The best way to round off the day in Masoala…

What could be better than a professional massage after a long hike in the primary forest?

We decided massage offers would perfectly fit to our programs. Unfortunately, there were no professionally trained masseurs in the Masoala area which is hardly surprising, given that Masoala is one of the most remote places on earth and very few people here have qualifications of any kind, barring the skills needed to survive in a rain forest!

To make sure that the quality of the massages on offer will be of high quality we looked for a person with long-term experience that would be able to teach and up-skill our future masseurs.

We got in touch with South African Massage Therapist Sue Retallack, who came to Masoala Forest Lodge in summer 2016 to give a two-week massage course.

10 local ladies were invited to participate in the course, with the prospect of securing one of four masseur positions we were planning to make available at the lodge.

The ladies competed in different massage techniques and the four best were chosen on day 3 from which on they were trained one on one for the next 11 days.

Since launching this wonderful offering we have had great feedback from our guests.

The masseurs have also been putting their new skills to use and offering their services in our off-season to locals.

We are very happy that this project was such a success and has had a positive and sustainable impact on the community here.