Tourism is an act of exploring, travelling from one’s abode to places to discover some things and sightseeing places, events and occurrences in the world. This might be a critical and systematic examination of particular activities in a place, how an event is being done, etc. Travelling has always been a fabulous privilege for people to discover new things. Travelling helps in encountering and experiencing new feelings about a particular event, place or occurrence.
Tourism in Nigeria
Tourism is for the discovery of a new world, new perceptions about a particular thing; be it events, places or new development. Tourism is significant to economic growth and it’s an integral part of a country’s economic development. It’s a catalyst to economic advancement. The importance of technology cannot be underestimated in the growth and development of a country.
It also involves travelling for business pleasure. Tourism in Nigeria focuses mostly on events due to the country’s bulky amount of ethnic groups but not limited to that. Tourism is an important landmark that has noticeable economic importance to every country that is naturally or artificially endowed with it.
Some countries venture into building things that can attract tourists to the country.
Some of the importance of tourism is here discussed:
Creation of Employment Opportunity
This is an important contribution of tourism to the country. The impact of tourism in providing jobs for citizens cannot be left unmentioned. This is achieved when a noticeable number of tourists are in a country, the rate of productivity will increase and this, in no doubt provides employment for people. Tourists will be interested in buying local goods and this will demand more productivity.
It will surely pave way for business development and serve as economic opportunities for people. The unemployment rate in the country is very high and tourism can provide job positions for guides, restaurants, coach services and hotel staff. This will not only provide employment but provide additional revenue for the local government.
Diversification of Sources of Income
Tourism gives room for diversification especially in the local economies; it is an asset in developing new forms of income, which thereby increases the creative potential of local businessmen. It gives variety to the economy, as people have diversified sources of income. There are areas that only focus on agriculture, but with the help of tourism, they can dabble into other businesses.
For instance, the rural communities whose major source of income is agriculture can simply invest in other businesses with the presence of tourists in the area. It is discovered that additional dollars from tourists may work as an insurance policy for the local governments.
Provision of Infrastructure
The presence of tourists in a community increases the speed of infrastructural development. When there is more tourist, undoubtedly, there will be funds to provide good roads, social amenities, parks and other infrastructural materials. This will also provide an opportunity to build new schools, hotels, hospitals, airports and companies in the community.
Income for the Local Community
Tourists spend money on local attractions. They come with things that will be of benefit to the community. Tourists purchase basic human requirements in cities which bring attractions to the local community. Commonly, international tourists usually come with dollars or euros that have to be exchanged for Naira, which gives room for foreign exchange. These help in stabilizing the economy of local communities.
Tourism engenders different opportunities to the country in the sense that tourists in a country have an appreciable impact on such a country. Constant visits of tourists can change the life of the local communities; it will propel their activeness socially, economically, and perhaps, ecologically. Investment in tourism is likely to help the creation of a super mega-city out of a melancholic town. The community will be lively and be socially in vogue.
This is definitely one of the importance of tourism as no city engaged in tourism will want to have a tattered looking environment. The community will be ventilated and this will allow for ecological advantage. Therefore local community involved in tourism ensure their environment is well cleaned.
Both the visiting tourists and the local communities, that is, the places of these tourist centres shared their respective subcultures and their relations often birth different sorts of development in terms of cultural exchanges. For an instance, the tourist often makes inquiry about the cultural history is well attached to the visiting places, and also, learn can some basic words of the local languages, which are attached to the places of visitation. Ideas are birthed with this relation, and also, the tourists recognise the existence of the past of the tourist centres’ communities or groups of people attached to the story.
However, there are many determinants of tourist attractions in the world that are what propel tourists to come to a particular community. The tourist attractions in Nigeria are:
National Mosque, Abuja
The tourists often visit this mosque to worship. It is situated in the capital city of Nigeria, Abuja. The mosque, also known as Nigeria mosque, came into being in 1984 under the administration of then president, Shehu Shagari. The mosque is open to the public except for congregational program. The mosque is situated on Independence Avenue, across from the National Christian Centre, includes a library and a conference room. The conference can serve five hundred people. It consists of two domes and four minarets.
National Church, Abuja
The church which is also known as The National Christian Centre serves as the primary Christian place of worship in Nigeria. It is also located in Abuja, the capital city. The church is built in neo-gothic style and was designed in a Postmodern version by Nigerian architectural firm, Darchiwork Group; located in Lagos.
The church attracts tourists since it’s a primary place of worship and people want to make excursion to the place and probably settle there.
The First Storey Building, Badagry
This is another place of attraction. It was completed in 1842 by the Church Missionary Society. It is the first storey building in Nigeria which most tourists usually visit. The place is interesting to visit. People visit it often and often.
Obudu Mountains, Cross River
This mountain is located in Cross River State. It is home to the Obudu Cattle Ranch and Obudu Mountain Resort. It is also an attraction to tourists. People prefer to visit the place as it covers a wide expanse of land. The mountain is a six-hour drive from Calabar, Cross Rivers capital.
Yankari National Park, Bauchi
It was founded in 1956 as a game reserve and became national park in 1991. It covers 870 square miles (2,254 square km). The park, at an elevation of about 1,600 feet (500 m). The park has characteristics such as savanna vegetation, including swamps in river floodplains, grasslands, and thick bush. It’s a place rich in animal life, with antelopes (roan, water buck, bush buck, and hartebeest), elephants, hippopotamuses, giraffes, baboons, hyenas, lions, leopards, and crocodiles. Special features of the park include ancient sandstone cisterns, carved by former inhabitants for water storage, and the Wikki Warm Springs. Those features attract tourists to visit the place.
Kajuru Castle, Kaduna
This place also attracts tourists to visit. It is a medieval-style castle located in Kaduna State. The castle took 8 years to be built. The construction was made by a German expatriate and was completed in 1989. It is a 45-minute drive from Kaduna and currently serves as a resort for tourists.
The Ikogosi Waterfall is also a tourist attraction located at Ikogosi, a small town in Ekiti State, southwestern Nigeria. The waterfall flows and meets at a confluence, each maintaining its thermal properties. Despite being a small town, the waterfall attracts tourists.
Owu Waterfall, Kwara
It is situated in Kwara State. The Waterfall is one of the tallest waterfalls in West Africa at a height of 120 meters with a 330 feet drop into an ice-cold pool below. Its existence is untraceable at it is often regarded as a wonder. Tourists come constantly to the place.
Agbokim Waterfalls, Cross River
This Waterfall is located in Ikom, Cross River. The waterfall consists of 7 streams that cascade into a pool below. It is surrounded by lush greenery and is a major hiking destination in Cross River state located 315 km from Calabar. The qualities also attract investors.
Sumu Wildlife Park, Bauchi
Sumu Wildlife Park is a game reserve located in the Ganjuwa local government of Bauchi State. The reserve spans an area of about 82 square kilometres and was opened in 2006 as a partnership between Nigeria and the Namibian government.
Gashaka Gumti National Park, Taraba
Gashaka Gumti is the largest National Park in Nigeria covering an area of 6,402 sq km. The park is located on the Nigerian border with Cameroon and is also home to the highest point in Nigeria, Chappal Waddi which stands at about 2,500 meters.
Zuma Rock, Niger
Zuma Rock is a large monolith and is one of the most notable tourist attractions in Nigeria. It is located in Suleja, Niger State and is about 30 minutes from Nigeria’s capital Abuja. It is referred to as the gateway to Abuja and stands at about 300 meters.
Lekki Conservation Center, Lagos
The conservation was established in 1990 by Chevron for the Nigerian Conservation Foundation. It consists of various animal and plant species and is also home to the famous Lagos Canopy Walkway. The centre is a 190-acre conservation area in Lekki, Lagos. It is a good area that tourists visit.
Ngwo Pine Forest, Enugu
The forest is located in Enugu along the Old Enugu-Onitsha Road. It is a scenic hiking destination and it is also home to the famous Awhum waterfall and limestone caves. This attracts more tourists.
Wikki Warm Springs, Bauchi
These warm springs are located within the Yankari National Park and Game Reserve in Bauchi State. The spring is a result of geothermal activity within the park and maintains a constant temperature of 32 degrees making it perfect for swimming.
Tulo-Tolu Oasis, Yobe
The desert oasis is located in the Yusufari desert in Yobe State and is one of Nigeria’s hidden jewels. Therein is where the Kanuri speaking people live and has served as a stop camel caravans carrying potash which is also known as black salt.
Ibom Golf Resort, Akwa Ibom
The Ibom Golf Resort is located in Uyo, Akwa Ibom and it is the top resort tourists preferred place in Nigeria. The resort is home to one of West Africa’s best golf courses. The resort also serves as a popular conference place in Nigeria.
Gurara Waterfalls, Niger
The waterfall is a popular tourist centre in Nigeria and is the most popular waterfall attraction in the country. It is located in Niger State about two hours from Abuja. It is 30 ft in height and about 200 meters wide.
Other tourist attractions in Nigeria
Other tourist attractions in Nigeria include; Agodi Gardens, Andoni Elephant Sanctuary (Andoni Island), Aso Rock, Bar Beach, Lagos, Benue River, Biu Plateau, Bina Footprint, Chad Basin, Cross River National Park, Emotan Statue, Erin-Ijesha Waterfalls, Ezeagu waterfalls, Gashaka Gumti National Park, Gurara Waterfalls, Ibeno Beach, Idanre Hill, Ikogosi Warm Springs, Isaac Boro Park, Kainji Dam, Kainji National Park, Kamuku National Park, Lake Chad, Mambilla Plateau, Mandara Mountains, Millennium Park (Abuja), Mount Patti, National Arts Theatre
National War Museum, Umuahia.
And also, the National Stadium, Abuja, New Afrika Shrine, Niger River, Oban Hills, Obudu Plateau, Ogbunike Caves, Okomu Forest Reserve, Okomu National Park, Old Oyo National Park, Olumo Rock, Oron Museum, Osun-Osogbo, Port Harcourt Tourist Beach, Queen Amina Statue, Sir Lugard Empire Hill, Sukur Cultural Landscape, Tinapa Resort, and others.
Cite as: Boluwatife Adedokun. Tourism in Nigeria: Importance and Centers. October 24, 2021. Tadexprof. Retrieved at https://tadexprof.com/2021/10/tourism-in-nigeria-importance-and-centers/