Tourism is also one of the growing sectors of the Nigerian economy. The industry was accorded priority status in 1990 when the National Tourism Policy was launched. The main thrust of Government policy on tourism was to generate foreign exchange earnings, create employment opportunities, promote rural enterprises and national integration among other things.
Tourists visiting the country will gain insights into a glorious past as well as a promising future, set amid the natural beauty of this diverse country. From rain forests in the south, broad savanna woodlands in the center, to a semi-desert region in the north, Nigeria offers a remarkable range of physical beauty in her land and hospitality of her people, ready to be enjoyed by the tourist fortunate enough to choose this land of ancient empires as their travel destination. The richness and diversity of the Nigerian culture is a manifestation of the socio-cultural differences of the over 250 ethnic groups that inhabit the land for ages.
Nigeria offers a wide variety of tourist attractions such as extended and roomy river and ocean beaches ideal for swimming and other water sports, unique wildlife, vast tracts of unspoiled nature ranging from tropical forest, magnificent waterfalls, some new rapidly growing cities, and climatic conditions in some parts particularly conducive to holidaying. Other attractions include traditional ways of life preserved in local customs; rich and varied handicrafts and other colorful products depicting or illustrative of native arts and lifestyle, and the authentic unsophisticated but friendly attitude of many in the Nigerian population. However, many of these attractions are still largely untapped and even at their raw state, they are still being enjoyed by few outsiders, either very rich visitors in quest of exoticism or adventurous people in search of new challenges and experiences.