Travel & Adventure 52'


In Madagascar, the Fianarantsoa-Manakara railway is a true institution. Criss-crossing the island from its summits to its east-coast, its little train a key driver of the Malagasy economy.


Inaugurated in the 1930s, and maliciously nicknamed “High-Vibration Train” by the Malagasy because of its outdated nature, this valiant train crosses the red island twice a week, slowly but surely – with a top speed of 35 km/h. Travelling 270 km from Fianarantsoa, in the hills, to the port city of Manakara, it stops by 18 villages scattered through the mountains, with no road access. This train thus ensures the survival of over 200,000 villagers (farmers, breeders, craftsmen or traders).


This film invites us to hop aboard the “little train of the cliffs” to explore the island, from its high plateaus to its valleys and lush forests. A marvelous excursion that brings to light the little-known society of rural Madagascar.

Direction: Laurent Boullard  

Production: Flair Production for France Télévisions

Languages: French

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