Travel guide to Polynesia (French)

» Polynesia (French)

Facts

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Local name
Nigeria
Capital
Abuja (300.000)
Size
924.000 km2
Principal Languages
English
Principal Religion
Islam and Christianity
Inhabitants
100.000.000
Government
Republic
Geography
Nigeria is a large country, home to more than half of the population in West Africa. Nigeria's southern coastline is characterized by a humid climate with mangrove swamps and dense forests. This is where the oil industry of the country is situated. On the other side of the River Niger, which traverses the country, are the great savannas. The eastern part of the country has many mountains.

Travel preparation

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Best time to visit

You will benefit most from travelling to Nigeria from December to March. This is when the weather is nicest and you avoid the rainy season and the worst humidity. Furthermore two very exciting festivals take place in the northern part of Nigeria in February: the Sallah Festival and the fishing festival of Sokoto are both major attractions.

Literature

Lonely Planet West Africa Lonely Planet Africa on a Shoestring To Timbuktu - a journey down the Niger

Local conditions

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Currency

Naira (N)

Net cafes

Nigeria only has very few internet cafés. Most of them are in Lagos.

Tipping

As a rule you give a 10 percent tip in restaurants, taxis and the like. In expensive hotels it is also expected that you tip the staff. In Nigeria tipping is associated with status. This means that tips are not expected from backpackers and in cheap restaurants.

Timezone

When the time is 12.00 in the U.K., it is 13.00 in Nigeria.

Weight and Measures

In Nigeria the following weight and measure units are used: Length: metre Weight: kilo

Photography

Avoid taking pictures of airports, bridges, military equipment and anything that can be considered as strategic information. If in doubt, ask. Otherwise your film and your camera might be confiscated. Don't forget that the heat, the humidity and the sunlight can damage your camera.

Drinking water

You shouldn't drink the tapwater. Use bottled water (incuding for brushing your teeth).

Electricity

In Nigeria the following power source is used: 220/250 volt AC/50 Hz.

Behaviour

In the northern (and Muslim) part of the country, women should cover their arms and legs so as not to give offence. In Lagos and in the southern part of the country there is a much more relaxed attitude towards clothes, and in the nightlife in Lagos there are no restrictions whatsoever.

Business Hours

Shops are open from 8.30 to 17.00 (Monday to Friday). Public offices are open from 7.30 to 15.30 (Monday to Friday) and from 7.30 to 13.00 (Saturday). Banks are open from 8.00 to 15.00 (Monday to Thursday) and from 8.00 to 13.00 (Friday).

Food and drink

Nigeria is a regular soup paradise. Soup is eaten all the time, and there are soups in all imaginable colours and taste variants. Try the paella-like jollof-rice, too, and the cookie-like moin-moin, a real West-African speciality.

Disabled travellers

Wheelchair slopes and similar facilities for disabled people are practically non-existent in Nigeria. So it can be difficult to get around if you are in a wheelchair.

Holidays

New Year's Day: January 1st May Day: May 1st Natinal Day: October 1st Christmas: December 25th - 26th Shifting holidays: Good Friday: March or April Easter Monday: March or April Tabaski (2 days of praising Abraham's willingness to sacrifice his son) Eid al-Fitr (the end of the Ramadan): December, January or February Eid al-Moulid, the birthday of the profet Muhammed: about 3 months after Tabaski

Accommodation / Hotel

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Camping

Only a few towns have camping facilities. The prices are very reasonable indeed.

Hotels

It is pretty easy to find hotel rooms at a reasonable price in Nigeria. Note that the prices are a bit above average in Lagos and Abuja. Look for something in the suburbs if you think the prices are too high.

Bed og breakfast or guesthouse

They are not common.

Hostels

They are not common.

Other Accommodation

In some towns (for instance Jos, Sokoto, Kano and Ibadan), mission stations are renting out rooms at very favourable prices.

Local transport

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Planes

It is cheap to fly. Please note that tickets for national flights can't be booked in advance. Just go to the airport and be prepared for a wait. The private airline companies are much better than the state-owned ones.

Bus

The many private bus companies connect all larger towns and offer safer and much more comfortable transportation than alternative ways of travelling.

Trains

The railway system only connects the largest towns. Be prepared for constant delays and many cancellations.

Taxi

It can be dangerous to go by taxi. Many taxi drivers seem to be involved in armed robberies. Be particularly careful when choosing a cab at the airport. Remember to write down the license plate of the taxi.

Other Transport

Bush taxis are not as comfortable as ordinary buses, but they are quick and cheap and run 24 hours a day.

Special conditions

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The last Saturday of the month is an official 'clean-up' day. A permit is required to be on the streets between 7 a.m. and 10 a.m. Nigeria has a very high crime rate. The towns in the southern part of the country especially can be extremely dangerous at night. There is a risk of catching a number of serious diseases during a visit. Contact your doctor to get the required vaccinations before the departure. To be safe read any current Foreign Office guidelines before visiting Nigeria.

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