Set beautifully on a hilltop, and often referred to as Canaan City, the coastal city of Calabar is a pleasant metropolis with clean streets and a mildly cool weather with mediterranean appeal. Little wonder, locals and visitors claim the word Calabar is an anagram for “Come And Live And Be At Rest.”
With the introduction of free trade zones in Nigeria, the Calabar Free Trade Zone became the first zone to register. Following its commissioning in 2001, the zone opened up the city to the world to discover its serenity and hospitality.
Exciting spots to visit in the city include the Marina Resort, the Drill Ranch, Mary Slessor’s home, the Slavery History Museum, Obudu Cattle Ranch and of course, the beautiful Tinapa Business and Leisure resort, among others.
When the word ‘Calabar’ is mentioned, what come to the mind is often thoughts of peace, serenity, tourism, beauty and carnivals. For all the aforementioned and more are what makes Calabar a tourists’ delight. Marina Resort, a major entertainment hub situated along the Calabar River, is a great place to kick-start your adventure. Enjoy some drinks at the resort’s bar, and lounge with sea-view while your kids have fun at the Children’s Park or Cinema. Another fascinating place is The Drill Ranch, an expansive conservation area where you can have a close-up view of the Drill Monkeys – an endangered species of monkeys and chimpanzees being rehabilitated and later re-introduced into the wild. Familiar with the history of the cessation of the killing of twins in Calabar and the Scottish Missionary Mary Slessor who helped facilitate it? - Her residence is situated in Okoyong and has been termed an adventure on its own. Finally, no visit to Calabar is complete without a visit to the beautiful Tinapa Hotel and Resorts - housing the massive Tinapa shopping complex, the expansive Obudu Mountain Resort and the majestic Agbokim Waterfalls. These are stunning attractions that make Calabar and indeed Cross River a tourist haven any day.
Calabar is highly reputed for amazing delicacies that have become a national delight. From the sumptuous Edikang-Ikong soup to the finger-licking Ekpang Nkukwo dish, the people of Calabar are ingenious at making visitors feel at home in an inimitable way. Being a riverine area, Grilled Fish and Fresh Fish pepper soup is also a local delicacy that is cooked very well in the city. You should try out the local palm wine.