar

Madagascar Government
Madagascar government portal site.

Assemblée nationale malgache
Official site of the Malagasy National Assembly.

Ministère des Affaires Etrangères de Madagascar
Madagascar's Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Diplomatic Missions
Permanent Mission of Madagascar to the UN
Information site of the Permanent Mission.
Ambassade de Madagascar au Canada
The Embassy of Madagascar in Canada.
Représentation de Madagascar en Suisse
The Madagascar Embassy in Switzerland.
Madagascar Consulate General
General Consulate of Madagascar, South Africa.
Représentation étrangères à Madagascar
List of Foreign Diplomatic Missions in Antananarivo, Madagascar.
Malagasy Diplomatic Missions
List of Malagasy Diplomatic Missions abroad.

Institut National de la Statistique Malgache
The National Institute of Statistics.


Map of Madagascar
Detailed map of Madagascar.
Google Earth Google Map Madagascar
Searchable map/satellite view of Madagascar.
Google Earth Google Map Antananarivo
Searchable map/satellite view of Madagascar's capital city.

Small Map of Madagascar
Indian Ocean Map
Political map of the West Indian Ocean.

Political Map of Africa
The 54 countries of Africa.
Map of Africa
A Relief Map of Africa.

Baobab trees, Madagascar
Madagascar's grassy plains which dominate the western landscape are dotted with patches of deciduous forest, and baobab trees, while the south is characterized by desert and spiny forests.
Image: Frank Vassen



La Gazette de la Grande Ile
Antananarivo daily (in French and Malagasy)
L'Express de Madagascar
Comprehensive Madagascar News (in French and Malagasy)
Madagascar Tribune
Madagascar News (in French and Malagasy)
Midi Madagasikara
Regional News (in French and Malagasy)
Online magazine specialized on Madagascar, most articles are reserved to registered users. (English, French, Italian)

IRIN News: Madagascar
News on relief, development, social, economic and political affairs.

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Arts & Culture

Links to Malagasy music
Artists, lyrics, bibliographies and discographies of Malagasy musicians.


Business & Economy

Chambre de Commerce, d'Industrie, d'Artisanat et d'Agriculture
Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Craft, and Agriculture.

Air Madagascar
With information about the Airline and Madagascar.

Fianarantsoa Cote Est
The FCE train line links the highland city of Fianarantsoa with the east coast town of Manakara.

Lokoho River in Marojejy National Park, Madagascar
Lokoho River in Marojejy National Park with Marojejy Massif in background.
Image: Eric Mathieu

Travel and Tour Consumer Information

Destination Madagascar - Travel and Tour Guides

Discover Madagascar: accommodation, attractions, festivals, events, tours and much more.

Office Maison du Tourisme de Madagascar MTM
The official site of Madagascar Tourism, provides travel and tourism information.

Explore Madagascar!
A country guide made by Air Madagascar.

Guide de Madagascar
Site pour les voyageurs atravel guid to Madagascar. (in French)

A guide to Madagascar and its unique and diverse species of wildlife.

Official site of the city of Antananarivo, Madagascar's capital (in French and Malagasy).



Université d'Antananarivo
The autonomous University of Madagascar is the primary public university of Madagascar.
Université de Fianarantsoa
The University of Fianarantsoa.

Diadeemsifaka in Andasibe-Mantadia National Park
Diademed sifaka in Andasibe-Mantadia National Park, a protected rainforest area in eastern Madagascar.
Image: Heinonlein

Environment & Nature

Parcs Nationaux et Réserves Naturelles de Madagascar
Official site of Madagascar's National Parks (in French)
Madagascar Wildlife Conservation (MWC)
A Malagasy non-profit association, which organises and pursues various conservation projects in Madagascar.
MBG: Madagascar Biodiversity and Conservation
David Parks and Larry Barnes Madagascar site - A photographic tour of Madagascar.
Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew: Science and Horticulture: Madagascar
The focus of RBG Kew's programme in Madagascar has centered on conservation and sustainable utilisation of Madagascar's plant diversity.
Baobabs of Madagascar
Baobabs, the sacred trees of Madagascar


About Madagascar
History, Culture, Cuisine and Language of Madagascar.
History of Madagascar
Wikipedia article on Madagascar's history.



Sources and additional Information on Madagascar

African Studies: Madagascar

Africa South of the Sahara: Madagascar
Karen Fung's collection of Madagascar related resources.

Amnesty International: Madagascar

BBC Country Profile: Madagascar

FAO: Madagascar

GlobalEDGE: Madagascar

The Heritage Foundation: Madagascar

Human Rights Watch: Madagascar

OEC: Madagascar

Reporters Without Borders: Madagascar

Wikipedia: Madagascar

The World Factbook -- Madagascar

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