Swange traditional dancers, Benue State

Benue State – “Food Basket Of The Nation”

By: | March 23rd, 2011 | 0 Comment


Located in north-central geopolitical zone of Nigeria, Benue State was created out of the old Benue-Plateau State in 1976 with its headquarter is Makurdi. The state is divided into twenty three local government areas which include Ado, Agatu, Apa, Buruku, Gboko, Guma, Gwer-East, Gwer-West, Katsina-Ala, Konshisha, Kwande, Logo, Makurdi, Obi, Ogbadibo, Ohimini, Oju, Okpokwu, Otukpo, Tarka, Ukum, Ushongo Vandeikya.


Benue State was created on February 3, 1976 from the former Benue-Plateau State in which the Igala and Bassa people were brought from Kwara State. the desire of the Igala people to rejoin their Kith and Kin led to the creation of Kogi State in 1991 leaving Benue State with its present boundaries. The state derives its name from River Benue, the second largest in the country and the most prominent geographical feature in the state.

People & Culture

With a population of 4,780,389 (2006 census), the state is made of several ethnic groups: Tiv, Idoma, Igede, Etulo, Abakpa, Jukun, Hausa, Akweya and Nyifon. The Tiv are the dominant ethnic group, occupying 14 local government areas, while the Idoma and Igede occupy the remaining nine local government areas.

Most of the people are farmers while the inhabitants of the riverine areas engage in fishing as their primary occupation. The people of the state are famous for their cheerful and hospitable disposition as well as rich cultural heritage.


Occupying a land mass of 32,518sqkm, Benue State lies within the lower river Benue in the middle belt region of Nigeria. Its geographic coordinates are longitude 7° 47’ and 10° 0’ East. Latitude 6° 25’ and 8° 8’ North; and shares boundaries with five other states namely: Nassarawa to the north, Taraba to the east, Cross-River to the south, Enugu to the south-west and Kogi to the west. The state also shares a common boundary with the Republic of Cameroun on the south-east.

Benue State map


Benue State has a tropical subhumid climate, with two distinct seasons which are wet season and dry season. The wet season lasts for seven months is between April and October, while the dry season comes between November and March. Temperatures are generally very high during the day, particularly in March and April.

Along the river valleys, these high temperatures plus high relative humidities produce inclement/debilitating weather conditions. Makurdi, the state capital, for example, records average maximum and minimum daily temperatures of 35°C and 21°C in summer and 37°C and 16°C in winter, respectively.

Cities & Towns

Other important cities and towns include Makurdi, Gboko, Katsina-ala, Vandeikya, Obi, Okpokwu, and Ogbadibo.

Ikyogen Hills

The hills exude wild weather conditions which ensures steady green vegetation and a round the year grazing of animals in the area which is also known as Ikyogen cattle ranch.

Dajo Pottery, Makurdi

Dajo Pottery is a centre where pots are made locally. Methods and art in which pots are made traditionally are shown to tourist who shows interest.

Anwase-Abande Ranges

Located in Kwande local government area on Nigerian-Cameroon border and stretches adjoining the Obudu-Cameroon range, this place features temperate climate and beautiful scenery of forests, dissected hills, dykes, dozens of fast flowing streams and incised valleys. It is a beautiful place for camping, sight viewing and picnicking.

The Rare Manatee, Katsina-ala River

African manatee a rare herbivorous mammals found in their natural environment close to the Katsina Ala river.

Tor Tiv Palace, Gboko

This is the official residence of the king of Tiv people. The palace is rich in historical artifacts about the Tiv people and their history.

Ushongo Hills

The place also offers climate weather condition that makes it a most fulfilling spot tourists and adventurers.

Ikwe Holiday Resort

One of the top destinations in the state where visitors can enjoy most of their time undisturbed. The resort offers visitors an opportunity to experience the work of nature.

Enemabia Warm Spring

One of the famous attractions in Benue State which is particularly prized for its warm water. It is available for both night and day for tourists who cherish swimming.

Montane Games Reserve

One of the very few game reserves left in the state with animals in their natural habitat.

Other attractions

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