Ghana Travel Guide
Ghana is located in west Africa is bordered by Ivory Coast to the west, Togo in the east, Burkina Faso to the north and the gulf of Guinea that makes much of the coast line in the south. Ghana before and after the colonial era was a major political and economic power under the Ghana Empire that was headed by the Warrior king called Ghana!
History and Culture in Ghana
Ghana has long existed before the Bronze age some 5000BC. Through the centuries to the 16th, there are migrations of people and expansion of West African states that basically was caused by the trading of Gold. The Ashanti Kingdom conquered many of the small states establishing a big kingdom Ashanti that was run by the Asante chiefs with their capital in Kumasi.
The first Europeans arrived in Asante kingdom around mid 16th century and these were Portuguese explorers. English and other major European explorers also arrived in the 17th century who later named the area as the Gold Coast thanks to the thriving trade in Gold and later named the area a British colony by 1896.
Many of the colonialist die in the Gold coast due to Malaria and mosquito bites. The struggle for Ghana independence started after the World War I in 1948 under leadership of Kwame Nkrumah who previously worked for the British protectorate as prime minister of the United Gold Coat Convention (UGCC) and in 1957, Ghana was declared a free state.
After independence, Ghana has gone through the hands of JK Rawling in 1966-1981, John Kufuor in 1992 to 2009 and John Atta mills was elected into office in 2009 and continues to lead the country to date
Many Ghanaians have served the world including the former Secretary General of the UN Kofi Anan and Akua Kuenyehia a judge at the Criminal Court (ICC) in Hague among many others
People and Culture
Due to the early migrations in the Gold Coast and west Africa, there are several tribes and ethnic groups living in Ghana such as the Akan, Fante, Ashanit, Hausa, Fulani and Bono to mention a few. More than 60% of the people in Ghana are Christians, 20 % muslim and the rest are traditionalist and practice other religious beliefs.
Ghana Black stars are the national football team that has made regular appearances in the World cup since 1990 and reach the quarter finals of the world cup in 2010.
Kente is the traditional dressing of the Ghanaians is a brightly colored cloth in shades of yellow, red, blue, green and black. It was previously woven by hand but not can be made with screen printing technology. It is worn on special occasion by a number of tribes in Ghana such as the Asante and is known to describe the heritage of this African nation.
Just like Nigeria, Ghana music is diverse and varies according to the different tribes and origin. The drum is played in harmony with fiddle called Goje, Koloko lute, and a log xylophone among other instruments to create ecstatic rhythms and sounds. There are new music styles that incorporate the use of Ghana instruments to make contemporary Ghana music such as Afro dance Hall and hip pop sounds
The south of Ghana is covered by an endless beach resort on the Gulf of Guinea. On the beach is the Cape Coast a former colonial British fort that has been deserted. It was the largest historic slave centre in West Africa. Today, the cape coast tours take you to the former castle and a museum with some items that were used by the British.
There are many cities and town in Ghana but Accra and Kumasi are more prominent and known to the world. Kumasi is a cocoa growing region and known for its cocoa exports while Accra is the port town of Ghana with the international airport.
Wildlife safaris in Ghana are part of the itinerary for Ghana safaris and holidays. Take a visit to Kakum National Park and Mole National Park in the town of Tamale. There are 300 different birds in Ghana, 600 species of butterflies and wild animals such as buffalos, hippos, elephants, colobus monkeys, crocodiles and antelopes to mention a few.
By Air, Ghana is serviced by the main airport in the capital Accra-Kotaka International Airport. There are direct flights to London from Accra and some of the airlines with Ghana flights schedules include Air Ivorie, Afriquiyah Airways, British Airways, American airlines, Kenya Airways, Lufthansa Airways, South Africa Airways, Virgin Nigeria and many others. The national airline is Ghana International airways and offers weekly flights to London and other international airports in Africa.
Travelling to Ghana by road is through the different border posts in Togo, Burkina Faso and Ivory Coast. There are buses licensed to carry passengers out and into Ghana. Getting around Ghana’s cities and towns is by public transport and hired cars
Ghana lies in the tropical Equatorial belt of Africa and thus enjoys equatorial climate. The rains are during April to June and later in September to October. The dry season begins in November and ends in March and a shorter dry spell for July to August with occasional rains. The highest temperature for the summer is up to 30ºC for the part in central Ghana.
Ghana is attractive all through the year although most tourists visit during the summer holidays of June to August although a good tourist seasonal extends until December.
Hotels and Accommodation
There are hotels, lodges and a few other accommodation facilities in every town in Ghana. Most of the standard and up market hotels are located in the capital Accra and Kumasi. Common hotels in Ghana include Crystal hotel Accra, Travella Lodging hostel in Accra, Sikaso Beach hotel Accra, Oxford Castle Accra Hotel, New Coco Beach Resort Accra and a few others in Kumasi