What You Need To Know About The National Museum Onikan, Lagos

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The National Museum Lagos is one of the oldest museums in Nigeria located at Onikan, Lagos. It contains collections of statues, carvings, art, artefacts, carved ivory, cultural and traditional outfits, archaeological items etc. Some of these are dated as far back as 900 and 200 BC. The National Museum has become one of the most popular tourist attractions in Lagos.


The Nigerian National Museum was set up to preserve the rich Nigerian Cultural heritage. The National Museum is an arm of the National Museum of Nigeria. It has different cultural, traditional and historical items about Nigeria and the different tribes in Nigeria.

History of the National Museum Lagos

History of the national Museum

The Nigerian National Museum Lagos was founded in 1957 by Kenneth Murray. He is an English archaeologist and tourist who was fascinated by the Nigerian diverse culture and historical values. He gathered several collections of Nigerian artefacts. He built what is today known as the National Museum, Onikan, Lagos.

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Best time to Visit the Museum

National Museum Opens at 9:30 am and closes by 3:30 pm. The museum runs from Mondays to Saturdays but doesn’t open on Sundays. The best time for Tourists to visit is the off Peak period between 10 am and 12 noon.

Location of the National Museum

If you are wondering where the National Museum Lagos is located.  It is located between four major landmarks. It is opposite the J.K Randle Centre For Yoruba Culture and History and also the Muson Centre. Adjacent it is the City mall and Tafawa Balewa Square all located at Onikan, Lagos, Nigeria.

The National Museum Onikan Lagos Nigeria

Lagos National Museum Address

Address: National Museum, Lagos – Awolowo Road (opposite Muson Centre), Onikan, Lagos Island.

Tel: +234 -1 263 6005

National Museum Gate Fee

The gate fee to the Museum :

Gate fee: N200-N300 per person

Fun Things to Do at the Museum Lagos

  • Experience the Nigerian history.
  • You get to see the State car of the former Military Head of State Murtala Mohammed.
  • See old sculptures and royal crowns.
  • Visit for Recreation and excursions.
  • You get to Understand Nigerian history better.

Things You Should Not Do at The Museum

  • You are not to take pictures inside the Museum.
  • Do not touch the Artifacts.
  • Do not carry or touch any items in the Museum.  

Things you will find in the Museum

The National Museum Onikan contain different artefacts, instruments and other historical benefits. Tourists have the chance to get a live view of the best of Nigeria’s cultural heritage. Here are some of the things you will find at the Museum.

The National Museum Onikan Lagos Nigeria
  • Brass from the Benin Kingdom
  • The Nok Terracottas
  • Traditional symbols
  • Armoury
  • Carved Ivory
  • Royal Crowns
  • The Bullet-riddled Mercedes in which Murtala Muhammed was assassinated in 1976
  • Ancient Wood carvings
  • Artefacts
  • Images and pictures of past and present President and heads of states
  • Masquerade regalia and cultural garments
  • Antiques
facilitiesat the Museum Lagos

Different Sections At the National Museum

National Museum Lagos
The Nigerian Government Section

Lastly, The Lagos National Museum has seven sections namely: the fertility and birth, initiation, adult life, external influence, wisdom and learning, reincarnation, death, burial and funeral, temporary exhibition hall, Nigeria Government. The Nigerian Government section has history and portraits of various Nigerian leaders (both past and present). Furthermore, the state car in which former Nigerian Head of State General Murtala Mohammed. It also features the export permit unit where permits to export artworks out of Nigeria is issued.

How To Get to the National Museum Onikan, Lagos

If are looking for a reason to travel, this is a must-visit location for tourists who want to know more about Nigeria. If you are coming from outside Lagos, you can either take a flight or a bus to Lagos. From the Airport or the Park. You can order a taxi, Taxify or Uber. You get a discount ride when you use this code.

Uber: brandlers1ui

Taxify/ Bolt – SS2U9

Downside of the National Museum

The facility needs a lot of upgrades, most parts of the buildings have degraded. Some information on the artefacts is not up to date. I feel the use of cameras should be allowed inside the premises. The place needs lots of investment in terms of artworks, artefacts, maintenance and total upgrade of the facility. Furthermore, the staff also need to be trained and well equipped. Lastly, more modern day history, activities and games should feature at the National Museum Onikan, Lagos.

List of Other Museums in Nigeria

  • Benin City National Museum
  • Old Residency Museum Calabar
  • Slave Trade Museum Calabar
  • Esiẹ Museum
  • Gidan Makama Museum Kano
  • Jos Museum
  • Kaduna Museum
  • Kanta Museum
  • National Gallery of Modern Art, Lagos
  • Nigerian National Museum
  • Oron Museum
  • Owo Museum
  • Uli Beier Museum
  • National Museum of Colonial History,Aba
  • War Museum, Umuahia
  • Niger-Delta Museum
  • CRIMMD Museum Nigerian Photo History, Idimu, Lagos

Other Tourist Attractions Close to the National Museum Lagos

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