The beauty of a hike up a hill is the breath-taking view. There are lots of hiking destinations in Nigeria, but some destinations are more popular than others. If you live in any of the states with these destinations, you should consider organizing a group hike to these choice areas.
Listed as one of the tentative sites on UNESCO World Heritage Sites, Idanre hills is a majestic hill located in the ancient Idanre town, Ondo state. It is estimated to be about 800 years old. People say the Idanre settlers once lived at the top of the hill before relocating to it’s base. The hill is steep-sided with a smooth dome shape. Tourists have to climb a total of 667 steps to get to the top, but not to worry, there are five posts for resting along the way. There are also tour guides to take you up the hill and entry fees to be paid.
Oke Ado Mountain
Also known as Ado Awaye Mountain, this site is home to Africa’s only suspended lake, Iyake Lake. This makes it a must-see for lovers of hiking. It is located in Oke Ado, a residential area in Ibadan city, Oyo state. Tourists have to climb well over 300 steps to get to the summit of the mountain. There are other attractions at the top of the mountain, namely: the Elephant tree (a tangled fallen trunk or root of a tree that looks like an elephant’s head and trunk); the foot print of the elders (aka Ese awon agba – a cluster of 100 foot-sized depression), Ishage Rock (a rock standing without support).
The Olumirin waterfalls is located at Erin Ijesha in Oriade LGA, Osun State. It has an impressive seven-part cascade; that means you have to climb up 7 levels of the fall. The good news is there are random pieces of art works on the rocks. So you get a view of art and nature on the go. The steps up the rocks are only at the first level, the other levels involve actual climbing and deciding where to place your hands and feet to climb up. It takes about an hour to get to the seventh level from the first and without a guide, that can be treacherous for a newbie. This hike is not for the faint-hearted but it’s a therapeutic ambiance is worth the try.
Located 20 minutes from Ikogosi Warm Springs in Ekiti State, this waterfall makes an interesting tourist attraction. It has seven levels and most hikers barely make it past the fourth level since there are no man-made steps. The slope ascending upwards is steep, but it has uninterrupted flow of water from the hills, a view of lush vegetation and on the overawing ridge, lies the view of a beautiful valley. The best feature of Arinta falls is the aerial view of Ipole Iloro enclave from the top of the hills.
Mount Patti is located in Lokoja city, Kogi State and is about 1,500 feet (460 meters) above sea level. The unique feature of the location lies in the fact that you can drive up the trails. The top of the trail is filled with interesting sites to see such as Rivers Niger and River Benue. It was this view Lord Luggard’s wife saw that made her decided our country should be called Nigeria i.e. a combination of Niger Area. A statue of her sits at the top of mountain along with her husband’s office & Rest House, an NTA office, telecommunication masts and a museum of colonial history. For now, there are no entry fees so this trail is free for all.
The city of Jos in Plateau State has an amazing view, fantastic weather and dynamic terrain. Shere Hills falls in line with this, and has lots of different sized boulders balanced on each other with a big rock for a base. It is quiet challenging to climb especially when the highest point is about 6,000 feet (1,829m) above sea level. But if you can make it to the top, the view is worth it.
Olumo rock, the fortress of Abeokuta in Ogun State, stands 40 feet (137 meters) above sea level and is easy to climb thanks to the man made stairs carved into the rock. If you get breatheless, there are benches under the trees growing out of the rock where you can sit and catch your breath. There is also an elevator for those who don’t want to climb all the way up but it has a price. For those hiking up, there are cowrie studded statues and carvings on the rock to see. The climb is about 40 minutes and there is a gate fee as well as an expected tip for the tour guide. The view of the city from the apex of the rock is also worth the journey.
Abuja is a hilly city and Aso Rock is the highest and largest rock in Abuja, Federal Capital Territory (FCT). It is 1,300 feet (400m) above sea level and the most noticeable feature in the town. It is quite steep and because the presidential residence is close by, you might need permission to climb it.
Obudu Holy Mountain
The allure of visiting a mountain with a waterfall is seeing the cloud or fog formation at the top of the mountain. The air is chilly and dew forms on your eyebrows the closer you get to the top of the mountain. Although the entire Obudu Mountain is 1,576m above sea level, Holy Mountain is at the highest peak of the range.