Tafawa Balewa Square
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National Museum information
Lonely Planet review
The National Museum is definitely worth seeing, but note - no cameras are allowed. The star attractions are the brasses from Benin City, which get their own gallery. The Nok Terracottas are also well represented. Another gallery dedicated to traditional symbols of power contains carved ivory and a royal host of crowns. A less fortunate symbol of power is the bullet-riddled car in which Murtala Mohammed was assassinated in 1976. This museum also operates a nonprofit crafts centre, which stocks a good range of batik cloth, woodcarvings and textiles at fixed prices. There's a fine range of intricately decorated calabashes from across Nigeria.
The museum has a small crafts village with woodcarvings and other handicrafts for sale at fixed prices; you might also see a demonstration of adire - cloth-making from Abeokuta.
The museum is 150m southeast of Tafawa Balewa Sq, a huge arena adorned by statues of gargantuan horses. In the square is Remembrance Arcade, with memorials to Nigeria's dead from two world wars and the Biafran conflict.