Lagos State was created on May 27, 1967 by virtue of States [Creation and Transitional Provisions] Decree No. 14 of 1967 which restructured Nigeria’s Federation into 12 States. Prior to this, Lagos Municipality was administered as a Federal Territory by the Federal Government through the Federal Ministry of Lagos Affairs as the regional authority, while the Lagos City Council governed the City of Lagos. Equally, the Metropolitan areas [Colony Province] of Ikeja, Agege, Mushin, Ojo, Ikorodu, Epe, and Badagry were then administered by the Western Region Government. The State took off as an administrative entity on April 11, 1968 with Lagos Island serving the dual role of being the State and Federal Capital respectively. However, with the creation of the Federal Capital Territory of Abuja in 1976, Lagos ceased to be the capital of the State, as this was moved to Ikeja.
The State is located on the South–Western part of Nigeria, on the narrow plain of the Bight of Benin. Lying approximately on longitude 20 42’E and 32 2’E respectively, and between latitude 60 22’N and 60 2’N, Lagos State is bounded in the North and East by Ogun State of Nigeria, in the West by Republic of Benin, and stretches over 180 kilometers along the Guinea Coast of the Bight of Benin on the Atlantic Ocean. Its territorial extent and political jurisdiction encompasses the city of Lagos and the four administrative divisions of Ikeja, Ikorodu, Epe and Badagry collectively referred to as IBILE and covering an area of 358,862 hectares or 3,577 sq. km. which represents 0.4% of Nigeria’s territorial land mass of 923,773 sq. km.
Lagos State is the smallest state in Nigeria yet, it has the highest urban population, which is 27.4 % of the national estimate [UN-Habitat]. According to the 2006 National Census, Lagos State has a population of 9,013,534 in relation to the National count of 140,003,542. However, based on the UN-Habitat and international development agencies’ estimates, Lagos State is said to have about 24.6 million inhabitants in 2015. Of this population, Metropolitan Lagos accounts for over 85% on an area that is 37% of the land area of the State, and the fact that Lagos population is growing 10 times faster than that of New York and Los Angeles, and more than the population of 32 African nations combined, the State population is expected to hit the 35 million mark in 2020.
With Lagos State growing population, the state has some very beautiful tourist attractions for you to explore. some of it are listed below;
LEKKI CONSERVATION CENTRE
The Lekki conservation Centre located in Lekki -Epe Expressway Lagos state, is an oasis of nature within the urban chaos of Lagos, and the suspended canopy walkway that rises over the reserve is the longest in all of Africa.
The canopy walkway features six towers that rises over 22 feet each. They are connected by a series of suspended and swinging walkways that offers a unique 360-degree view of this part of the world from high above the treetops. The treetop walk stretches about 1,315 feet long (more than three and a half football fields), setting the record for the longest on the African continent
Founded in 1990 by the Nigerian conservation foundation, the conservation Centre preserves a large part of the regions biodiverse coastal ecosystem and educates visitors on the importance of coexisting with nature. The reserve is home to a plethora of wildlife, including monkeys, tortoises and rare birds.
There is a cone-shaped structure which functions as the auditorium for lectures, conferences and seminars. At first glance, there are rare collections of striking pictures of endangered species of animals as well as plants prescribed in glass stands around the oval hall.
Efforts have been made to save different types of animals, reptiles and birdlife from extinction. The endangered species of animals includes bush bucks, crocodiles, mona monkeys, squirrels, snakes, crocodiles, monitor lizards, duikers, giant rats and hogs.While the trees hosts mona monkeys and other species of monkeys, the open grasslands are home to bushbucks, maxwell’s duikers, giant rats, hogs, mongooses, chameleons, squirrels and an impressive variety of birdlife. Park rangers are also available as guides. Lekki Conservation Centre has the Longest Canopy walkway in Africa.
The opening hours at the Lekki Conservation Centre is between 8:30 am to 5:00 pm daily. There are also different type of games there.
NIKE ART GALLERY LEKKI
Nike Art Centre, Lagos, is one of Nigeria’s hidden treasures. Located in Lekki, Lagos, the four-story building compromises of an art gallery and textile museum featuring over 7,000 pieces and soon to have Coffee shop. The Centre has a diverse collection of art by a multitude of artists, celebrating Nigeria’s talent, offering visitors an insight into all cultures of Nigeria through the medium of art. It can take up to a full day to discover all the Nike Art Centre has to offer. Fortunately, the gallery is open 7 days a week often holding art exhibitions, workshops and cultural days. If you’re feeling creative you can take an art course with Nike or go on one of her week-long retreats outside of Lagos in Osun state (Osogbo), Kogi state (Ogidi) and Abuja, all of which you can visit with ‘Nike Tours’. The tours offer overnight accommodation at her guesthouses, and partake in creating traditional African crafts such as adire, batik, indigo, beadwork, painting, or carving. Nike Art Centre is an impressive gallery and a mustike 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. The founder of Nike art gallery is CHIEF MRS. NIKE DAVIES-OKUNDAYE
Backing onto the gallery, however within the same property, there is a shop selling quirky dresses, handbags, clothes, hats and jewelry. For those who want to learn more about Nigerian art culture, there are also traditional classes such as indigo dying and sculpting, as well as painting, quilting, African drumming and dancing.
The five-story building holds over 8000 works of art, largely Nigerian and African, as well as Nike’s second textile museum. The gallery is a well-known cultural spot and tourist destination in West Africa.
NATIONAL MUSEUM ONIKAN LAGOS
The national museum is in Onikan Lagos and was established back in 1957 before Nigeria gained independence. Essentially, this national museum is among the top-rated tourist attraction in Lagos. The place has great and attractive collections in ethnography, archaeology, and traditional art.
It also has the best galleries which are dedicated to brasses from Benin City and others related. Further, this museum houses an amazing bullet-ridden car that belonged to the country’s former Head of State, who got assassinated in 1976.
Additionally, the museum has a small, decent crafts village with handicrafts and woodcarvings for sale at affordable prices. Besides, if you love history, you need to visit this place for amazing history ever.
The museum was founded by the English archaeologist Kenneth Murray. The museum has an eminent accumulation of Nigerian workmanship, including bits of statuary and carvings and archaeological and ethnographic displays. You can find galleries dedicated to the Nok Terracottas from Benin City, the bullet-riddled car from the assassination of Murtala Muhammed, carved ivory, ancient royal crowns and intricate handcrafted artefacts from all over Nigeria.
The museum is located in Ikoyi, Lagos Island. You can take a cab direct to Modupe Alakija crescent in Ikoyi or board a bus to TBS, the popular bus terminal on the Island.
FREEDOM PARK LAGOS
Freedom Park is a memorial and leisure park area in the middle of downtown Lagos in Lagos Island, Nigeria which was formerly Her Majesty’s Broad Street Prison. It was designed by the Architect Theo Lawson.
The Park was constructed to preserve the history and cultural heritage of Nigerians.
Monuments in the park reveal the Lagos colonial heritage and history of Her Majesty’s Broad Street prisons. It was built to commemorate the 50th anniversary independence celebration in October, 2010. The Park serves as a National Memorial, a Historical landmark, a Cultural site, Arts and Recreation Centre.
The park, which is now a serene abode for individuals, visitors’ collective contemplation and interaction is open to the public every day. Today, freedom park has become a venue for diverse social events and recreational entertainment.
Fun Activities to do at Freedom Park Lagos
- Watch Cultural shows and events
- Enjoy meals at the popular restaurant
- Grab a drink with friends
- Enjoy Live band music
- Visit the Museum
- See the beautiful monuments and statues
- Know more about the Colonial rule in Lagos
- Enjoy the beauty of the Green landscape
- Do a picnic
- Come enjoy the serenity and lots more.
TARKWA BAY BEACH ONISIWO ISLAND LAGOS
Tarkwa bay beach is one of the most popular beaches in Lagos. Tarkwa Bay beach is an artificial sheltered beach located at Onisiwo Island which is about 20 minutes boat ride from Victoria Island, Lagos. Tarkwa Bay is one of the many popular tourist attractions in Lagos. Even though Tarkwa Bay is a public beach, it offers the exclusivity of a private beach. Tarkwa Bay boasts one of the most beautiful beaches in Lagos and it is also a popular tourist attraction where you can experience nature in its rarest beauty.
However, since Tarkwa Bay is an Island, it can only be accessed via water either through a boat ride or better still you can announce your entry on a grand style by coming through a helicopter.
Tarkwa Bay is a perfect blend of nature and the beauty of the Lagos Island and the Eko Atlantic City at the background fused in beautiful harmony.
Tarkwa Bay is a man-made island that was made during the construction of the Lagos harbour. The Island was sand filled with sand dredged from the Atlantic. It serves as a shelter for the Harbor which makes Tarkwa beach a lot calmer in terms of the wave compared to other beaches in Lagos which makes it safe for swimmers and surfers. Tarkwa Beach is located on a blissful and quiet island off the outskirt of Lagos Island along the Lagos coast. It a sandy island which serves as a residence to some of its inhabitants and a tourist attraction to hundreds of people that troop this beautiful Island every day.
Tarkwa Bay is usually less crowded, it is peaceful and void of the regular noise you get at major public beaches.
Majority of the residents at Tarkwa bay are fishermen, traders, Artisans and producers of natural palm oil, palm wine, coconut oil etc.
NEW AFRIKA SHRINE
The New Afrika Shrine is a place you have to visit if you are in Lagos. The original Shrine was built by Afrobeat Legend Fela Anikulapo Kuti and was unfortunately burnt down. The replacement is managed by his children. This open-air entertainment centre is located on Adeleye St, Ikeja, Lagos. The best time to visit is during the annual Felabration music festival. But you can also stop by on Thursday and Sunday when Femi Kuti plays and the last Saturday of the month when the energetic Seun Kuti plays. The New Afrika Shrine is an open air entertainment centre located in Ikeja, Lagos State. It serves as the host location of the annual Felabration music festival. It is Currently managed by Femi Kuti (eldest son of Fela Kuti) and Yeni Anikulapo-Kuti, it is the 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 music performances by Femi Kuti and Seun Kuti thus making it a tourist attraction.
The internationally acclaimed art house, Terra Kulture is the home of contemporary visual and theatre arts in Nigeria. It stands as one of only 2 art auction houses in Nigeria, with a collection of over a thousand art pieces from across the country. The Terra Kulture building is home to a restaurant, a craft shop, a library, a language school and theatre and its central feature; the art gallery. It is proud to have hosted readings by renowned Nigerian authors such as Wole Soyinka, Sefi Atta, Chimamanda Adichie and others for book readings. Annual events at Terra Kulture includes an art auction and the Taruwa Festival of Performing arts (which is often held in January).
Terra Kulture is located at Tiamiyu Savage Street, off Ahmadu Bello Way, Victoria Island Lagos, Nigeria
The internationally acclaimed art house, Terra Kulture is the home of contemporary visual and theatre arts in Nigeria. TK as it is fondly called stands as one of only 2 art auction houses in Nigeria, with a collection of over a thousand art pieces from across the country. The Terra Kulture building is home to a restaurant, a craft shop, a library, a language school and theatre and its central feature; the art gallery. Terra Kulture is located at Tiamiyu Savage V,I Lagos State.
ELEGUSHI PRIVATE BEACH
Elegushi Beach is a private beach located at Lekki, Lagos state, southwest Nigeria. The beach is owned by the Elegushi royal family in Lekki, Lagos state. Elegushi private beach is seen as one of the best beaches in Lagos and Nigeria at large. The beach entertains close to 40,000 guests every week with Sundays being the best day on the beach. Over half of all guests that are entertained on the beach weekly visit on Sundays.
Elegushi beach is one of the oldest beaches in Lagos. Elegushi beach is a 24 hours beach that runs 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and 365 days a year. However, if you are a lover of serenity or looking for a private and cool beach, this beach is not for you.
Unlike other beaches in Lagos, at Elegushi, anything goes, there are no restrictions. You are ushered in with very loud music, with a mammoth crowd if you visit on a weekend. You are free to bring your food and drinks at no extra cost.
The beach is not known to be a serene environment,It is a 24 hours ever popping beach experience. There is never a dull moment. Do not be carried away else you may end up staying more than you anticipated. The Elegushi Royal Beach is known for three things the beach, the food and the music. It is a never-ending fun place. As you walk into the beach, you are ushered in by exotic restaurants, night clubs, bars and lounges. Elegushi beach is known for its night clubs, restaurants and cool spots for maximum fun.