Ile-Ife is an ancient town in the South-West region of Nigeria where majority of the Yoruba populace believes Yoruba tribe originated from. Ile-Ife is not just ancient but historical. However, Ile-Ife is now known to be one of most crude and local towns in Nigeria. Despite its locality, Ile-Ife is a home to historical places, fun sites, etc. Below are the top 6 you should visit if you ever find yourself in Ile-Ife;
IFE GRAND RESORT
The Ife Grand Resort & Leisure is a must to visit if you ever find yourself in the ancient city of Ile-Ife. Situated on a 250 acres of land on Kilometre 4, Ibadan Road, Ile-ife, Osun State, the resort is an example of garden Eden on Earth for travellers, tourists and fun seekers who loves the beauty and experience of nature.
From the entrance, fresh air greets you while the warmth at the concierge sets you in the mood for indulgence. For lovers of aesthetics, the locally crafted concierge table, the bespoke furniture decorated with local fabrics such as Adire and Ankara, the centre tables made from timber cuttings, and the walls dotted with beautiful artworks, combine to delight the five senses, especially sight.
Having 68 rooms comprising 6, 8 and 10 room chalets and also single room option. The furniture of these rooms are purely local made from bamboos that can be easily found in Ile-Ife. An African Village with 51 exquisite huts named after the past traditional rulers of Ile-Ife ( called the Ooni of Ife) is found in the Ife grand resort.The huts are a one room in suite with comfortable facilities.
The Ife grand resort is a home for aesthetic buildings, cultural experience and fun such as ;
1. The Bamboo Restaurant and a local kitchen where visitors can enjoy the beautiful of experience of watching how varieties of traditional dishes are prepared and served in complementary plates and pots.
- Adults and children swimming pool
- Restaurant and an open bar ( a replica of the floating bar on the Lagoon at Inagbe Grand Resort Lagos ).
- Sport facilities, such as ; tennis court, mini stadium, basketball court etc.
- A well equipped children playground. And lots more.
There are ongoing projects in the grand resort, such as the 6000 seats capacity Civic center, an Olympic standard swimming pool and also an indoor spa.
A visit to the IFE grand resort is a lifetime experience!
The Moremi statue of liberty
When next you visit Ile-Ife and you wish to tour the ancient city bereft with many places of interest,one place you shouldn’t miss is the Moremi statue of liberty.
Erected in 2016 by the Ooni Enitan Ogunwusi Ojaja 2 and standing at 42 feets,the monument which signifies a great heroine in Yoruba culture and is also a source of pride to virtually all Yoruba females is located just at the street behind the Palace.
Standing tall and branding a torch,the statue is the tallest in Nigeria and the 3rd tallest single monument in Africa. A visit to Ife will never be complete without a check in at this cultural masterpiece.
The Opa Oranmiyan
The Opa Oranmiyan is a 18 feet tall round obelisk located in Oroto street,Mopo area of Ile Ife.
Myths surrounding it states that it was the staff of Omoluabi Oranmiyan Odede,the Great Ife prince who out of anger drove his sword/staff into the ground and went angrily into the forest never to be seen again.
The Staff driven into the ground is now the Opa Oranmiyan we all know. It has a shrine of its own and it’s Grove shielded from tourists,only initiates can enter into it. Whilst serving as a tourist centre,it is also a religious centre as the Eredumi and Akogun family worship there
Ooni of Ife Palace
Ooni palace is something called Oodua palace. It is located in Enuwa area, ile ife. The Ooni of Ife (King of Ile-Ife) is believed to be a sacred being. Therefore, Ooni palace has seven gates before you can reach where the king throne is. There are large, well structure event halls in the palace that the king receives his guest.
The king’s ‘ Emese ‘, who are known to serve as one of the judicial body of the palace when there is/are cases to be settled, have their own building in the palace. The judicial bodies in the palace is structured in a way that if a body finds it difficult to settle a case, it transfers it to the higher body and so on. And if the case is still unsettled, it is then brought before the King who only has to give command according to his discretion on the case and it will be so.
There are also isolated houses for idols in the palace. The outer part of the palace is designed with different sculptures, carvings on woods, statues, the King’s crown, staff and so on.
Flowers are planted round the palace to beautify it and give it extra ordinary look.
The former king, right before the present one is called Oba sijuwade, olubuse, ii. And the present King is called Oba Adewusi enitan ojaja ii.
Inside the palace are statues of the past kings that reigned in the land with their years written on them. There is also a museum/ gallery inside the palace where King’s pictures, kings’ staff, crown, irukere e.t.c are kept for record purposes and tourism. There also are burial grounds of few immediate past kings inside the palace.
Of the places you should visit, should you find yourself in the ancient city of Ife, the Sabo Market is one.
Sabo is located immediately after Lagere. Usually, the market is open everyday, but the main market day when you have the full market is always a week interval (Wednesdays & Thursdays) i.e if the Market is open this week Wednesday & Thursday, the next one will be two weeks after.
At the Sabo market, you get whatever it is you want; speak of perishable goods, foodstuffs, ready mades, etc.
Sabo is one of the places that makes Ife “second Lagos”. Somewhere people will want to go for sight seeing, window shopping and do real businesses. There, students also sell during market days to add to their pocket money or to stay financially independent – students who are money wise.
To get there, simply board a bus or a bike as you so wish for #50 OR #60, depending on the route through which you’re going. However, the Tfare from the market to campus is now #100 naira, and the Market to Mayfair is #70 naira.
Conclusively, It is no longer called Sabo market, but now Oja Tuntun.
OBAFEMI AWOLOWO UNIVERSITY
The Obafemi Awolowo University (O.A.U.), Ile – Ife, often called Ogba Femi OR Oba Awon University amongst students, is located in the South-West region of Nigeria, precisely Osun state. The University was established in the year 1962, and was called the University of Ife before it was changed to Obafemi Awolowo University, in honour of Chief Obafemi Awolowo, the Premier of the Western Region.
It’s no longer news that O.A.U. is Africa’s most beautiful Campus. I mean, it’s all over. This is why it should be on your ‘MUST-VISIT’ list, peradventure you find yourself in the ancient City of Ife. The scenery alone is mind blowing! Oh, you haven’t seen the Citation movie? Go check it out NOW to catch a glimpse of the most beautiful Campus in Africa.
From the Campus’ gate, you’ll agree with me that what you are about to see is definitely gonna be great. After all, ‘the end is greater that the beginning thereof’. Yes, what you see from the gate is just a tip of the iceberg, what lies beyond the gate is Wow! OMG!! From the beautiful structures to the evergreen cultural artefacts, and the delectable academics (Professors & Doctors). Did I mention that the Campus is colourful? Oh yes, it is! With the flowers all over, and paintings on the walls, you’re sure to see a real colourful O.A.U. – A friend once mentioned that O.A.U. worships flowers; how laughable!
Well, this does not rule out the fact that OAU Students are bright – if not all, a good number of them, as academic activities are usually on top gear.
The O.A.U. is undoubtedly one of the reasons the city of Ife remains a center of attraction. Is it the College of Health Sciences? The faculty buildings, etc.
You should check-in to see for yourself, perhaps, you find yourself at Ife.