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Time + Tide Miavana, Nosy Ankao Private Island, Madagascar

As the first five-star luxury eco-lodge in Madagascar, Miavana looked to set the bar on far-flung African luxury when it opened in spring 2017 - and set the bar it has. Welcome to the land of lemurs, chameleons, coral reefs, and caves as you indulge in a haven of seclusion at Time + Tide Miavana.

A castaway experience awaits on the sandy shores of Miavana Nosy Ankao, Madagascar’s wild north eastern island. Surrounded by azure waters, you will reconnect with nature, and immerse in your island setting from this remarkable beachfront retreat.

Your experience commences from the Madagascar mainland by Heli arrival, to Nosy Ankao’s unspoiled wilderness. Overlooking the vast Indian ocean and mountains beyond, Miavana’s exquisite design boasts Madagascan inspiration through Malagasy wood features and hand-dyed textiles. Admire picturesque French gardens and unique waterways as the property expands out to a large swimming pool with uninterrupted ocean vistas.

Celebrating the gorgeous island surroundings, each villa reflects sand and sea elements through endless shades of turquoise, bamboo details and hand cut stones etched into their walls. Leaving little to the imagination, large floor-to-ceiling windows provide phenomenal views of swaying palms and glistening waters. Varying from one to three bedrooms, each villa boasts a private veranda and pool, living area, butler service and a well-stocked kitchenette.

Appreciate the fantastic space, thoughtful décor and calming ambience that radiates throughout your luxurious home-away-from-home. Coupled with impeccable service, a fine-dining experience can be savoured from the privacy of your villa, the beach, the chic dining grotto or under the stars. Celebrating the seasons, local ingredients are sourced, and meals paired with the perfect wine or cocktail. After a superb meal, gaze upwards at the spectacular Milky Way from the warmth of Miavana’s beachfront firepit.

At approximately 10km square, the island of Nosy Ankao is small enough to feel like an intimate paradise island, but large enough to provide a wealth of things to see and do. Once a hide-out for pirates, the island has a colourful history and has now become the home of Time + Tide Miavana, the only resort on the island.

It is designed by the same talented architects that designed North Island in the Seychelles, Silvio Rech and Lesley Carstens and is yet another utter triumph in design. Madagascar itself is a biodiversity hotspot, famed for its high percentage of endemic species.  A stay at Miavana will allow you to explore this natural wonderland, while being treated to the award-winning hospitability.

Miavana Highlights

  • A luxurious tropical island lodge, only accessible by helicopter
  • Breath-taking ocean views and direct access to the beach from luxury villas
  • Fantastic conditions for water activities like scuba diving and snorkelling
  • Helicopter safaris to Ankarana Reserve and Montagne d'Ambre National Park
  • Watch turtles lay eggs and see them hatch between December and April
  • Watch thousands of terns nest on a deserted island from June to August

Why we love it?

Unearth the wealth of experiences this small island has to offer, each setting it further apart as an unforgettable African destination. Discover immaculate reefs in the Indian ocean and embark on mainland day trips for up-close encounters with the Madagascar’s renowned lemurs.

With the aim being to protect and conserve the island’s vulnerable natural resources, Time + Tide Miavana is a luxurious beach retreat with a heart. From the endless white-sandy shores and panoramic ocean views to the hidden lagoons and aquamarine bay there really isn’t a place more magical than this. Here you can look forward to scuba diving, snorkelling from your villa, embark on a turtle, whale and dolphin watching excursion, or head deep into the forest to seek out lemurs, or simply relax at the world-class spa.

Where is Time + Tide Miavana Private Island located?

Miavana is part of the Nosy Ankao archipelago which forms part of a 15,000-hectare protected marine area on the north-eastern coast of Madagascar, so you can guarantee wildlife that is as untouched as it is abundant. Accessible only by a short helicopter ride from Antsiranana (Diego Suarez), the nearest international airport, Miavana is tucked away in an azure bay, high on the northern tip of Madagascar.  From the lodge, guests can explore the treasure trove of bays, beaches and lagoons that provide a perfect platform for ‘Blue Safaris’: a wonderful mix of guided water and land activities.

What sort of accommodation is available at Time + Tide Miavana Private Island?

With 14 private villas to choose from, each ranging from 1 – 3 rooms guests can hole up in complete seclusion during their stay. It may be off the grid but Miavana still oozes style creating the perfect blend of barefoot beach luxury with historic European renaissance. As well as private pools, each villa also boasts gorgeous ocean views with direct access to the beach so you can simply roll out of bed and into the azure water to snorkel through reefs.

What activities are available at Time + Tide Miavana Private Island?

On arrival at Time + Tide Miavana, you will have a consultation with their expert activities team to create a customised plan based on your wants, interests, and needs. Miavana has two distinct seasons. From November to mid-May, the days are warm, with light rains mainly overnight, making it best for diving, fishing, snorkelling and sea turtles. Mid-May to October has cooler days with seasonal winds, making it perfect if you would like to see whales, terns, or go kite/windsurfing.

  • Scuba diving and snorkelling
  • Deep sea, fly and boat fishing
  • Helicopter excursions
  • Lemur trekking
  • Guided nature walks
  • Stand-up paddle-boarding
  • Windsurfing
  • Kitesurfing
  • Surf skiing
  • Sea kayaking
  • Wakeboarding

Not included are helicopter adventures, deep sea fishing and PADI qualifications.

Does Time + Tide Miavana Private Island cater for families with young children?

Children of all ages are welcomed at Miavana Private Island in all villa types. Children under the age of 14 are provided with accommodation free of charge when sharing with the minimum number of guests specific to that villa type.  Children from 14-17 years are given a 50% discount off the adult rate when sharing with the minimum number of guests specific to that villa type. 

Villas can accommodate 2 children as a maximum at any one time.  Of course, some water-based activities may not be suitable for children depending on their age however once on the island the staff will happily create a personalised program of activities for children. Parents will be responsible for always supervising their children. The “bubble maker” is a favorite activity for children 8-9 years old where they can don full scuba gear and jump in to explore the house reef while very closely supervised by one of the PADI instructors. The maximum depth would be up to two meters.

When is the best time to visit Time + Tide Miavana Private Island?

The weather patterns create two distinctly different seasons, and the best months to visit will depend on your preferences and what activities you are keen to get involved in. For some activities, such as guided nature walks in search of lemurs and other wildlife, the weather year-round is suitable.

  • From mid-November through to April, one will have the warmest daily temperatures, between 23˚C / 73˚F up to 33˚C / 91˚F. This period also sees the greatest rainfall, which happily usually falls at night. The weather can be humid at any time of the year, although sea breezes bring cooler air and relief from heat and humidity. This season is best for those wishing to have a chance of seeing sea turtles nesting on the beach or partake in water-based activities such as scuba diving, fishing, and snorkeling. This is also a superb time of year for guided nature walks in search of lemurs and other wildlife.
  • From May through to mid-November, the daily temperatures are a little cooler ranging from 20˚C / 68˚F to 30˚C / 86˚F. At this time of year, there is very little chance of rain. The seasonal south easterly winds peak during this season, during June creating the perfect conditions for kitesurfing and windsurfing enthusiasts. This season is the absolute best however for wildlife, and there are a plethora or spectacles to be seen. Thousands of terns land on the adjacent island of Nosy Manampaho, and this seasonal nesting colony is quite a sight to behold so a guided nature walk around the colony is very much recommended. Equally exciting is the arrival of Humpback whales in Nosy Ankao’s waters, where they have come to breed and will exhibit dramatic breaching displays.

For further information, please do feel free to contact Nicola directly or at The Explorations Company for further inspiration and unforgettable safaris and holidays to Africa, Asia, and Latin America

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