Departing September 24th knowing we will miss the extraordinary scenery of Andringitra we hit the road to make our way to Isalo National Park, about 220 kms south west and about 230 kms from the west coast of Madagascar.
The RN7 on this portion of our journey was excellent and we cruised at an average of 80 km/ hr. There were still the occasional surprise potholes but the going was generally smooth and uneventful. Traffic was very light as we passed through wide open vistas of endless uninhabited grassland and distant rocky crags.
The land so far in our travels has primarily been composed of red clay with limited farming potential. The area here seemed unsupportive of agriculture as it was flat and not conducive to building and cultivating rice terraces so villages and people were few and far between, just wide open infertile land.
The “Ranch” is a collection of bungalows located right off of the RN7 just outside of the town of Ranohira, the gateway to Isalo NP and the sandstone canyons and forests that dot the most visited national park in Madagascar.
There are 20 nice bungalows, a swimming pool and bar and restaurant area populated by seniors groups seeing the sights in three weeks, couples with their drivers and us, the only couple anyone had met so far who are driving independently through this country.
In our travels to date we have seen maybe 3 cars/4×4 vehicles that had a white driver and white passenger so we know there are others doing what we’re doing but they are few and far between. When the locals ask us if we are with a group or a guide and we tell them no, they seem impressed, it’s unusual, and in our opinion it’s the only way to fly!