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Lagos, Nigeria

Discover the hustle and bustle of Lagos

A guide to Lagos, Nigeria

Lagos, Nigeria

Once Africa’s capital for slave-trade, Lagos has been transformed into a booming tourist hub that attracts visitors from all corners of the world. From picturesque beaches to pulsing nightlife in the city-centre, Lagos appeals to anyone who has a taste for life.

Lagos has a cosmopolitan population, with a considerable number of foreigners amongst a cultural melting pot of various tribal nations such as the Yoruba and Hausa ethnic groups. You will also find a mix of religious traditions, with the most popular religions being Christianity and Islam.

Lagos was once the capital of Nigeria, and for good reason; being one of the top 10 ports in Africa, it is still responsible for more than 80% of goods in Nigeria. It is the most populous city in Africa and still growing. Lagos has accommodation to suit the adventure-seeking solo traveller on a tight budget, as well as those looking for a 5-star establishment that can cater to all their needs. You can book hotels in Nigeria here.

Best time to visit Lagos, Nigeria

Being a tropical climate, Lagos is more humid than the northern regions with a distinct rainy season between March and November. The best time to travel to this vibrant, colourful city is between December and March.

Use the flight booking tool above, to book your flights to Lagos. It is very easy and also secure.

Lagos tourist attractions

Lagos has something to offer everyone, from the adrenalin-junkie to the family looking for some wholesome quality time while they explore the history and culture this city has to offer. Art lovers could easily spend a day at the National Nigerian museum or the National Theatre, which both offer insight into ancient Nigerian art as well as the best up-and-coming modern artists who are setting the stage in the art world. Nike Art Gallery is also one of the top-rated galleries in Lagos, featuring the work of one of Nigeria’s most renowned artists Nike Okundaye.

For those who would appreciate exploring the natural wonders of this beautiful country, the Lekki Conservation area was created to protect the diverse plants and animals. It is an untouched 78 hectares of Nigeria’s natural environment and is run by the Nigerian Conservation Foundation. Tarkwa Bay beach is an island near Lagos harbour that is slightly off the beaten track, though remains popular amongst swimmers and sporting enthusiasts.

Lagos has much to offer the modern family as well. A fun-filled day at Hi Impact Planet could keep kids (and the young-at-heart) entertained with rides and games, as well as a food court. Ikeja City Mall is an ideal day-out for the whole family, boasting more than 100 shops as well as various entertainment centres for the kids. For those who prefer a more thrilling experience, visit the GET arena for the best go-carts in Lagos (suitable for kids and adults alike).

The Food in Lagos

Much like the city itself, restaurants in Nigeria are eclectic and offer a range of choices that suit every palette. Being a tourist hub, in Lagos, you can experience a marriage between the rich flavours of Nigeria with the best international cuisine. Try NOK by Alara for the ultimate fusion menu. Just make sure you have cash with you as many restaurants don’t accept foreign cards.

Street food to look out for includes Akara (deep fried bean cakes), boli (roasted plantain) and dundun (deep fried yams). Nigeria is not known for being a vegetarian nation, there are some mind-blowing vegetable-based dishes that will tickle your taste-buds, such as the ever-popular Dodo (fried plantain).

Shop until you drop in Lagos

Lagos is a shoppers’ paradise, offering everything from the most exclusive, high-end brands in modern malls to locally produced hand-crafts that you can take home as souvenirs.

Visit the Palms Shopping Centre or peruse the stalls of street vendors and you might find the finest batik cloth. Batik is a technique of wax-resist dyeing applied to cloth. This technique originated from Indonesia. Find out more about batik cloth here.

Essential Lagos info

The official language in Nigeria is English, but only about 50% of the population can speak it. The other most-spoken ethnic languages in the country are Hausa, Yoruba and Iso. However, all administration is done in English and you should be able to get by without understanding the local languages, especially in Lagos.

The currency that is used is Nigerian Naira. Note denominations include 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200 and 500. There is no limit to the amount of foreign currency you can bring into the country, provided you declare it upon arrival, at customs. Foreign currency can only be exchanged at selected banks.

Government offices are open between 07:30 am and 03:00 pm, Monday-Friday. There are over 100 banks located throughout Nigeria – opening hours are usually 08:00 am to 03:00 pm on Monday and 08:00 am to 01:30 pm from Tuesday to Friday.

Lagos is one hour ahead of GMT and daylight saving is not observed.

Local Markets

Take in the sounds and colour of Nigeria at one of the local markets.

Balogun Market is the largest market in the city, situated in the heart of Lagos within walking distance of Broad Street.

Lekki market is also well worth a visit for authentic Nigerian and West African crafts.

Keep in mind that it is expected that you will haggle with the traders.

Does the thought of haggling intimidate you? Fear not. Read this guide to haggling in Nigeria.

Top tips for surviving Lagos

#1 Beware of the traffic

Lagos is notorious for traffic and it is not uncommon to see it voted as one of the most congested cities in Africa. If you are planning on being somewhere, make sure you allocate a window of a couple of hours extra to get to your destination on time.

#2 Don’t be afraid to bargain

Lagos natives are not shy about laying on extra charges for a foreign face. Honed haggling skills will serve you well in markets and when using taxis. Ask the price when you get into the taxis to avoid paying more than the going rate.

#3 Get your vaccinations

Not having them could mean you won’t be allowed into the country, or that you might be coaxed into paying a hefty bribe. Recommended vaccinations include:

  • Yellow fever (at least 10 days before you enter the country)
  • Rabies
  • Polio
  • Meningitis
  • Typhoid
  • Hepatitis A and B
  • Influenza

# 4 Nigeria is a country affected by Malaria

Make sure you have effective medication that will prevent you from contracting this disease while you are travelling in Lagos.

Cheap Flights to Lagos, Nigeria

Use the flight booking tool at the top of this page to make an online flight booking to Lagos. We have cheap flights to and from Lagos. It is now easier than ever to book flight tickets online. Just follow the steps indicated on the flight booking tool.

The Air Peace Abuja to Lagos tickets are often particularly good value.

Do you have any suggestions?

Have we forgotten something? Do you have any suggestions on where to go, what to see or where to eat in Lagos? If so, please tell us in a comment below:

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