When I was little, there was a story we were told about how the clouds were so close to earth that people need only reach out to it to ‘pluck’ a portion they would use for food. They were always told to take only what they could finish in a day else the ‘gods’ would become angry and take the clouds far away from them.
I’m sure you might have guessed how the rest of the story goes. Someone always spoils it for everyone and now the clouds are far, far away from us – except you’re in Obudu, that is! Here, the clouds literally touch the mountains and once you’re up there, you can actually feel them against your skin!
I’ve had Obudu and its mountains on my mind for the longest time and I’m so happy that I finally got to visit. This trip almost didn’t happen though as we (my sister and I) were advised against going during the rainy season. Planning the trip itself was almost a nightmare! Thankfully, we had a great deal of help from friends who encouraged us to go on with the journey and were available to answer any questions we had at anytime of the day!
Getting to Obudu from Lagos
We began our journey from Lagos to Enugu by 8am – almost 2hrs later than scheduled, using the GIGM bus service. I’ve used these guys before and I thought they were great but this trip didn’t live up to the last one. We left very late and we were stuck with a remarkably rude and fairly rough driver. Thankfully, we still arrived Enugu in good time.
The next morning, we headed to the park and boarded a bus going directly to Obudu. Big mistake! This bus took forever to get filled up. Like forever, as in 3 good hours! In that time, we would have been more than half way into our journey. My friend later told us that we should have gotten into the smaller vehicles that ply the same route. (I didn’t see those at the park we were in). Anyway, we finally arrived at Obudu town at about 5:00pm and lodged within the town.
The next day, we hired a car and its driver to take us up to the ranch, show us around and bring us back. We had initially planned on sleeping in one of the accommodations up the ranch but we were told the staff was on strike, so we opted for a day trip instead. The first place we checked out was the Becheve Nature Reserve. An entrance fee was required to go on the nature trail and canopy walkway.
After going on the walkway, we then went on to check out the accommodation areas, which was further uphill. As we made our way up, the weather kept changing so quickly. I have never seen a more temperamental weather in my life! It threatened to rain at some point but we got to another point where it was very sunny. The fog also kept lifting and settling on the mountain tops. It was all very breathtaking to watch!
Besides enjoying the beauty of nature, there was not much else to do on the ranch. Most of the infrastructures at the time of our visit were either completely abandoned or dying slowly and painfully. I really do hope this place would be restored back to its former glory someday.
Anyway, the views with and without the fog were nothing but spectacular. It made the treacherous journey to get here absolutely worth it!
We rounded up our visit to the ranch by checking out the mini waterfalls and natural pool located there before heading back to town to relax and prepare for our trip to a bigger waterfall at Agbokim the next day.
Some Points to Note:
Based on Recommendations, we travelled first to Enugu (using GIGM). This took about 9 hours. Yes, I know, flying takes less time but I hate flying so, I didn’t mind the time spent on the road.
From Enugu, we took a bus from the ‘Onitsha South’ park directly to Obudu through Abakaliki and Ogoja. I hear Cross Country goes directly to Ogoja from Lagos. That might be an option if you don’t want to break the trip in Enugu. This bus from Enugu took about 5 hours to get to Obudu, inclusive of a 30-minute stop in Abakaliki.
Getting to the Ranch/Resort: From Obudu town, we hired a driver to take us to and fro. Buses can also be gotten to the foot of the ranch or you can hire a bike if you’re feeling very adventurous! It takes about an hour (more or less) to get to the foot of the ranch from the town.
Road Conditions: I’d say the conditions were 50:50. Part of it was really good and the rest was riddled with portholes or not tarred at all. We didn’t have to deal with bad traffic or flooded roads, so this made the trip more bearable.
Coming up next is details of our trip to Agbokim and Calabar and then a cost breakdown and a review of services. I hope you enjoyed reading this first installment. Let me know what you think in the comment section below.