A Guide to the Freedom Park Lagos, Nigeria

Best Chill and Hangout Spots in Lagos: Freedom Park Lagos
Statue of past Nigerian Leaders: Chief Obafemi Awolowo, Dr Nnamdi Azikiwe, and Alhaji Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa. © Tim G/Google

You enjoy food and music in an open-air historic background? Then Freedom Park Lagos its a great place for you soak-in the evening vibes in the city. One of the best chill and hangout spots in Lagos, located in Lagos Island holds historical and tourist importance in the city of Lagos and Nigeria as a whole. Formerly Her Majesty’s Board Street Prison (back in the time of colonialism) designed by the architect Theo Lawson is now a leisure park area.

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The park was constructed to preserve heritage, culture and history of Nigeria. Momentums reveal the colonial times of Her Majesty’s Board Street Prisons which was established after Britain made Lagos a Colony in 1882, but, didn’t last long due to the sabotage from colonial government opponents. The Board Street was pulled down in 1979 which led it to becoming a dumping ground in the 90’s thereafter it was decided to transform into a more creative space.

Notable personalities like Obafemi Awolowo, Herbert Macaulay and others were held prisoners at a time in history. The park serves as a National Memorial and a Historical Landmark for Nigeria. Also a recreational arts and cultural center making it one of the most visited places as individuals’ tour in and out of the place daily. It has fountains, ponds, art installations and pools to look at. There is a part of the park that the old prison cells are recreated from for those who have wondered how the prison cells looked like back in the day where the so called “political prisoners” where kept for opposing the colonial rule of Nigeria. The park has a food court where you can enjoy a variety of Nigerian food sold by the food vendors there while taking in your surrounding of art and history.

Best Chill and Hangout Spots in Lagos: Freedom Park Lagos
© Sanya Oluwadare

A lot of events are hosted at the Freedom Park almost every weekend, a performance or show is hosted for the viewing pleasure of people in attendance. People usually go and catch plays, concerts or a meal at The Freedom Park.  One of the most popular concerts hosted at The Freedom Park is the annual Felabaration concert. The Felabaration is a music festival conceived in 1998 by Yeni Anikulapo Kuti in memory of her father. This concert which happens live at the Freedom Park during the month of October, celebrates Afro beats and African music and also the legacy left by the iconic Fela Kuti- a Nigerian Musician and human rights activist also the pioneering father of Afro beats. The Felabaration usually attracts a lot of personalities of different genres coming together to enjoy good music and share sound and vibes. The freedom park has been the most ideal place to host this event as it suits the preservation of history, art and culture.

The freedom Park also hosts a whole other variety of shows such as musical concerts, comedy shows and so on. This has been the go to place to catch the Afrocentric historical vibes because a lot of persons feel closer to their roots, their history and understand to a great extent the pre-colonial and post-colonial times of our fore fathers. A visit to the freedom park on Lagos Island will prove to be relaxing and unnerving at the same time entertaining and educating, it is definitely worth it.

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