Exploring Lagos: Dos and Don’ts in the Nigerian city

Lagos is the city of art and music, and one of the few cities in Nigeria that is all about development and technology. Lagos is very much like New York, where each person reads his or her own meaning into it. Where every traveller has his own perception, which makes it difficult to define the city. It is the city that can easily become the “Singapore of Africa,” as it is called the “megacity of the future.”

Metropolitan Lagos

Even though the congested cities of Nigeria are known for traffic jams and busy streets, Lagos is a city of fascination that offers something to everyone. There are so many entertainment options and things to do in the city so there is no chance you will get bored in the country. This also gives you the biggest reason to take a flight to the vibrant city and try to define it for yourself. 

Lagos is the ultimate expression of modern urban living. This is a place where you must mind walking on the side of the road for all the many half-built skyscrapers. Take a flight to Lagos and you will find yourself wandering about the city. However, there are some things to do and avoid exploring the second richest country of Africa in the best way possible.   

Research before booking a hotel room

After booking your cheap flights, you must be looking for hotels or accommodation in Lagos, Nigeria. The good news is that there are a number of options for you to choose from. This all depends on your budget, and whether you are travelling alone or with family and friends. 

If your budget can go up, you can choose from a high-quality hostel or a dorm to an ensuite room in an expensive five-star hotel. And if you want to go cheaper, while staying in style, you can check out the bunk beds in a high-quality hostel or stay at a traditional family-run guesthouse or apartment that you can easily find on Airbnb. 

Be prepared for the hot weather 

Nigeria is hot and humid, and unless you don’t mind being a little sweaty or catching a little tan, it is not the city for you. It is because the sun shines in the city all through the year. In fact, the whole country is warm, but the weather varies from city to city. 

Jos is typically cool whereas Borno is typically hot. However, if you are looking for a little chill, it never snows here. Hoping for snow is like waiting for Santa here. During summertime, people have air-conditioners running in their cars, houses, and offices because it can get really sweaty and sticky otherwise. Therefore, pack really light clothes, like breathable cotton, and book accommodation with central air-conditioning if you are travelling to the city in the summer. 

Don’t overdress

Whenever you are travelling, it is important to dress appropriately because it will determine how seriously you will be taken in Nigeria. If you overdress, you might be giving the wrong impression and be approached for something you aren’t offering. Make sure you are also not showing off the skin as this is breaking the local customs. Try to dress moderately. Some travellers also told us that Nigerians don’t appreciate foreigners trying their local dresses, so don’t try their dresses to mock them.

Find out how your food is cooked 

Lagos offers a wide variety of lovely, delicious, and spicy exotic food. It might look very tasty and appealing to you, and you might be dying to try some of the finger-licking dishes. However, you have to make sure the food is not made under questionable conditions. Make sure you know where your food is cooked if you can trust the water used and the hygiene of the chefs.

Learn how to exchange greetings with Lagosians

Nigerians, especially Lagosians, appreciate good manners. It is, therefore, important that you learn how to greet people you interact with such as hello or good morning in the local Nigerian language. If you learn a little about how to exchange greetings with the strangers in Nigeria, it can go a long way. You can ask them for directions or some other help. 

Be safe 

One thing you should always keep in mind while traveling abroad is your safety and security. Therefore, it is very important that you check out for a very reliable private vehicle and driver. You can book a cab or taxi online if you can’t find a trusted pick-up. Always trust your instincts when it comes to unsafe areas or unsafe people. 

Avoid places that aren’t tourist-friendly 

Some parts of Nigeria, especially Lagos welcome travellers and tourists as security, basic conveniences and comfort are kept in mind for them. However, you should steer clear of some secluded or questionable parts of the country. Find out what are the areas that you should avoid as a tourist and don’t lurk around in there. Moreover, if you are looking for a place to stay, don’t pick such a place.

Don’t rely on anyone for directions 

As a newbie, it might be difficult for you to see around the country. There are so many isolated places with unidentified streets that you might get lost on every turn. Because of this, and because you can’t rely on one answer, make sure to ask for directions from more than one person.  

Watch a local and learn how to bargain 

As a tourist, you should always learn how to bargain. Vendors will hike the prices of goods to the disadvantage of the traveller, especially one on a budget. Therefore, if you are traveling on a budget you should learn how to negotiate. Bargaining is a common practice in most parts of the world, except marts with fixed prices. Therefore, when you want to make a purchase ask for the price and haggle for its half. This is a good place to start. From there, you can start negotiating.

Exploring Lagos: Dos and Don’ts in the Nigerian cityPhoto by rawpixel.com from Pexels

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