The pirogues that ply the Niger are leaky vessels, but no matter, the river is so slow and shallow during the dry season that it's unlikely anyone could drown. Our ride across the river came to us in the form of a young man who met us at the hotel. For $15, he and his brother ferried my wife and I across the river to the villages. The pirogue is like a canoe built with planks. A plastic container was used to toss out the water that leaked in during our trip. A long pole is used to push along the bottom of the river. Judging from the throw of the pole, I'd say that the Niger is no more than 10 feet deep during dry season in the middle channel. It could be very muddy down there, so I wouldn't try testing the water's depth. During the rainy season I could see that this place becomes very soggy indeed.
The bus station is away from the waterfront where the hotels are, so you'll need a short taxi ride. No need to do any heavy bargaining s the ride isn't that long. We arrived late at night and were able to wake up the manager of the hotel received us without complaint, and we were able to have our guide shepard us to the bus station in the early morning hours. However, these buses can and do break down. On the way to Djenne, the next day we were stranded about half way between Segou and San. We bargained for a bachee, which turned out to be a mistake as the bus managed to get fixed and met us at the San bus terminal. Needless to say, it was very late by the time we arrived in Djenne.
Bittar trans is the best choice to go to/from Segou from/to Bamako.
The ticket cost 2500 cfas in October of 2004