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Tourist Attractions in Ghana: Discovering the Best of West Africa

Article by Petrina Darrah

Petrina Darrah

Posted: April 23, 2023

Ghana is a country located in West Africa, with a rich cultural heritage, vibrant traditions, and stunning natural beauty. This West African nation is renowned for its diverse wildlife, pristine beaches, vibrant festivals, and historical landmarks that reflect its tumultuous past. In this article, we will explore some of the best tourist attractions in Ghana that make it a must-visit destination for travellers looking to experience the best of West Africa.

Historical and Cultural Sites

Ghana has a rich history that is reflected in its historical and cultural sites. These sites provide a glimpse into the country’s past and how it has evolved over time. Some of the must-visit historical and cultural sites in Ghana include:

Cape Coast Castle and Elmina Castle

These two castles were built by European powers during the colonial period and were used as trading posts for slaves. Today, they are important historical landmarks that provide a glimpse into Ghana’s dark past.

Independence Square

This landmark square was built to commemorate Ghana’s independence from British colonial rule in 1957. It is located in the heart of Accra and is a popular spot for visitors to take pictures and learn about Ghana’s history.

National Museum of Ghana

This museum houses a vast collection of artefacts and exhibits that showcase Ghana’s rich cultural heritage. From traditional clothing to ancient pottery, visitors can learn about Ghana’s past and present.

Kwame Nkrumah Memorial Park

This park is dedicated to Ghana’s first president, Kwame Nkrumah, who led the country to independence. The park features a mausoleum and a museum that highlights Nkrumah’s life and accomplishments.

Natural Attractions

Ghana’s natural beauty is unparalleled, with lush forests, stunning waterfalls, and diverse wildlife. Visitors can explore the country’s natural wonders by visiting the following attractions:

Kakum National Park

This park is home to a diverse range of flora and fauna, including over 500 species of birds, primates, and the elusive forest elephant. Visitors can take a canopy walk, go hiking, or take a guided tour to explore the park.

Mole National Park

This park is one of the best places in Ghana to see elephants, antelopes, baboons, and other wildlife. Visitors can take a guided tour, go on a safari, or explore the park on foot.

Wli Waterfalls

This is the tallest waterfall in West Africa, located in the Volta Region of Ghana. Visitors can hike to the waterfall, swim in the pool, or take a guided tour of the area.

Lake Bosumtwi

This natural lake is located in the Ashanti Region of Ghana and is believed to have been formed by a meteorite. Visitors can explore the lake by boat, go fishing, or take a guided tour of the area.

Beaches

Ghana has over 500 kilometres of coastline, with pristine beaches that offer a wide range of activities. Some of the most popular beaches in Ghana include:

Labadi Beach

This is one of the most popular beaches in Ghana, located in Accra. Visitors can swim, sunbathe, or enjoy a variety of water sports, including jet skiing and surfing.

Kokrobite Beach

This is a laid-back beach located in the Western Region of Ghana. Visitors can relax on the beach, take a surfing lesson, or enjoy live music and local food at one of the many beachside bars.

Ada Foah Beach

This is a secluded beach located in the Eastern Region of Ghana. Visitors can enjoy the quiet and peaceful atmosphere, take a boat ride on the Volta River, or explore the nearby mangrove forests.

Festivals and Events

Ghana is known for its vibrant festivals and events, which provide a unique opportunity to experience the country’s culture and traditions. Some of the most popular festivals and events in Ghana include:

Homowo Festival

This festival is celebrated by the Ga people of Ghana and is held in August. It is a celebration of the harvest and involves the sprinkling of Kpokpoi (a special dish made from cornmeal and palm oil) to ward off hunger and famine.

Chale Wote Street Art Festival

This is a vibrant festival that celebrates street art and creative expression. Held annually in Accra, the festival features live music, art installations, and street performances.

PANAFEST

This festival celebrates the culture and heritage of Africa and the African diaspora. Held every two years in Cape Coast, the festival features cultural performances, lectures, and discussions on issues related to African history and identity.

Food and Drink

Ghanaian cuisine is a delicious fusion of local and international flavours, with a variety of dishes that reflect the country’s diverse cultural heritage. Some of the most popular Ghanaian dishes include:

Jollof rice

This is a one-pot rice dish that is flavoured with tomatoes, onions, and spices. It is a staple in Ghanaian cuisine and is often served at weddings and other celebrations.

Banku and tilapia

Banku is a popular Ghanaian dish made from corn and cassava dough. It is often served with grilled tilapia and a spicy pepper sauce.

Fufu and soup

Fufu is a starchy dish made from yam, cassava, or plantain. It is often served with a soup or stew made from vegetables, meat, or fish.

Volunteering with GVI in Ghana

For travellers looking to gain a deeper understanding of Ghanaian culture while making a positive impact on the community, volunteering with GVI is a popular choice. GVI offers a variety of volunteer programs in Ghana, including community development, conservation, and education initiatives. Volunteers have the opportunity to work alongside local communities and learn about their customs and traditions while making a meaningful contribution to their development. Whether it’s teaching in a local school, working on a community development project, or participating in conservation efforts, GVI provides a unique opportunity to immerse oneself in the local culture and gain a new perspective on life in Ghana.

Ghana is a must-visit destination for travellers looking to experience the best of West Africa. From historical landmarks to natural wonders, vibrant festivals, and delicious cuisine, Ghana has something to offer everyone. Whether you’re interested in exploring the country’s rich cultural heritage or relaxing on one of its pristine beaches, Ghana is a destination that should be on every traveller’s bucket list. So pack your bags and get ready for an unforgettable adventure in this beautiful West African nation.

By Petrina Darrah

Petrina Darrah is a freelance writer from New Zealand with a passion for outdoor adventure and sustainable travel. She has been writing about travel for more than five years and her work has appeared in print and digital publications including National Geographic Travel, Conde Nast Travel, Business Insider, Atlas Obscura and more. You can see more of her work at petrinadarrah.com.
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