Climbing The Rock
If you visit Abeokuta and not stop by the famous Olumo Rock, your visit would be considered incomplete. My husband and I were at Abeokuta briefly and of course we caught the Olumo Rock fever. We didn’t plan visiting the rock because we were there for a different reason. Climbing is one task I would never intentionally want to do because I have a terrible phobia for heights.
Climbing, jumping and flying scares me and I have gone through a lot of embarrassments as a result of this phobia for heights. There is one story that is still stuck in my head (my fall to glory) but that is a story for another day.
I have read a lot about Olumo rock and have always wanted to visit. So you can imagine my happiness when I got a chance to embark on the Olumo Rock adventure. Seem like my excitement actually helped with my phobia. I made it to the apex of the Rock without screaming for help.
Interesting Facts About Olumo Rock
The Rock has a lot interesting facts and history. The tour guide was quite knowledgeable in the history surrounding the Rock. I guess he has been a tour guide for a long time. We started the tour by first visiting the art museum before proceeding to the Rock.
Elevators are available (although it wasn’t working on that day) but I was going to use the manual stairs anyways because I wanted to feel the whole experience. I think it is more fun climbing the rock. The Olumo Rock stands at a height of 137 meters above sea level. According to the tour guide, the Rock was a fortress/refuge for the Egbas in the early 19th century during the inter-tribal war. The Egbas are one of the well-known people and a major sub-tribe of the Yoruba. That is my little history lesson for you.
Another interesting fact about this rock is that sacrifices and prayers are offered yearly in the ancient shrine at the upper part of the rock by the Alake of the Egba land. The Alake is the traditional ruler of the Egbas. The prayers are for the protection of the tourists that visit the rock, the country (Nigeria) and of course the entire Egba people.
From the apex of the Rock, you can literally see the whole of Abeokuta. Some of the major landmarks of Abeokuta you could see from the apex of the Olumo Rock include the first church in Nigeria, the river Ogun and the central mosque.
Overall, it was a wonderful experience; there is a lot of interesting facts about the rock. Climbing the Rock wasn’t an easy task. It felt as though I lost 10 pounds from all that climbing but that is my lazy self feeling that way. I can’t remember them all. It is good they are preserving all that history. It was a learning experience for me.
If you ever visit the rock don’t forget to say hi to the 133 year old Iya Olumo living under the rock and have fun climbing.