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Hi there!

I'm Margaret, a female traveller from Nigeria, and welcome to my personal blog , TheAjalaBug.com.

Here, I document my adventures in travel and life experiences generally. Hope you get inspired!

A bizarre adventure in Nasarawa State

A bizarre adventure in Nasarawa State

"Adventure is worthwhile" - Aesop

Few days before I set out of Lagos to Abuja for a meeting, I came across Motley travel tour's post on Instagram about a group tour to Nasarawa state. I knew that was one of the states in Nigeria which I will only be able to visit with a group. This was going to be my first group travel and so I was apprehensive about it.

After carrying out some due diligence about the state and each of the tourist location, I contacted Mark, the Founder of Motley. I asked him all manner of questions. He attended to my every request; assured me of security, safety, personalised hospitality and fun. He was more than helpful and that gave me some level of comfort.

We left Abuja on Saturday morning and it was a fun ride all through to Nasarawa. Our first stop was the hotel, Kini Country, which was fantastic. We checked in, freshened up and set out for the adventure. Nothing I read online or heard prepared me for the level of adventure I had embarked on.  Anyways, we set out to the Massenge, where the Farin Ruwa waterfall sits pretty. Do you know Nasarawa was created from Jos 1st October 1996? I only found out on the trip. 

Truth be told, the journey to the waterfall is only for the brave and adrenaline junkies, it was tough mehn. I contemplated turning back a couple of times. I actually kept murmuring that "I didn't tell my folks I was going on a life threatening journey". LoL. Okay, it wasn't that bad but I was dramatic.

After taking a bike on an unpaved motor road akin to grazing route for almost one hour and hiking for another hour, I saw the magical white water fiercely staring at me. I quickly forgot the stress I had gone through and I screamed out of excitement. Gosh! It was a moment worth the adventure. 

Quickly, we all rushed to have a feel of the water. It was cold and sort of therapeutic. I threw in my bottle of water and after a few minutes, it came out chilled. Wow! God is great, I thought to myself. We ate (with the locals joining in), danced and chatted. We chilled for about two hours or so and head out. Returning back felt easier as we were descending as opposed to ascending. In all, I was more than glad I embarked on the journey with very matured people.

The Journey to Nasarawa from Abuja

  First sights : The railway tracks

First sights : The railway tracks

Kini Country Hotel

  Stopped at the hotel to freshen up. Blog post on the hotel coming soon.

Stopped at the hotel to freshen up. Blog post on the hotel coming soon.

Courtesy Visit to the Mama community

  Inhabitants of the host community and my travel buddies.

Inhabitants of the host community and my travel buddies.

 I was glad to learn about a new culture in Nigeria. The community head, Yahuza Abbas, opened his home to us and told us about the culture of the people and history of the place.

I was glad to learn about a new culture in Nigeria. The community head, Yahuza Abbas, opened his home to us and told us about the culture of the people and history of the place.

 Yahuza Abbas (District head) and I

Yahuza Abbas (District head) and I

  The kids looked extremely surprised to see us in their community and stared. I had a chat with them and I asked politely to take a picture together, of which they obliged. 

The kids looked extremely surprised to see us in their community and stared. I had a chat with them and I asked politely to take a picture together, of which they obliged. 

  LGEA Primary School at Massange

LGEA Primary School at Massange

Trip to the Farin Ruwa Waterfall

I understand FarinRuwa waterfall is the highest fall in Nigeria. It is similar to Victoria falls in Zimbabwe during the raining season, when all the rocks are fully covered with white water. The water drops from a height of almost 500fts as compares to victoria falls which is about 350fts.

  After what seemed like an endless journey from Mama community, we arrived at Massange. We were compelled to park and continue the journey on motor bikes, crossing streams in the forests.

After what seemed like an endless journey from Mama community, we arrived at Massange. We were compelled to park and continue the journey on motor bikes, crossing streams in the forests.

  A view of the waterfall from a distance. We visited during the dry season

A view of the waterfall from a distance. We visited during the dry season

  Finally, we arrive at the entrance gate of the waterfall, It was time to hike for roughly another one hour to behold nature's wonder. First of all, take a selfie

Finally, we arrive at the entrance gate of the waterfall, It was time to hike for roughly another one hour to behold nature's wonder. First of all, take a selfie

  Heading to the abandoned project, it was somewhat obvious that there were plans in the past to build a resort around the fall as you find stairs, chairs, etc around but due to lack of maintenance or abandonment, the place is not as accessible.

Heading to the abandoned project, it was somewhat obvious that there were plans in the past to build a resort around the fall as you find stairs, chairs, etc around but due to lack of maintenance or abandonment, the place is not as accessible.

 There was something significant about this rock which I seem not to remember

There was something significant about this rock which I seem not to remember

  Mark doing all the heavy lifting.

Mark doing all the heavy lifting.

  Meeting amazing people is the fun part of travelling. Diana cracked me up so much. I can't wait to go on a trip with her again.

Meeting amazing people is the fun part of travelling. Diana cracked me up so much. I can't wait to go on a trip with her again.

  Someone almost passed out. Guess who? Me..lol

Someone almost passed out. Guess who? Me..lol

  The locals were friendly and very helpful.

The locals were friendly and very helpful.

  That smile when you finally sight the waterfall. 

That smile when you finally sight the waterfall. 

  Finally, we are at the grace of nature, the waterfall

Finally, we are at the grace of nature, the waterfall

  At the foot of the waterfall

At the foot of the waterfall

  Hi Diana :)

Hi Diana :)

 What a spectacular sight, quite fascinating!.  It was somewhat obvious that there were plans in the past to build a resort around the fall as you find stairs, chairs, etc around but due to lack of maintenance or abandonment, the place is not as accessible.

What a spectacular sight, quite fascinating!. It was somewhat obvious that there were plans in the past to build a resort around the fall as you find stairs, chairs, etc around but due to lack of maintenance or abandonment, the place is not as accessible.

  Travel journalist, The Ajala Bug, reporting from Farin Ruwa. LoL

Travel journalist, The Ajala Bug, reporting from Farin Ruwa. LoL

  The locals joined us for lunch

The locals joined us for lunch

  The group. Finally, it was time to say good bye and head to the hotel.

The group. Finally, it was time to say good bye and head to the hotel.

Trip to Mada Village

The next morning, before we set out to Abuja, we tried to go hiking at Mada hills. There is a myth that if you cry of taste or hunger while hiking Mada hills, the spirits of the hill will respond immediately. The locals claim they have experienced it and seem to hold fast to this myth. Well, we got there late and were advised by the village head not to hike. What a welcomed advice as I was still exhausted from the Farin Ruwa adventure. His reason was that hiking the mara hill is better done first thing in the morning due to the dry and harsh weather.

 I bring you beauty from Nasarawa State. I was told foreigners come here to purchase and export these woods then sell the finished products to us. Sounds like the oil situation in Nigeria.

I bring you beauty from Nasarawa State. I was told foreigners come here to purchase and export these woods then sell the finished products to us. Sounds like the oil situation in Nigeria.

  Mada hills from a distance

Mada hills from a distance

  Mada hills

Mada hills

 H ow do we enter a kingdom and not greet the king. TAB.  

How do we enter a kingdom and not greet the king. TAB.  

  The district head and the community welcomed us

The district head and the community welcomed us

  The entire crew. 

The entire crew. 

  That feeling you express when you know you don't have to go through the pains of hiking, again. LOL

That feeling you express when you know you don't have to go through the pains of hiking, again. LOL

  Mark's angels

Mark's angels

Β 

Final Thoughts

Memories for a lifetime.  Did I mention we had more than enough to eat and drink. Yes, Motley tours did excellently well! I can sometimes be a handful to manage but I returned to base with zero complains. Motley tours kept to their promise. Well done Mark.

I look forward to returning to the state to learn more about the major tribes in Nasarawa and the development areas amongst other interest.

Travel tips

  1. First, get your mind prepared

  2. Preferably go in a group

  3. Wear proper hiking gear

  4. Balm up with insect repellent 

  5. Carry loads of food and drinks because you will need to refuel

  6. Prepare to pay twice as much for the 'okada' ride

  7. Come prepared to give back to the community.

Thanks for reading this seemingly endless article. Hope it can serve as your travel guide to Nasarawa State. Till my next adventure, be kind to one another.

Margaret.

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