Owerri, capital of Imo state, is one of Nigeria’s southeastern cities native to the Igbo ethnic group. Bordered by the Otamiri River to the east and the Nworie River to the south, Owerri can be aptly described as Nigeria’s entertainment capital. The city’s amazing nightlife testifies to this fact. Every weekend, patrons flock Owerri from neighbouring states to dance, drink, party and have fun at the popular hangouts, joints, restaurants and bars that dot the city.
Igbo is the main language in the city, but you can hardly meet any Igbo man or woman who can’t communicate in English. Education is not taken for granted as notable schools such as the Federal University of Technology, Owerri and the Federal Government Girls College, Owerri, and many other institutions of learning are domiciled in this city. Tricycles, buses and taxis are the main modes of transportation while government is the largest employer of labour. If you are looking for exotic and luxury hotels in eastern Nigeria, Owerri is the way to go. Hotel business there is serious business and the hospitality industry is indeed booming by the day.
Oguta Lake is Owerri’s top tourist destination. This massive natural lake features an amazing ecological wonder where two water bodies of separate colours (brown and green) are seen distinctly flowing side by side without mixing; and they are not restricted by any natural or man-made barrier. This is simply a wonder of creation worthy to be marvelled at. Other water bodies worth seeing are the Otamirin River and the Abadaba Lake.
Just opposite the old Concord hotel are the iHop amusement park and Heroes Park. This is a great place for fun, relaxation and leisure activities suitable for adults and kids alike. Owerri is not devoid of wildlife attractions as well, so if you are an enthusiast, the Nekede zoo awaits you. Here, you’ll find two lions, a camel, ostriches, crocodiles, chimpanzees, monkeys, tortoises and a host of other animals. Other places of interest in Owerri include Freedom Square at the city centre and the expansive Roche Oil Palm Plantation at the city outskirts.
Owerri is the heartland of the Igbos, so get set to wash your hands ahead of your experience with the sumptuous Akpu and oha soup. Ofe Owerri, a highly delicious and nutritious vegetable soup is another dish to look out for. These aforementioned dishes and the regular ones (rice, beans, chicken and other continental dishes) can be found at any of the city’s restaurants and fast-food outlets. Palm wine is a popular drink, while the regular brands of beer, wine and spirits are also in abundance wherever you go.