How to see Osun in one Weekend — Day 2

If you somehow missed the first part, you can read it here!

Morning Yoga at the Nike Arts Gallery Guest House, Photo: Adebola Adeniran

After Dinner, I was tired and exhausted but Rupesh, Vivienne and Judith were determined that none of us would go to sleep early that night and we were all going to play games and eat the cake from Seyi’s birthday. And so we did! — Always have people on your trip that have insane energy. It lifts everyone else. Our friends at Beniemania were kind enough to provide us with games for this trip. We played Game Culture’s in twenty five seconds. I always have a good laugh whenever I play this game and this time was no different. I headed off to bed at around 2:00am in the morning.

Someone must have forgotten to spray my room with insecticide because the mosquitoes that dealt with me that night was no joke. It made sense that there were so many mosquitoes because of the amount of plants and greens in the compound.

Morning Yoga — 7:00am

Vivienne left a message in our group chat to wake everyone up for Yoga.

I guess everyone was still asleep so she went around knocking on everyone’s door to wake us up for Yoga. She had been excited about doing Yoga in the Garden before the trip sef and finally the day had come.

Nearly 30+ me couldn’t get myself off the bed to go for Yoga and I instead settled for watching everyone else do Yoga while taking pictures of them.

Yoga at the Nike Arts Gallery Guest House, Photo: Adebola Adeniran

Breakfast — 8:30am

After Yoga, It was time for breakfast. Breakfast was Milo, tea, bread, fried eggs, pineapples and Puff puff.

After breakfast, it was time to head out for the day!

Nike Arts Gallery Workshop — 10:50am

First stop was the Nike arts gallery Workshop. It was a little hard to locate and Google maps (which we used a lot on this Trip) wasn’t so helpful either. Eventually, we were able to find it.

This is where the Adire that’s sold at the Nike Art Gallery is made. As guests of the Guesthouse, we were given a complimentary tour of the Workshop. We met students getting lessons on how to draw patterns by hands on the fabric. We were shown the process of dewaxing the fabric after work has been done on them. We also got to see the different types of patterns and fabrics that are used in the Adire making process — guinea and 100% cotton fabrics.

Getting a tour of the Workshop. Photo: @adejosh_

We learnt about the traditional method of drawing patterns on fabrics — Adire eleko.

Dewaxing Adire, Photo: Adebola Adeniran
Pots that the indigo dyes are mixed in. Photo: Adebola Adeniran
At the Nike Arts Gallery Workshop // Photo: Oyinola Agunloye
Nike Arts Gallery Workshop, Photo: Adebola Adeniran
Dye pots. Photo: @adejosh_

Nike Arts Gallery, Osogbo— 11:30am

After the tour of the Workshop, we headed to the Nike Arts Gallery itself which was only a 5-min drive from the Workshop. My first thought on arriving at the Art Gallery was that the one in Lagos is much much bigger than the one in Osogbo.

Nike Arts Gallery, Osogbo, Osun state

I was looking to buy some of the Adire they had but I thought the starting prices were a little steep at N10k per 5 yard of fabric.

Aso-oke section of the Nike Arts Gallery, Osogbo, Osun State.

We got to look around the Arts gallery, this time we didn’t have a tour guide. We took a lot of pictures and took in all the sights of the gallery. Compared to the space they have in Lagos, I felt like the gallery in Osogbo was a little cramped.

Nike Arts Gallery, Osogbo. Photo: Oluwaseyi Oyefeso
Nike Arts Gallery, Osogbo Photo: Oluwaseyi Oyefeso
Nike Arts Gallery, Osogbo
Nike Arts Gallery, Osogbo Photo: Oluwaseyi Oyefeso

We left the Arts Gallery around 12:15pm and headed to our next stop — the Osun Osogbo Sacred Grove.

The Osun Osogbo Sacred Grove — 12:40pm

We arrived at the Osun Osogbo Sacred Grove at around 12:40pm and spent a few minutes waiting for our tour guide. In the meantime, as you should know by now, we spent those few minutes taking pictures for the gram!

The Osun Osogbo Sacred Grove is designated as a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Outside the Osun Osogbo Sacred Grove. Photo: Oluwaseyi Oyefeso
Outside the Osun Osogbo Sacred Grove, Photo: Vivienne Ekpo
Outside the Osogbo Sacred Grove, Photo: Adebola Adeniran

Our tour guide eventually arrived and took us in to give us a Tour of the Sacred Grove.

First, He showed us the path that the Virgin walks through during the Osun Osogbo Festival while carrying a Sacrifice. He also told us that the Virgin must be from the Royal Family and must not stumble while doing the Walk. He told us of Susan Wenger, the Austrian woman who joined many of the religious/spiritual cults in Osun state and participated in many rituals in order to be able to do the work of protecting and restoring the Grove.

He also told us of how we he tells people to only think good thoughts when they’re coming to see the Grove because there are many spirits walking around that cannot be seen by the human eye. Fortunately for us, It was one of the days where the Worshippers would come around to Worship so we got to see some of the Women who worshipped the goddess Osun. You’re encouraged to give them some money aswell. They said prayers for everyone in the group as we passed through the area they were seated at.

As we walked through the grove, our guide continued to tell us the History of the grove from the carvings on the walls and the sculptures around. He told us of how different religious groups come to worship Orisa’s at the grove. In my opinion, He was probably the best tour guide we had during the entire trip. He was not only knowledgeable about the grove, he was also passionate about the History of the grove.

Eventually, we got to the banks of the Osun River. He told us how during the Festival, many people will come to the River to pray to Osun and how getting to the River itself is usually very difficult due to the amount of people trying to do the same. Osun is known for helping people conceive and many people come occassionally to pray to Osun for children.

Sculpture of Osun Olomojojo — Osun the giver of many Children
Sculptures around the grove

Our next stop was the Suspended bridge overlooking the Osun River. As you walk on the Bridge, you can feel it sway. Some people in our group were scared as the bridge moved from side to side or when other people in the group shook it, I wasn’t sha :).

The Osun River, Photo: Adebola Adeniran
The Suspended Bridge, Osun Osogbo Sacred Grove, Photo: Adebola Adeniran
Group Photo on the Suspended Bridge. Photo: @adejosh_

If there’s one thing I regret from here, It was not tipping our tour guide for this portion of the trip. Always carry cash when you go to places like this. It’s important!

Olumirin Waterfalls, Erin Ijesa — 3:50pm

Our next stop was the Olumirin Waterfalls, Erin Ijesa. It took us over an hour to get here.

We got lost a few times trying to find this one but eventually we did. As we drove the final stretch leading to the Waterfall, locals in the area were trying to sell us shower caps. One even tried to sell us a ticket to access the waterfall! I think If I wasn’t with other people on the bus, I would have probably fallen for the scam and bought a ticket from her.

At the entrance to the Waterfall, there were vendors selling Snacks and drinks with the prices obviously hiked. Even for someone that lives in Lagos, it was clear that these people were trying to rip us off.

As we headed into the Waterfall grounds, there were two men, one playing the gangan and the other playing another instrument trying to make music for us. Roseline was kind enough to dance and tip them.

Anyhow, we headed through the gates, and met our tour guide. He told us the story of Iya Aiye Akinlaja who discovered the Waterfalls. There are sculptures of her footsteps within the premises. He also told us that there are people residing at the 7th level of the Waterfall and that there’s a path leading to the Ikogosi Warm Springs in Ekiti State. Another interesting fact is that Adekunle Gold’s Orente video was shot here at the Waterfall.

The Water from the Waterfall is collected in a Dam and used to supply water to houses in the community.

The climb up to the 3rd level was very very steep. After climbing up, you’ll then need to descend to get to the 3rd level of the Waterfall. It took us at least 20mins of walking to get to the part of this level of the Waterfall.

Descent to the 3rd level of the Waterfall

The Waterfall itself is breathtaking and the plants are so beautiful.

Vegetation at the Olumirin Waterfalls, Photo: Adebola Adeniran

If you ever go, make sure to wear sneakers because it’s practically a hike and a lot of rock-climbing.

We spent just over an hour here. Listening to the sound of the water was very calming. The water is also quite cold but relaxing at the same time. If you’re taking pictures, you’ll spend a lot of time wiping your lenses to get the water off them.

The Gallivanter at the Olumirin Waterfall. Photo: Adebola Adeniran
At the 3rd level of The Olumirin Waterfalls, Photo @adejosh_
The Olumirin Waterfall, Photo: @adejosh_

Gràffítì Village Bar, Osogbo — 7:30pm

Our final stop for the day was the Gràffítì Village Bar in Osogbo. As you can see, the owners were very particular about how the word Gràffítì is spelt. It’s how you would pronounce Graffiti but as an indigene of Yoruba land.

One thing that struck me was how “cheap” — not affordable — but cheap things were at this bar compared to Lagos. And the food was also quite good meanwhile at Lagos bars, food can be hit or miss.

Menu prices at the Graffiti bar

The Gràffítì Bar is around 10mins from the Nike Art Gallery Guest house.

We finally headed back to the Guest House, had dinner, made a bonfire, Played 2 truths and a lie before heading off to bed and getting ready to leave for Lagos the next morning (Sunday). P.S 2 truths and a lie is a great game to play if you really want to know what goes on in the minds of people you think you know :).

We had breakfast — not complimentary this time around. Went up to the rooftop to take pictures then We left for Lagos at around 9:00am in the morning.

From the Rooftop of the Nike Arts Gallery Guest House // Photo: Adebola Adeniran
From the Rooftop of the Nike Arts Gallery Guest House // Photo: Adebola Adeniran
At the Nike Arts Gallery Guest House, Photo: Oluwaseyi Oyefeso

This trip was planned the The Gallivanter Traventures

Judith made a full length video covering our trip!

Beware of the Checkpoints

One thing I need to point out is the amount of Checkpoints we met. Sometimes, It felt like we were in the middle of a war or something. From Lagos to Ibadan, there were zero checkpoints but once we began the journey from Ibadan to Osun state, we must have encountered at least 5 checkpoints on both legs of the journey. Somehow, our Bus was never stopped. It seemed the Driver had a little trick up his sleeve that I’m not quite sure of. I just noticed he never stopped at any of the checkpoints. You’d think he was friends with the policemen.

Full-stack Engineer. Rails/Node.js/React. I love plantain chips! Reach me at Adebola.dev.

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