When you think of tourism in Nigeria, the giant of Africa,  in size and economy  garnering approximately 174 million inhabitants and the seventh most populous country in the world, one place comes to fore; Cross Rivers State.
For those who are not familiar with this state, Cross River is a coastal state in southeastern Nigeria, bordering Cameroon to the east. Its capital is at Calabar. The state is named after the Cross River (Oyono), which passes through the state. 

What Makes Cross River State tick!
Cross River is historically buoyant, economically stable, and hospitable, in terms of tourism. The state is a perfect of business and pleasure. In the words of Eta Uso, “Cross River State stands on a very unique spot of what is known today as South South Nigeria also known as the Niger-Delta. From the soaring plateaus of the mountain tops of Obudu to the Rain forests of Afi, from the Waterfalls of Agbokim and Kwa to the spiralling ox-bow Calabar River which provides sights and images of the Tinapa Business Resort, Calabar Marina, Calabar Residency Museum and the Calabar Slave Park along its course, there is always a thrilling adventure awaiting the eco-tourist visiting Cross River State”.

Investors within the eco-tourist State
Many investors have tapped into the buoyant state; among which are;
General Electrics with over $1 billion in a Multi-Modal Manufacturing and Training Facility at the Calabar Free Trade Zone, Calabar, Cross River State. United Cement Company (Unicem)    commissioned its 2.5 million metric tons/annum Cement Manufacturing Plant in 2009 at Mfamosing, Akamkpa Local Government Area of Cross River State and is currently the leading supplier of cement in South Eastern Nigeria. Honeywell Group Nigeria Limited has invested its Cement Manufacturing Plant which is estimated to be $600m. Brentex Petroleum Services Limited is investing in a 300,000 ton per annum Pipe Mill Manufacturing Plant estimated at a total cost of $150m just to mention a few.

Tourism Potential in Cross River State
There are already existing tourist centres in the state, but the need to further develop and strengthen the existing ones and magnify the non-recognized centre is apparent as the state stands out in Nigeria in terms of natural tourist’s site.
Aside the magnified tourists sites such as Tinapa, a few other tourist centres holds potential. Ikom Monoliths (a series of volcanic-stone monoliths constructed sometime between 2500 BC and 1 AD) is one of such. The Mary Slessor Tomb, Calabar Drill Monkey Sanctuary, Cross River National Park is another. This park can become a money spitting arena where history is reinforced for younger generation.
Afi Mountain walkway canopy is another fine spot that can be transformed into one of these wonders of the world.
Kwa falls, Agbokim waterfalls, are centres that can be made alluring for tourists.
Hot Sauce for Investors
Without mincing words, Calabar, the capital of Cross River State, is the leading tourism city of Nigeria and dare to say Africa. Visitors from different parts of Nigeria and overseas, come to the city in quantum yearly. Investors who can recognize good spots can leverage on businesses that can be hinged around tourism. Some of which are;
Hospitality Businesses
Eatery, and Confectioneries
Arts and Artifacts
Cross River is the belle of Nigeria in terms of tourism, it hold great potential of becoming Africa’s number tourist city.

Ryta Moemeke