Nosy Be

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Nosy Be is an island located off the northwest coast of Madagascar. Nosy Be is Madagascar's largest and busiest tourist resort. It has an area of 312 km2 and its population was officially estimated at 36,636 in 2001.

Nosy Be means "big island" in the Malagasy language. The island was called Assada during the early colonial era of the seventeenth century. Nosy Be has been given several nicknames over the centuries, including "Nosy Manitra" (the scented island).

Nosy Be is located about eight kilometers (5 miles) from the coast of Madagascar in the Mozambique Channel; several smaller islands are located nearby, including Nosy Komba, Nosy Mitsio, Nosy Sakatia, and Nosy Tanikely. The island's main town is Andoany.

The volcanic island has an area of about 312 km2 (120 sq mi), and reaches its highest peak at Mont Lokobe at 450m (1476 feet); the volcano is of Holocene origin but has not erupted in recorded history. There are eleven volcanic crater lakes on the island.

The island is known for having the world's smallest frog (Stumpffia pygmaea) and chameleon (Brookesia minima). The Lokobe Reserve is one of Madagascar's five Strict Nature Reserves (Réserves Naturelles Intégrales). Nosy Be is also home to a specific color of panther chameleon (Furcifer pardalis).

Nosy Be has a tropical climate. It is most humid in summer (December, January, February). The Tsaratanana massif partially protects the island from the strong north-east winds affecting the region in August or during tropical depressions.
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