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The majestic Allée des Baobabs: discover the history and beauty of these emblematic trees

The majestic Allée des Baobabs: discover the history and beauty of these emblematic trees

Strolling along the baobab avenue at sunset

The Avenue of Baobabs is a stunning and rare place in Madagascar, located about 20km from Morondava. The area is home to around 40 giant baobab trees lining the dirt road. This avenue was designated as a “Natural Monument” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature in 2007, turning it into a protected area spanning 320 hectares.

The baobabs are massive trees that are over 800 years old and hold significant cultural importance. They have been dubbed “Renala,” which means “mother of the forest.” These particular species – Adansonia Za, A. rubrostipa, and A. grandidieri – are endemic to Madagascar. These giants are survivors of intense deforestation, with only about 10% remaining due to widespread wildfires.

Considered sacred, these trees cannot be used for everyday purposes like making furniture or fuelwood. Despite this, their fruits play an essential role in producing essential oils and beauty products such as masks for women’s skincare routines.

According to legend, the gods planted the baobabs upside down due to their perceived arrogance, resulting in their unique bottle-like shape with smooth trunks and foliage at their apex. These majestic trees can reach up to 30 meters in height and store up to 100,000 liters of water within their trunks.

During the rainy season, they sprout leaves while their flowers open momentarily to release precious nectar before wilting shortly after. The flowers come in various shades like yellow, white, or red attracting animals such as lemurs and bats who aid in pollination before the baobabs shed their leaves during the dry season.

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The baobab avenue is a majestic and truly magical place, a must-stop on a tour to the West-Central region.

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