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Staff writer
16 interesting things to know about Ghana [INFOGRAPHIC]

Have you ever heard about Ghana and thought to yourself, “I want to know more?” Here’s the only infographic you’ll need to learn all about the facts, history and culture in Ghana, Africa.

Interesting facts about Ghana

Location

Ghana is a West African country located on the side of the continent that’s closest to the Americas.

Weather and landscape

Ghana has a tropical climate with hot and humid weather year round. This is due to the country being just a few degrees north of the equator. The country is about equal parts sandy desert, shrubby savannah and lush rainforest.

Capital city

Accra is the capital city of Ghana. It’s a port city and the governmental and commercial hub of the country. Its white sandy beaches and lively street markets are popular with holidaymakers.

History

In medieval times, the region was a sought-after location among several African empires. The Ashanti Empire was able to maintain control of the coastal region, which allowed them to trade with the British Empire.

Independence

In 1957, Ghana became the first self-governing country on the African continent under president Kwame Nkrumah.

Main language

Ghana has 12 official languages! The two most spoken are the Twi language of the Ashanti people and the Dagbani language of the Dagomba people.

Religion

Today most Ghanaians are Christians, with cultural practices that borrow from Ghana’s traditional religion – a form of pantheism known as Akom. A favourite of traditional Ghanaian storytellers is Anansi, a swindling spider, represented in Neil Gaiman’s novel, American Gods.

Culture

One of the most predominant cultures, Akan, hands down wealth and titles based on the matrilineal line. However, men still hold the main positions of power in this society.

Food

You’ll find tomato-based stews with complex flavours throughout Ghana. The stews usually include fish and are eaten with a dough – of which a dough called fufu is the most popular – which is used to scoop it all up.

Fashion

Modern Ghanaians wear a mix of Western and traditional fashion. The traditional Kente cloth is made from cotton and silk, intertwined in a basket weave to create the brightly coloured striped cloth. You may see local people wearing this attire at a celebration or while running errands!

Children’s names

The first names of children of Akan tribes are based on the day of the week on which they were born – which is said to influence aspects of their spirituality and personality.

Coffins

If you’re ever in Accra and spot a huge fish or airplane sculpture being carried down a side street – that’s a coffin. The custom of creating elaborate coffins comes from the belief that life carries on after death – so a good impression must be made!

Music

A music style now known as “highlife” developed in Ghana when local people began using European instruments to create traditional rhythms. Today, the style has evolved into “hiplife”, with electronic beats featuring Twi language rap.

Movie industry

A straight-to-video film industry sprung up in Ghana during the 1980s. Ghanaian films usually revolve around challenges faced by residents of urban Ghana. The largest media capital in Africa, Nigeria’s Nollywood, has even set up several partnerships with Ghana’s film-makers and actors.

National sport

Soccer is a national pastime in Ghana and the country’s national football team is the Black Stars. They have won the African Cup of Nations numerous times and regularly go toe-to-toe with accomplished national teams like Mexico and Egypt.

GVI in Ghana

We partner with women’s rights groups, primary schools and organisations that work in several communities in Ghana and add to the impact being made in community development.

You can contribute to making an impact in the local community on one of our community development programs. Visit our program page for more information.