Advice on Lagos
Replies: 8 - Last Post: Jan 12, 2012 9:53 AM Last Post By: EggshellJoe
Dec 22, 2011 7:58 AM
Advice on LagosI'm travelling to Lagos, Nigeria for a week. My company is co-hosting a small seminar for Nigerian manufacturers with a local company who sells our products. I'll be travelling with a few guys who are about twice my age and seem nervous about this trip. Frankly I'm excited but I'm really not sure what to expect, what to look out for and what to visit. I'll have 3 or 4 days to explore before/after the business meeting though I don't anticipate travelling too far outside of Lagos state. Any suggestions?
Edited by: EggshellJoe
Dec 22, 2011 10:14 AM
1Your colleagues are right to be nervous: Lagos is not a place to wander around!
For your exploring, try to find a trusted local person to be your guide and companion, and follow to the letter any security advice they give you. Alternatively, jump on a bus going west and do some exploring in the Republic of Benin: just two hours away by road, but another country and very much safer!
Dec 22, 2011 5:31 PM
2Nothing to be nervous about in all reality. There has been a case of two of expats working in the oil industry being targeted by hoods and would be abducters this year in Lagos, but there are thousands of expatriates in Lagos.
it is a huge urban area, traffic choked main roads and obviously very hot and sweaty. It is not the most pedestrian of cities in the world either. I usually find a destination, get transport and then doing a little walk around in a chosen area before heading off again. I have never bothered with taking minibuses, motorcycles and arranged driver as I had this offered to me.
I personally head to the coast when I go just for a little fresh air - Lekki Beach and Eleko Beach - nothing to rave about but it's an escape for the urban sprawl.
Plenty of nightlife all over the place and no shortage of cold beers.
Just to pass it along, my last arrival there (May 2011) once I cleared immigration and went through the baggage hall, there were 2 airport 'officials' standing between the baggage hall and the exit. They were asking for Yellow Fever Certificates from random passengers, even though the passengers were all from just one plane - the direct flight from Atlanta, USA. They were basically hustling the nervous travelers and I saw them accepting money from 2 groups of people and they let others pass them right by...................
Dec 23, 2011 2:50 AM
Dec 29, 2011 7:51 AM
No PC way of saying this. They go down the Non-ECOWAS queue for immigration and check all non-blacks for YF certs- just make sure your is to hand and you'll be fine, they're looking to make an easy buck from people who either don't have at all or don't have them to hand, not for hardcore wahalla.
Dec 29, 2011 10:47 AM
5Anyhow, suggestions. You may find yourself under company restrictions depending on your business sector. Oil bods are pretty much under lockdown, if you're in general manufacturing they may be more tolerant.
Good places for a Lagos Lite tour are Terra Kultur (close to Eko hotel, VI) which has a nice art gallery and sometimes some Nigerian theatre, also good Nigerian food; Bogonbiri guest house (off awolowo road Ikoyi) if you need a night away from the biz hotels; The Jazz Hole bookshop (On Awolowo road) to get some \Nigerian books; and Lekki market is traveller-safe for souvenirs.
Further afield I've heard good things about the wildlife reserve off the Lekki express at chevron. A night out in Ikeja GRA is always interesting (and safe) way of seeing the Nigerian middle classes partying though I'm a year out of the scene and can't tell you the goto places anymore- I know La Cachette isn't as popular as it once was.
For beaches get a boat across to Tarkwa Bay; no undertow so safe to swim. #
You'll really need good local connections to go any further in Lagos like The Shrine, Motherlan', or a real market (Yaba etc).
Enjoy- it will be an experience and a half!
Jan 6, 2012 1:44 PM
6Thanks for the responses so far. I will in fact be with a few Nigerians, though they are from Rivers state and not Lagos so I'm not sure how familiar they will be from the area. Also, I'm in general manufacturing not oil and my company is pretty lax as far as a policy for travelers... I can do what I want for better or worse.
This is the first I'm hearing of Yellow Fever papers but multiple people mentioned it. Should I be researching this before I travel?
Lastly, thanks for the beach info... any suggestions for food dishes to try/ places to eat/ sites to see?
Jan 6, 2012 4:57 PM
7Yes: check out Yellow Fever requirements in time to get the injection at least two weeks before travel. In neighbouring Benin your YF vaccination certificate is checked before you even get to Immigration, and if you don't have one you don't even get to ask to come into the country.
Jan 12, 2012 9:53 AM
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