5 places worth visiting if you’re in Uyo
By Ekemini Joseph
Akwa Ibom is scenic and serene and one of Nigeria’s under-celebrated states when it comes to travel and tourism. The state does not have hills or waterfalls but it has lots of other attractions that’ll appeal to many visitors, including several historical sites.
Uyo, its capital, is relaxed and is a most suitable place if you’re seeking a getaway from work and the pressure of everyday living.
And if you have the time, be sure to plan visits to a selection of awe-inspiring locations outside the city; some of the locations are linked to Nigeria’s evolution as a county. These places include (but are not limited to): site of the 1929 Aba Women’s Protest; the Amalgamation House (both at Ikot Abasi) and the memorial site to Scottish missionary, Mary Slessor (at Itu LGA).
If you are in Uyo any time of the year, you’ll do well to experience the following attractions.
The Ibom Plaza: The Ibom Plaza is the city centre and you will find it intriguing. As expected, it’s arguably of the busiest parts of the capital. Also known as the Ibom Connection, it links the major roads in Uyo — Nwaniba Road, Oron Road, Aka Road, Abak Road, Ikot Ekpene Road and Wellington Bassey Way – together. And you can do a couple of things at the Plaze: take a passport photographs; buy jewelries; buy street food; play snooker or table tennis, as well as just sit and gist with friends. There is an amphitheater right at the center of the plaza, you can just sit on one of the theater stairs (meant to be a chair) and read a book or watch people do their thing.
Ibibio Unity Park: This is the location for the annual, record-breaking Christmas fanfare. Also within the park is the Ibibio Unity Museum, which isn’t open for the public; that notwithstanding, you can learn a lot about the history of Akwa Ibom by walking around the walls of the museum, which is an architectural masterpiece in itself. On the museum exterior are images which profile some of the individuals who benefited from communal contributions to send them to school abroad. It holds a lot of history for Akwa Ibomites.
Ibom E-library: Another place worth visiting is the Ibom E-library. This massive edifice is a one-stop library where you can find materials on any subject of your choice. It has physical books as well as the virtual part which makes it an e-library. At the library, you can get to the rooftop and see the beauty of Uyo.
Gallery Of Art: Located just beside the Ibom E-library, the gallery of art is a place you should visit if you find statues like the ones at the library and on some major roads around Uyo interesting. Right there, a number of people are creating masterpieces using sand and waste materials and you’re free to just watch them do it. You might be lucky to visit when there is an exhibition.
Tech Hubs: if you’re fascinated by how technology works, and you’d want to see firsthand how the young people are making changes to the landscape of technology from the southern part of Nigeria, then visit the tech hubs in the city. You can’t go wrong with either Start Innovation Hub or The Roothub, both of which are driving the local tech scene.
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