Olumo Rock Abeokuta Nigeria
It’s a mysterious attraction, one that has its foundation laid on an unfathomable spirituality: a truly special place of great significance for an extraordinary people, namely the Egbas of proud, old Abeokuta. At the end of your experience here at Olumo Rock, you are left with the feeling that you have come for more than an expedition, your world has more than merely opened up to embrace a different culture. It has been filled with a depth that only a supernatural encounter with divinity as offered by different religions can make possible.
There is a legend of three Europeans prospecting for precious minerals who came to the decision to blast the rock with dynamite. To their misfortune, it was blood and pus that spurted out which resulted in their blindness. The chief priest made it clear to the unfortunate men that they had offended the god of the rock and to placate the god they would have to be sacrificed to the rock. A visitor can still see the crack which is a consequence of the blast today.
Then there is a tree on this rock that has reportedly been there for about a couple hundred years, a tree of life, one that never withers and produces leaves all year round. It is also called the crown tree because it forms a living stem on the top of the rock. It is widely famed for its therapeutic powers. No matter how insurmountable the problem a person brings here may seem, once you took of this Iroko’s leaves, healing or solutions would come. In other words, the gods would answer the prayers of the supplicant.
Man is sometimes consumed by thoughts of his own greatness. Your time on the rock will not be one of those periods because, in fact, you are really insignificant on the top of its majesty. Your feet firmly on the rock, looking down at the city will without fail humble you.
And it was indeed God that molded this rock. Its name derives from this thought. Abeokuta, the city that is the dwelling of the rock, in turn draws its name from this rock. It literally means “under the rock”. When you come here, you will hear awe-inspiring stories. With each story will grow your reverence for the rock which is not just a rock.
You will hear about how Olumo Rock provided a safe haven for the people of the old town when slave hunters from without besieged the city. It would always go on to serve this purpose of shelter from attack when the Egbas were at war. When you come here, you will see how it was possible as you are yourself enveloped by a great feeling of safety. There has not been a war for a hundred years. However, if ever you felt a need for wellbeing Olumo Rock will provide it.
It has become one of the top attractions in West Africa. Its magnetism really pulls people from all over the world in. When you do come, what can you expect to see?
Unlike other tourist attractions, Olumo Rock is an unending journey (climb, actually is the right word) of discovery. It is like a cloak once you begin your ascent, one that has several pockets. For the most part, you will likely be enthralled by the utter size of this rock.
In the past, it was more rigorous climbing this behemoth. Man made stairs were carved into the rock to ease the ascent. And the State government in a bold move to endear more visitors has provided facilities to bridge the ancient with the new. Where once a sightseer had to rely on the natural features of the rock to make the steep climb, elevators and escalators have now been provided. The different means of climbing of course present totally dissimilar experiences. Each experience is special nonetheless.
Now there is a museum, restaurants, a water fountain, gardens on the rock, the natural tunnels and cleft pathways, the natural cantilevers and overhangs.
Domestic and international tourist now explore the special features of the rock which include the gardens on the rock, the natural tunnels and cleft path ways, the natural cantilevers and overhangs, the unusual trees, relics of the belief system of the early settlers on the rock. There is also three heavy escalators now installed at the 3 natural heights of the rock, covering a total of about 20 floor of a high rise building, tourist also experience a scenic and panoramic views of the ancient city from the highest peak of the rock.
Abeokuta is just about an hour’s drive from the bustling metropolitan city of Lagos, providing convenient access to an array of hotels, restaurants, clubs, casinos and various nightlife activities. Lagos is also home to the closest international airport to Abeokuta, the Murtala Muhammed International Airport.
It is often helpful to enlist the services of a guide who possess vast knowledge of the history of the rock and the culture of the people. This makes for an interesting climb as every twist and turn will reveal a significant story, making the trip a truly memorable one.
You never remain quite the same person as when you experience this supernatural and extraordinary rock. And it all is in a good, upbuilding, spiritual way. The rock has always waited to embrace visitors and it is even now beckoning to you.