59 Amazing Facts About Nigeria You Should Know

What are some interesting facts about Nigeria? Would you like to know, continue reading this post. Nigeria is a very blessed and rich country albeit the bad leadership. There is so much to learn about the country, the people, the rich culture among other things. We have the Nigerian states, cities, landmarks, culture and so much more to learn about.

So, follow us and get an insight into the country and find out the facts about Nigeria we’ve got for you.

Facts About Nigeria

Nigeria officially called the Federal Republic of Nigeria is a country in West Africa.

It is made up of 36 states and one Federal Capital Territory.

The name “Nigeria” was given by Florence Lugard and is made from two words which are “Niger” and “Area”.

There are three major tribes in Nigeria namely Hausas, Igbos, and Yorubas.

Nigeria is bordered by Niger in the north; Chad in the northeast; Cameroon in the east; Benue in the west, and the Gulf of Guinea in the south.


The majority of the Northerners in the country are Muslims while the majority of the Southerners are majorly Christians.

There are more than 520 languages being spoken in the country. However, the official language is English as a result of former British colonial rule.

At 923,768 square kilometers, Nigeria is the 32nd largest country by total area in the world.

As of the 2006 Population Census, the population of Nigeria was estimated to be 140,431,790 people.

Nigeria’s capital city is Abuja and the largest city is Lagos. Other metropolitan cities in the country are Kano, Ibadan,  Kaduna, Port Harcourt, Benin, and Maiduguri.

The tallest mountain in Nigeria is Chappal Waddi which is located in Taraba State and reaches 2,419metres (7,936 ft) above sea level.

Nigeria has 853 kilometers (530.03 miles) of coastline which is made up of seven states: Bayelsa, Cross River, Rivers, Akwa Ibom, Lagos, Ondo, and Delta.

The Niger River is the longest river in Nigeria and West Africa.

Situated in Osun state, the Erin Ijesha Waterfall, a seven-step waterfall, is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Nigeria.

There are 8 national parks and other managed parks and forests in the country.

The oldest national park is Yankari National Park or Yankari Games Reserve, Bauchi, which was established in 1962.

There are three canyons in Nigeria which are Avon canyon, Mahin canyon, and Calabar canyon.

The Aso Rock Presidential Villa is the official residence of the President of Nigeria. It was built between 1985 and 1991 and was first used by President Ibrahim Babangida.

Nigeria is classified as a multinational state because it has 250 ethnic groups living in it.

Nigeria gained independence from British colonization on October 1, 1960, and became a republic in 1963. However, this was short-lived. Nigeria was able to regain the “Republic” status for the fourth time in 1998 after losing it three times before.

Nigeria has 2 UNESCO world heritage sites which are Sukur Cultural Landscape and Osun-Osogbo Sacred Grove.

Facts about the Nigerian Economy

  • As of 2017, the main exporting partners to Nigeria are United States, India, France, Netherlands, Germany, and Spain.

  • The Federal Republic of Nigeria has the largest economy in Africa. The country is very rich in mineral resources.

Facts About Nigerian States: List of States and Capital In Nigeria

There are 36 States and a Federal Capital Territory (FCT) in Nigeria. If you’re interested in finding out facts about the Nigerian States, capitals and largest cities, continue reading this post. This list includes some fun facts about each capital. Most of the time, the capital city is the largest city in the state, however, sometimes, this might not be the case.

  1. Abia

State Capital: Umuahia                                    Largest City: Aba

Umuahia has been an agricultural market center ever since 1916.

Aba is the major commercial city of the state where industrial activities such as textile production, footwear, cosmetics, soaps, plastics production among other things are carried out.

2. Adamawa

State Capital: Yola                                           Largest City: Yola

Yola has two parts which are the old city and the new city. The traditional city/old city is where Lamido is while Jimeta, the new city is the commercial and administrative centre.

3. Akwa Ibom

State Capital: Uyo                                           Largest City: Uyo

There is an event known as The Armed Forces Remembrance Day” which takes place in Uyo Unity Park every year. The largest golf resort in Nigeria, Ibom Hotel and Golf Resort is situated in Uyo.

4. Anambra

State Capital: Awka                                        Largest City: Onitsha

Awka is between two major cities in Igboland which are Onitsha and Enugu. Onitsha and it is the administrative center and the base for the government in Anambra State.’

Onitsha is the economic hub for education, commerce and industry. Onitsha Mall which is one of the largest malls in the Southern East of Nigeria is in Onitsha.

5. Bauchi

State Capital: Bauchi                                    Largest City: Bauchi

Bauchi was named after a hunter called Bauche and the city was founded by a non-Fulani flag bearer in Sokoto Empire called Yaqub Ibn Dadi.

The late Abubakar Tafawa Balewa was buried in Bauchi city and the city lies on the Port Harcourt – Maiduguri Railway lines.

6. Bayelsa

State Capital: Yenagoa                               Largest City: Yenagoa

The name “Bayelsa” was formed from the three major local government areas in the state which are Brass LGA (BALGA), Yenagoa LGA and Sagbama LGA (SALGA).

Okpoama Beach not far from Kpansia, Yenagoa is one of the major tourist attractions locations in Nigeria where Christmas fiesta is held every year.

7. Benue

State Capital: Makurdi                              Largest City: Makurdi

The Nigerian Air Force’s base for the  MiG 21 and SEPECAT Jaguar aircraft is in Makurdi. It is also a transshipment point for cattle coming from the Northern states in Nigeria.

8. Borno

State Capital: Maiduguri                           Largest City: Maiduguri

Maiduguri is made up of two cities which are: Yerwa to the West and Old Maiduguri to the East.

Yerwa was founded by Abubakar Gabai of Borno while the Old Maiduguri was selected by the British as a military headquarters in 1908.

9. Cross River

State Capital: Calabar                               Largest City: Calabari/Calabar

The city was previously named Akwa Akpa in Efik language before it was changed to Calabar.

Did you know that Calabar is the cleanest and most environmentally friendly city in Nigeria?

10. Delta

State Capital: Asaba                                  Largest City: Warri

Due to the fact that there are many foreigners living in Asaba, the cost of living is very high and the crime rate is very high as a result of the large population in the city.

Warri has its own unique pidgin English which they are known nationwide. The Olu of Warri, the Pere of Ogbe Ijaw Kingdom,  the Ovie of Agbarha Kingdom and the Orosuen (Ovie) of the Okere-Urhobo Kingdom all live inside Warri City.

11. Ebonyi

State Capital: Abakaliki                                  Largest City: Abakaliki

Abakaliki was derived from Nkalele, the name of an Izzi land community and it means Aba Nkalele. The Ohaukwu-Ishielu-Izzi-Ezza-Ikwo. the political people of the old Abakaliki are also referred to as Abakaliki.

12. Edo

State Capital: Benin                                      Largest City: Benin

Benin City has almost 1.5 million residents as of 2015. The people in the city also have one of the richest dress cultures in the whole of Africa as they are famous for their cultural accessories such as beads, bangles, body marks, raffia patterns and bangles.

13. Ekiti

State Capital: Ado Ekiti                                 Largest City: Ado Ekiti

Ado-Ekiti/Edo-Ekiti people consist of Yoruba and Edo people and they are known for textile industry particularly cotton-weaving. They are also known for other commercial crops like cocoa and timber.

14. Enugu

State Capital: Enugu                               Largest City: Enugu

The name “Enugu” is derived from “Enu Ugwu” which means “top of the hill”. There are two major seasons in Enugu which are Rainy and Dry season which makes it one of the most habitable cities in Nigeria with a temperature of 26.7 degrees Celsius. The best time to visit is during the dry season.

15. FCT (Federal Capital Territory) Abuja

FCT is the capital city of Nigeria and it is not governed by governors like the other 36 states but is governed by a Minister selected by the President. According to the 2011 Census, the residents are estimated to be around 2,238,80.

16. Gombe

State Capital: Gombe                             Largest City: Gombe

Majority of the residents in Gombe City are Hausa and Fulani people. It is also the home of the 2017 runner-up of the Nigerian Basketball Premier League, Gombe Bulls. A total of 280,000 residents live in the city according to the 2006 census.

17. Imo

State Capital: Owerri                             Largest City: Owerri

Owerri is the largest city by area in Imo State with approximately 40 square miles. A common food to the Owerri people is Ofe Owerri (Owerri soup) which is said to be the king of soups in the Igbo community. The Nigerian rapper, Naeto C, was born in Owerri.

18. Jigawa

State Capital: Dutse                             Largest City: Dutse

Due to the rocky topography of the area, hence, it was named Dutse. Did you know that the majority of the residents in the city are majorly farmers and that they are well known for growing date trees of different varieties?

19. Kaduna

State Capital: Kaduna                          Largest City: Kaduna

Kaduna is the fifth largest and most populated city after Lagos with 10,578,000 residents according to the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs in 2009. One of the major oil refineries in Nigeria can be found in Kaduna (Kaduna Refining and Petrochemical Company).

20. Kano

State Capital: Kano                             Largest City: Kano

Kano is the second-largest city in Nigeria at 193 square miles with an estimated population of 3,931,300 as at 2016 census. Notable transport infrastructures built in the city are the Kofar Kabuga underpass, 6 lane highways and Silver Jubilee flyover bridge at Kofar Nassarawa.

21. Katsina state

State Capital: Katsina                             Largest City: Katsina

The majority of the residents in this city are Hausas and Fulanis who are also Muslims. Katsina’s population is at 318,459 in 2006. One of the oldest and first palaces built in Hausaland, Katsina Royal Palace ‘Gidan Korau’, can be found in this city.

22. Kebbi

State Capital: Birnin Kebbi                       Largest City: Birnin Kebbi

Birnin Kebbi was previously the capital of Kebbi Emirate before it became Gwandu Emirate’s headquarters and the capital of Kebbi state. In 2012, Birnin Kebbi had a population of 125,594 people. but is now at 352,000 as of 2019.

23. Kogi

State Capital: Lokoja                       Largest City: Lokoja

Lokoja was previously the capital of Kabba in Kwara state before it became a part of another state which is Kogi and then became its capital. Lokoja is famous for limestone and iron ore deposits. It is also a collection point for goods being sent to Niger Delta Warri and Buruntu ports for export.

24. Kwara

State Capital: Ilorin                         Largest City: Ilorin

Ilorin was the 7th most populated city in Nigeria with 777,667 residents as of 2006 but is now in the 11th position as of 2019 with a population of 814,192. It is the only city with a standard baseball court in the whole of West Africa.

25. Lagos

State Capital: Ikeja                         Largest City: Ikeja

The city has had a reduction in population at 313,196 in 2019 from the population of 861,300 it had in 2015. Did you know that Ikeja was abbreviated from Ikorodu and Epe Joint Administration and is an industrial city in Lagos?

26. Nassarawa

State Capital: Lafia                         Largest City: Lafia

Also called Lafiyan Beri Beri, the city was established by Muhammadu Dunama. There are two royal ruling families in the Lafia Emirate which are the Ari and Dallah Dunama of the Kanuri people. Livestock farming is a common occupation among the Fulanis leaving here.

27. Niger

State Capital: Minna                         Largest City: Minna

Minna is made up of two groups which are Nupe and Gbagyi. Many people practice Christianity in the city even though Shariah law is also used. Notable people born in the city are General Ibrahim Babangida, former military President of Nigeria and Abdusalam Abubakar, former Head of State in Nigeria.

28. Ogun

State Capital: Abeokuta                         Largest City: Abeokuta

Abeokuta (meaning under the rock) is situated under Olumo Rock and water being used in the city is gotten from Oyan River Dam. It is the headquarters of the Federal Ogun-Osun River Basin Authority.

29. Ondo

State Capital: Akure                              Largest City: Akure

Akure is the capital of Ondo and the largest city in Ondo. It has a population of 420,594 as of 2019. Did you know that the oldest Homo Sapiens fossil ever found in West Africa dating back to around 10000 years ago was found in Akure?

30. Osun

State Capital: Osogbo                              Largest City: Osogbo

Farming is the major occupation of the Osogbo people. They’re also well known for dyeing (aro) clothes which is a major industry in the city. The Osun-Osogbo festival which is celebrated annually is done in Osogbo along River Osun.

31. Oyo

State Capital: Ibadan                             Largest City: Ibadan

Ibadan is the capital and largest city in Oyo State. It is the third most populated city in Nigeria with a population of 3,565,108 in 2019. The name was derived from the word “Eba Odan” which means “between the forest and plains”.

32. Plateau

State Capital: Jos                            Largest City: Jos

Jos, also known as “J-Town” is located at 4062 ft above sea level. The city is well known for tin mining and has a tropical savannah climate i.e. it mostly has a cooler climate. There’s a national museum founded in the city by Bernard Fagg.

33. Rivers

State Capital: Port Harcourt                            Largest City: Port Harcourt

Port Harcourt is the largest city in Rivers state with an area of 140 square miles. Also known as Pitakwa, the city is situated in the Niger Delta. As of 2019, the population of the city is 1,148,665.

34. Sokoto

State Capital: Sokoto                            Largest City: Sokoto

It is known by different names like Sokoto, Capital of Shaihu and Bello, Sakkwato and  Birnin Shaihu da Bello. There is a Sultan of Sokoto who leads all the Muslims in Nigeria. The city has a hot semi-arid climate and as a result, is one of the hottest cities in the world.

35. Taraba

State Capital: Jalingo                          Largest City: Jalingo

Jalingo is located in the foothills of the Shebshi Mountains and has a population of 117,757 as of last year. The city has a government dairy farm. Some of the tourist attractions that can be found here include Mambilla Plateau, the Gashaka-Gumti National Park, and the Marmara Crocodile Pond.

36. Yobe

State Capital: Damaturu                           Largest City: Potiskum

Damaturu Emirate’s headquarters is Damaturu city and it became the capital of Yobe state in 1991. The city is a market center.

Potiskum is the largest city in Yobe with an area of 559 square kilometers. The biggest cattle market in Sub-Sahara Africa is situated in Potiskum.

37. Zamfara

State Capital: Gusau                           Largest City: Gusau

Gusau has a population of 226,857 as of 2019 and is also the largest city in Zamfara. Shariah law is predominant in this city and the majority of the population are Hausas.