Osogbo, formed in the 18th century, is the capital city of Osun State. It is also home to one of the two approved UNESCO World Heritage sites in Nigeria, the Osun-Osogbo Grove. It is a city steeped in history, art and culture. Certainly, it’s a great place to visit when touring cities in Nigeria.
Below are some exciting tour attractions within and around this city:
1. Suzanne Wenger House and Museum
This Brazilian-styled structure with evidence of a Nigerian past is home to over 400 art works, a studio, a shop, Suzanne Wengers’ living quarters, and an exhibition room where great artworks are on display. The massive three floor house is an architectural landmark in the city.
2. Nike Art Gallery
Nike Art Gallery in Osogbo differs from the one in Lagos by its intimate and rustic feel. The art fiesta begins with the wall and the exterior of the building housing the artworks. Inside, the walls are covered with paintings and drawings while the floor area displays sculptures, metalwork, tie-dye clothing and other types of art forms. There’s a guest house for tourists to sleep over in and entertainment by performance artists. Here’s a glimpse of what a living space filled with African artworks looks and feels like. Even the garden area is dotted with intriguing artworks. It is seriously worth checking out.
3. Osogbo Markets
Another name for Osogbo is “Ilu Aro” meaning home of dyeing because the city is major tie and dye centre. So you can be sure to find it in the markets in Osogbo. A remarkable fabric market to visit is the Idi-Seke market where different types of clothes and cloths are sold. It is just along the road leading to the royal palace. Oke-fia Market is mainly for farm produce and Orisunmibare Market is for anything you need in bulk quantities, from foodstuff and utensils to toiletries.
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4. The Museum of Arts
Looking for a museum that has details on the cultural heritage of the Yorubas, then this is the best place to be. This museum is replete with artworks and historical artefacts that tell about the establishment of the Yoruba race and the city of Osogbo.
5. Osun Osogbo Scared Grove
Although much has been said about this location as the cradle of Yoruba civilization, we just want to add that it is in a dense forest. Besides the shrines and effigies of deities scattered therein, this forest is home to about 400 species of plants, most of which are medicinal. If you are a nature lover, coming here for forest bathing is a great recreational activity.
Furthermore, because the grove is located close to the Osun River, it is the centre for the Osun Cultural Festival which takes place in August and September. This festival is a sacred celebration of the goddess of fertility. With the Yoruba culture on display during thus period, it is an ideal avenue for cultural tourism.
More on tourism in Osun State
Featured image source: The New York Times
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