Nigeria’s cultural heritage is woven from threads of history and diversity, legend and conquest. Tourists visiting the country will gain insights to a glorious past as well as a promising future, set amid the natural beauty of this diverse country. From the rain forests in the south, the broad savanna woodlands in the center, to a semi-desert region in the north, Nigeria offers a remarkable range of physical beauty in her land and hospitality of her people, ready to be enjoyed by tourists who choose to visit this land of ancient empires as their travel destination.
NATURAL TOURIST SITES
A UNESCO listed World Heritage site, the Sukur land- scape lies within the Cameroon-Nigeria borderlands in present day Madagali Local Government Area of Adamawa State. The entire Sukur cultural landscape is a scenic blend of nature and culture.
The Sukur site possesses rich soils and adequate supplies of natural and spring water. The plateau is also the home of Hidi (i.e. the king). It is a strategic location from which the Sukur resisted attacks from hostile neighbours.
Located along Kaduna- Abuja Highway in Niger State, about half an hour drive from the centre of the new Federal Capital. This is a beautiful giant rock used for defensive purposes by the Gwari people against invading neighbouring tribes during the inter-tribal wars. The legend, it is said, goes that the indigenes in the olden days believed that a couple of depressions that form a patch on the upper part of the rock were actually eyes with which it could foresee danger from the surrounding and warn them through oracles. Zuma rock represents a beautiful and unique granite rock formation. It offers a good environment for picnicking and relaxation.
It is located in Abeokuta, Ogun State. Olumo rock is a massive outcrop of granite rocks of primitive formation. The highest point on the rock is about 137 metres from the base of the rock. It is a historical monument, which served as a shelter and fortress for the Egba people during the Yoruba inter-city wars.
The centre consists of a fast food outlet, a museum, a giant telescope to view Abeokuta, a recreational park, etc. The centre has a heavy-duty escalator band glass elevator running through the different levels of the rock alongside the old stairway for visitors who love climbing.
Kura falls is located 77 km from Jos, Plateau State. It is a fascinating and exciting place to visit. The village is situated within rich savannah vegetation with mountainous ranges and lakes, providing a beautiful scenery ideal for picnic, bird watching and nature trail.
The Shere hill is the apex of the Jos Plateau. The hill peaks at 1, 829 metres above sea level. The hilltop presents beautiful and relaxing scenery in an area excellent for picnic, mountaineering, and sightseeing and camping.
Agbokim waterfalls is a beautiful scenic attraction. Water from the falls run into a large pool surrounded by thick vegetation.
Gurara Water Falls
Gurara waterfalls, best described as Nigeria’s premier falls, is located off Minna, Suleja road in Niger State. It is one of the nation’s greatest holiday resorts. The fascinating periods of the falls occur when the water level is at its peak during the months of April-August. However, it is low between September and March thereby giving a good view of the waterbed.
The Mambilla plateau is a tableland located at Gembu in Sarduna local government council of Taraba State. The Plateau is about 1,830 metres above sea level with a temperate climate comparable to any temperate region of the world. The Mambilla Plateau is characterised by an undulating landscape and the clean free flow of Barup, Manchewa, Rufi, Tiba and Bambika waterfalls. It is an ideal site for high altitude sport, training, gaming, adventure, relaxation, picnicking, leadership training and holidaying.
Idanre and Oak Hills
Idanre hill is located 15km southwest of Akure, Ondo state. Idanre hill is steep sided, smooth and dome shaped. It is an inspiring and beautiful site for tourists. Oke Maria (Virgin Mary Hill) is located at Oka Akoko about 113 km from Akure town. It has a beautiful Virgin Mary statue at the top of the hill. It provides an attractive scenery and excellent environment for pilgrims.
Obudu Ranch Hotel and Resort
Obudu cattle ranch is about 350 km from Calabar, Cross River state. It is located at the exotic Oban Obudu Plateau, which is over 5,200 feet above sea level. The ranch provides a semi-temperate climate of between 26°C (78°F) and 32°C (89.6°F), which may drop to between 4°C (36°F) and 10°C (50°F). The scenery is breathtakingly beautiful with hills, valleys stretching as far as the eyes can see. The ranch is peaceful and close to nature: it comprises stonewalled chalets, ranch, bar and restaurant, lawn tennis court and cable cars for utmost
The Oguta Lake in Imo State is a lake resort complex comprising a motel and an 18 hole golf course, relics of the civil war, natural confluence of Oguta Lake and Orashi river. Activities at the Lake include: boat cruising, fishing and bird watching.
It is located in Ikogosi, Ekiti state, about 52 km North- West of Ado-Ekiti, Ekiti State. This is an irresistible site where warm and cold water ooze out from different sources. The springs flow side-by-side and meet at a spot with each maintaining its thermal identity the first of such in the world. The natural vegetation of the spring is left untouched for eco-tourism appeal.
The Oso Lekki beach water is located at the Lekki Peninsula area of Lagos. It is the site for the state fishing and cultural festival.
Mayegun beach is a splendid resort located at the beginning of the Lekki peninsula.
Bar beach is a captivating long stretch of beach, located along Ahmadu Bello way, Victoria Island, Lagos.
The Whispering Palm Resort
It is located along the Badagry Expressway, Iworu-Ajido, Lagos. It is one of the exotic palm resorts in Nigeria. The resort offers classic recreational and relaxation facilities, an ideal place for camping, honeymoon, picnics etc.
PARK AND GAME RESERVES
Yankari National Park
The park is located around the Gaji River in Alkaleri Local Government Area; about 110 km southwest of Bauchi State. The reserve covers an area of about 2,224.10/km2 of savannah woodland and is stocked with elephants, baboons, waterbucks, monkeys, buffaloes, hippotamus, among several other big animals. The park is inhabited by a variety of birds such as saddle bills, herons, and eagles. Within the park is the Wiki warm spring, which is one of the best features of the park.
Kuyamba Game Reserve
This resort is a wildlife reserve of about 10 km2 at Madada in Kuyambana, Zamfara State. The reserve is known to be a natural habitat for wild animals such as lions, tigers, hyenas, etc. It is an ideal site for game hunting, adventure, etc.
The Gashaka Gumpti Park in Taraba State is a natural conservation of rare fauna and flora located at the foot of the Mambilla Plateau. The park is over 15 km2. The animal species include white monkeys, birds, crocodiles, etc.
The entertainment industry: Nollywood and Nigerian music
Nollywood emerged in 1992 and quickly imposed itself as one of the world’s largest film industries. Today, it comes just behind “Hollywood and “Bollywood”, American and Indian film industries respectively.
It is a unifying brand for practitioners in scripting, directing, sound, High Definition (HD) techniques, acting, cinematography, make-up, editing, etc.
In Nigeria, Nollywood is the Nigerian national movie industry articulated around a few major production centres like Lagos, Onitsha, Enugu, Asaba and Abuja.
The distribution of the films also hinge on these same production centres as well as other major distribution points in Nigeria such as Aba. The movie, “Living in Bondage”, by Mr. Kenneth Nnebue was the bold step that made a journey of a million miles worth embarking upon.
Today, looking behind to its trail blazing achievements, Nollywood with its sister – Nigerian Music Industry, is proud to take the world stage, by identifying its relevance and essence in filling the gap created by the dearth of quality productions in the local television channels and radio stations, Nollywood has established itself as a major cultural and economic force in Nigeria and the rest of Africa.
The entertainment industry which they constitute accounted for over 1.4% of Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 2013 and this figure is fast growing.
Nollywood today boasts an impressive number of star actors and actresses as well as film producers.
Suffice it to mention a few names as examples: Pete Edochie, Olu Jacobs, Nkem Owoh (alias Osuofia), Segun Arinze, Francis Duru, the famous duo Chidi Ikedieze and Osita Iheme, Desmond Eliot, Emeka Ike, Ojoho Ouafor, etc. are among the outstanding actors, while actresses who have become familiar house-hold names include Patience Uzokwor, Rita Dominic, Genevieve Nnaji, Ini Edo, Omotala J. Ekeinde, Ngozi Ezeonu, Mercy Johnson, Stephanie Okereke Linus, Funke Akindele, Uche Jumbo, Joke Silva etc.
The entertainment industry has waxed relatively strong, expanding year after year, turning in billions of naira to the economy.
There is no gainsaying the fact that music is part of our everyday life and, more or less, an integral part of visual and audio media productions, including soundtracks in both local and foreign movies. With an apparently inexhaustible stream of talents and capacity to innovate, the Nigerian music industry is one that can neither be hindered by economic depression nor lack relevance.
Nigerian music has the necessary resources to rule the airwaves of not only Nigeria but also the length and breadth of Africa and the world at large. It is noteworthy that the number of stakeholders in Nigerian music business is ever increasing.
The stakeholders include artistes, musicians, producers, promoters, managers, distributors, marketers, etc.
In the past six years, interestingly, the growing numbers of new production studios and artistes springing up has paved way for a more vibrant and self-sustaining industry.
A lot of Nigerian artistes are already enjoying cooperate sponsorship for their unique talents and achievements.
Some have recorded and sold landmark albums sale, sometimes running into hundreds of thousands of copies. Others have won prestigious awards in international contests and events, hence attracting more and more investments from very many sources.
The investments have no doubt aided production of world class quality music as a result of innovations in sounds, rhythms and recording techniques.
Nigerian musicians have developed a vast spectrum of music genres, blending hip-hop, rap, rhythm and blues, reggae, gospel, etc. with traditional Nigerian beats and instruments.
Some of the popular names include 2-Face Idibia, P- Square, Davido, Timaya, Tiwa Savage, M.I, Bracket, Olamide, Flavour, Wizkid, D’Banj, Kcee, Asa, Skales, Don Jazzy, MC Galaxy, Yemi Alade, Patoranking, etc.
A good number have also made name in Gospel music. Among these are: Chris Morgan, Panam Percy Paul, Yinka Ayefele, Frank Edward, Sinach etc.