University of Ibadan Zoological Garden

Way back in May while I was in Nigeria, my family and I went to visit my sister and her husband.  They live in Ibadan, about 2hrs drive from Lagos (congested Lagos-Ibadan express way traffic factored in).  If the traffic was any worse than that, we might have been on the road a few more hours.

My sister and her husband had just gotten married and they both attend the University of Ibadan. While there, they prepared amala and ewedu soup with goat meat. Yum! 

Because eating such a heavy meal in the afternoon can make you drowsy, we decided to go to the University of Ibadan Zoological Garden and stroll around. 

The temperature was high but offset by the cool breeze through the garden. There were lots of people at the zoo, especially school kids on excursions. Ah, I remember those days of excursions. Once a semester, a class would go on an excursion with two or more teachers acting as chaperones. The trips are usually outdoors like Olumo Rock but sometimes there are indoor trips too, like a trip to the NTA or Coca cola company... but I digress.

Although the zoo itself is ok, there were stories told that the zoological garden we see now is just a relic of its glorious past. We were told the zoo used to be a major tourist attraction, with primates, snakes lions, and other animals. Poor funding and lack of maintenance were cited as reason for the slow but certain dilapidation.

I have never been to the zoo "in its glorious days", so to me the zoo do not look too bad. In fact, I actually liked it. I did get to see the birds (like owls, and others), primates (chimpanzees, gorillas, baboons and monkeys), lions, ostriches, giraffes, crocodiles, turtles, and many more. The garden sections were also very pretty.  The only animals i did not see were elephants (someone said they took them away recently) and snakes (they had an exhibits of snakes but I did not want to pay to see them, I was told there were different types of snakes there).  

But to those who had been there before, it is not as it was. At least, that's what I heard people say.

My little niece, who really enjoys the outdoors wanted a closer look at the donkey. So I obliged and carried her closer, much to her mother's consternation who thinks the donkey might get volatile and project hot spittle our way. hehe

We saw a giraffe named Ajoke. Ajoke in Yoruba means "someone who is pampered". But in English, it could also be a play on words for "a joke". I wonder if the giraffe is truly pampered or just a spectacle for people's amusement. Either way, it will live up to its name.

Incredibly lazy lions these were. About 15mins before we got to the lions, we heard them across the garden, roaring and roaming around. But by the time we got there, these lions were sleeping, yawning or just gazing. Someone told us they had just been fed few minutes before. Meh, just our luck.

When we came out of the garden, we decided to take a group photo. We used my camera, yay. My brother took this picture. 

This was one of the last trips we took in Nigeria. Now I miss Nigeria. A lot.


  1. A happy family! You make me really miss my family. I miss the meals my Mom cooked too:(
    By the way, your dress is awesome.


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