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Cultural Heritage Sites in Nigeria That You Should Know

Nigeria has a lot of sites to offer. Here are 10 of them all recognized by UNESCO.

Cultural Heritage Sites in Nigeria That You Should Know

Nigeria is a country with diverse cultural heritage which has over 250 local languages and counting. All of these various cultures have very rich histories and backgrounds and the people are incredibly proud of their heritage as they should. This heritage comes in the form of ancient places of worship, artefacts and is all recognized by UNESCO.

  1. Sungbo’s Eredo and Iya of Benin: These are defensive walls found in the southwest of Nigeria, namely Ogun and Edo states. The Sungbo’s Eredo walls were said to have been built in honour of a female chief, Bilikisu Sungbo. The Eredo walls are presumed to have been the inspiration for the ‘Iya’ (walls) of Benin which are said to be the largest earthwork in the world.

  2. Sukur Cultural Landscape: Sukur is located in the northeastern part of Nigeria, the Madagali area of Adamawa State to be precise. The landscape shows the palace of the chief and other sacred remains that express the spiritual and material culture of an ancient society.

  3. Ancient Walls of Kano and Associated Sites: The 14-kilometre city wall made of earth and its associated sites are found in the northern part of Nigeria. They form a part of a pre-colonial civilization and governance when the city was built for the security of the growing population of ancient Kano.

  4. Alok Ikom Stone Monoliths: The Alok Ikom monoliths are about 350 upright, carved stones found in Cross River State of Nigeria. They vary in height and most are grouped in circles facing each other. Researchers believe that the inscriptions on the monoliths are a form of prehistoric writing.

  5. Ogbaukwu Caves and Waterfall: Located in the southeastern part of Nigeria, the Ogbaukwu caves are said to be the largest in West Africa and have enough roomy chambers to accommodate an entire village. Not much is known about the caves as they are largely unexplored.

  6. Oban Hills and landscape: These Hills are a part of the Cross River National Park, which is bordering the Korup National Park in Cameroon. The Oban Hills are home to a variety of wildlife including the Nigerian-Cameroon chimpanzee, which has brought about a lot of conservation efforts in the hills and the surrounding landscape.

  7. Ogbunike Caves: To descend into the valley is a lengthy walkway of 317 steps, which was constructed by the state government. The cave, has about 10 inner chambers and several tunnels, some of which are interlinked. Several streams also flow into the caves, and another stream within flows out into river Nkissa.

  8. Old Oyo: Old Oyo in southwest Nigeria is said to be the former city of Oyo which was deserted in the 18th century after a war with Hausa/Fulani raiders. The site lies within the confines of Old Oyo National Park, and on it are the ruins of buildings built by people who lived there in the past, such as the old palace compound, outer walls with ditches and a water reservoir.

  9. Idanre hills: The hills of Idanre are found in Ondo State in the southwest of Nigeria which is about 300 kilometres from Lagos. The hills are about 680 steps from the bottom to the peak and have mysterious handwritings etched into the rock, which has never been decoded. On the hill also is a magical footprint that fits any foot put in it. The Idanre hill was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in October 2007, in the cultural category.

  10. Osun-Osogbo Sacred Groves: The sacred groves of Osun, the goddess of fertility and one of the most popular deities in Yorubaland is located on the outskirts of Osogbo. The groves, which are dotted by shrines, sculptures, and artworks, represent a time when people dedicated areas outside their settlements to deities, areas which are regarded as sacred.



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