Lagos isn’t known as a tourist destination, so you won’t find a lot of well-established tourist activities and experiences. But it’s an incredible city, with a vibrant energy all its own and an intensely rich culture.
Traveling solo as a woman makes some activities a little risky, and others more exciting and interesting! Spend the whole day browsing extraordinary fabrics and unique souvenirs at Lekki Market, get inspired by Nigerian creativity, or relax with locals at the beach.
So, find the cheapest possible flight with Azman, and get packing! Lagos is an incredible modern destination, and one that’s always changing.
Tips for Women Traveling Lagos
Some activities can be a bit dangerous to do alone. Nigeria does not have a great reputation for female travelers and the treatment of its own local women. This, however, is gradually changing as the city modernizes, moving towards better treatment and higher safety.
These are our top tips for traveling in Lagos:
- Be polite and chat with the locals. Nigerians are very polite, and appreciate being asked about their family and their life.
- Be aware of current events, but don’t chat too much about the negatives of the country – it’s not all bad, and Nigerians are a little tired of hearing how negatively represented their country is in global media. It’s a beautiful, vibrant city, with both good and bad.
- Expect small problems to crop up. The infrastructure here isn’t great, and you’re bound to run into a few small issues. Expect them, leave time for them, and don’t get too hung up on the small problems. Some of the most beautiful and noteworthy experiences happen when things go ‘wrong’.
- Public transport can be chaotic with a high theft-risk. Uber is available, as well as private taxis, but if you want to travel cheaply, stick to the BRT buses. These are cheap, and much safer than the famous yellow buses of Lagos.
The 5 Best Things to Do in Lagos for Women
There aren’t really tourist attractions in Lagos – rather, there’s a variety of authentic local haunts you’ll hope never get too touristy.
Wondering what to do in Lagos, Nigeria? The city has so much to offer women from all over the world – whether you’re traveling solo or with a partner.
1. Browse the wares at Lekki Market
Lekki Market is, despite its hidden location, one of the best street markets in Nigeria. You’ll find some of the most gorgeous fabrics and unusual wares. And taste incredible Nigerian cuisine!
Be prepared to bargain. In Nigeria, you’re expected to bargain, and the prices start high. You don’t want to undervalue their hard work, but start reasonably low and enjoy some haggling. It’s a fun experience and keeps the merchants from getting bored on a long day.
Walking alone through the markets can be difficult because it gets so busy. We recommend you visit in the morning when the crowds are relatively small. It’s also great to explore alone, as you can stop at all the places you want to, and aren’t tied to someone else’s interests – a particular blessing for those who know what shopping with an unwilling man is like.
2. Visit Lekki Conservation Centre
Experience untamed nature and daunting canopy walks at Lagos’ beautiful nature reserve. Lagos is a chaotic city, and the locals consider the center an oasis. It’s one of the best places to visit in Lagos, Nigeria.
You’ll see monkeys, snakes, and crocodiles, among others, roaming freely. Don’t be worried – they’re wild but safe, and your tour guide is very well trained. You’ll get to see the animals in their natural habitat – a marshland paradise.
The longest canopy walk in Africa can also be found here! It’s not for the faint-hearted, soaring over the trees. But you share it with cheeky monkeys and watch the activities and the enchanting nature from on high.
3. Find Local Art at Nike Centre for Art and Culture
No, Nike the shoe brand hasn’t expanded into African art. This cultural center is named for its owner, the famous Nigerian artist Nike Okundaye. Any woman interested in art, creativity, and culture can’t miss it.
The five-storey building hosts over 8000 works of art by various Nigerian artists. It is a unique and awe-inspiring establishment, and you may even meet the brilliant Nike herself!
It is not, however, just a gallery or a museum. It’s a beautiful workshop, where artists of a range of indigenous and other artforms ply their trade. You’ll find drummers, sculptors, weavers and painters, among others.
One of the most amazing things to do in Nigeria, the atmosphere here is addictive. So full of energy and communal creativity. If you feel the true spirit nowhere else in Lagos, you’ll feel it here.
4. Embrace Local Talent at Jazz Hole
Any literature and music fans? This is one of our favorite Lagos, Nigeria, attractions. It’s book store/cafe/literary haunt/music venue is a local gem of note.
Recommended by the incredibly talented local authors Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (who’s work we recommend reading before setting off for her motherland) and Teju Cole, there’s something special about this place.
You can spend hours here, browsing through the extensive book collection, and admiring the curated artworks, both western and local. The cafe at the back serves local favourites and great coffee. And of course, the music.
The albums collected here preserve Nigeria’s musical history. It’s a hub of inspiration and that Nigerian creativity that is taking the world by storm. Honestly, spending a few hours here is an honour, and you never know who you might meet.
5. Relax on the Beach
One of the top tourist attractions in Lagos, Nigeria, are the beaches. The vibrant city is famous for them, as the white sand beaches have great swells for surfing. They’re also plentiful and therefor never too full.
Laze in the sunshine with a good book and take a dip whenever you get too hot. Try out some surfing. Enjoy some ice cream and stroll through beachside mini markets.
Some of the best spots are Tarkwa Beach and Eleko Beach in downtown Lagos. These are great places to swim, with little tidal pull, clean sand, and surrounding activities to keep you here for the whole day.
Visiting Lagos, Nigeria for its contributions to art and literature, or to get a little inspiration? Or rather for its nature, and some time just to relax on the sandy beaches and catch a tan somewhere unique?
Whatever you’re looking for in this city, these are some of our favorite places to experience the best of Lagos. Pack light, and book your tickets!