Northern Nigeria has some of the best monuments and sceneries across the whole world and over the years many international visitors have found the region irresistible.

From catching various horse durbars in Kano, Zaria, Katsina and Daura to visiting the tremendous Yankari Games reserve in Bauchi, here are 5 of the best places to visit in northern Nigeria.

 

KANO

That’s my hometown and I’m not going to bias when I say it’s one of the best places to visit in Nigeria.

Just last week, I paid a visit to a friend who stays in ‘Hausawa’ and he took me to a house which is believed to be over 800 years old which was formerly inhabited by the king’s servants.

So basically lovers of history and antique will enjoy Kano 100 percent because there are lots of things to see and do in the state.

Gidan Makama museum is one of the oldest in the country and has items and tools from centuries ago; it’s mostly the first place non-Kano residents visit on their arrival because it says a lot about not only the state’s history but northern Nigeria as well.

Kurmi market is another interesting location because according to historians it is one of the oldest in the region. There’s an adage in Kano that ‘whatever you can’t find in Kurmi can’t be found anywhere else.’

From horse related attires, traditional kitchen utensils to modern appliances, I have seen Europeans take pictures at the famous market.

 

BAUCHI

Whenever one mentions Bauchi, the first place that comes to the minds of many is the Yankari Games reserve.

Personally I never get tired of visiting that place because I believe it’s one of the best relaxation spots not only in Africa but across the whole world.

Packed with exciting stuff, from game, the famous hot spring streams and amazing reservations for those who wish to spend the night. Whoever visits Yankari will no doubt be left wanting more.

Interestingly, that’s not the only place Bauchi is renowned for, Emir Rilwanu Sulaiman’s palace in Bauchi town is another impressive edifice that leaves visitors wanting to take pictures and learning about the history of the place is also something worth doing.

Not forgetting, the beautiful central mosque in Azare, one of the biggest and most decorative in the country.

 

KADUNA

The crocodile city isn’t as historic as the other aforementioned locations due to the fact that the city has always been associated with modernity since from its former position as capital of northern Nigeria.

Despite that, Kaduna possesses some amazing places to visit and enjoy. First on the list is the historic Emir of Zazzau palace in Zaria.

The Zazzau kingdom is one of the oldest and most renowned across Africa due to its gallantry and warrior ships during wars centuries ago.

The story of the amazing Queen Amina readily comes to mind. Over the years, The Emir of Zazzau palace has been one of the most visited by foreigners who want to learn more about history or attend the Kingdom’s popular Eid horse Durbars.

Another place I can’t leave out is the popular Gamji Gate. The place is Kaduna’s version of Abuja’s Millenium Park.

Growing up in Kaduna as a child, it’s the first place we visit during Eid because there were many things happening, from various shows taking place to the popular swimming pool section.

It also offers serene environments for people who just want to relax and enjoy quality time with family.

 

TARABA

According to many, this is Nigeria’s most beautiful location, I have heard this from countless number of people and I didn’t really put much into it until I visited the Mambilla Plateau.

It was as if I was no longer in Nigeria and living out a life I have seen several times in Hollywood movies. The scenery was just perfect. The massive beautiful mountains (including Chappal Waddi mountain considered the highest point in Nigeria with) waterfalls to the lush greenery.

I just wanted to carry my house on my head and place it at the place, it was that beautiful.

If the federal and state government will put more attention to the place, I believe we can be an envy of the rest of Africa in no time.

 

SOKOTO

We have all heard about Usman Danfodio and how the caliphate came into being right from school, but there’s nothing like visiting Sokoto State and seeing it all for yourself.

The ‘Sarkin Musulmi’ palace has so much history and knowledge that will leave you wanting to learn more.

Visiting the palace, you’ll get to see and learn more about the great people that shaped not only northern Nigeria but the continent at large.

Stories of the 20 Sultans, the erudite and knowledgeable Nana Asmau whose literary works is still a major point of study across the world. The renowned ‘Hubbare’ where all Sultans are buried is also another point of call.

A trip to Sokoto will no doubt open your mind and enrich your knowledge of the region and the religion of Islam.

 

 

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Mansur Abubakar is an Abuja based journalist that writes for several publications. His hobbies include traveling, reading and playing video games.

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