The cliffs are fairly close together, and tower above the tiny village of Andonaka, a simple and small settlement in the wild heart of Madagascar.
The climbs are long, but mainly tackled in a single day push. The rock is extremely compact, meaning that no natural protection can be placed. This has led to a ground up bolting ethic, producing quite run-out routes on generally slabby ground, but luckily the bolts are mostly in good condition.
When do I go?
The most popular time to visit and climb is in September and early October. In July the temperatures can be very low, below zero on the summits, but the weather is usually fairly dry. November to March can be very hot and have a lot of rain. We visited in April 2008 and had hot weather, but it was still climbable. If I was to return I would opt for September.
Who flies where?
You need to fly to the capital: Antananarivo - for flight advice check the Lonely Planet Website.
The climbing area is a full day's drive from Antananarivo, with the final few kilometres being on a dirt track. We organised all of our travel through the camp site Camp Catta, who arranged a bus for most of the way and then picked us up in a 4x4.
For a full run down on how to get to Tsaranoro see this page on the Camp Catta Website
Where do I stay?
There are loads of hotels in Antananarivo, you may want to spend a few days there soaking in the sites.
When at Tsaranoro itself there are limited accommodation options. The obvious choice is to stay at the excellent Camp Catta, situated just below the cliffs, with a full range of options from camping in your own tent to staying ina fairly posh bungalow.
It has showers, toilets, a bar and restaurant and can provide lunches and food for climbing.
It also has a full set of colour photo topos for all the climbs in the area!
It is not a budget choice, charging European prices, but it is not overly expensive and the food and service are excellent.
There is a more basic campsite in the village too: Tsara Camp
What's the scoff like?
Madagascar in general is a developing country and has basic food at a reasonable price. Camp Catta has high standard food at European prices. It has a bar and all amenities.
Water needs to be treated in some way. Bottled water is available at Camp Catta.
Where can I buy gear and food?
Climbing gear is not available, so bring everything you need. You can buy food in the nearby villages, or you can eat at the camp.
What else is there apart from the climbing?
Hiking in one of the most beautiful parts of the world, with excellent trails and huts to stay in. It is also a popular paragliding area.