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Life on board

On an adventure travel on our discovery or diving cruises you will experience the authenticity of Madagascar’s West coast, thanks to four dedicated local Vezo crew and a virtuoso gourmet chef. And to ease you into this new world and experience, European Laetitia or Fred, the originators of this dream, will host you throughout your journey on sailboat NOFY BE (“Big Dream” in Malagasy).

On the start of a sailing journey, we usually try to set off early morning, the day after your arrival. Before departure we will have a briefing to plan together and fine tune our itinerary according to the wind forecast. It is however just a forecast and changes may occur during our journey, such changes could of course also be dictated by your wants and wishes at the time. Flexibility is the motto on NOFY BE, our traditional old gaffer.


At that latitude we only get about 12 hours of day light all year round. When on cruise, to make the most of it and to be in keep with the traditions of our Vezo sailors, we live with the cycle of the sun. Early rise and early down.


We are of course at the mercy of the winds and our routes are dictated by them. A fairly standard day may turn out as follow: Early morning Easterly land winds will usually allow us to move on under sail. We will then take advantage of the winds dropping a bit later to stop for some diving, snorkelling or spear gun fishing for our lunch. We then carry on sailing to our next destination having lunch onboard. We will usually anchor for the night in the afternoon.

You will then have the opportunity of a scroll ashore to visit villages, to meet their local population, baobab forests, endemic fauna like lemurs, caves or other features of interest that we may encounter along this coast Madagascar virgin of mass tourism.


We then either return onboard for an evening shower and a meal sometimes followed by our crew’s famous musical animation, or, if the tides permit, set camp ashore and end the evening around a fire.


In winter, from June to September, during the strong Southerly winds season which some years can stretch to November or December, our boat will be based in Nosy Be, an island North-West of Madagascar. There, an all year round micro climate of moderate winds will allow us a comfortable dream sail.


This is the ecotourism concept of NOFY BE that lets you live to the rhythm of the winds through majestic sail manoeuvres!


In NOFY BE’s hull we have 8 bunk beds in a communal dormitory, offering limited privacy, but comfortable.
Small pillow, sheets & blankets are provided on cruises.


Indoor office/sitting area around a central table with two seats providing 2 further beds.
Two fridges for cold drinks. Not very “authentic” on this type of boat, but an agreeable luxury
(when they work…)!
Outside plenty of deck space to lie on plastic coated foam mattresses and relax. When the wind is not too
strong and / or we are anchored a tarpaulin provides some welcome shade over the main deck that also
serves as dining area, easily seating 15. At the rear, a further seating area surrounding a low “coffee table”.


The galley is sited under the front mast. Made of a wooden box with charcoal stoves, it is built to the same
specifications as the ones that can be found on the traditional “cargo botry” sailing along the West coast of
Madagascar. The charcoal we mostly use is a green “charcoal”, originating from a renewable eucalyptus
plantation. It is more expensive than charcoal from endangered and receding mangroves or rare remaining
hard wood forests, but by encouraging its use, such plantations might start springing up around many
bush villages and slow the blight of deforestation in Madagascar.


are external, rudimentary but affording extensive views whilst being out of site. They are situated at the
rear of the boat on an overhanging platform reached by a few steps. The toilet is on the starboard side with
a comfortable hardwood seat. The shower is on the port side with a bucket of seawater to wash and soft
water to get rinsed.