Nestled deep within the enchanting embrace of Ekiti State lies a hidden gem waiting to be discovered by adventurers and nature enthusiasts. The Arinta (sometimes spelled as Erinta) Waterfalls, is a turbulent stream of cascading water that has steadily flowed through time. It is housed in a lush environment, and offers a unique oasis of tranquility and natural beauty. This captivating eco-tourism site has however remained a well-kept secret, but therein lies the potential.
Arinta falls ranked high on my todo list for the Ekiti trek, primarily because waterfalls are one of my favorite natural phenomenon to experience. It is less popular than the famous Erin Ijesha Waterfalls which was a 45 minute drive from Arinta, I still had good faith that it would be a refreshing afternoon. We needed to be rewarded for how long we'd been sitting in the car.
This waterfall is located in the quiet community of Ipole Iloro, but interestingly many locals are unfamiliar with it. While asking for directions, we realized that there was a disconnect between the people and this location - many had not even heard the name. This made finding Arinta a bit difficult but we eventually did. A lack of community awareness is a big factor. It puts this site at a major disadvantage for eco-tourism development if the people here aren't connected to it.
We arrived at the Arinta complex, and apart from the lone caretaker stationed there, it was completely empty. It's a very spacious complex and we were told about plans to build a bar and other activities, so that could be a welcome development. Entry for Arinta waterfalls cost ₦1,500 per ticket and from the gate to the actual falls is a 10-minute forest trek, making it very accessible for children and the (semi)elderly.
The surrounding forest is a beauty to walk through - lush and bursting with life. Massive trees decades old towering above and the ecosystem is alive and jumping out of your way. Because we were the only ones here, we had an uninterrupted orchestra from the birds singing in the canopy and the gentle rush of water in the ambience. This gave me a sense of calmness and serenity.
In no time, we had gotten to the wooden platform built around Arinta. The soft sound of rushing water had changed into an angry crashing. It is smaller than most waterfalls, but no less a marvel. It has a single stream that crashes into the rocks so forcefully that it creates a powerful spray as it deflects. The stone surfaces are very smooth, timeless years of weathering has chipped and polished away rough edges and it can be slippery so please watch your step.
The experience would have been incomplete if we didn't go into the water and it was worth it. It's a breathtaking feeling, having thousands of water droplets hitting your skin every second. You feel tingles across your body from the cold water and the moment you step out of the spray, it feels like you've been cleansed. Your breathing improves because of the cool, misty air, and your body feels refreshed, alert and rejuvenated. Your mind also goes on a journey, and gently begins to float as you take it all in. The sounds, the sensations and the sights of nature's beauty come together quite nicely for an unforgettable afternoon in Ekiti.
My friends and I left feeling very grateful. The experience felt like a gift wrapped with love and I hope more people seek out this hidden gem in Ekiti State.
Thank you for reading and don't forget to like, share and comment! You can also watch video content from this trek here.