Nigeria Part II
From Calabar to Lagos
This article is part of a sequence of posts about my experience traveling by bus in West Africa.
The carnival in Calabar was about to finish and I wanted to spend New Years Eve in Lagos, so I took the bus on December 30th.
Price: 7000 NGN (13€)
Duration: From 7:45am till 10pm Total: 14:15 hrs
I wasn’t scared at all. I knew that I could make it, just as I did on the road from Abuja to Calabar. But I had to be very careful with my belongings because I had another problem here. This area of Nigeria is marked as a red zone because of pirates, robbery, etc. It’s actually a non-recommended zone for tourists to travel. And even worst, as female ALONE!
The bus was only one hour delayed departing at 7:45am instead of 6:55am but the journey was long. We arrived in Lagos at night.
This time I was sitting right behind the driver, seat number 2, lol. I had enough space for my legs and also AC. But the same story with the suitcases like in my article earlier (you can checl it here: West African overland Part II – Nigeria Part I). No space in the 14-seat minibus but my luggage was fortunately in for a modest price of 1.000 NGN (less than 2€). I told them that I was taking the next bus to Benin (which was true) and that I won’t be able to wait 3 days in Lagos for my suitcase (although I was actually there for 8 days, lol). But I was told that I had to specify that I’m talking about the country, Benin Republic, because there is a city called Benin in Nigeria too. Lol
The trip was ok, the only inconvenience was that they almost take me to the police station at the check point, haha. I had a problem with one migration officer that created a whole dilemma regarding my visa. I didn’t even know why he was checking visas as I was traveling inside the country and not crossing borders, but ok, I guess it’s his right to ask about it.
My Nigerian visa was granted at the Nigerian embassy in Germany on 22nd of September and I could use it within 3 months. This means that I could enter the country up until the 22nd of December, which was ok because I entered Nigeria on the 15th of December. From the day that I enter, I can stay in the country for 1 full month, so this means that I have until the 15th of January. I asked this same question at the embassy while applying for the visa and at the airport when I arrived and so it was written in the stamp that they put in my passport at the airport. But the officer didn’t want to understand it this way and was convinced that my visa was completely expired on the 22nd of December. He said the officers at the airport made a mistake with my stamp and that’s why it’s incorrect now. What!??
After a long discussion with him, all passengers waiting inside the bus and the officer telling me that he will take me to the police station if I continue arguing with him and questioning his job, he finally let me go. I knew that what he wanted was for me to pay him some money admitting that he was right and I was wrong but I didn’t. So he got tired and let me go.
Well…after proving myself that I could travel overland in West Africa as a female solo traveler, then I went for more adventures. Each of my bus trips were different and unique. New story coming soon.
You can check my daily summary of my travel adventures in Africa on my Instagram account.
Check my next articles about it.
Enjoy it and stay tuned!!!