A Couple’s Guide to Lagos

Lagos Victoria Island
Lagos Victoria Island | © Anders Broberg/Flickr

Irrespective of the stage of a relationship, Lagos is an ideal place to either deepen a relationship or to let go. No matter how dissimilar or alike a couple’s tastes are, there are places where both can spend alone time together or mingle with the crowd in addition to spending some quality time with one another.

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With the beautiful waters of the Atlantic Ocean skirting the city, Lagos has a wide range of beaches—public and private—that a couple in love with the sun and sea can have a quiet time together or party hard. Go on a day trip to the beaches of Tarkwa Bay, a 15-minute-boat ride from Victoria Island. Take photographs of grounded ships, visit the 110-year-old Lagos Harbor Lighthouse, surf, water-ski, or simply swim and take in the sun.

Tarkwa Bay, Lagos, Nigeria

Lagos Victoria Island

For a weekend getaway, the quiet Halemson Beach Resort is the ideal for a couple seeking to deepen their relationship. A 30-minute-boat ride from Victoria Island, the resort is built on one of the safest beaches in Lagos. Fully equipped with both indoor- and outdoor-recreational facilities, the resort also has a tennis court. Do a bit of rope climbing, take a boat ride, sail across the ocean, or spend a quiet day fishing.

There are also several parks in and around Lagos, but Lekki Conservation Centre comes highly recommended. Established in 1990 by the Nigerian Conservation Foundation on the Lekki Peninsula, the centre is a 78-hectre (192.7-acre) wetland, a combination of swamps and savanna habitats. There are raised walkways around the park where wildlife can be viewed (crocodiles, snakes, birds, monkeys, etc.) and a wealth of plant life native to the wetland. There are several trails that can be explored in the park; there is even a library for the studious.

Lekki Conservation Centre, Lekki Conservation Centre Road, Lekki Penninsula II, Lekki Peninsula, Nigeria, +234 906 546 0479

mona monkey

Freedom Park is another place that is fun and quiet at the same time, depending on the time of day. Explore this memorial park that was once a colonial prison. With a location in downtown Lagos (Eko), the park is a historical/cultural landmark, museum, and an art lover’s haven. Year round, the park has different programs including open-air concerts, art exhibitions, experimental drama, dance recitals, and a host of other activities that make it a go-to place for artists and cultural advocates. It also has a food court with both local and continental dishes available for purchase. The first vegetarian restaurant (Veggie Victory) is also within the park.

Freedom Park Lagos, Mobolaji Bank Anthony Street, Lagos, Nigeria, +234 806 210 8669

Music is the language of love. One of the things that grounds our humanity and connects us, it can scale the barriers of language, status, and race. If nothing else, Lagos is known as the melting pot for music—both Nigerian and international. To get a taste of Afro-beat, created by maverick Fela Anikulapo-Kuti, New Afrika Shrine is the go-to place. Managed by Yeni and Femi Kuti (Fela’s children), the shrine is a memorial to the music and political legacy of Fela. Upon entering, visitors get not only a taste of great music, but a political education as well.

New Afrika Shrine, Nerdc Road, Ikeja, Nigeria, +234 815 165 6751

Dancers ready for performance at the Felabration festival 2014

Those looking for something more intimate, try The Jazzhole, a book and music store that holds intimate-musical nights once a week. It is also a great place to get an immersion into the art and culture scene. In search for something more eclectic? Afropolitan Vibes is the destination. Held once a month in Muri Okunola Park, the rave is a mix of old- and new-school Nigerian Music. It also features foreign acts.

The Jazz Hole, Shop No. 168, Awolowo Rd, Ikoyi, Lagos, Nigeria, +234 706 064 8580

Muri Okunola Park, Ahmadu Bello Way, Victoria Island, Lagos, Nigeria

For the culturally inclined, try a weekend tour through Agidigbo music of Downtown Lagos. The Silverbird Galleria on Victoria Island is an ideal place to enjoy movies, both Nigerian and international. Visit any of the Filmhouse Cinemas usually located within the premises of Shopright Malls across the city. There are also tons of restaurants ideal for a couple in Lagos, but visit Bogobiri House for its cosiness and avant-garde Nigerian cuisine. The boutique hotel also hosts poetry and musical nights.

SilverBird Galleria, 133 Ahmadu Bello Way, Victoria Island, Lagos, Nigeria, +234 1 270 1413

Filmhouse Cinemas IMAX Lekki Lagos, Bisola Durosinmi Etti Dr, Lekki Phase I, Lagos, Nigeria, +234 902 499 7900

Bogobiri House, 9, 7 Maitama Sule St, Ikoyi, Lagos, Nigeria, +234 706 817 6454

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