Badagry: A trip to a slavery past
A serene and charming town tucked outside the city centre, Badagry is inhabited by a hospitable people with a chequered and heart-wrenching past. Why a chequered history? It was an important outpost for exporting slaves to Europe, America and the Caribbean. Indeed, the history of slave trade in Nigeria cannot be complete without referencing Badagry. At present, the quiet town is a tourist haven and a perfect getaway for anyone who wants to have a break from the nerve-racking, fast paced and carefree Lagos life.
Relics of slave trade can still be found in towns like Ajara, Ajido, Ere and Wowu among others. Badagry was founded in 1425 and the main language spoken is Egun, which is one of the many dialects of the Yoruba language. Jovago.com, Africa’s No 1 portal walks you through this town with a topsy-turvy past. Enjoy!
Top Three Sites
The Aquatic Jungle
Located in Povita village, Badagry, the aquatic jungle can be described as a ‘forest’ for relaxation and respite from the stress of Lagos. This recreational facility offers something for everyone from water rides to roller-coaster aircraft and helicopter tours, zoo, mini golf course and cosy lodging. It is a one-stop centre to have a weekend vacation, picnic and family get together.
Point of no return
The point of no return was the spot where captured slaves were shipped to unknown lands never to return. The dispirited slaves held in the Brazilian Barracoon (prison) where taken straight into a waiting ship docked at the river bed and off they went. This spiriting away of human cargo went on for 400 years and everyone dreaded this point of no return. It has become a place to have fun, unlike the past where it was filled with agony.
Badagry Heritage Museum
After traversing the beautiful beaches of Badagry, it is usually a great idea to acquire some practical knowledge about the community. and the best place to get first-hand information is the Badagry Heritage Museum.
The museum was opened in 2002 and located at the first administrative office block constructed in 1863; 30 years after the end of slavery. It takes visitors down the slavery memory lane through its nine galleries and is a must-see for art junkies.
Other relaxation tourist destinations include Suntan beach, Halem seaside resort, Whispering Palms Resort, and Brazilian Barracoon.
As a tourist town, there are quite a number of excellent places to unwind with friends after a rollicking tour of Badagry. Although they are not popular brands, they still provide a wide range of services that can help any tourist relax. These places are I.G. eateries and bar, Lovelokoso Bar, Princess Ayike cool spot, Ericson bar and Dohemetto restaurant.
Mesoma store, Beachtown, Chidozie Shopping complex and Vlekte slave trade market are among the walk-in places you can shop. If you want an indelible souvenir that reminds you of your visit to Badagry, then you can visit the Vlekte slave trade market.
From Coconut Guest house which is as low as N1,500 to Whispering Palms Resort (N25,000), visitors can book these hotels and more among the over 78 hotels in Badagry on Jovago.com.
The first storey building in Nigeria is located in Badagry. It was completed in 1845. It is 170 years old.