Over the weekend, I was out exploring the city of Ibadan, staycationing at IITA (The International Institute of Tropical Agriculture) Ibadan and living the baby girl life, bruh, I didn’t want to come back and sincerely, the only reason I didn’t stay longer was because my bank account kept giving me the red eye after every debit alert.
Away from my bank account, staycationing at IITA was a dream comes through for me, I will explain!
When I describe the woman I want to be in my head, she is one who travels round the world, meets new people, and experiences diverse culture. I can feel my account balance giving me those eyes every time I talk about this, but, I refuse to let the reality cut short my dreams, instead I decided to start small.
I had seen pictures from Cassie Dave’s page from her visit to IITA, and something within me was lit, I decided I wanted to experience that too. After going through her post, I scanned through the price list for visiting, did a mental calculation and bruh, I couldn’t afford to do the trip alone. So I decided to pitch!
I went to two of my friends, asked if anyone was interested in visiting Ibadan. After a few days of persuasion, Cynthia decided she was game and I started on the planning.
After visiting the IITA Ibadan website, we decided on a room for two in the residential quarters which was cheaper when we split the bills. Although I was skeptical about making full payment online, I am pleased with the transparency and understanding the staffs of IITA showed.
I made payment for the room in October, and we fixed a date to visit that same month but then ENDS SARS protest started and we couldn’t make the trip as planned. After a few emails, it was confirmed that we could choose any other date to visit and our payment was still valid. Hence we choose another date in November, 21st to be precise.
The check in time was slated for 3pm (I legit think this should be amended and pegged at 12pm instead), so we got there at some minutes after 5pm.
From the entrance, the serenity of the place swept us off our feet. The security team also did a good job, called the front desk to confirm our reservation, and checked our driver, did the routine checks for COVID-19 and directed us to the front desk office.
Once at the front desk, I mentioned my name and the receptionist replied, “finally”, lolz, that was as a result of the many time we had to change our date. I loved the ease at which they related and attended to us.
Soon after we got our keys, we were guided to our room and boy oh boy, we loved it! The room was so spacious, properly ventilated, well-furnished and with kitchen amenities just in case we needed to cook our own food. I and Cynthia spent the next few minutes drooling over the room, did a quick room tour and we were excitedly amazed.
It legit felt like a scene from a movie, even though the rooms were not the most modern structures, everything was kept neat and in good condition. I think the rooms were also built with a British structure in mind; it didn’t look like a regular Nigerian building.
Myself and Cynthia were bent on experiencing everything IITA had to offer in the little time we had, so about an hour in, we went swimming, did that for an hour or more, then had dinner immediately after.
Back in the room, I slept off as soon as I changed into my sleep wear, not sure what Cynthia did but I had a goodnight sleep and woke sometime around 6am feeling energized. I took in the morning view from the large balcony behind the room and then proceeded to have a morning walk with Cynthia.
While walking, we found the lake, golf court, basketball court and more; we also saw some animals like squirrels playing around, it felt rejuvenating taking in the fresh air (I know it was fresh air because there was little or no pollution), and taking picture.
Although we wanted to try fishing, we couldn’t because apparently we were supposed to come with our fishing tools, I find it surprising that no one could rent us a fishing gear.
From here on wards, we spent the rest of the day wishing we didn’t have to leave IITA. Infact, even though we had plans to see other places in Ibadan, we spent the rest of the day relaxing and chilling in our room til 11:59am, lolz time for check out at 12pm.
I still want to go back!!
While I plan for my next trip to IITA, I will keep memories of my amazing time here and work more so I can do these kind of trips often.
I deserve the baby girl life and so do you!