Tropicana Scuba Diving: Akinboboye’s 8th Tourism Product

When Otunba Wanle Akinboboye, who was in his mid-twenties returned to Nigeria from the United States of America in the late 1980s, he established La Campagne Tropicana Beach Resort, which incorporated the oceanfront at Ikegun in Ibeju-Lekki area of Lagos State

In the early 1990s, he registered several tourism and recreational-focused companies, one of which was Tropicana Scuba Limited.

He aimed to operate and expose Nigerians to leisure activities that leveraged Nigeria’s natural environment while providing similar tourism experiences to those in North America and Europe.

This week, he has decided to leverage off and re–Jig Tropicana Scuba Diving as a saleable tourism product. This product forms part of the 52 tourism products he intends to unveil to the industry over a calendar year.

Akinboboye mentioned that “La Campagne Tropicana Beach Resort Ikegun (the Resort) remains a preferred ecosystem that, amongst others, offers unforgettable underwater experiences for tourists, locals and corporate groups,”.

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He indicated that “With an American-trained scuba instructor in place, the Resort can offer safety standards with high-quality scuba equipment training and certification possibilities.

“Scuba diving is a tourism product that provides tourists with the opportunity to explore open water spaces whether in the ocean, the sea, or in a freshwater environment like lagoons, lakes, etc. While scuba diving you can see coral reefs, underwater caves, and marine ecosystems. You can also experience a wide range of underwater landscapes and marine life.

He mentioned that recreational tourists have the opportunity to explore different underwater environments using self-contained underwater breathing apparatus (otherwise known as SCUBA gear). He indicated that, as part of the gear required for this activity, divers wear a tank of compressed air or enriched air nitrox, which allows them to breathe underwater.

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Akinboboye noted that Scuba Diving is a great attraction for tourists who seek adventure and memorable experiences.

He also mentioned that experts have confirmed that scuba diving enhances physical fitness, as it provides a full-body workout, improving cardiovascular health, muscle strength, flexibility, and stress reduction. Being submerged in water can also have a calming effect, reducing stress and promoting mental well-being.

On the issue of skill development, Akinboboye indicated that Scuba divers acquire valuable skills in navigation and buoyancy control. It is also a unique team-building activity that can be incorporated into corporate retreats to strengthen work teams and foster internal communication and camaraderie.

He explained that with this tourism product, youths will be exposed to educational programmes on marine life, ecosystems, and environmental conservation, just as they would also be taught life skills such as responsibility, teamwork, and problem-solving skills through the dive training.

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“Scuba diving will build the confidence of our Youths and boost their self-esteem while improving their environmental awareness. In addition to the jobs that are peripheral to this activity, such as gas suppliers and helpers, our young people will also have an opportunity to earn income by taking on the role of Youth Tourism Entrepreneurs, and marketing this product,” he said.

Wole Shadare