In Kaduna, I stayed at Green Suites, located in a very accessible area of Kaduna town – Barnawa. It’s easily located on Google Maps. The service is okay; the food not so much (too much oil). If you’re familiar with the high prices of hotels in Lagos, then Green Suites will be ultra affordable for you. Kudos to the hotel taxi driver – Sambo. He made my stay memorable, as he was helpful during my visits to the landmarks and sights in Kaduna.
The hotel WiFi was dodgy. I ended up using my Airtel mobile hotspot. I think the hotel has a newer wing with better facilities. You may request for a room there.
During my Kaduna visit, I stopped by at Iyawo Restaurant. It’s like White House in Yaba – a no frills destination for cheap local food. I ordered the pounded yam and vegetable soup. I ate original Waina (a local fried delicacy made from rice) the next morning. I have been informed, I should try it with pepper sauce (Yagi) next time and not the vegetable sauce.
I also stopped at Habib for dessert – blended yogurt & millet (Fura) and some sugar frosted tiger nuts. Considering the size of the yogurt though, it looked more like a meal than dessert!
I explored Gamji Park. It is forlorn but has some redeeming qualities. The sound of the water was really peaceful as well as the butterflies. I saw my first Ostrich there.
I visited Lugard Hall, Kaduna’s legislative assembly building. It used to be the centre of legislative affairs for the former Nigerian Northern Region. It’s set in such a peaceful neighbourhood. At the gate, an interesting exchange ensued between an Army officer, a Policeman and I.
Me: Are people allowed to go in please?
Army officer: Go in to do what?! How can people just go in like that?
Me: I’m visiting Kaduna for the first time and read that this is a tourist attraction.
Policeman: Oh, welcome! Actually, tourists are allowed inside. The process is, you see the Clerk first who gives you a pass to see the grounds.
Me: Thank you. I’ll do that another time
Could someone please hug whoever trained the Policemen at Lugard Hall. Dem sabi work!
I couldn’t visit Kajuru Castle, a notable tourist transaction during my visit. You must book ahead, even if it’s for the one-hour tour, which I was interested in. (Their contact details are on their Facebook Page.) Their earliest availability didn’t fit in with my travel dates.
Returning to Lagos was an ordeal. The Medview flight to Lagos was delayed for 5 hours! Worse, the restaurants at the airport weren’t open on a Thursday! I eventually found some food at a local buka in the car park of the airport. On a good note, the toilets at the airport are much better than Lagos. It seems there isn’t a lot of human traffic at Kaduna Airport. Maybe because there’s a train from Abuja to Kaduna.