Manakara is a town on the east coast of Madagascar and the capital of the Vatovavy-Fitovinany province within the Fianarantsoa region. Agriculture around Manakara includes coffee, coconut, vanilla, pepper and cloves. Antaimoro papermaking is also produced here, a traditional paper made from the bark of the araho tree. The town has a small port and a pretty waterfront. Swimming is not recommended due to aggressive sharks and strong currents.
Manakara is located at the end-station of an old railway constructed between 1926 and 1936. This deteriorating railway was privatised in 2001. The line connects Fianarantsoa with the sea. Departures are scheduled from Fianarantsoa at 7 am on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Sundays. The journey can take 12 hours or longer and is often subject to delays. Manakara also has an airport with a domestic runway (which the train track crosses!). For railway enthusiasts, the train journey offers a memorable and picturesque journey. There are 48 tunnels, 67 bridges and beautiful landscapes with many stoppings along the line. However, in July 2009 the train derailed killing six and injuring many more. There are also frequent taxi-brousse running from connecting cities and villages, but which are of course not necessarily more convenient or safer.
Delices d'Orient Annexe
Tel: +261 (0)20 72 217 34
Padoula Chambers d'Hotel
Lot 1B 132
Tel: +261 (0)72 21623
Eden Sidi Hôtel (bungalows 12km south of town)
Hotel Restaurant Delices d'Orient