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ATQ Launches Search for the Seven Wonders of Nigeria

ATQ the first Travel magazine in West Africa, organizers of Akwaaba: African Travel Market is spearheading the search for the 7 wonders of Nigeria as its own contribution to the growth of Tourism and the development of National Pride.

As Nigeria marks its 50th anniversary there is a need to renew National Pride and develop a communal love for the country hence the need to identify National Icons of International repute.

There is a need to build up a body of locations that are “must see” for every Nigerian and every visitor and images that can be universally recognized and promoted as Nigerian destinations.This will draw attention to the beauty of Nigeria and its people. We are borrowing from the Greek writers of yore to launch the 7 wonders of Nigeria. The search for these 7 wonders will excite the nation as every one will be interested in the results, and will deliver dividends to the sites. , It will unlock the opportunity for the nation, and sites , to look good, feel good and create good. The search will act as a unifying force, aligning all of the people of Nigeria behind all that it has to celebrate, and therefore work together to proudly serve in their own way, to be able to confidently, meaningfully and sustainably showcase Nigeria to the world as a ‘must see’ travel destination and traveler experience.

REASON FOR THE SEVEN WONDERS
“This Country is useless, what is there is to see in Nigeria?”is one of the most famous questions asked by many? The answer lies with perception.Proust summed it up best “the real voyage of discovery comes not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes.”We must see Nigeria with new eyes. Nigeria has not been successful in marketing itself as a destination but everyone claims that Nigeria is richly blessed with attractions.This is the time to expose them to the world.

ERRORS OF IDENTITY
Last year at the National assembly Tourism Dialogue organized by the Committee on Tourism and Culture, ATQ had pointed out the errors in Nigeria’s coat of arms and the need to replace them.The question about what is the National plant and Animal is a perplexing one as there is a need to reflect the right plant as tourism icons. South African Protea, Canadian Maple, Lebanese Cedar and the Dutch Tulip are cases in point. Unfortunately the plant shown as red flowered grass on the National shield is false because Coctus spectablis is in fact a yellow plant .Experts have tried to draw the attention of Government to this error but to no avail.It is even published on Wikipedia that the Nigerian coat of Arms contains errors. What is the appropriate eagle identified as the national animal? Is it a bald headed Eagle as that of America or a golden Eagle or a fish eagle or a snake eagle? Are the horses on the shield Arabian, Argentine or Nigerian? What the pantones of the flag colors? Does the flag have a name like the Union Jack or the Star Spangled Banner?

Since the poem of Antipater highlighting what the old Greek Travel writers compiled as the 7 “must see” of the world known to the Greek, the world has come to know them as the seven wonders of the old world – The Pyramid of Giza, The Statue of Colussus at Rhodes, The Masoulem of Maussollies, The lighthouse of Alexandria, The statue of Zeus at Olympia, The Hanging Gardens of Babylon and The Temple of Artemis. In 2000 a modern day Travel writer Mr. Webber started compiling the new 7 wonders of the world. He selected a shortlist of 77 and reduced it to 21 and by the 7th of July 2007 in Lisbon, he unveiled the new 7.

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