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La Colline de Vinany
Antalaha, Madagascar

View of Ankavanana River from the Colline de Vinany

Standing sentinel to the town of Antalaha, with breathtaking views out over the wide Ankavanana River and the endless breakers of the Indian Ocean, the Colline de Vinany is a lush botanical garden set in a spectacular tropical landscape. Spread over the slopes of this large basalt outcrop is a beautiful display of the remarkable flora found in northeastern Madagascar. Native vegetation includes enormous old canarium trees, rosewood and ebony, and a host of palms, ferns and orchids. Also found here are examples of introduced plants, including vanilla and coffee, and even some small crops of manioc and beans.

The Colline de Vinany is a private nature reserve that has recently been established by local Antalaha community members to protect and showcase the local environment. Special emphasis is being placed on interpreting the natural and cultural history of the area to promote greater understanding and interest on the part of both local residents and people from foreign countries.

Vinany is just one part of a larger project that has three main objectives: 1) to restore and protect native plant communities in the greater Antalaha area, 2) to promote environmental education and awareness, and 3) to improve the lives of the local people. Thousands of tree seedlings are being propagated in tree nurseries at Vinany and at two nearby villages. These seedlings are used for revegetation projects not only in the Vinany Reserve, but also in Masoala National Park and along the Antalaha and Cap Est coastline. The nurseries provide needed employment for people who have suffered the debilitating effects of leprosy; guiding and maintenance jobs at the reserve help young people pay their education fees. Environmental outreach programs encourage local people to take pride in their natural and cultural heritage and inspire them to preserve it.

The rainforests of Madagascar are unfortunately shrinking in size yearly, and are in fact in serious danger of disappearing altogether within the very near future. With them will go much of the unique culture of the Malagasy people. Vinany is working hard to reverse this trend by preserving and replanting some of these forests, and by showing the world what remarkable and incredibly beautiful places they are.


Visits to Vinany and our community are warmly welcomed. Our Visitor Center is located at the base of the hill, next to the Sambava–Antalaha road at the south end of the bridge over the Ankavanana River. Several well-maintained trails meander up and over the hill through various plant communities. Viewpoints offer spectacular vistas out over the ocean, the river and the mountains beyond, and are a pleasant place to relax and listen to the sounds of the forest and the waves breaking on distant ocean reefs.

We also offer longer excursions to the surrounding area. Spend a morning exploring Vinany, have a traditional Malagasy picnic lunch at river’s edge, take a pirogue up the river through luxuriant tunnel-like vegetation, wander through pastoral rice fields and tiny picturesque villages. Or combine a trip to Vinany and Antalaha with visits to the spectacular Cap Est coastline, to the Masoala Peninsula, and to the impressive Marojejy Mountains.

We look forward to seeing you at Vinany. We are extremely proud of our land, our culture, and our work, and we would be very pleased to show it to you.

For further information, please contact us at Thank you.


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