Last Updated on December 5, 2018
Some of the best tourist destinations in Nigeria are well known and manage to attract the bulk of the tourists in Nigeria. The other tourist destinations that have flown under the radar also promise a very rich experience like their popular counterparts. These destinations offer one or more of these features such as a vibrant nightlife, chilling wildlife, an old world charm, thriving shopping centers, gastronomic delights or rich cultural experiences to both international and local tourists.
Almost everyone wants to travel but only a handful of people are able to do it. With the world being more interconnected than ever before, it’s easier to travel and stay abreast of everything. There is so much to see and do not just in Nigeria but in the world.
Most people are usually confused about where to travel to and what to do. While we’ve compiled a list of travel and tour companies for your utmost travel experience, we’ve also curated a list of the best places to visit around Nigeria, pick any of these places and see how the experience transforms you forever.
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Yankari Game Reserve
Location: km-40 Bauchi-Gombe High Way, Mainamaji Village, BauchiBauchi
The biggest national park in the country. The Yankari game reserve is a marvel to behold. The reserve is an epitome of nature’s beauty. This place offers a wide range of activities to get involved in. The animals at the reserve are of various species including the olive baboon, patas monkey, roan antelope and the western hartebeest amongst others.
Yankari game reserve is home to several natural warm water springs. Its location in the heartland of the West African savanna makes it a unique destination for tourists and holidaymakers to watch wildlife in its natural habitat. It is the most popular destination for tourists in Nigeria and the most popular eco-destinations in West Africa.
Obudu cattle ranch
Location: Obanliku Local, Government Area, Obudu plateau, Cross-river State
Obudu Mountain Resort, once known as Obudu Cattle Ranch, is both a ranch and a resort.. Located on the Obudu Plateau, Obudu mountain resort is one of the most beautiful and pleasant tourist centre destinations in Nigeria. This ranch and resort centre has become a favourite destination choice for both local and international tourists. It has an attractive landscape and calming ambience, with clouds smiling down on its peaks and valleys. It offers visitors a good blend of warm and cold temperature, as it has a very temperate weather.
The uphill of the resort can either be assessed by a cable car, driving or helipad. Obudu mountain resort also features a canopy walkway that gives an incredible view from the top. The best time to visit the resort is between October and February because it’s the period when the air is frosty and the sky is very bright. Nevertheless, Obudu Mountain resort is open all through the year.
Location: Idanre Town, Akure, Ondo State
A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Oke-Idanre hill is one of the grandest tourist centers in the world. It takes 682 steps to get from the foot of the hill to the hilltop. The oke-Idanre hill grants access to spectacular sights from unreadable handwritings, sea level plains to inselbergs and sculptural carvings.
The village that is settled at the foot of the hill also host shrines, belfry, Agbooogun footprint, thunder water (Omi Aopara), old and dilapidated mud buildings roofed in rust-brown iron sheets, set on well laid-out streets and burial mounds and grounds, and the King’s palace. If you get to visit this place you can try the Agbooogun footprint, a mythical shoe print which can fit into the size of anyone who put their foot into it.
Ado-Awaye Suspended Lake
Location: Iseyin, Iseyin Local Government Area of Oyo Sta
Ado Awaye suspended lake sometimes referred to as the hanging lake is housed on one of the crests of rocks commonly referred to in surveyor’s language as the “sleeping lion”. The lake is An extraordinary thing about this lake is that it never dries and it retains the same volume of water even during the rainy season.
The path to the lake consists of numerous shrines and other noteworthy historical spots that are sure to thrill a tourist. There’s a point in the climb of the hill called “Esekan Iku” by the inhabitants, meaning “the verge of death” where people can write their names with pieces of stone on the rock.
Climbing to the top of the hill requires 350 steps and takes about an hour to climb.
Lekki Conservation Centre
Location: 19 Lekki – Epe Expy, Lekki Penninsula II, Lekki, Lagos
The Lekki Conservation Centre is one of Africa’s prominent and most-diverse urban Nature Parks due to its high species richness. The LCC is a 21-year-old conservation center that’s has evolved into a nature hub.
Lekki Conservation Centre represents the preservation of unique biodiversity, scenic, natural, scientific recreational values of the coastal environs of western Nigeria. This is definitely one to make your tourism experience complete!
LCC offers an escape from the hustle and bustle of Lagos. A place capable of fulfilling your tourism imaginations. If you’re in Lagos, looking to satisfy your curiosity of nature. LCC is one of the best urban parks that can satisfy that curiosity.
Location: Calabar, Rivers State
Tinapa is a business and leisure resort located at the Calabar Free Trade Zone. The Tinapa Free Zone & Resort has facilities for retail and wholesale activities as well as leisure and entertainment. Its entertainment arena contains a casino, digital cinema, children’s arcade, restaurants, a mini amphitheatre, a nightclub and pubs. Tinapa resort also hosts an artificial tidal lake that feeds from the Calabar River, a Water Park / Leisure Land and Parking Space for 4,000 cars. The resort also has a 243-room international three-star Hotel
Tinapa free zone and resort has its own independent power plant. Its Business facilities include an open exhibition area for trade exhibitions and other events, and a movie production studio commonly called Tinapa Studios.
The rich culture of Calabar mixed with Tinapa’s ambience makes Tinapa Free Zone and Resort a splendid setting for tourists.
Gashaki-Gumpti National Park
Location: Gashaki-Gumpti, Taraba State
Gashaka Gumti National park is Nigeria’s largest and diverse national park. This park is not only a major watershed but also a haven for a rich and exotic collection of wildlife, Gashaka Gumpti National park gives a captivating glimpse into life during the medieval times in Nigeria.
This park is dubbed one of Africas most “important bird areas”. One of Nigeria’s best kept secret the Gashaka Gumpti, the park is a variety of habitats that include montane grasslands, savannah woodlands, swamps, lakes, mighty rivers, dark lowland rainforests, and luxuriant, montane rainforests strewn with ferns and orchids.
Gashaka Gumpti is one of the few places in the world that adorns such a spectacular scenery and diverse wildlife. A visit to the park ensures an appreciation of lush forests, abundant wildlife, and fascinating ethnic cultures among others.
Location: Three Arms Zone, Asokoro, Abuja.
Millennium Park, the largest public park in Abuja, arrays a walkaway like no other with fountains and night lights. One of the main attractions in the capital city of Abuja, Millennium Park offers visitors the opportunity to savour the freedom and freshness that nature offers.
Millenium park is divided into two parts by a river. One side comprises of pristine nature, brushwood as well as greenhouses for butterflies and tropical birds. The other side consists of a traditional and rigid Italian Style Garden Layout.
Millennium Park is a perfect place to visit during hot days as its s series of fountains allow for a refreshing time. It’s also a perfect spot for a picnic or children’s playground. The park is also a perfect place to view different species of birds as well as a relaxation heaven.
The Ancient Nok Settlement
Location: Jaba , Kaduna State
The ancient Mom settlement is famous for the terracotta figurines of the Nok civilisation, one of Africa’s oldest, and where it was first unearthed. The Nok settlement also contains a museum, created by the government. This is where antique objects and casings containing unique terracotta carvings are kept.
Antiquities from the Ancient Nok Settlement are displayed in galleries and museums in different parts of the world. It is believed that The Ancient Nok culture was very organised, with permanent settlements and centers used for farming and manufacturing.
A visit to this destination gives you a taste of a transitional age. One where West African societies transitioned from the Neolithic stone age straight into the Iron Age and possibly led by the Nok.
Kainji National Park
Location: Niger & Kwara State
Kainji National Park is a national park in Niger State and Kwara State, Nigeria. The park which is considered a Lion Conservation Unit has 3 distinct sectors. The Borgu Game Reserve, the Zugurma Game Reserve and the Kainji Lake where fishing is prohibited.
The Park has a typical inselberg landscape and also consist of different rivers. Some of the Rivers in the Park include. Oli Menei, Doro and Manyara Rivers.
The Lake Kainji National Park also hosts numerous animals which include the big five (The lion, leopard, rhinoceros (both black and white species), elephant, and Cape buffalo) – a sight that many tourists seek to experience in Africa. This park is open from December until June, and a definite must see.
The ravishing water features and rampant bird life makes this park a must see if you are going touring in Nigeria. The park also has accommodation that includes 49 standard chalets and a conference facility which can host 140 people.
New Afrika Shrine
Location: Nerdc Rd, Agidingbi, Ikeja, Lagos State
One of the best places to visit in Lagos mainland area, New Afrika shrine (aka shrine) is an iconic entertainment hub that has been in existence since the ’70s. Set up in a huge warehouse-like space, The shrine is run by the late Fela Kuti’s children. His sons, Femi and Seun usually perform at the shrine whenever they are in town.
The New AfriKa Shrine has a lot of history behind it (the original Shrine was burnt down), the replacement has lived up to the billing. One of the best authentic live music spots in the country, the shrine is also a perfect place where people in groups can chill out.
The New Afrika Shrine is a place where you can get tantalizing political education on Nigeria. Although there’s usually a cover charge of N500, it is worth the money and your while. We encourage you to visit the shrine at evenings to experience its true glory.
Location: Gashaki-Gumpti, Taraba State
One of Nigeria’s most popular landmarks, Zuma Rock, is a monolithic Inselberg with a human face that also appears on the 100 Naira bill. Located in Madalla, Niger State, to the North of Abuja. It has over time become a major symbol of Abuja’s landscape, due to its close proximity to Abuja City. Behind the rock is the Zuma Rock Village, which was built to accommodate tourists visiting the rock.
It is nearly impossible for anyone visiting or touring Abuja not to see this monumental structure. Getting to the top of the rock takes about 5 hours and affords a spectacular view of Abuja city and its environs. The Rock is twice as high as the Uluru Rock in Australia, and more than four times as high as Nigeria’s tallest building, NECOM House.
Zuma Rock’s beautiful and special natural rock formation provides a good environment for picnicking, relaxation as well as mountain climbing and hiking. Zuma Rock is open and available to anyone interested in exploring the rock, albeit tourists would be required to pay a token if they want to climb to the top of the rock.
Location Parliament Road, Ibadan, Oyo State
Agodi gardens is a nature wonderland of peace and beauty. A place brimming with chilly breeze from hulking trees. You can also hear the beautiful chirping of birds from these trees. Agodi gardens often regarded as a park has elevated into one of the top tourist destinations in Nigeria.
A blissful environment on 150 acres of land, Agodi gardens is a great sidestep from the hustle and bustle of the sprawling metropolis. The garden hosts a water park with slides and swimming pools, restaurants, and an open area for picnics. Although Construction is still ongoing as the management has plans to build more infrastructures and also revamp the zoo.
Because of its immense recreational potential, Agodi Gardens is regularly patronised by families and tourist especially during festive periods. This place provides everything that will make a retreat or tour truly exceptional. From its water parks to the animal enclosure or even just walking through the garden paths, Agodi Gardens is definitely a destination worthy to be on your bucket list.
Lekki Leisure Lake
Location: Water Corporation Road, Off Lekki-Epe Expressway, Lagos
If you’re looking for an authentic outdoor spot in Lagos, Lekki Leisure Lake is your perfect option. Stuffed away along the Lekki peninsula shoreline, this resort is a safe and pleasant destination suitable for a family outing, a group adventure or even a fun day out with your significant other. The lake has the ability to not only enhance your physical strength but also mental strength with its range of engaging leisure activities.
Lekki Leisure lake is host to thrilling aquatic attractions and seaside activities that include sliding across the zip line, venture across the many rope bridges, ride quad bikes, and other exciting adventurous activities. The Lake also has an activity centres where kids can indulge themselves in thrilling & adventurous activities like bumper boats, banana floats, and double floats.
This lake is perfect for most type of activities like birthday parties, seaside activities, general meeting, fun party and everything else. You can also decide to have a sleepover or stay at the lake, as there is also a hotel, Vantage Hotel, near the lake.
Location: Kajuru village, Kaduna
Kajuru castle is an architectural masterpiece constructed in a luxury Medieval-German style manner. Usually assumed to be a relic, it’s surprising to say that kajuru castle was built in this era, over 3 decades ago. The medieval theme is evident throughout the castle.
You can only gain entry into Kajuru Castle by booking because its a private property. Due to its exclusivity, only the complete facility can be rented out. This villa is a great place to host exclusive events, group vacations, a romantic getaway, and even a honeymoon. No wonder it is a popular pre-wedding shoot location. The capacity of the Castle is up to 150 guests, but if you wish to be the most comfortable, you may want to keep your numbers around 12.
Kajuru castle is designed with bedrooms modeled after dungeons and several towers with crenellated walls. Inside the bedrooms are armours and different artifacts relating to Germany and a shelf of books in German. it even has a vertical closing gate with a crocodile pit filled with live crocodiles that seem to be protecting the castle gates.
The castle also consists of a knights’ hall and a master suite ( also known as the “landlord’s residence“). There’s also a magnificent large stainless steel outdoor swimming pool that visitors can cool off in during hot days and a barbeque spot right by the pool.
Like the other tourist attractions listed in this post, there are other features in Kajuru Castle that are exclusive to it. Features that can only be truly experienced if you visit these places.