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Enugu State, Nigeria(Tourism)

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Enugu State is one of the states in the eastern part of Nigeria. The state shares borders with Abia State and Imo State to the south, Ebonyi State to the east, Benue State to the northeast, Kogi State to the northwest and Anambra State to the west.


Enugu, the capital city of Enugu State, is approximately 2½ driving hours away from Port Harcourt, where coal shipments exited Nigeria. Enugu is also located within an hour's drive from Onitsha, one of the biggest commercial cities in Africa and 2 hours drive from Aba, another very large commercial city , both of which are trading centers in Nigeria. The average temperature in this city is cooler to mild (60 degrees Fahrenheit) in its cooler months and gets warmer to hot in its warmer months (upper 80 degrees Fahrenheit) and very good for outdoor activities with family and friends or just for personal leisure.

Enugu has good soil-land and climatic conditions all year round, sitting at about 223 metres (732 ft) above sea level, and the soil is well drained during its rainy seasons. The mean temperature in Enugu State in the hottest month of February is about 87.16 °F (30.64 °C), while the lowest temperatures occur in the month of November, reaching 60.54 °F (15.86 °C). The lowest rainfall of about 0.16 cubic centimetres (0.0098 cu in) is normal in February, while the highest is about 35.7 cubic centimetres (2.18 cu in) in July


The name of State derives from its capital city, Enugu. The word "Enugu" (from Enu Ugwu) means "the top of the hill". The first European settlers arrived in the area in 1909, led by a British mining engineer, Albert Kitson. In his quest for silver, he discovered coal in the Udi Ridge. Colonial Governor of Nigeria Frederick Lugard took keen interest in the discovery, and by 1914 the first shipment of coal was made to Britain. As mining activities increased in the area, a permanent cosmopolitan settlement emerged, supported by a railway system. Enugu acquired township status in 1917 and became strategic to British interests. Foreign businesses began to move into Enugu, the most notable of which were John Holt, Kingsway Stores, British Bank of West Africa and United Africa Company.

From Enugu the British administration was able to spread its influence over the Southern Province of Nigeria. The colonial past of Enugu is today evidenced by the Georgian building types and meandering narrow roads within the residential area originally reserved for the whites, an area which is today called the Government Reserved Area (GRA).

From being the capital of the Southern Provinces, Enugu became the capital of the Eastern Region (now divided into nine States), the capital of now defunct Federal Republic of Biafra, thereafter, the capital of East Central State, Anambra State, (old) Enugu State, and now the capital of the present Enugu State through a process of state creation and diffusion of administrative authority.


Enugu state is endowed with a lot of tourist resources, facilities and potentials. These exist in natural features such as lakes, caves, hills, falls, springs and cultural festivals as well as such man-made features like hotels, telecommunications and transport outfits, galleries and monumental or archaeological collections. Some of these potentials are developed and others are yearning for development. Some of the existing tourist events in Enugu include the Mmanwu festival and the new yam festival (Iri-ji).


Masquerade (Mmanwu) festival

In the primordial times, masquerades were principally used as law enforcement agents because of the general believe that they were spiritual elements. They were effective in ensuring compliance with traditional norms and values and in setting moral code in the communities. Masquerades institution is vey important in Enugu State and its annual festival which comes up in November every year has become one of the greatest tourist attractions in the State. The festival usually attracts tourist in large number in Enugu. In the last few years, the government has tried to elevate it to an international tourist event like the famous Brazilian Samba carnival.



New Yam Festival

Yam is an important food crop in Enugu State and as a result, it has cultural significance. The harvesting of new yam is, therefore, celebrated by the people between the months of August and October. The time for the celebration varies from one community to the other. The new yam festival is an occasion to offer special prayers to God for a fertile land and good harvest. It is marked with feasting and merry-making.

Other cultural activities that often keep the various communities in the state alive are chieftaincy coronation ceremonies. Ozo title taking ceremonies, traditional marriage ceremonies and cultural troupes.

Prominent among the under developed tourist sites are:


The Ezeagu Tourist Complex: this is located at the south central pan of the State. It is made up of a waterfall, a three kilometer cave, natural spring and a lake. The complex has a unique beautification due to its natural setting. Interested corporate bodies could develop these features in corporation with the Enugu State Government.


The Opi Lake Complex: This is a conglomerate of eight (8) natural lakes within a community. The site is beautified by the surrounding wooded environment and the breathtaking landscape. The area is best suited for the construction of holiday resorts.


The Ugwueme and Udi Hills: These are hills that area hundreds of meters above sea level. These hills are good for mountaineering and scape admiration points. Underneath the Udi hills are coal mines, beautiful tunnels that are also true tourist sites.

Amagunze/Akpawfu Lake Complex: The complex consists of nine (9) lakes within the same district.

Awhum Waterfall:This is more than 30 meter high. The fall is located close to a monastery. The water is said to be curative and capable of dispelling evil or satanic forces if and wherever sprinkled.


Milliken Hills:Named after one of the earliest colonial administrator in Enugu, the first road into Enugu City winds through the foot of the hills, bounded by a deep gully.


The Ngwo Waterfall:The waterfall is several meters high throwing down good drinking water.

The Ani Ozalla Lake and Shrine:This is a natural lake located at Ozalla in Nkanu West LGA near Enugu where crocodiles which are regarded as goddesses appear from the lake at the command of the chief priest to take offerings from supplicants.

The under listed are some other tourist sites in Enugu State:

The institution of Management and Technology (IMT)

Sculptural Garden and Art Gallery

The Nike Lake Hotel, Enugu

Polo Amusement Park, Enugu

Coal Mines (Onyeama and Okpara) in Enugu

Historical monuments such as the Eastern Region

Parliamentary building and the old

Government lodge, all in Enugu

The University of Nigeria

Onuiyi Haven

Article Credit:

Updated 7 Years ago

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