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The Gap Year Blog

Fun Things to Do in Hellville - Frontier

23 Apr 2016 16:40 PM

Here at Frontier we’re not evil, Scrooge-like characters - we do let volunteers have a day off from all of their hard work! What, you may be wondering, does one do with these precious days off?

Well, let me tell you, there are a myriad of fantastical, cultural indulging and diverting activities to do in your spare time.

View the beautiful sunrise over the port

To begin your day of adventures in Hellville, get up nice and early and head over to the port. Just left of the port, over the bridge, there is a nice walk, around 2k, to a gorgeous view point where you can see splendid sunrises over the port. It’s really lovely to see the boats illuminated in pinks and oranges bobbing calmly on the water as the morning chorus of birds welcomes the day in.

Wander through great little fruit & veg markets

In Hellville town there are a few bustling and colourful markets where you can find any number of random items. A visit to the fruit and vegetable market, it’s a separate world of activity in itself, is a must! Browsing the exotic fruits and spices is inspiring for any budding chef and watching the locals go into battle with each when they are bargaining for vegetables and beans is always amusing!

The fabric stalls, dotted all over Hellville and especially common in the market, are beautiful. Vibrant, bright patterns steal your attention in every direction! These pieces of fabric you can either wear in the traditional Malagasy fashion of a wrap-around dress, or you can liven up your house and use them as funky wall hangings or sofa covers!

Get some tasty street food

The street food is absolutely delicious out here too, although you do have to be careful what you buy as not everything is environmentally friendly. For instance, much of the fried fish, available on most street corners, has not been sustainably caught. However, delicious dough balls are just as available and are completely guilt free- unless you count the calories, which we don’t! They taste like donuts but are actually deep fried balls of rice flour. There are also the delectable sambosas, similar to Indian samosas, little deep fried triangles filled with either veggies and egg or zebu (beef), yummy! You can also find fried bananas for pudding and salt and peppered dried bananas, which are like the Malagasy version of crisps!

Beach in paradise

Nosy Be, being an island, is littered with stunning beaches. When you say Paradise Beach, you think white sand, palm trees with coconuts and crystal clear seas… that’s what Nosy Be has to offer, so it’d be a shame to waste the opportunity of being a beach bum! The nearest beach to Hellville, within walking distance, is Fucus beach. It’s quite pebbly but breathtaking! A short collective journey away, a shared taxi for those who don’t know, are Ambondrana and Ambataluca beaches. These are slightly touristier but the spectacular views and sense of relaxation flooding over you make it worth it!

When the night comes alive

At night the streets of Hellville come alive and the market turns into lots of makeshift restaurants where you can eat scrumptious local dishes for cheap. Perfect. However, that isn’t the crowning glory of of Hellville’s nightlife, no. The discotec proudly takes that title! With a mixture of really cheesy, Western pop music and Malagasy dance music it’s easy to find something that’ll get your hips shaking and your feet dancing to the music! It’s often quite quiet, but so much fun as there are usually a few locals up for showing off their moves in a dance off. A great way to finish your day of adventuring!

By Lizzie Unsworth - Field Communications Officer | Frontier Madagascar

Frontier runs terrestrial & marine conservation, community, teaching and adventure projects in over 50 countries - join us and explore the world!