Discover the wildlife of Senegal and visit the Bandia Conservation Park on this half-day tour. See a variety of native African animals such as giraffes, rhinos, buffalo, crocodiles, and more as you embark on a 1.5-hour game drive. After admiring the wildlife, sit down to a delicious lunch at a local restaurant and take a boat ride across the Somone Lagoon to observe the animals of the mangrove forest.
Take a half-day safari to Bandia Park and Somone Lagoon from Dakar
See native animals such as giraffes, rhinos, buffalo, monkeys, and more
Enjoy a ride across the Somone Lagoon to observe the aquatic species
Sit down to a delicious lunch at a local restaurant in Bandia Park
At least for us, this was an extremely rare miss by Viator. Bandia Reserve itself was amazing. We took the tour guided by an expert employed by the park, and it was absolutely phenomenal-- lots to see and the guide was very knowledgeable. The rest of this day left something to be desired. Our Viator guide, Abdoulaye, picked us up at our hotel in a car with a driver he brought along. We took a somewhat circuitous route on two-lane roads to and from Bandia, presumably to avoid paying tolls. Traffic on the smaller roads around Dakar is often jammed up, so the drives were pretty long--closer to 2 hours each way. Abdoulaye offered a few random comments about the scenery as we drove, such as identifying the town we were driving through. Once we arrived at Bandia we had about a 40 minute wait to ensure Abdoulaye put us on a smaller tour vehicle for the park excursion--that was nicely done as it did seem like our views would be better on the smaller truck. So no issues with the wait! As noted, the reserve was incredible, and the tour of that lasted about 2 hours, from 11:00 a.m. until 1:00 p.m. There is a nice-looking restaurant right there at Bandia, but Abdoulaye did not take us there for lunch. That made me sad because we were hungry by that time. Instead, we drove to the lagoon and made our way aboard a small motor boat piloted by someone Abdoulaye made arrangements with. This was a total waste of time. We rode around the lagoon in virtual silence. Either there are no interesting facts about the lagoon which justify a guided tour, or Abdoulaye didn't know anything about it. If you have ever seen mangroves and water fowl, you're already good to go and don't need to spend an additional hour on this. Abdoulaye took photos of us to post on his Facebook page, which I had mixed feelings about but agreed to pose when put on the spot in that moment. Next, Abdoulaye's intent was to take us to lunch at a somewhat sketchy-looking lagoon-side restaurant at the end of the boat ride coming up on 3:00 p.m., but we declined and asked to call it a day. By the time we arrived back at the hotel it was around 5:00 p.m., so this was a full day rather than a half day even without lunch. If I did this again I would skip Viator to avoid the risk of another experience like this, and make my own arrangements to tour Bandia Reserve. This is my first experience with Viator that has been anything less than spectacular.
This was a nice tour, but it seems more like a zoo than that the animals are free. Also, there was to have been a lunch included - it wasn't. Other than the transportation and entry to the park, that was it.
A very pleasant day-trip to see acacias, baobobs, African antelopes, African buffaloes, monkeys, crocs, and several bird species including Abyssinian rollers and finches in Bandia. In Somone, you can see great waders like Eurasian curlews.