Ready to learn a few interesting facts about Madagascar?
Whether you’re thinking of traveling to Madagascar in the near future or just want to know a bit more about this African island country, you’re in the right place!
Here’s our roundup of the most interesting Madagascar facts:
1. Madagascar is an island nation located off the southeastern coast of Africa. Situated in the Indian Ocean, the nearest countries to it are the Comoros, Mozambique, Mauritius, and the Seychelles. A little further away on the continent are South Africa and Tanzania. In French, the nickname for Madagascar is la Grande île.
2. Madagascar is the second-largest island country in the world, after Indonesia. It’s a remarkable fact also because Indianized Austronesian peoples came on canoes over the vast distance from Indonesia to Madagascar between 350 BCE and 550 CE to form Madagascar’s first human settlements. Madagascar also happens to be the fourth-largest island in the world.
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3. Madagascar is one of the world’s most biodiverse places. According to Conservation International, it is one of only 17 countries determined to be “megadiverse,” and about 90% of its plant and animal species can’t be found anywhere else on Earth.
4. The capital and largest city of Madagascar is Antananarivo. Antananarivo, known also as simply Tana, has around 1.7 million people and is situated near the very center of the island.
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5. Madagascar’s cuisine reflects its diverse cultural and ethnic background. As they do for their Asian ancestors, Malagasy meals include plenty of rice. However, their cuisine also reflects the influences of Indian, European (especially French), and African cuisine, as well.
6. Madagascar is home to three UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Of these three sites, one is cultural, and two are natural:
- Royal Hill of Ambohimanga (cultural)
- Rainforests of the Atsinanana (natural)
- Tsingy de Bemaraha Strict Nature Reserve (natural)
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7. The traditional garment of Madagascar, the lamba, is worn by all genders equally. Lambas could be made out of a range of materials, from cotton to silk to pig skins, and they can be used everyday as well as for special occasions. A lamba is a rectangular cloth draped around one’s body and intricately decorated.
8. You call something or someone from Madagascar as Malagasy. Malagasy is the demonym for the people or things from Madagascar, but it is also one of the official languages of Madagascar, the other being French.
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Well, that’s all our Madagascar facts for now, and we hope you’ve found this post interesting and informative! Do you have any questions, feedback, or other facts about Madagascar we should include on our list? Let us know below in the comments, and thanks for reading!