The Parc Zoologique Ivoloina (ee-va-la-ween) is a very well-run zoo and botanical garden set on a lovely lake just north of Tamatave. Visitors can enjoy four walking trails with booklets in English, a snack bar and an education centre. An optional guide is Ar10,000 or Ar40,000 for a full day. Book in advance for a night tour (5.30pm) to see the nocturnal lemurs (Ar10,000). There is dormitory accommodation, too (for two Ar30,000); order dinner in advance (Ar5000).
The beautiful grounds cover 2.82 sq km and contain more than 100 lemurs from 12 different species, both caged and semiwild, as well as chameleons, radiated tortoises, tree boas and tomato frogs. The botanical garden contains more than 75 species of native and exotic plants, and a model farm designed to demonstrate sustainable agricultural methods.