Canter Safari

Location: Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve

Canter Safari

Description

Introduction

In simple language, Canter Safari means undertaking jungle safari in open bus system. It is a open bus with seating capacity of 18 tourists, 01 guide and 01 driver. Those who have visited Ranthambore national park, are very much familiar of canter safari rides as it is going on successfully their since many years but for Bandhavgarh & other national parks of Madhya Pradesh, it is introduced much later and still not much popular among visitors. Considering the geographical conditions, Canter safari accessibility is easy in Ranthambore but not in Central India. Still it is considered as a ray of hope for those helpless tourists who reaches Bandhavgarh without any advance booking safari tickets and when gypsy safari tickets get sold out. It is equally good safari option for those who have low budget and wish to see the jungle of core zone. In such situation, Canter safari is best way to explore core zone forest area in an economical way.

How to book Canter Safari

Like jeep safari, Canter safari tickets are not offered online for advance booking. It means we can't book Canter safari in advance. If you want to secure it in advance then book MPSTDC hotel roms for your stay and they will secure canter safari tickets for you, as per availability. MPSTDC hotel have a small quota of ticket for their own customers thus they can secure seats for you in Canter but only out of limited quota seats. If those seats gets booked then we have to follow the system to reach ticket counter and try for current tickets on first come first serve basis.  As jeep ride is the first choice for safari drives, thus their is high probability to get canter safari tickets. Whenever you go, carry sufficient cash in INR only (cards not accepted) and ID details of all the visitors. Try to reach the counter one hour before opening time to enhance your change of getting desired tickets. Here you need to fill-up booking form, submit cash payment and show the original ID document of all the visitors for verification. After all these formalities, Forest Department official at counter will allocate you seats and provide you vehicle number and seat number/s. Canter will be available for you close to ticket counter. Here it is important to note that Canter will not go to any hotel for pick-up or drop. Guest is required to reach ticket counter by own and similarly after completion of safari, return back to hotel by own. For these transfer they may take help for their hotel or hire dedicated cab for tour.

Benefits for Canter Safari

Their are many benefits for Canter safari drives. Some of them are discussed below:

Economical: It is an economical way of enjoying jungle safari drives. Thus is the more approachable medium of safari for deprived people who are not able to efford high cose of full-vehicle jeep safari drives. This make safari drives more approachable for middle or low class visitors and thus seen as value for money deal.

High Probability of Tickets: Jungle safari tours are costily but still very much popular among visitors. Large number of tourists reached national parks on daily basis and thus supply of tickets are always fall short in comparison to their demand. In season time, mostly jeep safari tickets get sold-out in much advance. At the same time, tourists comes with wish to visit core safari zones and have developed negative attitude towards Buffer zone safari. In such situation, Canter safari is a positive source of hope to get alternate way to enjoy core zone safari at very reasonable cost.

Togetherness: If you are in group of more than 6 person and wish to do safari all together then Canter safari is the best suitable medium for us. In jeeps, maximum 06 tourists are allowed but in Canter around 18 tourists can undertake safari drive, all together. It is very much suitable for large families, school student groups, corporate groups, group of friends etc.

Shortcomings of Canter Safari

Track Limitation: If we study the geographical conditions of Bandhavgarh, we will realize that it is located on hills of Vindhyachal thus their are many areas in steep road, narrow lane etc which poses challenge for Canter safari bus. Thus, Canter safari track is pre-studied and decided and thus we can't expect it to go by tracks of our choice or visit to any challenging place. This limits our probability to explore jungle as per our choice.

Guide Service Limitation: Usually we will find that safari guide sits in first seat, close to driver to check the track and have better view of jungle. Canter safari bus is lengthy thus it becomes difficult for visitors, sitting in last rows, to catch the speach of safari guide or to ask him any question. Thus they are more deprived of guide service and thus they were not able to enjoy safari in a satisfactory manner. One guide among 18 tourists is not a justified combination thus it is considered as its drawback.

Photography Issues: While doing jeep rides, we can call the driver to stop at anytime for photography or to wait for jungle calls, birdings etc. When we are in Canter, sitting at a distance from driver seat, along with 14 to17 other passengers, it becomes difficult to call the driver to stop or wait for any jungle moment. Similarly due to presence of may tourists, it becomes difficult for driver to decide whom to listen and whom to ignore thus this rides restricts our chances for better wildlife photography. 

Occupancy Conditions: As Forest department is charging very nominal fee for Canter safari rides thus they have put condition of minimum 10 passengers to operate the ride. If you are 2 to 8 person and no other tourists turn up for this ride, then you may not be able to undertake the ride. Due to less occupance, it would be difficult to cover the operating cost thus department has put this condition.

By reading above information, we can have better idea about Canter safari ride in Bandhavgarh. We can take suitable decision, whether to go with Canter or Jeep safari option. According to condition and other factors, tourist can take suitable decision.

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