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Published On: Thu, Oct 9th, 2014

Int’l Tourism Day: Exploring Nigerian tourist centers

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tourism_tax_2Tourism in Nigeria, no doubt centers largely on events owing to the country’s ample amount of ethnic groups, but also includes monuments, waterfalls and other factors too numerous to mention. Evelyn Okakwu explores tourists centres across the lenght and breath of the nation.

commemorating this year’s theme of the international tourism day; “Tourism and community development”; The United Nation’s Secreatry General, Ban Ki-moon stated that; “The role of tourism in contributing to one of the building blocks of a more sustainable future for all: Community development. This focus is in line with the global transition to the Sustainable Development Goals as the guiding principle promoted by the UN from 2015 and beyond”. Thus the need to highlight the tourists sites across the nation.

Obudu Cattle Ranch: Obudu Cattle Ranch is located in Cross River Slate towards the Nigeria-Cameroon border in the South-East. The Ranch is over 1,524m, has temperate weather condition to ensure green vegetation and grazing of cattle round the year.

Confluence of Rivers Niger and Benue: River Niger remained a marvel to the Europeans until John and Richard Landers passed through the Confluence on October 25th 1830, completing the journey that Mungo Park had started. Rivers Niger and Benue are two largest rivers in West Africa.

The two rivers meet at Lokoja forming a Y-shaped structure and draining Southwards into the Ocean. While River Niger is brownish in Colour, River Benue is light green in colour.

The Sultan of Sokoto Palace: The significance of the palace of the Sultan of Sokoto goes beyond cultural and artistic excellence; the palace is also the cohesive symbol of the Nigerian muslim world which guides believers in the faith. It is located in Sokoto town, the capital of Sokoto State .

Othman Dan Fodio Tomb: Othman Dan Fodio has a significant place in the history of Nigeria as a famous Jihadist credited with the spread of Islam in the North and beyond. His tomb in Sokoto has remained an attraction.

Birnin Kudu Rock Painting: Birnin Kudu town lies in the South of Jigawa State. Birnin Kudu is noted for the presence of rocks. Fascinating are the ancient paintings on these rocks. The different paintings are eloquent information on the styles of the early settlers in the area.

NOK Village: A trip to the Nok Village in Kaduna State launches visitors into physical romance with the so-much-talked-about culture of the Nok people. The cultures has been known for over 2,500 years.

River Azurnini: Blue River is located in Abia State towards its boundary with Akwalbom State. The attractive features of the River include its crystal-clear blue water; canoe rides; sandy beaches with such relaxation facilities as chairs and tables.

The Long JuJu Shrine of Arochukwu; also known as: Mask Arochukwu, is a famous tourist destination with the cave of the famous long juju oracle as a particular attraction.

The cave is believed to hold the long metal pipe through which the gods speak to the people.

Yola Municipality; Located in Yola, the most striking impression aboutthe town is its undulating topography of hill chains particularly the three sister hills which are so-called because they stand side by side and share the same height.

Ibeno Beach: One of the numerous fine beaches in Nigeria is the Ibeno Beach in Akwalbom State. A lover of water sport finds the Beach which stretches to James town on the Atlantic most inviting.

Ogbunike Cave: Ogbunike Cave can be described as the very wonder of nature. The Cave, segmented into sections, is found in Anambra State, some few kilometres away from the Onitsha market town.

Rojenny Tourist Village: In Anambra State, just at the outskirts of Onitsha market town is found Rojenny Village, one of the leading tourist resorts in Nigeria.

lgbo-Ukwu African Artifact lgbo-Ukwu is an ancient town which has remained an attraction to tourists because of its bronze artifacts. The bronze which was first noticed in 1938 was later excavated by Thurstan Shaw, an English archaelogist.

Yankari National Park: Elephant Yankari National Park has become the most developed Wildlife park in Nigeria with a lot of attractions for visitors. The park is famous for its variety of animals available for viewing round the year.

Wikki Warm Springs is a famous attraction in the Yankari National Park. It is particularly prized for its warm water. It is available both night and day for tourists who cherish swimming.

The National Park is located in the South-Eastern area of Bauchi, the capital town of Bauchi State in the North-Eastern part of Nigeria.

The Hills of BenueHillsLocated in the middle belt region of Nigeria, Benue State shares boundaries with Taraba State on the East; Plateau State on the North and Edo State on the West; and Anambra, Enugu, Cross River States on the South. The entire landmass presents hills of various shades and touristic appeals. They include;

lkyogen Hills; this hill exude mild weather and is also known as Ikyogen Cattle Ranch.

The others are Ushogbo Hills in Ushogbo; and the Bassa Hills believed to be the place for origin of the Tiv people.

Lake Chad; This occupies a strategic location serving, not only Borno State of Nigeria where it is located but also the three neighbouring countries of Niger, Cameroon, and Chad.

Agbokim Waterfall: Some short distance away from the Nigeria-Cameroon border is the very captivating sight called Agbokim Waterfalls.

Sillicon Hill: Near the Nkpologu campus of the Enugu State University of Science and Technology (ESUT) is found this very important mineral deposit. The hill which is more than 300 metres above sea level and almost half a kilometre long has silica, an important raw material fofthe manufacture of glasses.

Mbari Cultural Centres; The home of Mbari sculptural houses. These sculptures are robust art manifestations of the prevalent social life and a monumental art sacrifice to “ALA” the earth goodness. In Mbari, Imo State there are very many objects like the terrorising beast, the plastic forms of symbols of the prevalent deities among which is the “ALA” herself, the Amadioha (Thunder god), the Ogwugwu (forest god) each deity with his or her mystical messengers.

Chief Nana’s Palace, Koko: Chief Nana Olomu was a powerful nineteenth Century indigenous entrepreneur. As a reflection of the grandeur of his achievements, he built this magnificent edifice at the turn of the century. The Palace has now become recognised and approved as a National Monument.

Bible She, Araya: A copy of the Holy Bible is believed to have descended miraculously in Araya in Delta State from heaven around August, 1914. The spot now attracts Christian Pilgrims from all over the country, especially during the Easter season.

Abraka River Resort, Abraka: Located in the quiet University Town of Abraka, this Motel is ideal for those who want to escape the noise and tension of city/urban life.

Okonni Wildlife Sanctuary: The Okomu Wildlife Sanctuary, Benin City, Edo State was the first in the country to be protected by law for conservation in August 1985. The sanctuary contains rare species like the white-throat- ed monkey. Also present are the mona monkey, the putty nosed quenon, among others.

Ososo Tourist Centre: Located on the boundary between Edo and Kogi States, is hilly and rocky. It lies about 40 kilometres from Igarra and 200 kilometres from Benin city in Edo State, The rocks and hills present a beautiful scenery.

Ezeagu Tourist Complex: A half-hour drive from the burstling capital city of Enugu State is the Ezeagu Tourist Complex. The complex exhibits one of the natural wonders ofnature. Measuring about 22 hectares in size, it comprises a lake, a cave and a waterfall (spring water).

Mbari Cultural Centres. The home of Mbari sculptural houses. These sculptures are robust art manifestations of the prevalent social life and a monumental art sacrifice to “ALA” the earth goodness.

Oguta Lake Holiday Complex:

The holiday complex situates in Oguta local government Area of Imo State about 40km (forty kilometres) away from Owerri, the Capital of Imo State. The lake is of fresh water and the second largest natural lake in the country after lake Chad.

The Iron of Liberty: Lokoja, because of its location near the banks of River Niger, was an important centre for slave trade during the era of slavery in Nigeria.

Owu Waterfalls: The Owu Waterfall is at Owa Kajola, lfelodun Local Government Area of Kwara State. It is about 120m above water level. The surrounding is evergreen while the waters are ice cold.

Pategi Beach: PategiKwara State is located along River Niger and enjoys a bounteous stretch of sandy beach currently used by local fishermen. The Regatta pavilion is constructed on the beach and, together with the recently constructed regatta complex, Pategi beach has potentials for great holiday resorts.

Maiyegun Beach: The beach is within the Maiyegun Tourism Zone of EtiOsa Local Government Area of Lagos State. The Beach is popular for relaxation spree. The beach hosts the popular Lekki Sunsplash Musical Concert.

The Ancient Town of Badagry: Agia tree: The site of the fallen tree at Market street, Badagry was the spot where Christianity was first preached under the tree in 1842. First storey building was founded in Marina Badagry the first one storey building in Nigeria was built in 1845 by Rev. Henry Townsend.

Slave Trade Relics:Relics of the slave trade comprising shackles, locks are in the custody of the Mobee family at Marina Badagry.

Verekete Shrine: A shrine in Badagry where Richard Landerwas tried before a priest for alleged espionage charges. He survived after drinking concoction as proof of his innocence.

First pair of Sato Drums: In Badagryare the first pair of Sato drums brought to Akara Kunmo in 1543 by Tosavi and Whensu his son, from Dahomey (now Republic of Benin).

National Theatre: Highbrow architectural masterpiece of modern bearing, the National Theatre is popularly acclaimed the cultural headquarters of Nigeria.

Zuma Rock: Located along Kaduna Abuja highway, Niger State. This is a beautiful, giant of a rock.

As the tourists nets closer, a human like face becomes Visible with engraving representing the sockets, the nose and the mouth on the side of the rock that faces Abuja road.

Dr. LadiKwali Pottery Centre

Established in 1951 by late Mr. Micheal Cardew, a British porter of international repute. The centre in Niger trains native traditional porters in the art of modern pottery making in order to preserve and protect Nigeria’s rich cultural heritage through the art of pottery making.

Gurara Waterfalls:

This wonderful falls which is best described as Nigeria’s Premier falls is located at kilometre 76 along MinnaSuleja roads. From Suleja to the junction is about 45 kms while from the junction to the falls is about 2 kms.

Bida Brass Works: Brought to Bida from Babah during the reign of the late Etsu Nupe UsmanZaki, popular Brass works are found at Gbongbofu, Tswatako and TswataMukun area of Bida town in Niger State.

Birikisu Sungbo Shrine: A popular tourist centre in Ogun State is located at OkeEri near Ijebu Ode, off the ijebu-ode/ibadan road in the Ijebu Ode Local Government area.

Birikisu Sungbo was otherwise regarded as the Biblical Queen of Sheba .The shrine is fast becoming the “Mecca” of Nigeria.

Olumo Rock (Tourist Centre) Abeokuta: Olumo Rock is a massive outcrop of granite rocks of primitive formation from which Abeokuta (meaning under the rock )the capital of Ogun State derive its name from this rock.

The Rock is sacred to the Egba of Abeokuta because it was the place where they found refuge from their attackers during the days of internecine wars.

Ikogosi Warm & Cold Spring

Ikogosi warm spring is about fifty-five kilometres from Akure, the state capital of Ondo State. Ikogosi is located in Ekiti West Local Government Area. The warm spring roll down over a hilly landscape. From another hill rises a cold spring which Joins the warm spring at a confluence.

Idanre Hills: The historic Idanre Hills, situated in Idanre town about 20 kilometres from Akure, is in Idanre/lfedore Local Government Area of Ondo State. Towering into the sky and shimmering in the morning sun, make them beautiful tourist attractions.

Holy Apostles Community, Alyetoro: Aiyetoro is a coastal town located about 160km south of Akure, and KMkm East of Lagos. The inhabitants of the town consist mainly of llajes.

Osun Shrine: The Osun Shrine represents an eloquent statement on the traditional religions of the people of Osogbo. Situated on the bank of Osun River, the shrine remains an attraction any day.

Lfe Museum: Traced to Ooni Adesoji Aderemi. Now under the management of National Monuments, the lfemusuern is appreciated for its numerous archaelogical artifacts.

Opa Oranmiyan: In lfe, one object of attraction is Opa Oranmiyan (Oranmiyan’s Staff). Oranmiyan, the 3rd Ooni of lfe is said to have owned the staff which is 5 metres high and about 11/2 metres at its base.

University Museum: The Obafemi Awolowo University museum along Old lkirun Road is yet another attraction in lfe.

Jos Wildlife Park: This is the most developed man made Wildlife park in Nigeria. It covers 8SQ kilometers of land enclosing; hills, streams and varied vegetation with picnic sites.

Assop Falls: It is located 61 kilometres from Jos Akwanga road in Barkin Ladi Local Government Area of Plateau State. It is a crowd pulling weekend pinic resort surrounded by beautiful rocks and trees.

Wase Rock: Located in the outskirts of Wase town about 216 kilometres South-East of Jos. Available records indicate that this beautiful massive dome shaped rocky inselberg is one out of the only five in the world. One of the very few breeding places for White pelican birds in Africa.

Port Harcourt Tourist Beach: Located on an artificial sand beach along Kolabi Creek, is one of the waterfront tourist resorts in Port Harcourt the Capital City of Rivers State.

Gashaka/Gumpti Game Reserve: This Reserve parades the largest and richest reserve South of the Sahara. It contains various Flora and Fauna with varied bird viewing possibilities. It is located in Taraba State.

The Mambilla Plateau: This is a Plateau of about 1,830 metres above sea level. It has temperate climate within the tropical region. It has an undulating landscape free of insects.

Biu Plateau: Located in Yola, predominantly hot region; the Biu Plateau as a special attraction because of its temperate climate.

Abuja: The Federal Capital Territory: Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) lies between lattitude 80 25’, and 90 20’ north of the equator and longitude 60 45’ and 70 39’, east of the greenwich meridian. It occupies the central position of the country.

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