Isalo National Park

A beautifully scenic arid national park in the south west of Madagascar....

Personal experience

I spent a few days here with the Silversea expedition team and guests in 2018.


This is one of the places to find the famous Ring-tailed Lemur. I photographed a troop along the walk into the gully on the Nymphes Cascade Circuit.

the pretty creek and nice scenery of the Nymphes Cascade Circuit on the way to the Blue Pool and Black Pool (Piscine Bleue and Piscine Noire).


You want reptiles? Well you have come to the right place in the right country! There is a wide range of lizards in the slightly different habitats within the region.

Madagascar Keeled Plated Lizard (image by Damon Ramsey)

You know how your mum used to say she had eyes in the back of her head? Well this guy really does... 

The 'three-eyed' lizard. Note the pineal gland on the back of the head (image by Damon Ramsey).

The Dumeril's Madagascar Swift is common on rocks around the various lodges.

Dumeril's Madagascar Swift (Damon Ramsey)

During the day, many individual (presumably introduced) Radiated Tortoises can be seen dragging themselves around the Isalo lodges. 

While walking through the accommodation grounds after a night walk, I found this snake when I nearly trod on it! Fellow expedition team member Malcolm Turner identified it as one of the 'Cat-eyed Snakes'. Based on distribution and dorsal pattern I presume it is Madagascarophis ocellatus.  

Cat-eyed Snake.

and of course this being Madagascar, there are always Chameleons....


Souimanga Sunbird (Damon Ramsey)


Flatid Leaf Insect adults (Damon Ramsey)
two Stick Insects mating
Noctuid Moth (Damon Ramsey)


There is some stunning scenery in and around the national park. The vegetation includes the iconic Bismarck Palm, with it's distinctive grey green foliage.