BRIEF HISTORY OF PLATEAU STATE
Plateau State was created out of the then Benue-Plateau State on February 3, 1976 by the Murtala Mohammed Regime. It’s capital is Jos. Jos the original name of ‘Gwosh’ was wrongly pronounced as ‘Jos’ by the Hausa who settled on the site and turned it into a trading centre.
Plateau State gets its name from the Jos Plateau, a mountainous area in the north of the state with captivating rock formations. Bare rocks are scattered across the grasslands, which cover the plateau. The altitude ranges from around 1,200 meters (about 4000 feet) to a peak of 1,829 metres above sea level in the Shere Hills range near Jos. Plateau State has led to a reduced incidence of some tropical diseases such as malaria. The Jos Plateau, makes it the source of many rivers in northern Nigeria including the Kaduna, Gongola, Hadejia and Yobe rivers.
It is located in North Central Nigeria, Plateau State occupies 30,913 square kilometres. Plateau State shares borders with Kaduna State to the North, Kaduna and Nassarawa States to the East, Benue to the South and Taraba State to the East. Plateau State is located between latitude 80°24’N and longitude 80°32′ and 100°38′ east.
Plateau State has over forty ethno-linguistic groups but no single group large enough to claim majority position. Some of the indigenous tribes in the State include: Afizere, Amo, Anaguta, Angas, Aten, Berom, Bogghom, Buji, Challa, Chip, Fier, Gashish, Goemai, Irigwe, Jarawa, Jukun, Kwagalak, Kwalla, Meryang, Miango, Miship, Montol, Mushere, Mupum, Mwaghavul, Ngas, Piapung, Pyem, Ron-Kulere, Rukuba, Taletc, Taroh, Youm. Each ethnic group has its own distinct language, but as with the rest of the country, English is the official language in Plateau State although Hausa has gained acceptability as a medium of communication.
These people groups are predominantly farmers and have similar cultural and traditional ways of life. People from other parts of country have come to settle in Plateau State and generally coexist peacefully with the indigenes. These include the Hausa, Fulani, Igbo, Yoruba, Ijaw, and Bini. Plateau State is predominantly Christian.
Tin mining activities began in 1902 under the British and continue to present day.
This is one of the most adventurous tourist sites in Jos. Mountain climbers and hikers that love a challenge will enjoy a visit to this monumental site as it has the highest and most rugged peak of all the mountains in Jos. It serves as a camping spot for the Citizenship and Leadership Training Centre and the east of Jos is approximately 10 km from Shere Hills.
Shere Hill is one of the seven highest pointers in Nigeria and has attained the height of about 1829m or 6001 feets above sea level. The top of the hill helps to get a good grasp of the city view.
Shere hill is a fantastic location for leadership training such as the man o war drill and also for mountain climbers and adventure seekers. The Shere hill has been one of Nigeria’s tourist asset.
The Assop waterfall is about 60 kilometres away from the Jos metropolis. This waterfall is a scenic awe that has drawn tourists to behold her beauty. Going towards the waterfall is a forest gallery passage and a brick staircase leading to this fascinating sight.
Water pours out from the rock and runs through the valley with so much strength and speed forming a whitish torrent which projects a rare view of nature. The water course feeds the forest in close proximity to this waterfall.
Assop waterfall has been a choice location to shoot movies, picnic, photo shoot and other events. The beautiful Assop waterfall in Jos is an alluring place to visit.
RAYFIELD HOLIDAY RESORT
The Rayfield holiday resort is one of the best resorts in Nigeria. It offers unending fun for its visitors, presenting an amazing scenery and facilities such as sports fishing, boating, indoor games and swimming to make tourist have an awed stay and also a place to reminisce about.
This holiday resort is located about 4km away from the Jos metropolis birthed in a serene environment. The Rayfield Resort has a golf club and is the home of golf in Nigeria. The resort possesses exquisite cuisines where local as well as international delicacies are being served.
JOS WILDLIFE PARK PLATEAU
Jos wildlife park is one of the largest man made zoological gardens in the country and is home to a variety of animals ranging from monkeys, elephants, lions. The variety of wildlife and closeness to nature is one of the many reasons why tourists come from far and wide to visit. Everybody is welcome!
This wildlife Park help to reconnect with what a natural forest should look like. It hosts a number of protected picnic centres and also history museum that tells historical facts about the park. It is a prime tourism location and relaxation centre.
PANDAM GAME RESERVE AND LAKE
Established in 1972 and located in a small community called Pandam in Qua’an Pan local government area, the game reserve is situated beside the Lafia-Shandam Road to the north of the Benue river and is barely a distance of 60 kilometres to Lafia, the capital of Nasarawa State.
Veering off the road towards the reserve, the deploring state of the tourist village, which is supposedly chalets to accommodate tourists, hidden among towering trees, is the first thing any visitors stares at. To the right is the multipurpose hall, still standing strong but obviously in need of a desperate make over.
Two rusty iron boards welcome visitors with a message that reads, “Pandam Wildlife Park aims to provide a place for visitors to learn about and enjoy the natural environment, and to ensure that future generations of Nigerians are able to experience for themselves their country’s rich natural heritage.”
The message goes further to mention the various species of animals that can be found in the park and gives a vivid description of the park’s activities and a map that outlines self-guided trails. It is obvious that those who established the park had something better in mind than the present humiliating structures which greet visitors.
Wase Rock is a massive dome shaped rocky inselberg found near Wase town in Wase Local Government Area of Plateau State in central Nigeria. Standing alone in the Wase plains, it achieves a remarkable height of about 176 metres (577ft) above the surface of the neighbouring surroundings and 426 metres (1,398 ft) above sea level.
It has been described as a volcanic plug by geographers. It is visible for a radius of 40 kilometres (25 mi) due to its height. It is one of the only five breeding places for the Rossy white pelican birds in Africa. The government now protects about 321 hectares (790 acres) of land around the rock as a bird sanctuary and for wildlife development.
From the peak of this rock formation, there is an excellent view of the Wase Town as the rock rises at approximately 250 metres or 800 feet from the plane of the town. The breathtaking view and serenity at the peak of the rock make climbing it worth the while.
KURRA FALLS RIYOM
Kurra Falls is an area of magnificent scenery some 77 kilometers southeast of Jos. It is the location of the State’s first hydroelectric power station. It is a beautiful area of rocks hills, and lakes, ideal for boating, camping, and rock climbing.
Kurra waterfall is located along the Jos Pankshin road. It is made up of hills, rocks, valleys and lakes. Kurra Waterfalls has a rich cultural history, beautiful landscape and mother nature in its beauty.
KURANG VOLCANIC MOUNTAIN
Located about 88 km from Jos Township, the Kurang volcanic mountain is a delight to visit in order to see the natural springs.
In fact, SWAN bottle water is bottled right at this natural spring, and it is rich in natural minerals and other organic properties.
Kurang Volcanic Mountain is not far from the Jos Township. It is here that you would see the natural springs where SWAM Bottle Water is bottled.
SOLOMON LAR AMUSEMENT PARK
Named after one-time governor of the state Chief (Dr.) Solomon Daushep Lar, this amusement park combines the beauty of nature with man-made facilities to offer the very best in outdoor entertainment.
This is a natural park improved upon with some artificial facilities. Offering swimming pool services, playground for children, artificial lakes, free internet service, and a pleasant environment for events, this is a choice site for picnics, recreational activities and events.
The park provides a place for many occasions. On your visit you might see movie makers scouting and filming on site, newlyweds having their receptions, or picnickers and nature lovers generally relaxing and having a blast.
Helena farms is a farm where ornamental vegetables and herbal plants are grown. Also known as the Rose Merchant. Here, flora is abundant as items like Rosemary, Cucumber, Bill, Broccoli, Asparagus, Basil and Roses are grown and cultivated. The smell of Roses is heavy in the air at Helena farm and it is a wonderful place to visit with family or friends.
MUSEUM OF NIGERIA FOR TRADITIONAL ARCHITECTURE
A collection of traditional architecture can be found at this museum. It is also located in the Complex of the National Museum. The buildings are in themselves, exhibitions of traditional Nigerian architecture and art.
Jos museum was established in 1952 by Bernard Fagg and was originally the National Museum. It is an important centre of research into the prehistoric culture of Nigeria,and was recognized as one of the best in the country but fell into ruin.
The Pottery Hall in the museum has an exceptional collection of finely crafted pottery from all over Nigeria. The museum boasts some fine specimens of Nok terracotta heads and artifacts dating from between 500 BC to AD 200. It also incorporates the Museum of Traditional Nigerian Architecture with life-size replicas of a variety of buildings, from the walls of Kano and the Mosque at Zaria to a Tiv village.
Articles of interest from colonial times relating to the railway and tin mining can also be found on display. A School for Museum Technicians is attached to the museum, established with the help of UNESCO. The Jos Museum is also located beside the zoo.
PANYAM FISH FARM
The Panyam fish farm is ideal for sports fishing. It is man-made and its products are sold at a subsidized price.This is situated in Mangu nearby government zone around 60 kilometers South-East of Jos.
The ranch is perfect for sports angling. It is man-made and its items are sold at financed price..The state Commissioner for Agriculture and Natural Resources, Mr Steven Barko, said in Jos, the state capital that the ranch could reimburse the credit in two years.
He said the homestead would have been in activity at this point, notwithstanding funds. The chief said the legislature had spent the previous one year searching for accomplices to revive the homestead.