Did you know there are so many cool places you can visit in Nigeria? Well we compiled a few from each part of the country for you to check out when you need a domestic getaway. PS: we do not own any of the pictures used and all image copyrights belong to their authors.
1. Ogbunike Caves:
The Ogbunike Caves are located in (you guessed it) Ogbunike town of Anambra State. Set in a valley blanketed by tropical rainforest with great biodiversity, it is the average explorer’s dream. The caves have been used for centuries by locals, as a form of shelter during the civil war and for spiritual festivals such as the annual ‘Ime Ogba’ celebration to commemorate the discovery of the caves. By the way, legend has it that the caves were discovered about 4000 years ago by a certain hunter named Ukwa from the Umucheke family of Ifite-Ogbunike.
To get to the valley where the caves are located you’d need to go down about 317 steps constructed by the State Government in the 90s. No shoes or women at ‘that time of the month’ are allowed into the caves per tradition.
The main cave is a massive structure with a big open chamber which has ten tunnels also containing large chambers and smaller interconnected tunnels; it’s a maze! Some of these tunnels extend for several miles and have been traced to other locations in the town, such as the Igwe’s (King’s) palace, a college and another town (Abatete town) in the state.
An interesting feature of the caves lies in the surrounding waters. A stream flows out from one of the tunnels and empties into the rapidly flowing River Nkissa. The meeting of these two water bodies is unique as one can feel the warm stream water and the cold river water. There’s also a flat land beside this meeting point where visitors can relax and appreciate the scenery. Finally, watch out for the bat population within the caves, they are a lot but harmless.
2. Agbokim Waterfalls:
The Agbokim Waterfalls is a natural attraction in Etung Local Council of Cross Rivers State. The waterfalls are located about 315km from Calabar and less than 10km to Cameroon, which gives the opportunity to nick over the border for a Cameroonian tour. It consists of 7 streams and cascades over a steep cliff surrounded by lush tropical vegetation.
The seven-faced water fall is sited over the Cross River and has some history. A hunter named Ntankum is credited for discovering the Falls after which he brought his family and relatives from a placed called Inagu to inhabit the area.
It’s a perfect spot for tourist picnics and activities, due to its majestic beauty.
3. Sungbo’s Eredo
Located in the rainforest of South-West Nigeria in Ijebu-Ode town of Ogun State, Sungbo’s Eredo (eredo means ditch) is an earthen system of walls and ditches believed to have been built between 800 and 1000AD as a monument to Queen Bilikisu Sungbo who’s rumoured to be the biblical Queen of Sheba!
Sungbo’s Eredo is touted as the largest ancient man-made structure in sub-Saharan Africa, and needed more earth to be moved than that used for building the Giza pyramid, during its construction! The monument is really vast, with a wall about 100 miles which enclosed an ancient Yoruba kingdom and served as a spiritually charged fortification against invaders in its heydays. This ancient kingdom was known to trade in gold and ivory, and a three-storey ruin which had living quarters, shrines and patios was discovered and identified as the royal palace.
Bilkisu’s burial site is also located within the Eredo, and locals often visit the site to pay their respects to this ancient queen.
Being only about an hour outside of Lagos, the Eredo is often visited by archaeologists, adventurers and religious people, so there’s a lot to learn regarding its history from such tourists and the locals. You can also hike through the rainforest while viewing the Eredo.
4. Kajuru Castle
A lovely sight for sore eyes is the Kajuru Castle which may seem like a myth to some people. Located in the middle of nowhere in Kajuru city of Kaduna State, the Kajuru Castle was constructed in 1978 by a German expatriate living in the State.
The castle is heavily European in style with a remarkable ambience and view. There’s also some German influence in its having a baronial hall which houses suits of armour and medieval weapons. The grounds and gardens are beautifully maintained, with lovely views of surrounding mountains and a scenic view of Kajuru town from the Castle.
To get to it though, you’d have to get some mountain-climbing exercise as the Castle sits at the top of one. Kajuru Castle is large enough to easily accommodate 12 people and features four dungeon rooms, swimming pools and self-equipped kitchens. There are other interesting features such as the moat surrounding the castle which contains crocodiles! There’s also some mystery to be had, with a secret room behind a book case where a ghost is said to reside, and a secret door whose location the caretaker will not disclose.
It’s a private lodge which requires permission to access from a German caretaker or dragon, depending on who you ask! Be sure to obtain permission though before you head for a visit. Getting to the Castle entails a 7km drive from Kajuru Local Government Headquarters, best done with a very sturdy 4-wheel drive SUV due to the road network. Kajuru Castle is the best getaway location, just don’t forget to pack all you need as there are no nearby malls or shops.
And there you have it, some interesting locations right at your doorstep! Don’t forget to book your bus or flight tickets to these locations from www.odarion.com if you fancy a visit.