Madagascar celebrates the usual Christian holidays, and has three secular public holidays, during which many offices and shops will be closed. The country normally sees in the New Year with a three-day party, with ceremonies, song and dance – and again most offices are closed.

Public holidays

January New Year
March Martyrs’ Day, commemorating the Revolt of 1947
March/April Easter Monday (March 28, 2016; April 17, 2017; April 2, 2018)
May 1 Labour Day
May Ascension (May 5, 2016; May 25, 2017; May 10, 2018)
May/June Whitsun (May 16, 2016; June 5, 2017; May 21, 2018)
June 26 Independence Day
August 15 Assumption
November 1 All Saints’ Day
December 25 Christmas Day

A festival calendar

Diana festivals bit.ly/Diana-Festivals. Festivals of culture, sport, music, dance and arts include: Zegny Zo in Diego Suarez (May); Kabiry in Ambilobe (Aug); and Sorogno in Ambanja (Sept).
Donia Nosy Be (a week or so in May or June) festival-donia.com. Hell-Ville and nearby villages stage shows of traditional music and dance with artists visiting from across the Indian Ocean region.
Famadihana Throughout the central highlands (June–Sept). Hundreds of two-day family exhumation and reburial ceremonies, with feasting and music.
Festivanille Satrahagna Sambava (Aug) bit.ly/Festivanille. Vanilla-flavoured series of weekend festivals in the Sava region (Vohémar, Andapa, Antalaha and Sambava), with sporting contests, music and dance.
Madajazzcar Antananarivo (Oct) madajazzcar.mg. International jazz festival.

Book through Rough Guides’ trusted travel partners

Madagascar features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

8 reasons why Madagascar should be on your radar

8 reasons why Madagascar should be on your radar

Madagascar, the world's fourth largest island, is a giant wonderland of natural sights and experiences. It's a place of diverse landscapes, climates and tribal …

20 Mar 2018 • Kirsten Henton insert_drive_file Article
Passport to write: the runners-up!

Passport to write: the runners-up!

After weeks of deliberation, we're thrilled to announce the results of the Rough Guides and Journeys are made @gapyear.com writing competition. The winning p…

03 Jul 2015 • Rough Guides Editors insert_drive_file Article
Incredible forests of the world

Incredible forests of the world

Spiny Forest, Madagascar On an island filled with weird and wonderful living things, the spiny forest has to be Madagascar's most unusual ecosystem. Endemic…

03 Oct 2014 • Alison Roberts camera_alt Gallery
View more featureschevron_right

Privacy Preference Center

Necessary

Mandatory - can not be deselected. Necessary cookies help make a website usable by enabling basic functions like page navigation and access to secure areas of the website. The website cannot function properly without these cookies.

PHPSESSID,aelia_cs_selected_currency,cookie_notice_accepted,RS,bp-message,bp-message-type,id,UIDR,w3tc_logged_out,__cfduid
__cfduid

Statistics

Statistic cookies help website owners to understand how visitors interact with websites by collecting and reporting information anonymously.

__utma,__utmb,__utmc,__utmz,_ga,_gid,__atssc,__atuvc,__atuvs,di,dt,ssc,ssh,sshs,uid,uit,xt
__utma,__utmb,__utmc,__utmz,_ga,_gid
__atssc,__atuvc,__atuvs,di,dt,ssc,ssh,sshs,uid,uit,xtc

Marketing

Marketing cookies are used to track visitors across websites. The intention is to display ads that are relevant and engaging for the individual user and thereby more valuable for publishers and third party advertisers.

__gads,PISID, BEAT, CheckConnection TempCookie703, GALX, GAPS, GoogleAccountsLocale_session, HSID, LSID, LSOSID, NID, PREF, RMME, S, SAPISID, SID, SSID,__utmv, _twitter_sess, auth_token, auth_token_session, external_referer, guest_id, k, lang, original_referer, remember_checked, secure_session, twid, twll,c_user, datr, fr, highContrast, locale, lu, reg_ext_ref, reg_fb_gate, reg_fb_ref, s, wd, xs
__gads,PISID, BEAT, CheckConnection TempCookie703, GALX, GAPS, GoogleAccountsLocale_session, HSID, LSID, LSOSID, NID, PREF, RMME, S, SAPISID, SID, SSID
__utmv, _twitter_sess, auth_token, auth_token_session, external_referer, guest_id, k, lang, original_referer, remember_checked, secure_session, twid, twll
c_user, datr, fr, highContrast, locale, lu, reg_ext_ref, reg_fb_gate, reg_fb_ref, s, wd, xs