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Founded in the early 17th century, Antananarivo is Madagascar's capital city. It has a rich history, and an emerging modern vibe rolled into one. There are world-class hotels, art galleries, and shopping places. And it is home to old relics and ruins too. The blend between the old and the new is so seamless in Antananarivo that it is hard to separate one from the other.

An often-overlooked destination in Africa, Antananarivo is a must-visit location, especially for those who don't want to explore touristy places. If you are interested in a raw and real experience of this side of the world, Antananarivo will be a perfect pick. Use this guide to discover things to do, tips to keep in mind, and information you should know about travel medical insurance or travel insurance.

Antananarivo's Most Popular Places for Travel

Often called Tana, Antananarivo is where international travelers land in Madagascar. It is an ideal place to set up a base for exploring the entire island nation. But that doesn't mean Antananarivo has any fewer things to see and do.

Rova Palace Complex

Known as Manjakamiadana (Meaning a fine place to rule), the Rova Palace Complex was the seat of the rulers from the 17th through the 19th century. Perched over the highest hill in the city, it is visible from all over Antananarivo. A fire in 1995 damaged it, but you can still visit it during the daytime to catch a glimpse of the royal ruins as the palace is restored.

The French Institute

The French Institute (formerly called Albert Camus Cultural Center) has an auditorium that hosts dance recitals, concerts, plays, and live performances. The theatre screens a wide variety of films for all tastes. and the gallery hosts frequent art exhibitions. All your cravings for culture will be satiated right here.

The Musée de l'Art et d'Archéologie

Located in the Isoraka neighborhood of Antananarivo, the Musée de l'Art et d'Archéologie was established in 1970. It is home to several ethnographic and archaeological artifacts unearthed on the island. It has over 7,000 items on display, hosts a guest speaker, and acts as a center of learning and discussion.

Lemur Park

The Lemur Park is a 5-hectare natural preserve that is home to nine species of lemurs. Go for a guided walking safari and watch these primates of Madagascar roaming freely from a close distance. Don't forget to take in the stunning scenery here. And do visit the open-air vivarium, where you'll find iguanas, chameleons, and turtles, among other animals.

Analakely Market

The Analakely Market isn't a tourist destination, but visiting this place will help you experience the energy and true vibe of the city. The market is bustling with local sellers. Here you'll find fresh produce, clothes, spices, and small items that are perfect souvenirs. Haggle if you know French or Malagasy to get some great discounts. But beware of pickpockets.

Key Guidelines for Travelers in Antananarivo

Antananarivo is a perfect destination for those willing to tread the roads less traveled by. The following guidelines will make sure you are safe during your entire trip.

Political unrest

Madagascar has suffered from bouts of political instability in the past. Protests, marches, and gatherings do happen. While they are peaceful for the most part and don't concern tourists, steer clear of them.

Petty crime

The crime rate in Madagascar is lower than most African nations. While Antananarivo is safe, petty theft can happen. Whether you are at the beach or in an urban market, make sure your valuables are safe and hidden from the public eye.

Transportation troubles

While booking taxis in Antananarivo, ensure you book one from a reputable agency only. Unlicensed taxis may not be safe, and could overcharge you. Be cautious if driving or walking near traffic, as road conditions can vary greatly.

Pushy street vendors

While visiting Avenue L'independence Antananarivo, you can encounter aggressive street sellers. They mean no harm but can be pushy and make you uncomfortable. Just kindly refuse their offer and continue on with your journey.

Thieving lemurs

Madagascar is home to over 70 varieties of lemurs. While they are cute, these cunning bandits will happily steal your belongings if given a chance. During your stay in Antananarivo, you're likely to encounter at least a few lemurs, especially if you visit a nature preserve. Keep the windows to your vehicle closed to avoid any issues.

Travel Medical Insurance for Travelers In Antananarivo - FAQs

Medical emergencies can arise anytime. They can bring a lot of stress, tension, and bills too. To ensure you aren't left checking your bank balance while recovering in a hospital bed, buy travel medical insurance for your trip to Antananarivo.

Why buy travel medical insurance before traveling to Antananarivo?

There is a reason why you have airbags in your car, right? Though you do everything under your control to not be in a situation to need them, they're still necessary. The same logic should convince you to get travel medical insurance. You could of course go without it, but in certain situations, it could be extremely important.

If you fall ill or get hurt in Antananarivo, your bank balance could take a major hit. The hospital bills, possible medical evacuation, and bills for your medicine can add up pretty fast. With travel medical insurance, you can have the protection in place you need to ensure you aren't solely responsible for large out-of-pocket medical bills.

What should I look for in my Antananarivo travel medical insurance?

While comparing and selecting travel medical insurance, there are several things to consider. Take into account the activities you may want to take part in during your vacation, such as a safari, and make sure it can be covered. Also, consider if the plan offers emergency medical evacuation benefits, and coverage for any medical situation that may suit your needs during your trip. With the right travel medical insurance, you can vacation with the confidence of knowing that you can be covered for whatever may befall you during your travels.

Trip Cancellation Insurance for Travelers in Antananarivo - FAQs

The only thing worse than not being able to go on a planned trip is having to pay for it. If you have to cancel your trip to Antananarivo without insurance, your nonrefundable payments could go to waste. Trip cancellation insurance can ensure you get reimbursement, and your finances don't bear the burden of a missed trip.

Why should I get trip cancellation insurance for my Antananarivo travel?

There are scores of reasons an international trip may need to be canceled. Personal injuries, family emergencies, natural disasters, or political unrest could require you to cancel through no fault of your own. Unfortunately, this could make it difficult to get your prepaid expenses for things like airfare and hotels back in your bank account. These expenses are often nonrefundable, or they charge fees for cancellation.

A trip cancellation insurance plan can allow you to be partially or fully reimbursed for these expenses if your trip has to be canceled for a reason that's covered by the policy. This way, you aren't stuck paying for a vacation you weren't able to take.

What should I look for in my Antananarivo trip cancellation insurance?

Beyond just coverage for trip cancellation, consider these travel insurance benefits when planning your trip:

Before You Travel to Antananarivo - Do This

  • Get vaccinated. Visit your doctor and make sure you have all the appropriate vaccinations and boosters to protect your health.
  • Bring mosquito repellent. Mosquitos are present in large numbers across Madagascar, so it's important to do all you can to keep them at bay. Also, ask your doctor about taking antimalarial tablets if necessary.
  • Get insured. An appropriate travel medical insurance or travel insurance plan can give you financial protection and peace of mind throughout your trip.

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