Welcome to Nigeria Rendezvous. Tour Nigeria: Best Nigeria attractions places for locals and tourists. Find Osun-Osogbo Sacred Grove, Terra Kulture, Afi Mountain Drill Ranch, Kalakuta Republic Museum, Nike Art Gallery, Lekki Conservation Centre, Lekki Market, Olumo Rock.
Osun-Osogbo Sacred Grove
The Osun-Osogbo Sacred Grove is a large cultural landscape of undisturbed forest near the city of Osogbo in southwestern Nigeria. Dedicated to Osun, the Yoruba goddess of fertility, the area was established more than four centuries ago and is the largest of the sacred groves that have survived to the present.
The Osun River meanders through the protected area, with sanctuaries and shrines erected along its course. In the twentieth century, the development of the movement of New Sacred Art invigorated efforts to protect the grove, and modern sculpture now adds to the spiritual significance of the site.
This movement was led by Susanne Wenger (1915–2009), an artist and Yoruban priestess, and it transformed Osogbo into a hub of artistic activity and new ideas about contemporary African art. In 2005, the Osun-Osogbo Sagred Grove was designated a World Heritage Site.
Sacred groves used to be found near every Yoruba settlement, but their disappearance over time has made Osun-Osogbo an important reference point for Yoruba identity and the Yoruba diaspora.
The historic landscape remains a place of worship and plays host to an annual festival, but by the time it was included on the 2014 World Monuments Watch it faced a number of modern challenges.
The rapid growth of the city of Osogbo was causing pressure on land use that was affecting the area around the site.
Additionally, the Osun River was becoming increasingly polluted and bush fires posed a continuing threat to the sacred area. The Osogbo community is strongly attached to the site, and Nigerian heritage authorities are leading efforts to raise awareness about these challenges through community activities.
Founded in 2003 by Mrs Bolanle Austen-Peters, Terra Kulture has become the Premier destination in Lagos for visitors, students and culture practitioners seeking to lear & experience Nigerian arts, food, fashion,theatre and history.The concept of the Centre was borne out of the fact that there is no venue with the intended ambience in Nigeria, for Nigerians and foreigners alike to learn about our cultures languages and so much more. Terra Kulture Comprises of 5 Major Operative Arms:
THE FOOD LOUNGE: Our Restaurant throbs at the epicenter of the Lagos life. With a modern and sophisticated restaurant gallantly groomed with African Décor and a welcoming ambiance, we leave no doubts in the hearts of the customers that the food business should be taken seriously. Our food leaves you purely satisfied. Our bar provides an array of skillfully mixed cocktails, fresh fruits, well blended lattes that project perfection, fresh African palm wine and fine wines from around the world.
BOOKSTORE AND AN INFORMATION CENTRE: The purpose of this arm is to have a place that stocks a wide variety of books on Nigeria and Africa as a whole. Our documentation centre also has a contemporary section with current journals, articles and newspapers from all over the world.The information centre boasts of an information technology area that has flat screen computers with wireless internet facilities for our members and visitors. To maintain standards and have the desired ambiance, access to this unit is by membership ONLY.The unit anchors book readings, book fairs and organizes symposiums and lectures on selected topics and equally provides members an opportunity to network with other professionals and people from other cultures.At the centre, monthly book readings are organized in conjunction with authors or book reviewers to promote African literature and to promote the reading culture among Nigerians.
THE GALLERY: A Gallery that aims to have thematic exhibitions focusing on the diversity of Nigeria by celebrating the different cultures and people of Nigeria. The gallery also organizes interactive sessions with renowned members of the art community.Sculpture, decorative arts, furniture, textiles, costume, drawings, pastels, watercolors, collages, prints, artists’ books, photographs and installation art are regularly shown at out gallery space. We also create group and solo exhibitions. The Gallery works with the event centrel to organize exhibitions and excursions for school children, foreigners, Nigerians etc. These exhibitions will be held on a scheduled basis.We showcase, sell, exhibit and auction the best of Nigerian art.
MULTIPURPOSE EVENT HALL: Quintessentially designed to serve as a venue for the promotion of Nigerian Art and Culture, we proudly present to you our Multi-purpose Hall which is fully equipped with facilities for drama presentation, conferences and seminars. The Hall can conveniently sit 200 people dinner setting and 300-350 theatrical arrangement.
Over the past few years, Terra Kulture, in its continuous pursuit of promoting the arts have given preference at subsidized rates to theatre practitioners and art related causes.
The Revenue from the Multipurpose Hall helps finance all the other arms which are mostly social projects. Some of our clients include: Airtel, Telnet, Transocean, Oando, Chevron, Multichoice, Platinum Bank, GT Bank, Microsoft, Citigroup, British Airways, Accenture, Profund securities, GT Assurance, Socket Works, Adic Insurance, Heirs Insurance, Lagos Business School, National Electric Power Authority, Security Exchange Commission; to mention a few.
The Language School: The Centre is committed to ensuring that Nigerian languages are passed on from generation to generation and made popular home and abroad.
The unit teaches the three major Nigerian Languages: Yoruba, Hausa and Ibo. The understanding, speaking and writing of these languages is emphasized. So far, we have trained over 150 Nigerian and foreign students in local crafts such as: Tye & Dye and Batik, Basket weaving. We operate cookery classes and excursions.
Our summer classes are organized for kids during the holidays. This program showcases every aspect of Nigerian art and culture. Activities include dance, craft, painting, cookery classes and teaching Nigerian Languages. A certificate of participation is given out to each student at the end of the program.
There is always an interesting stage play every Sunday of the month to promote the theatre culture.. There are many exciting reasons to come to Terra Kulture all through the year.
Afi Mountain Drill Ranch
The excellent Afi Mountain Drill Ranch near Cross River National Park is one of Nigeria’s highlights, with a rainforest canopy walk, close primate encounters and superb accommodation. Its headquarters is in Calabar. Spread across a tree-covered alcove in southern Nigeria is the Afi Mountain Wildlife Sanctuary, a 38-square mile patch of dense rainforest that is one of the last refuges for the one of the world’s rarest primates: the drill monkey. Conservation groups estimate there are between three and eight thousand drills left in the wild, but the animals face an uphill battle.
Drills are closely related to baboons. Drills are a short-tailed monkey that looks similar to a Mandrill but without the red and blue colours on the face of the latter. The male Drills are usually three times bigger than the female in size and can weigh up to 45kg while the female weight far less at just 15kg. The Drill Ranch at the Afi Mountain houses orphaned Drills whose mothers have been killed by hunters. Visitors can have a close look at the Drills in the sanctuary.
Visitors that want comfort can book make hotel reservation in any of the top hotels in Obudu. You can get a decent hotel with good amenities and quality services about one and half hour drive away from Afi Mountain Wildlife Sanctuary. To have a smooth experience, visitors are advised to come with mosquito nets, hiking boots, backpack, tent (if possible), food, sleeping pad, a compass (people that have), change of clothing, drinks, etc
Kalakuta Republic Museum
Legendary musician Fela Kuti’s former house and revolutionary headquarters is now a fascinating museum with everything intact from Fela’s bedroom to his (very small) underwear. Breath deep and you may even catch a high. And hang around on the rooftop terrace and you might catch a band rehearsal or performance. Lagos’ Kalakuta Republic Museum, a fascinating site full of history, is set in the former home and revolutionary headquarters of famous musician Fela Anikulapo Kuti. The building was Kuti’s home from the 1970s until his death in 1997 and is now open as a museum for travelers to explore. A number of personal artifacts and household items are on display.
Kuti was a great advocate of human rights and expressed his concerns about the corruption and dictatorship of the then military government of Nigeria through his music. The afrobeat legend’s trademark clothes and shoes feature heavily at the museum, while his bedroom and living room have been left almost untouched, with additional photographs and other items also proudly displayed, such as his saxophone and various album covers.
The museum is the result of Kuti’s family’s efforts to promote the late musician’s legacy, and was officially opened to the public on October 15, 2012, to mark Kuti’s birthday.
Tour the Kalakuta Museum—highlighting the life of legendary Afrobeat musician Fela Kuti—in Lagos with a private guide. Opened in 2012, the property served as Kuti’s residence from the 1970s until his 1997 death. Kuti is buried in a mausoleum on the grounds. See his preserved bedroom as well as other artifacts and exhibits pertaining to his life throughout the space. There’s also an onsite gift shop and a rooftop bar where you can savor a cocktail (own expense) while reflecting on Kuti’s many musical contributions. The Kalakuta Republic Museum is located in downtown Lagos, not far from the New Africa Shrine and other Lagos attractions. There is also a gift shop and rooftop bar at the museum.
Right from the minute you step into the Kalakuta Museum grounds, first on the left is the Mausoleum where the late Afrobeat Legend was buried. Then from there you find the main entrance, leading to the ground floor of the Museum, here you find Televisions showing clips of late Fela on stage during his life time. On the ground floor you will find the souvenir shop filled with memorabilia of the late Fela, from T-shirts,to gift items and CD compilations of Fela’s music. Then up the stairs to the second floor which holds his bedroom, his clothes worn during his tours and stage performances, awards and more pictures of him, his families and his many wives(29). From here you get to the last floor which is an open Roof Top bar. Here you can soak up the sun while having your lunch with Fela’s music playing.
Nike Art Gallery
Nike Art Centre Lagos was opened in 2009, with the global aim of reviving what was considered a rather neglected and flagging art culture in Nigeria. Since then, its owner Nike Okundaye, a prominent Nigerian painter and professional textile artist, has built a small artistic empire, with three other branches in Abuja, Oshogbo and Ogidi. One of Nigeria’s most important artists, Nike Okundaye, runs this enormous gallery full of contemporary and traditional Nigerian arts. Nike herself is practically an incarnation of love and beauty, which is reflected in this astonishing four-storey space. If you’re lucky she’ll be there and may grace you with a new Yoruba name. There’s a small cafe in the grounds. Cultural tours to other Yoruba towns can be arranged through the gallery; book ahead here if you’d like to visit Oshogbo.
The best of Lekki all in one tour. Visit the Lekki Conservation Centre and climb the longest canopy walkway in Africa, get an appreciation for African art at the Nike Art Galley, haggle for art pieces and souvenirs at the Lekki Art Market, explore the Awolowo Museum and relax to a barbecue on its private beach on this 9 hour private tour.
You will be picked up from your hotel at 9:00am to begin your full day tour of the new suburban town of Lekki, one of Lagos’ reclaimed new cities. Start off with a visit to the famous Nike Art Gallery for an appreciation of traditional and contemporary African art. Proceed on to the Lekki Art Market where you can bargain and purchase different local arts, fabrics, jewelry and more. Head on to the Lekki Conservation Centre, home to a variety of birds and other animals like monkeys, antelopes, fish and tortoises.
Interact with the animals in this nature reserve and climb to the top of tree canopies on the longest canopy walkway in Africa. Afterwards, you will embark on a 90mins journey to the Awolowo Museum and Private Beach, former prison site of Chief Obafemi Awolowo, a political leader and key player in the Nigerian Independence Movement. You will also discover how Lekki got its name, after which you will relax and wind down with a barbecue on the beach. You will be depart the beach at 4pm for a 2 hour leisurely drive back to your hotel.
Lekki Conservation Centre
Run by the Nigerian Conservation Foundation, this centre has a huge tract of wetlands set aside for wildlife viewing. Canopy walkways enable you to see monkeys, crocodiles and various birds; early morning is the best time to visit. There is a conservation centre and a library. From its origin and establishment in 1990 by the Nigerian Conservation Foundation (NCF), Lekki Conservation Centre (LCC) has grown into one of Africa’s prominent and most-diverse urban Nature Parks due to its high species richness. It is located in the coastal environs covering an approximate land area of 78 hectares, extending from kilometer 19 along the Lagos-Epe Expressway and ends up a very close distance to the Atlantic Ocean near Okun Ibeju Village, Eti-Osa Local Government Area in the Eastern district of Lagos State. LCC can be accessed through the Lagos-Epe Expressway.
Widely acclaimed as an icon of nature conservation and pearl of ecotourism, Lekki Conservation Centre represents the flagship project of NCF for the preservation of the unique biodiversity, scenic, natural, scientific and recreational values of the coastal environs of the south-western Nigeria. It is therefore one of the best urban parks to satiate visitors’ curiosity of nature.
It is the only vibrant protected area in Lagos State and one of the very few vibrant tourist destinations of repute in Lagos and has thus been recognized as one of the notable Sites/Monuments of special interest and exceptional relevance by the Lagos State Government under the LISTED SITES for the preservation, protection and restoration of historical properties and cultural heritage in Lagos State and for connected purposes.
A rich variety of crafts from all around Nigeria and West Africa: this is a brilliant place to wander and look for affordable gifts. You can also buy fabrics and get clothes run up on the spot here. The location of the Lekki Arts and Crafts Market (Jakande Art Market) is as uncommon as the arts, crafts and other goods and services it has on offer. It’s tucked away in one corner of the Lekki-Epe expressway and unless you’re looking for it, you won’t find it.
One of the things that will stand out is how well organized the market is, especially compared to the topsy-turvy nature Nigerian markets end up having, no matter how well organized they might be. But, like any other market, the best time to shop is early in the morning, in order to avoid the Lekki traffic and the throngs of people who crowd it in the early afternoons and evenings.
Just like an open-air gallery, the shops have different crafts and arts on sale, and each piece comes from a different part of Nigeria. From wooden sculptures, masks, necklaces and bracelets to intricately designed chairs, bowls and metalworks, you’re bound to find something that catches your eye.
Aside from arts and crafts, the market also sells fashion accessories and Ankara fabrics, which are used in so many things these days. From Ankara bags to clutch purses, shoes covered in fabric and even neck pieces and other accessories, all made from Ankara. There are tailors who provide on-the-spot services for clients who wish to make clothes and other items, such as pillow cases and curtains.
As with all Nigerian markets, you’re expected to bargain for the goods you’re buying. This not only establishes a good feeling between you and the trader, you also come away with a sense of satisfaction. In most cases, an outrageous amount is proposed as the opening price, but this depends largely on the kind of clothes you’re wearing and the way you carry yourself. If you enter the Lekki Market like a newbie (‘journey-jus’-come’ in Nigerian parlance) the traders will attempt to fleece you. Go in armed with your most charming manner and try not to stand out. Usually when bargaining, halve whatever price the trader first offers. This will usually be accompanied by scandalized grunts, but in the end both parties should be able to arrive at a fair price.
Don’t be afraid to window-shop in as many places as possible. At the end of the day, this gives you the advantage of getting different art pieces at affordable prices. Usually old pieces are kept behind the new ones, so you need to be patient and know what you’re looking for, even if you only have a rough idea. You should also go in with an open mind.
There are certain kinds of crafts that are practically mass-produced to attract tourists. The defunct Molue buses and men in canoes are typical of these arts. It’s not that they are poorly crafted, just that the designs are overused and there are more exciting, new arts and crafts being produced all over Nigeria presently. And you can be sure to find some important pieces hidden away in one of the quaint little shops that populate the Lekki Arts Market.
The name Olumo means “troubles and sufferings are all over”. The history of the rock dates back to the 19th century Oyo Empire when Abeokuta was inhabited by the Egba people who found refuge at the Olumo rock during inter-tribal wars. The rock functioned as a tower of strength for the Egba people in their wars to defend the new settlement as well as a vantage point to monitor the enemy’s advance leading to eventual triumph in war. The rock is nature’s large monument made from indigenous materials.
The element of its native formation is its strong point as a refuge and a hideout. . Olumo Rock is the most significant representation of Egba nationalism. It is the distinctive monument linked with their heroism and freedom. Thus, Olumo rock symbolizes unity and freedom not just for the Egbas alone but for all the residents of Abeokuta. The year 2006 saw a string of remodelling being carried out at this tourist site in order to further its course as a prime tourist location in Nigeria. Thus, after the remodelling, facilities like a new museum, restaurants, water fountain, and an elevator (to ease the climbing challenge) were added.
The month of March is always a great time to pay a visit to the Olumo Rock, as it is the dry season around the environment of the Rock. Visiting Olumo Rock in March would also afford you the opportunity of enjoying the razzmatazz of the Lisabi and Olumo Festivals, which both climax at the Olumo Rock.
The founding site of Abeokuta, famed Olumo Rock has a rich history and great spiritual significance. Hire a guide and climb the rock – at one point it is smooth and quite steep, so go via the steps if you’re not confident. You’ll see shrines, sacred trees, tribal war-time hideouts, and ultimately, at the top, an astonishing view of the city. On the way up the rock the guide will point out Olumo Shrine, which opens just one day a year – on 5 August – for a festival and a gathering of chiefs, priests, local leaders and townspeople. During the rest of the year offerings are made at the shrine: you’re likely to see chicken feathers and dried blood stuck to the door. Further up, a blue painted rock signals another shrine, where the apparently extremely long-lived priestesses will welcome you; Afrobeat star Fela Kuti used to worship here.
There’s also a historic hideout under a rock used by people fleeing tribal wars and slave hunters. At the summit, look down on the corrugated iron roofs of the town; you’ll see St Peter’s Baptist church – built in 1840s, it’s the oldest church in Nigeria – and a brown building housing a mosque which dates back to 1925.
Tourists who visit the Olumo Rock have several interesting activities they can engage themselves in, as a tour guide, who is versed in the history of the rock and the culture of the people, would be available to show you around the interesting places at this tourist location. The presence of the tour guide would make your adventure an unforgettable one, as almost every curl and turn at the rock tells a story. Thus, when you visit Olumo Rock start your adventure by climbing up the man-made stairs carved into the rock. While the use of the word ‘man-made’ may make it sound a bit easy, it leaves many breathless and ready to take a break to rest on the benches under the trees growing from the rock and enjoy some clean breeze.
Also, climb the uneven sized rocks on the narrow corridors leading to the peak of the rock. While climbing up the rock enjoy the sight of the cowrie studded statues, the carvings on the rock and bid greetings to the 131-year old priestesses (Iya Orisa) living under the rock. Do not forget to visit the ancient Itoku market which lies outside the Olumo Rock. This tye-and-dye (Adire) market is a commercial hub located around the Olumo Rock. It would be an interesting sight to see how the local artisans and traders dicker over price with customers, who are always looking to buy goods at the lowest price.
Also, take a tour of the new museum and relax at the recreational park, which is at the foot of the rock. Serenade your senses with nature’s beautiful scenery by going to the taking a peek at the Ogun River flowing down the rock. Let the water caress your skin with the soft therapy of Mother Nature. Maintain peace between the warring factions in the abdominal enclave by visiting the fast food restaurant located at the base of Olumo Rock.