I have fond memories of Tarkwa Bay mostly because I had my Man o War training there when I was in secondary school and we all slept by the beach. I remember sneaking off to buy suya with my friends during the bonfire. Those were simpler times when the Naira exchange rate wasn’t so bad.
Chiamaka of Social Prefect hit me up telling me about an upcoming trip to Tarkwa Bay and I was in. Saturday will always be for the beach.
Tarkwa Bay located in Lagos is only accessible by boats, ferries, water taxis or any other form of water transportation there is.
We used Tarzan Marine services for our transportation there and take off point was from their dock which is beside Oriental Hotel, VI.
As a tour organiser myself, I would like to stress that people need to learn how to keep to time. Tours are organised with a schedule in mind and this is thrown off balance when people are late. We should all be considerate and sensitive to others. A lot of folks were late and it was amusing that the first person to get there was a guy coming all the way from Ota in Ogun State.
The silver lining is that the waiting time was used to make friends, take selfies and learn more about one another.
I’m not sure when this started, but I love boat rides. Some people found it interesting and scary at the same time, but we loved every bit of it. It was nice to see the back end of Lagos by sea. After about 20 mins we were there and after a few minutes haggling with the ‘gate keepers’ of Tarkwa Bay, we were let in and assigned our spots for the day.
It’s interesting to note that despite being a beach, Tarkwa Bay also has settlers. There is a community in Tarkwa Bay including 3 schools. You can see the shacks dotting the back drop of Tarkwa Bay and the residents watching fun seekers play around on the beach.
There isn’t alot about Tarkwa Bay to be honest. There is nothing fancy or amazing about it BUT it meets the purposes of being a beach where you can just hang out with your friends and put life’s troubles behind you for the day. I even spotted a senior from secondary school while I was there.
We ate, played volley ball, card games, and pretty much just had a chilled day at the beach. We had a guitarist come thrill us as we ate and had some coconuts for desert. I on the other hand after a brief round of volleyball wandered off with Ellen and Segun to explore the grounds and climb rocks that some might consider dangerous. There was also a lovely man selling jewelry on the beach and I got some (3 bracelets cost me N500 ($2)).
It was epic and making it to the make shift lighthouse was such an accomplishment for me. The lighthouse is said to have been built in 1848. Now that I think about it, it was a dangerous but fantastic climb.
Despite the lack of amenities, Tarkwa Bay really is a lovely place. There were so many people; Nigerians and foreigners who just came to kill time at the beach and just enjoy their Saturday. If you’re lucky you can catch the occasional surfer riding the waves of the beach. It’s really peaceful and with a bit of effort, it really could be something. We also saw a couple of video shoots/photo shoots taking place.
It’s also really cheap so its ideal for people who aren’t looking to spend a lot of money.
- It is dirty. Considering it gets a lot of visitors, there should be a way to ensure the beach is cleaned regularly. You have rubbish just littering the grounds and it isn’t a pretty site.
- Cost. While it is cheap, it is just a chore paying. We had to pay to enter, pay for the tents and pay for the chairs. This is unacceptable. It would be better to just have a one off cost that includes all this. For me it’s just another way for the touts there to make money.
- Speaking of touts, different people collect different payment. A centralised fee collector should be allocated to Tarkwa Bay. I don’t think I’ll be wrong in assuming the money goes to their pockets which would explain why there isn’t a lot of side attractions on the beach.
- There’s not a lot to do. Apart from volleyball, there aren’t a lot of options on things to do there. You have to come ready to create your own excitement.
- The lack of government presence is very obvious here as the residents are kings and queens over the beach and what they dictate is what must be done. Also some sort of security measure needs to be put in place.
Despite it all, Tarkwa Bay is an enjoyable place and if you’re ever looking for something simple to do on the weekends, this isn’t a bad choice. Pack your bags, grab a couple of friends, get some food (there’s nowhere to buy food) and just head on down there. It’ll be restful awesome day.
- Speed boat cost N2,000 ($10) to and fro (this price depends on the speed boat you get. Also note that the last boat leaving Tarkwa Bay back for shore is at 6pm.
- For the entry fees and sitting arrangement, you must haggle with the self imposed ‘gate keepers’. This was what all our haggling resulted to.
Entry – N200 ($1), Tent – N300 ($1.50) Chairs N300 ($1.50) (tell me these people aren’t unserious human beings)
It was a lovely day and I”m glad Chiamaka invited me. Have you ever been to Tarkwa Bay, what did you think?