Lagos City Guide
The chaotic and busy city of Lagos is home to more than fourteen million people and is Nigeria’s biggest city. The city limits of Lagos extend over several large islands, which are located on a large lagoon and over the mainland near the Gulf of Guinea. Lagos is the largest port and business and commercial hub of Nigeria and hence is an established stop on the business traveler’s map.
Lagos is not usually regarded as a vacation destination as the city lacks any major tourism infrastructure. However, this former Portuguese and British settlement is now counted amongst the world’s fastest growing cities offering several attractions, markets and beaches for the adventurous tourist looking for a seemingly undiscovered, exotic vacation destination.
Where to stay in Lagos
Victoria Island is a town located between Lagos Island and the Lekki Peninsula. Victoria Island is an exclusive area in Lagos that is home to banks, embassies and headquarters of global corporations like IBM, Haliburton, Hewlett Packard and others. Victoria Island also plays host to many diverse hotels, world-class restaurants, shopping malls, bars, night clubs, movie theatres, schools and businesses and is a highly coveted accommodation locale in Lagos.
Ikoyi today is an affluent suburb of Lagos and was once an exclusive enclave for expatriates during British times. This suburb, which lies on the edge on Lagos Lagoon on Lagos Island, hosts upscale residential buildings and luxury hotels, which are favored by business travelers who visit Lagos.
The area of Ikeja is located close to Lagos’s Murtala Mohammed International Airport. Ikeja is home to various hotels, shopping malls, pharmacies and government reservation areas and is popular with travelers who need to have easy access to Lagos airport.
Places to see in Lagos
The National Museum is the most prominent attraction in Lagos, which is located on Lagos Island in the center of the city. The National Museum contains several interesting exhibits that offer an insight into the rich history of Nigeria like the gallery of Benin brasses, the bullet marked black Mercedes in which former president Murtala Mohammed was assassinated in 1973 and the collection titled ‘Treasures of Ancient Nigeria’.
Lekki Conservation Center
The Lekki Conservation Center on Lekki Peninsula offers displays of the region’s ecosystem and hosts exhibits of native creatures like Mona monkeys, crocodiles, bush bucks and others. The Lekki conservation center is equipped with trails and tree platforms and is a must-do attraction if you are on vacation in Lagos with your children.
Being a coastal city, Lagos is equipped with miles of simmering sands, palm tree fronted beaches, which are immensely popular with the local resident population and visitors. Bar Beach (named after the sand bars on the beach) on Victoria Island, Kuramo Beach, Lekki Beach, Alpha Beach, Eleko Beach and Akodo Beach (Eastern Lagos) and Tarkwa Bay, Ogogoro Island, Atlas Cove, Lighthouse beach, Ilashe Beach, Agaja Beach and Badagry Beach (all in Western Lagos) are the main beaches of Lagos which offer visitors and local a chance to get away from the chaos of Lagos city.
Best time to visit Lagos
If you are seriously contemplating booking a vacation to Lagos then it’s useful for you to know about its climatic conditions. Lagos is bestowed with a tropical climate and has two rainy seasons, from April to July and from October to November. The dry seasons in Lagos last between August and September and then again between December to March when average daytime temperatures in Lagos register 84F(29C).
Getting around in Lagos
Lagos is served by its Murtala Muhammed International Airport, which is located 13 miles north west of the city and offers numerous air connections to Europe, the Americas, Asia and the Middle East. As a result Lagos is quite well connected with other parts of the globe.
Fare Buzz periodically announces flight deals for Lagos and if you need to travel to Lagos on business or even for a vacation, you may want to check out the various cheap air flights that Fare Buzz has on offer.
Lagos doesn’t have much of a public transport system and most visitors to the city opt to rent a car for the duration of their stay in Lagos. Car rentals in Lagos come equipped with chauffeurs who are experienced with traversing the challenging traffic conditions in the city.
If you need to rent a car for your Lagos vacation, Fare Buzz can be of assistance for it offers a variety of well appointed car rentals for Lagos, which can be booked via its normal booking channels. Aside from car rentals, the city is also equipped with taxis, which are reasonably safe and reliable and easy to get outside hotels.
Where to shop in Lagos
Lagos contrary to popular opinion does offer some good shopping opportunities like Lekki Market, which is the city’s main market that is located on Victoria Island. The many vendors at Lekki market offer products like African masks, Nigerian beadwork and cloth, which can make for good souvenirs from your trip to Lagos.
Aside from Lekki Market, Lagos also offers other shopping haunts like Akin Adesola Street on Victoria Island, Awolowo Road in Ikoyi , and Allen Avenue in Ikeja, which offer several spanking new stores and boutiques. In recent years, the city has also witnessed the development of a mall culture and now hosts malls like the Palm and Galleria on Silverbird, which offer additional shopping options for tourists on a vacation in Lagos.
Where to eat in Lagos
Lagos is equipped with a good selection of restaurants that serve a variety of global cuisines. Some of the most popular and well regarded restaurants in Lagos include establishments like Reeds( Thai), Saipan ( Chinese), Yellow Chili(Nigerian), Piccolo Mondo( Italian), Churras(Brazilian), Debonaires Pizza, Double Four(Lebanese) and Bonsai (Japanese).
Nightlife in Lagos
Almost everybody knows that the security situation in Lagos leaves much to be desired though the city seems to be changing somewhat and now actually has a semblance of a nightlife scene that offers bars, cocktail lounges, live music venues and more. Some of the popular hotspots in Lagos currently include establishments like the Soul Lounge (the Palm, Victoria Island), Swe Bar, Da Grotto, Saipan Bar and Terra Kulture Vulture.