By Taylor Mayol, Blue Ventures
Look at a map and find Madagascar, the fourth biggest island on Earth, just off the coast of east Africa. Focus on the dry southwest and find the town of Toliara, capital of this impoverished region.
Now imagine a drive northwards through the searing heat along a bumpy, sandy trail. You’re hugging the coast, flanking the peculiar yet alluring Spiny Forest, one of the planet’s most threatened forest ecosystems. You hold on tight as your 4×4 surges forward over rocks and nearly becomes planted in the deep, fine sand.