“Christmas is like candy; it slowly melts in your mouth, sweetening every taste bud, making you wish it could last forever,” Richelle Goodrich once said. Unfortunately, it won’t last forever. But you can make it worth remembering when you do things you never did before, or go places you’ve never been before this season. Some have even discovered their talent by chance while on vacation.
Many parents will love to embark on family adventure and spend quality time with their kids, beside the traditional travelling to the village with the whole family by the end of the year. However, they have little idea about amazing family vacation destinations in Nigeria.
Therefore, we present to you 12 great places to visit on a family vacation in Nigeria
1. Yankari Game Reserve
All roads lead to Yankari Game Reserve, in Bauchi State, North-Eastern Nigeria. Get ready to experience nature in the country’s biggest wildlife retreat. At the reserve, you will be captivated by the number of activities you can participate in.
Marvel at the largest herd of elephants in the country, embark on a guided safari tour and explore the tropical forests. At the Reserve, you’ll find different varieties of animal species including the olive baboon, patas monkey, roan antelope, western hartebeest, living in their natural habitats.
After your day at the reserve, exploring the marvel of wildlife, head over to the Wikki Warm Spring. Your visit to the Yankari Game Reserve is incomplete if you don’t experience the warmth of this spring.
2. Olumo Rock
Any visit to the city of Abeokuta would be incomplete without stopping by at the “fortress of Abeokuta”; Olumo Rock. No surprise that this rock is located in Abeokuta, as the name “Abeokuta” itself means “under the rock” as has been one of the choice tourist attractions in Nigeria. Olumo Rock has long served as a rock of offence and a fortress for the people of Egba Land, since the 19th century.
At Olumo Rock, you would be treated to attractions like natural tunnels, unusual trees, natural cantilevers, gardens on the rock, broken pathways, monuments of the belief system of the rock’s primeval settlers, e.t.
3. Lekki Conservation Centre
The Lekki Conservation Centre, Lagos is one of the best nature reserves in Nigeria. This conservation and relaxation centre offers a breath of fresh air and an escape from the forever buzzing city of Lagos.
The 21-year-old conservation centre cum nature hub, which covers an area of 78 hectares, is run and managed by the Nigerian Conservation Foundation (NCF).Generally regarded as an icon of nature conservation, Lekki Conservation Centre represents the flagship project of Nigeria Conservation Foundation for 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!
4. New Afrika Shrine
You can’t mention the names of tourist attractions in Nigeria without mentioning the New Afrika Shrine. Are you thinking of taking your nightlife escapades to the next level? Then think Fela Shrine a.k.a The New Afrika Shrine. From the genre of music to the inspirational story-telling lyrics. Not forgetting the sacrosanct palm-wine, get ready to get a political education, a lesson in ‘shakin-it’ and a contact high!
The New Afrika Shrine, an open-air entertainment center located in Ikeja, Lagos State. It serves as the host location of the annual Felabration music festival. Currently managed by Femi Kuti and Yeni Anikulapo-Kuti. Serves as a replacement of the old Afrika Shrine created in 1970 by Fela Kuti until it was burnt down in 1977. The New Afrika Shrine showcases photo galleries of Fela and musical performances by Femi Kuti and Seun Kuti. For a wholesome tourism in Nigeria, visit the Fela Shrine.
5. Hi-Impact Planet
Hi-Impact Planet offers world-class fun for the young and old, friends and families. There are games, rides and other entertaining attractions for the young and young at heart. You and your family will enjoy a good time and form magical memories. You can grab a snack or a pastry during your day of fun or enjoy full-blown intercontinental meals at the parks 3 food court.
6. Aso Rock
Aso Rock is a 400-meter rock which stands out as the most noticeable feature in the capital city of Nigeria, Abuja. The location is reputed as one of the lush tourist attractions in Nigeria, as it is a location in the Country’s seat of power. Aso Rock houses the three major seats of power of the Nigerian Federal Government namely; Presidential Villa (Aso Rock Villa), National Assembly, and the Supreme Court, albeit the Aso Rock Villa building is the only structure built in the valley of the Rock. Although tourists are still allowed to visit this place, due to the rise in the menace of terrorist attacks by Boko Haram in recent times, this access has become limited.
7. Agodi Gardens
Agodi Gardens is a beautiful park in the city of Ibadan which has risen to become one of the top tourist attractions in the country. Also called Agodi Botanical Gardens, Agodi Gardens, Ibadan, the site is a serene environment on 150 acres of land. It is usually patronised by families during festive periods and weekends. It’s peaceful and calm environment makes it a perfect destination for you to take a break from the hassle and reevaluate life values or hang out with friends and family. From the water parks to the animal enclosure or even just walking through the garden paths, Agodi Gardens is sure to make you forget about reality!
8. Kajuru Castle
Kajuru Castle is a luxury Medieval-German style villa, built over 3 decades ago located in Kaduna State, Nigeria.
The villa is designed with bedrooms modelled after dungeons and several towers with crenellated walls. The medieval theme is seen throughout the castle, it even has a portcullis (the vertically closing gate) with a crocodile pit.
The castle includes a guest tower with 4 rooms and the main building with a knights’ hall and a master suite ( also known as the “landlord’s residence”). There’s an outdoor swimming pool for cooling off on hot days and a barbeque spot right by the pool. From the pool area and most of the castle windows, you will enjoy a fascinating view of the surrounding mountains and inselbergs. The Castle also has its own Sauna!
9. Kano City Walls
The city itself exudes tourism! Although the city has long taken a modern cosmopolitan hue, relics of the city’s past as the hub for commercial activities during the trans-Saharan trade still remain. The real identity of Kano can best be felt in the old city area. The mud houses with distinct Hausa local architectural dexterity. The narrow roads meant for only men and their domestic animals are still there. However, gradually being lost as the ancient structures go modern, relics have gradually been wiped away by both man and nature. The walls also helped in monitoring the movement of people in and out of the city.
10. Obudu Cattle Ranch Cross Rivers State
Obudu Mountain Resort, formerly known as Obudu Cattle Ranch, is one of the most beautiful and pleasant tourist centre destinations in Nigeria. Located on the Obudu Plateau, close to the Cameroon border, in the Northeastern part of Cross Rivers State.
This resort centre has grown to become a major destination choice for tourists.
It has an attractive landscape a
nd 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 rooms in Obudu Mountain Resort are made up of chalets, standard room, executive room, huts to presidential suites. Although this resort is open to visitors throughout the year, the period between October and February is the best time to visit, as it is the time when the sky is very bright and the air is frosty.
11. Eleko Beach
As you can expect, fun lovers enjoy a visit to the beach on the weekends. If you are looking for a quiet and reflective time at the beach, you should visit Eleko on a weekday.
Even though more people troupe into Eleko Beach on weekends, it generally doesn’t get as crowded as the other popular public beaches in Lagos like Elegushi Beach, Bar Beach and Alpha Beach.
Also, the huts at Eleko Beach make you people like you’re having your own private beach experience. Which means, in reality, any day of a week is a good day to visit this beach.
Eleko Beach offers a peaceful retreat for privacy seeker or couple’s looking to enjoy a good time away from the hustle of Lagos. This public beach, located close to La Campagne Tropicana, offers private beach features bamboo huts. It is also less rowdy than other public beaches in Lagos and considered to be cleaner. It’s definitely one of the few tourist attractions to offer such services.
12. Osun Sacred Grove
Classified as one of the UNESCO world heritage sites. This sacred forest attracts a large number of tourists as it is definitely worth visiting and is reputed to rank high in the list of tourist attractions in Nigeria. Situated on the outskirts of Oshogbo, the capital of Osun state along the banks of the Osun river.
Osun state is one of the states in the South-western part of Nigeria. Majorly populated by the Yorubas who are indigenes of the state. Yoruba people believe that Osun sacred grove, which spans about 75 hectares of land, is home to Osun– the goddess of fertility.
A festival that celebrates this fertility goddess takes place every year in Oshogbo. You will find scattered about the forest, shrines, and effigies of different deities. In addition to that, the forest contains about 400 different species of plants that are used for medicinal purposes.