Taraba is a state in North Eastern Nigeria, named after the Taraba River which traverses the southern part of the state. Taraba’s capital is Jalingo. The inhabitants are mainly the Fulani, Jukun and the Ichen who are found predominantly in the southern part of the state while Wurkum, Mumuye, and Kona tribes are predominantly located in the northern part of the state. The central region is mainly occupied by the Mambila people. There are over 40 different tribes and their languages in Taraba State. The state was created out of the former Gongola State on 27 August 1991, by the military government of General Ibrahim Babangida.
Taraba State is bounded in the west by Nasarawa State and Benue State, northwest by Plateau State, north by Bauchi State and Gombe State, northeast by Adamawa State, and south by Nord-Ouest Province in Cameroon.
Taraba State lies largely within the middle of Nigeria and consists of undulating landscape dotted with a few mountainous features. These include the scenic and prominent Mambilla Plateau. The state lies largely within the tropical zone and has a vegetation of low forest in the southern part and grassland in the northern part. The Mambilla Plateau with an altitude of 1,800 meters (6000 ft) above sea level has a temperate climate all year round.
Tourist attractions in Taraba state are;
Located in the Southern sector of the Gashaka Gumti National Park, this is the highest peak in Nigeria at 2,419 meters. Infamously known as ‘Mountain of Death’, this is the ultimate spot for daredevils and adventure seekers who are interested in thrills and adventure-inducing adrenaline rush.
Located near the country’s border with Cameroon, this is the highest point in Nigeria.
It is a very safe location to be for adventure.
MAMBILLA PLEATEAU TARABA
The Mambilla Plateau is a plateau in the Taraba State of Nigeria. The plateau is Nigeria’s northern continuation of the Bamenda Highlands of Cameroon. The Mambilla Plateau has an average elevation of about 1,600 metres (5,249 ft) above sea level, making it the highest plateau in Nigeria.
Some of its villages are situated on hills that are at least 1,828 metres (5,997 ft) above sea level. Some mountains on the plateau and around it are over 2,000 metres (6,562 ft) high, like Gang Peak Chappal Waddi which has a height of 2,419 metres (7,936 ft) above sea level. It is the highest mountain in Nigeria and the highest mountain in West Africa.
The Mambilla Plateau measures about 96 km (60 mi) along its curved length; it is 40 km (25 mi) wide and is bounded by an escarpment that is about 900 m (2,953 ft) high in some places. The plateau covers an area of over 9,389 square kilometres (3,625 sq mi).
Citizens best know the Mambila of Nigeria as the coolest and calm place in the country. Lands at the plateau are considered very fertile, and food crops like Banana, Plantain, Pineapple, Cassava, Yam, Sweet and Irish Potatoes are produced in large quantities there. It is the highest point in Nigeria and the second highest mountain in West Africa after Mount Cameroon.
GASHAKA GUMTI NATIONAL PARK
Covering about 6600 sq km, Gashaka Gumti is the Nigeria’s largest national park. This area is important not only as a major watershed but also as a haven for a rich and exotic assemblage of wildlife, given its strategic location at the interface between the moist Cameroonian Highland and the dry Sub-Saharan Guinea Savannah.
Gashaka-Gumti National Park is located in a mountainous region of North-east Nigeria adjacent to the international border with Cameroon, and immediately to the North of the Mambilla plateau. No roads cross this remote region and only a few lonely footpaths wind through the forested mountains towards Cameroon.
Visitors to the park are able to enjoy lush forests, wide sweeping grasslands, cool highland plateaus, rugged moody mountains, abundant wildlife, and fascinating ethnic cultures, all combined within a single protected area.
Barup waterfall is the most popular waterfall in Taraba state and one one the most popular attraction in the state, it is located in Gembu area of the state, within the Gashaka-Gumti national park.
Barup waterfall is a sight to behold as it plays host to thousands of visitors every year. The Barup waterfall and its environs is a perfect place to relax and enjoy nature.
BITAKO HILLS AND ROCK FORMATION
Located in Zing Local Government Area of Taraba State. The Bitako Hills is a sprawling rock formation situated in Zing, and the sight as well as the spread of the formations is enchanting to both natives and visitors alike.
The Bitako Hills is a beautiful place with amazing and breathtaking rock formation, The Bitako Hills is an ideal and perfect place for nature lovers and adventure seekers.
It is one of the must see tourist attraction in Taraba state.
DONGA RIVER BASIN FORESTS
Donga River is located at the southern part of Buru village with a distance of about 10 kilometers from the border with Cameroon.
It is largely lowland and one of the best lowland forests used for bird-watching in the country.
There are over 190 bird species in this river basic forest, and here you can be certain of seeing rare birds like the forest francolin, dusky long-tailed cuckoo, white-belied kingfisher, spotted honey guide, hartlaub’s duck, green hyla, African pied hornbill, and the red-headed malimbe among others.
MARMARA CROCODILE POND,WUKARI
The Marmara crocodile pond is situated in Wukari and reputed to be an ancient pond full of legendary crocodiles which are largely sighted on Fridays.
There is a fable making the rounds that these crocs in ancient times went into town to pay homage to Aku Uka, the supreme head of the Jukuns. If you’re ever in Taraba State, then you mustn’t leave until you’ve seen these legendary crocodiles that live at peace with animals and humans without hurting anyone.