when we start evaluating Madagascar as a destination for a future trip, we Italians usually mean the small island of Nosy Be . It is located northwest of the Madre island and is home to a large number of French tourists and residents. For years, Nosy Be – which in Malagasy means ” big island ” – attracts middle-aged men who, once they reach retirement, decide to settle down in the quiet island, perhaps accompanying young local women.
We too, for the first approach, we chose Nosy Be as the basis of our journey but we did not miss the opportunity to discover some of the small islets that form a wonderful archipelago with a special fauna.
In particular I speak of Nosy Komba – “the island of lemurs” – and the name already says it all.
The small volcanic island is located between Nosy Be and the north-west coast of the Isola Madre and offers a very calm and clear sea with the possibility of snorkeling and diving . It is easy to meet under you a beautiful sea turtle, or a huge grouper!But you could be distracted by the sea because of some lively and very nice little creatures that populate the island: the lemurs! Mainly lemur macaque, perhaps the most widespread in the area. In appearance and in movement they resemble arzille monkeys but they are less spiteful and they gladly come closer if you offer them a banana.They will jump on their shoulders without thinking for a moment . They will hold the banana in their hands with their useful opposable thumb or will be content to lick the pulp from your hands.
They do not fear man, Nosy Komba is a wildlife paradise and they do not run any kind of danger for us. And they are perfect photomodels! If you are quick to take pictures, they change position every moment, going from the shoulders, to the head and with a surprising jump, up to the nearest branch. Skilled climbers and innate curious, spend a large part of their lives on trees looking from up there and waiting for a good reason to get off.
Although the island takes its name from them, the lemurs are not the only inhabitants of the dense tropical forest that extends to most of the land that emerged.