Bonny Island (or Ibani) is an island town and a Local Government Area in Rivers State, South South Nigeria. It is also the capital of the Kingdom of Bonny.
Bonny Island has an estimated population of 302,000 and occupies an area of 343.9 km². The local language spoken on Bonny Island is Ibani. Many native people also speak the Igbo language.
Bonny is located at the edge of the Atlantic Ocean on the Bight of Bonny, the island of Bonny serves as the seat of a traditional state known as the Kingdom of Bonny. It was a traditional trading centre for fish, salt, palm oil, and palm kernels of the Ijo people. it was the capital of the 15th- to 19th-century kingdom of Bonny.
The region produces a type of crude oil known as Bonny Light oil. Much of the oil extracted onshore in Rivers State is piped to Bonny for export. It has the biggest LNG Gas Plant in Nigeria with six trains. Bonny was founded by a priest king known as Ndoli. He (as well as his successors Opuamakuba and Alagbariye) were the leaders of the founding group of Bonny Island. The virgin lands and territories of the island kingdom were settled about or before 1400 AD. Asimini, the fourth king (but the first one to be crowned), founded a dynasty that went on to provide most of the kingdom's monarchs. Bonny Island's local industry which exports coconuts and coir (coconut fibre).
Visitors who intend to come into Bonny Island by air have to make use of the nearest airport, which is Port Harcourt Airport.
- Port Harcourt International Airport (IATA: PHC, ICAO: DNPO), Airport Road, Rumuodomaya, Port Harcourt, ☏ +234 803 668 7250. The airport has two terminals for international and domestic flights.
Visitors and tourist that want to come into Bonny Island from Porthacourt through the sea have to board a speed boat and the drive is about one hour.
Ferries are the main form of transport to and from the island.
- 1 Finima Nature Park (Bonny Nature Park), behinde Ra3 lng round-about Finima Bonny Island, Bonny, 500272, Port Harcourt, ☏ +234 808 806 0350. Daily 9AM-4PM. The Finima Nature Park is a natural park in Bonny Island, Rivers State, Nigeria covering an area of approximately 1000 ha (3.9 sq mi). It was established by the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas Limited in 1999 with the aim of conserving nature and biodiversity in the region and it occupies an area of 10 km². Finima's reserve area is covered by tropical rainforest and mangrove swamps and some parts contain sand with freshwater ponds and tall timber between the swamps and the beach. it harbors numerous creatures, including the pygmy hippo and reptiles such as crocodiles, monkeys as well as different bird species.
- 2 Bonny Love Garden, Orosikiri, ☏ +234 908 037 2747. Daily 8AM-10:30PM. Bonny Love Garden is a Mini Beach Resort Located in Bonny Island. It has one of the best beach views on the Island and it's environment gives a calm and serene feeling to all its visitors and tourist. This garden has become a household name because both the old and young have grown fond of the mini-resort. Once you enter the garden, you will be greeted by the inviting aroma of popcorn, barbecue, shawarma, and all kinds of munchies.
- 3 Finima Beach, Finima street. Finima Beach is for conservation, recreation, and research. This beach houses various oil companies such as Royal Dutch Shell, Mobil, Chevron, Agip, and Elf among others. It has a large space for social events or wedding ceremonies. The best time to visit is on sunny days and festive periods. This are regular periods in which the beach is usually crowdy.
- Opobo Regatta Festival: is festival that occurs annually and it is one of the famous festivals in Bonny Island. The festival is held on New Year’s Eve. The festival consist of ritual sacrifices before the boat racing competition starts. Enthusiastic men rowing hard competiting for the first position, crowd cheering, masquerades display to spectators, indigenes and visitors filled with aesthetics, colors, sea breeze and it attracts visitors and tourists year after year.
- The Nwaotam Masquerade: Nwaotam Masquerade is being celebrated annually 25 of December in Bonny Island. it's a very spiritual Masquerade and every year the NWAOTAM chooses who to wear the Nwaotam Masquerade head and regalia from their cult group. Whoever it chooses to wear the head and regalia gets paid heavily for that. seven days to the day of celebration, the one who is to wear the head and regalia to dance sleeps in a cemetery for seven days performing some rituals to remain fortified and to be able to wear the head of the Nwaotam successfully and dance through the town without anyone trying to fall it off his head with spiritual means. The Nwaotam Masquerade starts dancing from the King's place which is locally referred to as the Amayanabor of Bonny Island from 6AM and dance through many locations in the town and finally return to its abode where he comes out on his house roof and dance on it, rolling and doing all manner of stunts on that roof.
- Boat Racing
Shopping is not huge on Bonny Island but visitors have options of supermarkets, stores, and even an open market.
- 1 Finima Central Market. M-Sa 7AM-6PM. Finima Central Market is a small and well organised market but organized market where you can go and buy anything you want.
- Best Way Supermarket offers all kinds of provisions, cosmetics, beauty products, household items among many others.
- Dammy Supermarket sells a wide range of products including cocktail drinks, wines and beer.
- For frozen food and packed food, try one of the stores on Pepple Road. Most of the impressive clothing stores are found inside the NLNG camp.
- 2 Chichi Foodstuff, NLNG, Minna Close, RA, ☏ +234 803 563 2552. Nigerian food ingredients such as: rice, yam, garri among others. It also offers door steep delivery.
Sea food is well consumed on as it is close to the ocean, and there are a number of dining options both on the mainland and the hinterland. Visitors get the best taste from Local food joints and restaurants. There are however classy eateries for high-class business travellers, tourists or expats who come to the island for oil business or for sight seeing.
- 1 Bonny Delight Fast Food, No. 51 Hospital Road. M-Sa 5AM-9PM. Local and inter-continental cuisines and sea foods.
- 2 The Promise Fast Food, No. 17 King Perekule Rd, ☏ +234 812 912 5100. Daily 7AM -9:30PM. Shawarma, pastries, shawama, drinks, Burger, charcolit chicken & fish, rice,side dishes, bread, cake and others. They also offer in-door and out door catering services. ₦1,500.
- Classic Buka (Resturant & Office Delivery), New Road, opposite living faith Church head quarter Bonny local government, ☏ +234 803 578 2840. Daily 8AM-8PM. Deals on local and inter-continental cuisines.
- 1 Azontio bar, Abalamabie Road. Daily 8AM-8PM.
- 2 Violet Gardens, New Layout, Ward IV, ☏ +234 803 952 6550. Monday to Friday 24 hours.
- 3 De Jen White's Bar (GRA Road, Bonny Finima, GRA Road,), ☏ +234 806 976 0459. Daily 7AM-7PM. De Jen White's Bar sers its customers with varieties of bears, wine,hot drinks, pepper soup among others.
- 1 Elizabeth Suites, 20 Abalamabie Road. A 1-star hotel. It is an affordable hotel in Bonny Island, Rivers. It has restaurant, bar, free WiFi and adequate parking space. ₦6,000-8,000 per night.
- 2 Progress Lovers Guest House, Plot 431A Zone 6 (G.R.A) Finima, ☏ +234 803 087 2877. Check-in: 2PM, check-out: noon. Restaurant, bar, air conditioned rooms, dry cleaning, 24 hours electricity supply and lots more. ₦6,000-10,000.
- Atlantic Royal Suite, Simidia Road, off Abalamabie Road. Check-in: 2PM, check-out: noon. Atlantic Royal Suite has nice swimming pool, an on-site restaurant, bar, outdoor lounge, gym, air conditioned rooms, free WiFi, rooftop terrace.
- 3 Hotel De Televee (Bende Road). It has such facilities like restaurant, bar, swimming pool, free WiFi, free parking space among others.
Bonny Island is the centre of oil business in Nigeria. It is relatively a developed place and conducive for both expatriates and Nigerians that come for business. Some bars and clubs, nevertheless, seem relatively safe even during the night.
The networks in certain parts of Bonny Island can be very erratic at times. Please check with the local service providers - 9mobile, MTN, Glo and Airtel prior to your arrival for current coverage and accessibility.
- Port Harcourt
- Yenagoa - another city with an oil-based economy