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Get Educated: Calabar

Here, I’m going to tell you facts that you may or may not know about Calabar, the home of The Fattening Room. There’s so much I didn’t know about this rich capital of Cross River State. I’m going to take you through this slowly, so sit back and get educated!

  • Did you know that Calabar is a city in the South Eastern region of Nigeria (Cross River State) and is located on the bank of the Calabar river?
  • There are about 1.2 million people living in Calabar and the natives are Efik people (watch The Fattening room to know more about their culture). They are notorious for their artistic skills, rich food, culture and traditions.
  • Their main occupation is Agriculture which explains Calabar’s service as a seaport exporting rubber, palm oil, cocoa and timber.
  • Calabar which was one of the first regions invaded by the British has been inhabited for over 2000 years.
  • Known to European sailors as far back as the 15th century and recognised as an international sea port since the 16th century.
  • Calabar was a major slave trade port from the late 17th to 19th centuries.
  • Calabar is made up of seven clans which are (drum roll please): Creek Town, Adiabo, Ikoneto, Ikot Offiong, Old Town, Duke Town and Henshaw Town
  • It is the home of one of the major universities in Nigeria, University of Calabar (UNICAL).
  • This history filled town can be accessed by air, road and sea from different parts of Africa.
  • Calabar boasts of a lot of Nigeria’s firsts (don’t try to read it all in one breathe, you won’t survive)

  • Nigeria’s first public hospital – St Margaret’s Hospital

  • The oldest Post Office (extremely handy back then)

  • One of the first two Botanical Gardens in Nigeria (an establishment where plants are grown for scientific study and display to the public)
  • In terms of social life, Calabar prides itself of the first social club in Nigeria, The Africa Club and also the very first competitive football, cricket and field hockey games were hosted in this City.
  • In addition to this, the cities firsts include the first Presbyterian church (Church of Scotland Mission) in 1846, earliest Military barracks, the first monorail and the first modern road network in Nigeria.
  • Calabar is noted as the cleanest city on top of that, it is also the number one tourist destination in the whole of Nigeria. On that same note; Calabar is second to Abuja when it comes to beauty and planning. What’s more, there are no hawkers (I didn’t know such a thing existed in Nigeria) and the residents are disciplined which makes the city welcoming.
  • Want to see the best cultural setting of the Efik people? Go to Calabar… It can be seen in their traditional attire, masquerades and cuisine…
  • As a result of the abundant warmth and hospitality of its people, rich history, natural and cultural attractions, the city has been branded “Canaan City” which translates as “the land of flowing milk and honey”

That’s all I’ve got for you for now, but as we’re often told, we can’t know everything so if there are any interesting or fun facts about Calabar that I have missed, please fill free to add them in the comments section below.

I hope you enjoyed reading and I hope you learned something new.

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