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Makurdi is a city of 365,000 people (2016), and the capital of Benue State of North Central Nigeria. It sits in a very agricultural area along the Benue River with the fitting moniker of food basket of the nation. Being the state capital, it houses the government house and head offices of all important government agencies, as well as military facilities. While it may be not possess exquisite hotels and resorts for an holiday, it is indeed a place to visit if you want to enjoy local cuisines, dance and cultural events.

This article includes Kanshio district.

Understand

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Makurdi is more of a political and administrative city than is commercial. It is also a major transport route between the north and south of Nigeria. It is predominantly made up of the Tiv tribe, who have been in leadership since civilian rule, then the Idoma, Igede, Etulo people. The capital is mostly a Christian city, with Muslims and African traditional religion making the minority. The city is quite accommodating as it is the cultural capital of the state.

The town is slow, laid-back and there are lots of men around drinking alcohol. As long as you do not go poking into their business, you'll be just fine.

Climate

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The city is mostly warm with an average temperature of 32°C. There is occasional flooding of the river during high rainfall in the wet season.

Get in

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River Benue in Makurdi

It is on the main narrow gauge railway line running north from Port Harcourt.

By bus

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There are regular bus services linking Makurdi to neighbouring towns.

Prominent among shuttle service providers are the Benue Links with their park in Makurdi stationed opposite Access Bank at the Wurukum axis of the City and the God's Will Transport Services, Pleasure Travels which is opposite Benue Links, Nyanya Transport Company, Yaman Transport Company. They leave early so be sure to check in on time.

By plane

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  • 1 Makurdi Airport (MDI  IATA). Major Nigerian airways and other private airlines provide air links between Makurdi and cities like Abuja, Lagos, Calabar, and Port Harcourt. The airport is not very far from the city centre. There are shuttles (private and commercial) that ply the route from the airport to other parts of the city. Makurdi Airport (Q6740484) on Wikidata Makurdi Airport on Wikipedia

By train

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Makurdi has a 2 Rail Bridge Old Bridge, Makurdi on Wikipedia that provides the only rail link between the northern and eastern parts of Nigeria.

By car

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Situated in the middle belt of the country, it has major roads that is accessible from all parts of the country.

Makurdi to Lafia, Minna, Jos Road in the north. To the south we have the Makurdi to Otukpo, Enugu, Owerri, to Calabar in Cross River State.

Very important and a busy route is that which leads to the west. The Makurdi to Yandev to Katsina Ala to Wukari roads.

By boat

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Makurdi has a river that flows all year round, higher during the rainy season and shallow in some parts during the dry season. There are no high-end sea vessels but one can find engine boats, paddled boats and some steam engine boats.

Get around

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Map
Map of Makurdi

The major means of moving around Makurdi is shuttle mini buses, motorcycles and tricycles (keke-napep). It is best to have a local guide and to not go out at night. Touts can be a nuisance, and street gangs are best avoided.

There are two bridges which connect the southern and northern banks of the River Benue. One is the dual carriageway bridge for pedestrians and vehicles while the other is the rail bridge.

By bus

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The buses ply routes through the city. The cost depends on the length of your trip with the minimum being ₦50. You can get a bus for virtually anywhere in the city centre. Ask what route that they will be taking.

By motorcycle

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Ahh! The preferred choice of movement if urgency is the word. Bikes are the fastest and can take you to your doorstep, unlike buses. However it is not advisable for long distances as the fare will be really expensive. These bikes are commonly known as Okada. They are quick, cheap, and save a lot of walking. You should try this option if you do not know exactly where you are going as most of them know the city off hat. Negotiation is key. You do not want to be outsmarted as they will quickly know if you are a newbie to town.

Before you try and negotiate any transportation fare, always confirm the fare from a local. If you have a Nigerian friend, let them negotiate for you as the quoted fare differs greatly for locals and foreigners.

See

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  • 1 River Benue Bank. You can stop along the bank of the Benue River here to watch the locals fish with nets in the not exactly pristine water and maybe catch a sunset.
  • 2 Makurdi Zoological Garden (on the Benue State University campus), +234 7033326160. This appears to be a rather primitive zoological park with few animals, but it is something to pass the time if here in Makurdi.
  • 3 Benue State University. A university with 32,000 students (2015). Benue State University (Q4890689) on Wikidata Benue State University on Wikipedia
  • 4 University of Agriculture Makurdi, RJ28+428.

Do

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  • 1 Aper Aku Stadium. Watch the Lobi Stars F.C.play football. Aper Aku Stadium (Q618215) on Wikidata Aper Aku Stadium on Wikipedia
  • River Benue. you can go boat cruise on the River Benue
  • Exodus Cinema, 46 Old Otukpo Rd, High Level.
  • 2 Saba Film Hall, Walmayo, Asuir, +234 903 323 2547.

Buy

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  • 1 Wurukum Market. If you want the real deal of an outdoor Nigerian market, this might just fit your bill. Come prepared for the raw, real experience with all the sights and smells. Don't forget the handwipes if you have any.
  • Sudo Supermarket, Benue State Library, Wurukum.
  • Dobiac Supermarket, Wurukum.

Eat

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  • 1 Dexters Restaurant, Old Otukpo Rd, Wurukum, +234 9036011289. Longtime Makurdi establishment. Jollof rice, chicken, yogurt, etc.
  • 2 Ark City Cafe and Grill, Atoshi Cl Rd, +234 7067941160. Fairly upscale dining location with shawarma, grills, and fancy drinks.
  • 3 Ceci restaurant, Senator Akume Way, +234 803 516 2965. 9AM-11PM.
  • 4 Madam Dooyan Restaurant, Makurdi - Otupko Rd, +234 703 670 2672. 9AM-11PM.
  • 5 Fish World Bar and Grill, Kashim Ibrahim Road, +234 905 649 5269. Daily 9AM-midnight. Dine in, takeaway and delivery. They offer various foods like rice, chicken, pizza, various sauces, pasta, and spaghetti.
  • 6 Mama Kasbee Restaurant and Bar, High Level Market, Jonah Jang Cres, High Level. 10AM - 9PM Daily. Dine in and takeaway. They offer various Nigeria cuisine like rice, chicken, swallows with local and traditional foods. .
  • 7 Multi Cuisine Restaurant, Doo Palace Hotel, No.1 Father Hunter Street, High Level, +234 909 551 1517. 10AM - 9PM Daily. Dine in and takeaway. They offer foods like okro, ogbo, rice, chicken and chips also various drinks and yogurt. .
  • 8 Outdoor Restaurant, 19/21 Doki Street, High Level. 8AM - 10 PM Daily. Dine in and takeaway. They offer various foods like Jollof rice, chicken,Suya and also native traditional soups.
  • 9 Dexter's Restaurant, 2 Old Otukpo Rd, Low Level, +234 706 634 1247. 8AM - 10 PM Daily. Dine in and takeaway. They offer contemporary African foods like rice,fried and Jollof rice and also native traditional soups alongside swallows.
  • 10 Doo Restaurant, Kashim Ibrahim Road. 10AM - 9PM Daily. Dine in and delivery. They offer contemporary and native traditional foods Alongside snack and drinks.
  • 11 Calabar Kitchen, Wukari Road. 8AM - 10PM Daily. Dine in and takeaway. They offer various contemporary and native traditional dishes.
  • 12 Chahms Grill Sensation, 4 Old Otukpo Rd, Wurukum, +234 802 733 6133. 8AM - 10PM Daily. Dine in and takeaway. They offer contemporary and Native traditional foods.
  • 13 After 4 Restaurant, Orti Bende Street. 10AM - 9PM Daily. Dine in and takeaway. They sell food like rice, Okro, Ogbono soup and various types of native dish.
  • 14 Aver Restaurant, High Level. 10AM - 9PM Daily. Dine in and takeaway. They offer foods like rice, Ogbono, okra and other Native soups.
  • 15 Madam Ruth Restaurant, npsc makurdi depot, +234 816 923 6189. Dine in and takeaway. They offer various Nigerian recipe and continental dishes.
  • 16 Lady P Restaurant, Vandeikya Street, High Level. 10AM - 9PM Daily. Dine in and takeaway. They offer continental and native traditional foods.
  • 17 Spaw Cuisine and Event, Katsina Ala Street, Wurukum, +234 701 380 2858. 8AM - 10PM Daily. Dine in and takeaway. They offer various Nigerian cuisine and Native traditional foods.
  • 18 Godwins kitchen, Federal locust bus stop, +234 704 205 8436. 10AM - 9PM Daily. Dine in and takeaway. They offer various foods like rice, chicken and chips,small chops and as well Traditional native food and soups.
  • 19 Star shawarma and Smoothies, Kashim Ibrahim Road. 10AM - 9PM Daily. Dine in and takeaway. They offer various foods like rice chicken and rice chicken and rice and beans.

Drink

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  • Bush Bar, Ankpa - Aukpa Rd.
  • Madam Sarah Beer Palour, wadata maurdi, No 6 Port Harcourt street, behind Mc Carthy Stadium.
  • Balcony Garden Resort, No2 George akume Road,near catholic youth centre, Makurdi, +234 703 620 1299.
  • 1 Kings Spot, George Akume Way, Kanshio, +234 810 596 0247. 9AM-11PM. Bar.

Sleep

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  • 1 Benue Hotels & Resort, 57 Ahmadu Bello Way, Old GRA, +234 902 122 6645. This is a well-liked hotel with some class. It has a restaurant, pool (complete with peacocks, mind you), gym, and comfortable interior halls. May be a little pricey according to some.
  • Hallydays Hotel and Resort, 16 Daniel Shinyi Street, Township, +234 0803 622 8492.
  • Greenbelt Hotels Ltd, Off Abu King Shuluwa Road, +234 703 199 9166.
  • Kimbis International Hotel, Old Otukpo Road, Walmayo, +234 813 910 1002.
  • Terenso Hotel, Along Achusa Road Nyiman Layout.
  • Hotel Reuphina, 33 Emmanuel Mende Close Off, Kashim Ibrahim Road.
  • 2 Nature's Garden Hotel, Kanshio.

Connect

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Go next

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This city travel guide to Makurdi is a usable article. It has information on how to get there and on restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.