For some couples, the thought of designing a wedding that reflects their personalities and their love story is overwhelming. A giant, empty banquet hall that serves as an invigorating blank canvas to one couple can feel like a daunting task to another. That’s why some betrothed pairs turn to locations that are already full of character–like parks or private homes. But beyond that, Nigeria is full of some truly fascinating and off-the-beaten-path venues that make for an unforgettable wedding. Here are 8 unconventional places to get married in Nigeria.
If a couple’s Nigerian heritage plays a large role in their love story, they can hold their reception at the DIDI Museum in Lagos–the first private museum in the city. DIDI sits in an ultra-modern building that resembles a private home, and it has sprawling balconies on either side offering great photo ops, with a Lagos backdrop. The museum features all Nigerian art–both contemporary and ancient according to Didimuseum.org. Guests can lounge on couches and chairs, giving the feeling of a home. It’s the perfect place to celebrate a Nigerian love story, among works created by some of the the country’s best artists.
The Zoological gardens in Ibadan recently underwent major beautification, and the result is cleaner animal cages, well manicured walking grounds, and lovely gazebos sprinkled around the property, says Venturesafrica.com. The property boasts acres of grass to hold a ceremony and reception, and endless photo opportunities in front of the gorgeous animals including antelopes, camels, and ostriches.
Marrying here would give a couple the chance to tie the knot not just in a theater, but also on a college campus, with the energy of youthful ambition buzzing around their vows. The Jose Lecture Theatre sits on the Obafemi Awolowo University Campus and regularly appears on lists of top ranked gorgeous buildings and theaters, Nairaland.com reported. The 500-capacity theater would allow a couple to exchange vows on a large stage which could later transition into the dance floor.
The Olumo Rock is a tourist destination just an hour’s drive outside of Lagos that served as a sanctuary and battle strategy planning zone for ancient tribes. Businesses and stunning landscaping have sprouted up around the rock, including a museum, restaurants, and a water fountain, according to Olumorock.com. A couple can wed with the dramatic backdrop of these rocks, drenched in history, and move to one of the local restaurants for their reception.
Couples who are young at heart, or are expecting a lot of children at their wedding, will swoon for the colorful and playful landscape of Hi-Impact Planet, a new amusement park at the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway (a location that makes it easy for guests to access). Wedding couples can conduct a choose-your-photo-op-adventure, bouncing between the classic haunted house to the Jungle play area, and several thrilling rides. There are also guest accommodations in the park, and a multipurpose hall perfect for a wedding, says Kemiflani.com.
The Ibom Stadium in Uyo just opened in 2014 so still looks bright and polished. The stadium’s exterior resembles a space station and at night when it glows white, makes for an unforgettable evening reception. It also boasts grassy lawns, a helicopter pad (for a dramatic entrance), and a swimming pool, according to Buzznigeria.com. This venue isn’t for the budget wedding, but during off-season, couples can reserve it for their big day. Since the stadium can hold 30,000 people, it really could be a big day.
For the couple who wants their wedding to turn into an all-night party, and an event their guests will never forget, there is the Quilox nightclub in Victoria Island. Inside this hot spot are several elegant, art-deco rooms that can hold a total of 400 guests. Along with features like the Jack Daniels-themed room and the light-up dance floor, there are relaxing areas like an outdoor bamboo bar, according to Mydestination.com. This venue is best for a nighttime wedding because it has a sprawling views of Lagos, which looks incredible under the stars.
The Eko Tourist Beach Resort in Ibeju Lekki is a one-story resort that resembles a small village, with minimalist cottages, three bright and cheery communal dining rooms and relaxing cocktail lounge. The resort offers an all-inclusive package that includes all meals and food, so it can be the perfect way to combine a wedding and vacation for guests, and a wedding and honeymoon for the couple. Every room has a garden or ocean view, and the entire property is lined with coconut groves says Mydestination.com.