Most of us long to get away from the Lagos hustle for a break. Usually we want to enjoy the UK’s rainy summer, relax on the beautiful beaches of Thailand or marvel at man-made island in Dubai whilst shopping.
But the reality is that travelling can be very expensive.
So today we’ve something that will make you feel like you have travelled the world without leaving Lagos:
Here are 17 awesome restaurants to experience the world cuisines in Lagos. Instead of a plane ticket, all you need to pay for is a taxi fare (try either Taxify, UBER) and of course the restaurant bill.
USA – Hard Rock Cafe
Water Corporation Road, Landmark Center, Victoria Island, Lagos // 0908 198 8888
Fun fact: Hard Rock Cafe was started by two young Americans in London. The classic menu centred on the American cuisine (think mouth-watering Burgers) is what has made this franchise world famous. If you want something less flashy, try Johnny Rockets for retro diner setup. The other restaurant to try for the Yankee NYC feeling is RSVP Lagos. Either way, the outcomes are same – all it takes is a Burger, Milkshake or Manhattan cocktail to feel the American dream in Lagos.
South Korea – HSE Gourmet Cuisine Café
Arabella’s Place, 2 Emmanuel Abimbola Cole street, Lekki Phase 1, Lagos // 0809 086 5298
The reality is that K-drama has a huge following in Nigeria and yet there is a real lack of authentic Korean food in Lagos. HSE is the closest thing you’ll find. The space is pretty neat and probably feels more like Cafe in Paris than Seoul. Nevertheless, the menu has a couple of Korean inspired dishes. Ask for the Korean Bowl with BBQ chicken and apple slaw.
Mexico – Bottles
8 Imam Agusto Close, Victoria Island, Lagos // 0700 268 853, 0808 880 4116
Lagos now has four real Mexican restaurants – Bottles, Crossroads, La Taverna Tex Mex and The Public House. Each restaurant is a great way to experience the beauty that Mexico is (obviously without the beaches). Technically speaking, all those restaurants focus on the Tex Mex but hey let’s not get caught up in details. We call out Bottles, only because it’s an old timer, doing this before Tex Mex became cool in Lagos. You can try the chicken taco and oh, the Margaritas. Also EDL suggests visiting BBQ & Cravings if you’re craving Chipotle-type burrito bowls.
India – Spice Route
36 Adeola Odeku Street Victoria Island, Lagos // 0808 020 8080
There are a number of places in the Lagos to get authentic Indian food: Sherlaton, Ilupeju hub of restaurants and the newly opened Peppercorn Avenue. The list goes on…However Spice Route is an old favourite and remains a great choice if you want to experience the Indian cuisine in style. Definitely order the house special Chicken Tikka with cheesy Naan bread.
Brazil – Churrasco at Lagoon
1C Ozumba Mbadiwe Street, Victoria Island, Lagos // 0803 305 3536, 0706 666 3333
The Lagoon is a collection of restaurants by the scenic waterfront serving seven cuisines including Japanese, Lebanese, Indian and Brazilian; so plenty of reasons to visit this spot. The Churrasco (Portuguese for “barbecue”) at the Lagoon is essentially a Brazilian steakhouse that doesn’t have a traditional menu. The restaurant is an all-you-can-eat meat and salad buffet. The food itself is simple Brazilian stuff like skewers of various types of steak, chicken, prawns served at your table. Each guest is given a small wooden card painted red (no more meat) and green (still hungry and want more meat) on each side to indicate current situation.
China – Jade Palace Chinese Cuisine
61 Adeola Odeku Street, Victoria Island // 0803 301 9983, 0704 322 2885
There is no shortage of Chinese restaurants in Lagos – see Ofadaa’s recently updated guide to Chinese restaurants. Jade Palace is where you come to get authentic Cantonese cuisine and of course amazing dim sums. The place is run by a family from Hong Kong and the head chef is from Guangdong in China. Ask the friendly servers to order off the daily “secret” menu. Otherwise, the English menu is still a safe bet.
United Kingdom – Churchill’s Pub
4/6 Layi Yusuf Street, Lekki 1, Lagos // 01 454 2345
Appropriately called Churchill’s Pub, this place arguably serves the one of the best full English breakfasts you can get in Lagos. The quintessential British fish and chips delicacy is also available here and noteworthy. If you want to have the London feel while still in Lagos, this place could work. Churchill’s also stocks some London beers…!
Thailand – Orchid House Thai
15A Marine Rd, Apapa, Lagos // 09091706888
Until recently Orchid House Thai Restaurant was the only place to get authentic Thai food in Lagos. A few new restaurants have opened up recently, however this is still the spot to hit up when need some quality Thai food. Definitely out of the way given it is in Apapa. The restaurant is literally a house with overflowing orchids being hung all over offering a serene getaway away from Lagos hustle. Try the Seafood Pad Thai along with a local Singha Beer, the combo is exceptionally delicious.
Japan – Izanagi
19B Idejo Street, Victoria Island, Lagos // 0706 222 2222
Located within The Blowfish Hotel in Victoria Island, Izanagi serves the best sushi in Lagos. The menu is rather extensive, caters to every sushi lover and is certainly not cheap. From their dynamite shrimps to Teppanyaki and Teriyaki to their Izanagi dragon, you’re bound to have the time of your life there. Grab your chopstick and let’s go to “Little Tokyo” in Lagos.
Italy – La Taverna
48 Balarabe Musa Crescent , Victoria Island, Lagos // 0908 631 2927
La Taverna is one of our favourite spots for a first date. Every item on the Italian focused menu is shockingly good and there’s also a reasonably priced wine selection. Missed the flight to Italy? Let La Taverna Milano take care of you!
Jamaica – Jamski
8A Ologun Agbaje Victoria Island Lagos // 0809 458 0930
When you walk into the restaurant and hear the Jamaican accent everywhere from the wait staff to the chef, you might actually believe you’re in Jamaica. Jamski is as authentic as you are going to get in Lagos. The space is largely outdoor seating with a huge painting of Bob Marley on the wall in the background, very apt. Enjoy the sights and sounds of the country that gave us reggae.
Spain – Ginger Tapas ‘n’ Grill
6A Ologun Agbaje Street, Victoria Island, Lagos // 0809 448 2727, 08187813511
Yes, they serve delicious Tapas dishes and at reasonable prices too. The lounge space is eclectic and sultry; perfect getaway for a secret rendezvous in Lagos. The Caracoles Picante and Quesos Españoles are highly recommended.
UAE / Middle East – Arabesque
225B Etim Inyang Crescent, Victoria Island, Lagos // 0706 966 5555
Arabesque is a restaurant that brings you a slice of Arabian with the most gorgeous outdoor seating. The garden is beautiful with fountains and exotic flowers; there is a sense of quaint serenity. The décor feels like you’ve been transported to somewhere deep in the Middle East. The food is fresh and the presentation authentic and excellent. Ironically, Arabesque is also known for its super cocktails that’ll knock some love into you.
Bulgaria – BL Restaurant
147 Younis Bashorun street, Victoria Island, Lagos // 0908 080 7070
Fun fact: BL stands for Bulgarian and Lebanese. There is a pleasant mix of Bulgarian and Lebanese dishes on menu which means you could be in two countries without even trying. BL Restaurant opened earlier in 2016 and there are many reasons why you should eat here. However if you need just one reason, come for the BL Plancha Seafood Platter, one of the best in Lagos.
France – Tarragon
50 Raymond Njoku Street, Ikoyi, Lagos // 0817 762 6031, 0808 335 5268
Fine dining is hard to pull off in Lagos, so props to the Tarragon team for attempting and getting it right. The space is perfect, right from the decor to the ambience with dim lights. In some ways, it is the ideal alternative for a lovely romantic night in Paris. There are two menu options: A la Carte and a Chef’s Tasting Menu. Tarragon is attached to the Famous Culinary Academy in Lagos; as a result the focus on creativity and use of refined cooking techniques is apparent.
Taiwan – Bubble Tii or Bubbleville
Obviously this is not a plate but Bubble tea (also Boba tea) transports you to Taiwan. Bubble tea is essentially a tea-and-fruit mix with chewy pearls of tapioca added. There are currently 2 brands fighting for the Boba Tea Crown in Lagos: Bubble Tii and Bubbleville – both are equally delicious.
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Portugal – Adega Express
31 Fola Osibo Street, Lekki Phase 1, Lagos // 0905 146 9983, 0803 828 3868
Like many Portuguese restaurants in Lagos, Adega Express is a franchise restaurant based out of South Africa. The menu specializes in traditional Portuguese cuisine covering seafood, chicken and meat. There is alfresco dining option with a pizza spot enclosed just in case.