Ifaty is a small fishing village with idyllic palm-fringed white beaches on the southwestern coast of Madagascar, and is an ideal place to relax after visiting the central highlands.
Although unprotected, the spiny forests inland from Ifaty are of great interest to birdwatchers and botanical enthusiasts alike. Two of the island’s most threatened birds, the long-tailed ground roller and sub-desert mesite, are often see here, on early morning bird walks. There is plenty more of interest, not least an excellent diversity of other birds and some of the most bizarre flora imaginable – fascinating spiny forest of Alluadia madagascariensis in which the crazy waving branches of devilishly-spined octopus trees contrast sharply with the squat, rounded forms of bulbous baobabs.
There are a few basic beach resorts with bungalow accommodation along the coast. Diving and snorkelling on the nearby reef is possible, and local fishermen also take visitors out in their pirogues.
Ifaty is located 22 kilometres from Toliara airport and a few hours’ drive from Zombitse-Vohibasia National Park.
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