Top 10 Best Northern States To Live in Nigeria (2024)

Looking for the best place to settle in Northern Nigeria? With 19 states to choose from, how do you determine the top locations that offer a good quality of life? What factors make some states more livable than others?

This article answers these questions by ranking the 10 best Northern states to live in Nigeria as of 2024.


Map Showing The Northern States in Nigeria

We know the number one thing to be wary of why thinking of living in Northern Nigeria is security, as a lot of terrorist activities are ongoing there. Key parameters like infrastructure, economy, security, cost of living and availability of basic amenities were used to evaluate the states.

In this article, we will discuss why these 10 states in Northern Nigeria emerged top.


Nigeria is divided into six geopolitical zones and the Northern region occupies about 70% of Nigeria’s total land area. There is great diversity among the 19 Northern states in terms of culture, economy, infrastructure development, security, cost of living and overall livability. When deciding on the best place to live in Northern Nigeria, these factors have to be considered carefully.

The following paragraphs discusses the top 10 Northern states that offer the best standards and quality of life to residents in 2024 based on critical livability parameters.


Kaduna state tops the list as the best Northern state to reside in for its balance of livability factors. As the political and economic nerve center of the North, Kaduna has good infrastructure, educational institutions, healthcare facilities, and employment opportunities in industries like manufacturing and agriculture.

Although still grappling with religious tensions in some areas, the state government is making commendable efforts to promote religious tolerance for peaceful coexistence.

Cost of living and housing are also more affordable compared to Abuja.

Overall, Kaduna provides reasonable stability, comfort and prospects to thrive.


Kano has grown to become one of the most important commercial centers in Northern Nigeria.

As a fast developing mega city and major manufacturing hub, Kano offers abundant socio-economic opportunities. The cost of living is relatively cheap even as modern residential estates and shopping complexes spring up around the metropolis.

Kano is also trying to ease infrastructure constraints while the entertainment scene keeps getting more vibrant and foreign investment continues to pour in.

Although still prone to extremist threats, the government has strengthened security.


Ranking as the third best Northern state is Abuja FCT.

Abuja would have made the top spot but it falls out due to the high cost of living there. Despite being very expensive, Nigeria’s administrative and political center boasts of world-class infrastructure, well-planned neighborhoods, quality healthcare and education centers, premium recreational spots and better security.

Abuja represents unity with its diversity and cosmopolitan nature. Major economic activities also mean abundant high-paying jobs. In all, Abuja gives a higher standard of living.


Nasarawa is an emerging Northern state with huge potentials, mostly untapped. With its proximity to Abuja, Nasarawa serves as a dormitory town to the FCT while also housing many Abuja workers due to affordable real estate.

Nasarawa has reserves of natural resources like solid minerals and agricultural products. It also boasts of rich tourism sites. As infrastructure expansion and socio-economic development catch up, Nasarawa may soon join the ranks of elite Northern states. Already, it beats many states on critical livability indices.


Jos, the capital of Plateau state, is admired as one of the most beautiful Northern cities having pleasant weather. Tourism and agriculture thrive on the Plateau enriched with mineral deposits.

The economy of Plateau is growing with industries in food processing, soap and detergent production, among others. The state also places high premiums on education with reputable institutions. Infrastructure is continuously being upgraded while more efforts are underway to fully restore peace.


Bauchi state houses the Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University and boasts of ample tourism potentials with attractions like the Yankari National Park. Agriculture provides jobs for many through farming cultivatable crops or livestock rearing. Bauchi also has mining sites.

Moreover, Bauchi city has seen remarkable urban renewal with modern architectural designs. Peace and stability have largely returned too after past religious crises.


In the past decade, Gombe has risen in ranks as one of the frontline Northern states in Nigeria based on huge leaps in infrastructural upgrades, education, healthcare and socio-economic expansion. Gombe city now wears a new look with mass urbanization.

As the transport and trade nexus linking the Northeast states, Gombe hosts key financial institutions, corporate offices and commercial entities attracting huge investment inflows.

This is a good place to consider living while in Northern Nigeria.


Kebbi is renowned as the food basket of the nation producing crops like rice, groundnut, millet, maize and sorghum in large quantities. With vast fertile land and huge livestock population, crop farming and animal husbandry thrive. Efforts are also ongoing to explore mining opportunities and promote tourism to historical sites.

Cities like Birnin Kebbi now wear modern looks with new infrastructure springing up. Increased foreign and private sector investment reflects better ease of doing business.


Katsina is adapting positively to the influx of investments from its affluent son, Muhammadu Buhari. As the hometown of Nigeria’s former leader, Katsina state has enjoyed increased federal presence and advantages in areas like agriculture, roads, healthcare, water supply expansion, security reinforcement and education empowerment.

However, there are reported cases of banditry in the state. This is one of the drawbacks to living here.


Last on the list is Sokoto state located in Nigeria’s extreme North West.

Sokoto showcases centuries of history and culture as the seat of the Sokoto Caliphate. Agriculture constitutes the state’s economic backbone with large-scale cultivation of cash crops, while livestock rearing thrives on the many grasslands.

Modernization is now creeping into towns and cities with new infrastructure, housing estates, schools and healthcare facilities.  Sokoto makes for a worthwhile living destination due to its peaceful environment.


While there is still much progress needed in Nigeria’s Northern region especially in improving security and socio-economic conditions, the states highlighted in this article offer the best places for comfortable living in 2024 based on available facts.

States like Kaduna, Abuja, Kano, Nasarawa and Gombe beat many of their peers on critical livability indicators.

However, the race is not over. Many other northern states can join the list with the right policies and investments on security, infrastructure, social amenities, and improved economy.

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Oluchi Chukwu

Oluchi is a seasoned Information blogger, content developer and the editor of Nigerian Queries. She is a tech enthusiast who loves reading, writing and research

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