The surprising archaeological discoveries of Madagascar.

Madagascar’s rich and complex history deserves to be better known. Yet this island has its rulers, sumptuous palaces, hidden treasures and ancient civilisations that have left their mark in archaeological remains. Researchers have undertaken expeditions to unravel the mysteries of Madagascar, revealing buried treasures and forgotten histories. Recent discoveries are still being made.

The museums of art and archaeology, freshly brought to light.

  • Art and Archaeology Museum of the University of Madagascar : The heritage of the Imerina region takes pride of place at this museum in the Isoraka district. Its opening hours are flexible, and it operates in partnership with the Institute of Civilisation at the University of Antananarivo. The museum offers temporary exhibitions highlighting Imerina traditions and everyday objects. Admission is free, but donations are welcome to support this institution.
  • The Grottos of Anjohibe : The Grottes d’Anjohibe, in the northwest of Madagascar, discovered only in 2012, is home to intriguing cave paintings dating back thousands of years. Objects in stone and bone offer a glimpse into the daily lives of the people who lived there.
  • Ambovobe : Recent archaeological remains and excavations in Ambovombe reveal prehistoric artifacts and ancient tools. New perspectives on the history of this region are emerging.
  • Marosely : Marosely, with its mysterious megaliths, raises intriguing questions about Madagascar’s ancient civilizations.

Where to find Artefacts and Precious Objects that bear witness to history?

Madagascar’s archaeological sites abound with treasures offering valuable insights into the daily lives of the island’s ancient inhabitants. Notable discoveries include:

  • Ambohimanga : magnificent artefacts are revealed, including pottery, gold and silver jewelry, and objects used in court life.
  • In the vicinity of Beloha sur Androy, in southern Madagascar, is renowned for its rock engravings and prehistoric paintings. Impressive are the collections of pottery, stone tools and ancient jewelry. The images depict hunting scenes, animals and daily life at the time.
  • Mainly known for its unique limestone formations, the Tsingy site also reveals paleontological artifacts. Stone tools and pottery bear witness to the region’s ancient history.
  • Mahilaka in the Mahajanga region, reveals a variety of sheaves dating back over 2,000 years. Pottery and handicrafts provide information on the lives of the ancient inhabitants of this coastal region.

Discover archaeological burial sites.

  • Betsileo tombs in the Central Highlands are famous for their wooden funerary sculptures, depicting human figures and symbolic motifs. These sculptures were placed on tombs to honor the deceased.
  • Anakao and Sépultures Vezo, in southwest Madagascar, are home to the tombs of the Vezo tribe. These enigmatic tombs reflect the connection between the Madagascans and the ocean. To understand the burial practices of this maritime community, we need to study these relics of the past.
  • The Ambohidratrimo complex, a historic site near Antananarivo that has been neglected in favor of more famous sites, contains royal tombs. Remains of the structures bear witness to the history of Madagascar’s ancient kingdoms.
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