One of the most fascinating countries on the Dark Continent, Ghana is rapidly gaining popularity among tourists eager to experience Africa at its finest. Merging the ancient and the modern, the lavish and the austere, aesthetics and functionality, Ghana boasts a picturesque coastline bespeckled with palm-fringed beaches, seven national parks, one nature reserve and two wildlife sanctuaries, impressive cultural scene and a number of important historical sites.
In addition to that, Ghana is well-known throughout the world for its diversified cuisine and surprising flavor combinations that appeal to the pickiest of gourmets, which is all the more reason to visit this African jewel and experience life at its most vibrant and most striking in the midst of a Ghanaian paradise.
Accra: The pearl of the Atlantic Ocean coastlineWith a population of over 2.2 million, Accra stretches along the coast of the Atlantic Ocean, extending north to the country’s interior. Tourists from Europe, North America and the Middle East normally reach it by plane, and upon landing at the Kotoka International Airport, you can take a taxi to one of the numerous hotels and hostels in the city.
The number of accommodation options ranges from the lavish mansions on the coast to private backpacker’s lodgings, and you can find very affordable housing deals through online real estate services such as meqasa.com. Formerly one of the most prominent trade centers in West Africa, Accra is now characterized by a booming tourism and catering industry, and the list of tourist attractions and sightseeing tours is quite lengthy, so you may want to extend your stay in the city if you want to see all the wonders the Ghanaian capital has in store for you.
Historical monuments such as the National Museum and National Theatre occupy an important place on the list of Accra’s major tourist sites. Kwame Nkr umah Mausoleum and Memorial Park honoring the memory of the country’s founder are a must-see for history aficionados, while nature lovers can take a tour of Aburi Botanical Gardens and inspect the diversified local flora and botanical species imported from abroad. Shopaholics will love an afternoon tour of Accra’s malls such as Marina Mall, Junction Mall, Accra Mall and Palace Hypermarket, but if you want to truly taste the local life at its finest, try Macola Market with rich fabrics, clothes and handcrafted items for sale.
Ghana’s national parks: The wild at its finestKakum, Ghana’s most popular national park is found in the south-central part of the country, to the north of Cape Coast. Stretching across 375 square kilometers, the park is mostly comprised of virgin rainforest, with the vertiginous canopy walk above treetops as one of its landmark attractions.
Another noteworthy Ghanaian wildlife site, Agumatsa Wildlife Sanctuary is situated in the area surrounding the highest waterfall in Africa, Wli Falls. After about an hour of a leisurely walk through the forest, the tourists are faced with an impressive view of the fall gorge with lush forest flora and thousands of yellow bats clinging to the side of the chasm.
Located in the Western Region of Ghana, Bia National Park is home to mainly untouched forests characterized by impressive biodiversity. The list of wildlife dwelling in the area comprises 62 animal species and over 160 bird species, including the endangered white-breasted guinea fowl.
Culture of Ghana: A melting pot of ethnic identitiesThe population of Ghana is mainly comprised by members of native ethnic groups such as Akans, Ga-Adangbe, Guang and Dagombas. Although the official language in the country is English, local languages Twi and Ewe are also in use. The population of Ghana cherishes its roots and heritage, and the bi-annual Panafest is one of the most popular festivals celebrating the idea of Pan-African unity that gathers both local citizens and Americans of African descent.
Tropical Eden: Best beaches in GhanaGhana is also known throughout the world for its peaceful, captivating beaches such as Labadi, Kokrobite, Ada and Busua. While strong ocean winds make Labadi a perfect place to engage in beach volleyball, Frisbee and football, Ada Beach is better-suited to bird-watching and hunting for encounters with endangered turtle species.
Located 27 kilometers from Accra, Kokrobite Beach is a Rastafarian heaven known for its party atmosphere, scenic sunsets and bonfire celebrations that start immediately after dusk. Busua, on the other hand, is a perfect place to go after quiet beach holidays and long walks along the powdery shore, which make it an ideal destination for tourists looking for peace and rest.
Foodie paradise: Ghana’s local specialtiesOne more thing that makes Ghana a perfect destination is the country’s splendid cuisine. Try out flavorful street food such as Chichinga (gourd slices with prawn, onion seeds and spices), Banku (fermented corn with either fish or meat) and Waakye spicy rice and beans dish, or taste the traditional Ghanaian bean curry with fish or prawns, the famous Red Red.
With fascinating beaches, delicious street food, historical monuments and lush national parks, Ghana is the best holiday destination for summer 2016. Are you ready to take a dive into the lap of African paradise?
Article was written by Jebiga fan Oliver Hyde. You can follow Oliver’s travel adventures on Twitter
Subscribe to Jebiga for a dose of the best in gear, design, rides, tech and adventure.