I had a nice spread on the BBC's travel page earlier this week of my photos from Tsingy de Bemaraha in western Madagascar. Someone wrote me yesterday to ask if the photos were real or if they were faked.
The question stems from rocks seeming to float in mid air. Well, the pictures and the place are real. I have the scars to prove it. On the other hand it is the most bizarre landscape I have ever encountered. The truth is that if I had not seen the place with my own eyes I might not believe the photos myself.
The reason that rocks sometimes seem to float in the tsingy is that layers of soft sediments are occasionally sandwiched between layers of harder stone. Sometimes that softer sediment erodes away leaving the stones seeming to "float" unnaturally like in the BBC photo above and the image below.
And sometimes enough of the soft sediment erodes away that whole towers topple over and the area resembles a huge stack of fallen dominoes.