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Wild At Heart

Perched nonchalantly on the West Coast of Madagascar, Morondava is a small, unassuming town, overshadowed by giants. The famed 'Avenue of the Baobabs' is what drew me here, and I am not disappointed: stately, serene, seductive - a ragged regiment of full-bodied trunks that taper gracefully skyward. Gently exploding clusters of root-like branches add the finishing touches to these unorthodox beauties. No wonder the sun worships here - along with the tourists.

MadagascarThe next morning, sated, I fly inland to Antananarivo, the island's sprawling, multi-levelled capital city. I won't stay long. The baobabs were a must-see detour, but I need another injection of wildlife.

I already have more than enough potent, palpable memories to last several lifetimes. Two weeks of travelling along the island's undulating spine have certainly been rewarding. In the sharply sculpted canyons of Isalo National Park, I indulged in one-sided conversations with slow-but-vigilant chameleons. Most were polite enough to cast one revolving eye in my direction while I did my best to express my respect and admiration. In the arid south, at Berenty, I attended early-morning 'yoga classes' with ring-tailed lemurs. Together we sat, straight-backed, limbs outstretched, absorbing the heat of the rising sun. Less than two hours later, I cried with laughter at the comic but graceful Verreaux's Sifaka: white, brown-capped lemurs that dance, arms raised, across the forest floor.