This tour, accessible to almost all, combines the discovery of the city of Fianarantsoa with a look at local artisan work. Plunging into heart of popular neighborhoods offers a look at the past and the present of “the city where to learn the good”. This original route will give you the opportunity to discover the reality of Malagasy city and countryside life.
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A day tour with lunch in a Malagasy home
A pleasant city tour that is allowing you to discover the multiple faces of Fianarantsoa (where to learn good things). The major part of the morning is by car and about three and a half hours of easy walk throught the uper town and the market square inthe afternoon
You will start the day at the SOAFIA complex, where you will visit the photo workshop of Pierrot Men, the famous photographer of Madagascar. Next, you continue with a visit of the workshops of the group "The Relais Madagasikara", an enterprise that implements socio-economic activities intended to be a tool for human and economic development by creating sustainable jobs. Then, you will make your way to the Monastery of Maromby. Just a few minutes away from the city centre, Trappist monks have settled here since 1958. You can attend a part of their prayer and enjoy the monastic products of the work of the 30 monks and some novices. After spending some time among them, return to the city towards the Zoma Square, the place of the daily market. You will dive directly into the hustle and bustle of its stands and small displays of all kinds. Here, you can find everything! Leaving the market, your guide will take you to the old city built in the nineteenth century under the domination of the Merina kingdom, which had the ambition to bring together all kingdoms of Madagascar.
Yesterday an ancient walled city, now the capital of the Betsileo region, Fianarantsoa is currently the second administrative city of Madagascar. The richness of the old town testifies to its past importance. Strolling through its labyrinth of cobbled streets, sometimes steep, will give you a glimpse of what the city could have been like during these times of conquest.
This city walk ends with a stop for a home-cooked lunch in a residential area to enjoy a typical Malagasy meal. After the meal, the tour leaves the city centre towards our next stop. You will discover the work of female prisoners, as part of a reintegration program, in partnership with a local association. A small climb will take you to your following stop. Here awaits a small workshop for manufacturing bamboo furniture.
We continue on a small descent then you will tackle a short steep climb. Then, an Antemoro paper manufacturer will be waiting for you to show you the manufacturing steps of this natural paper. After the visit of the paper workshop, you will cross a small neighbourhood market with typical local colours and smells and you will leave the city to discover the rural side of Fianarantsoa. From the top of a ridge, a beautiful view of the surrounding hills will allow you to enjoy a different side of the city. Traditional houses with thatched roofs, rice fields, agricultural activities, and brick manufacture will mark the course until the last pottery workshop. Here, it is a family business, and everyone is joining in! Your visit finishes here, the vehicle is already waiting to take you back.
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