Ghana regions

Ghana Arts and Culture Tour , 7 days Sticky

continent tours

Arrive in Accra

Day 1

On arrival in Accra you will be met by our representative, assisted and transferred to your hotel.

Depending on the time of your arrival, you may begin familiarizing  yourself with this vibrant West African city  this evening. Your guide  and  driver will be available to assist.

Accommodation is in Accra.

W.E.B. Dubois Center and Kwame Nkrumah Memorial Park

Day 2

This morning  your guide will orient  on the tour  activities during the next 6 days.

After orientation, set out to see Accra. You will  begin the city tour by first  visiting  the W.E.B. Du Bois Cultural Center which honors  the life of a great and prominent  Pan-Africanists who spent hi  final years working in Ghana. The center was formerly  Du Bois  residence.  Your  next stop is  Independence Square, Accra’s open-air ceremonial grounds where  national celebrations are held. Continue to the Kwame Nkrumah Mausoleum and Museum, a tribute to Ghana’s first president. This park, formally called the Polo grounds, is where Dr. Kwame Nkrumah declared the independence of Ghana. The remains of Dr Nkrumah as well as that of his wife rest on these premises. You will see various personal items used by Dr. Nkrumah, as well as books he authored.

In the early afternoon, travel to  Kokrobrite beach area  for lunch. After lunch you will be offered two  , two exciting hours of drumming and cultural dancing lessons with the experts at Kokrobrite Drumming Center. Or  you may relax in an area overlooking the beach.   Accommodation is in Accra.

KUMASI, CAPITAL OF THE ASHANTI  KINGDOM

Day 3

Today we travel  to Kumasi, the capital of the Ashanti Kingdom of Gold. On the way, we will stop to visit a  Plant Medicine research center  where  research in the use of plant medicine in the cure of various ailments are conducted. You will arrive in Kumasi  in the early afternoon in time to visit  Manhiya Palace which was  built  in 1925 to receive Asantehene (ruler of the Ashanti people) Prempeh I when he returned from exile in the Seychelles to resume residence in Kumasi.  Manhiya Palace was  used by  Ashanti kings until 1974.The palace  is  now  a museum, containing a range of items relating to the Ashanti Kingdom, particularly Prempeh I (ruled 1888-1931) and Prempeh II (ruled 1931-1970).  Here  you will obtain firsthand information on the legacies of the Ashanti kingdom, a  regal history that dates back to 1700and is  told with relics and artifacts.   You will also visit the  nearby Okomfo Anokye Sword, an important symbol of Ashanti unity that marks the spot where the Golden Stool “descended from the sky” and has been in place for more than 300 years. Legend says the Ashanti Kingdom would disintegrate  should the sword be removed from its present location.

KUMASI, KENTE WEAVING AND  WOOD CARVING  VILLAGES

Day 4

Your second and last day in Kumasi will include  non-stop activities. Begin with stops at : the  woodcarving village of Ahwiaa, known for the talented craftsmen who fashion royal stools, walking sticks and fertility dolls from wood;  next visit the  village of Ntonso where artisan’s hand-stamp patterns on cotton cloth to make Adinkra textiles. Black-on-black and black-on-red Adinkra cloth is worn for funerals and other solemn occasions; next stop is the  village of  Bonwire, where the famous Kente cloth is handmade on looms in a time-honored tradition passed down through generations. You will see the Kente weavers in process of creating Kente cloth in various styles, and have the opportunity to try your hand at the ancient  craft.

GOLD  MINE, SLAVE DUNGEONS AND SLAVE RIVERS

Day 5

Today we hear West to Ghana’s Central region  to Elmina and Cape Coast.  This is one of the  most visited areas in Ghana and is  must-see for first time leisure travelers  to Ghana.

On  the way we will stop at  Gold mine town of Obuasi. Next stop is at Assin  Manso, the burial site of two former slaves from the U. S. and Jamaica whose remains were re-interred in August 1998 during Ghana’s first Emancipation Day Celebration. Here you will see the  “Slave River” where captured Africans were washed before being confined in the Slave Castles to await shipment to the Americas and the Caribbean.
On arrival in Cape Coast we will  visit Cape Coast Castle and the Castle Museum for a guided tour. Cape Coast Castle is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and was one of the holding dungeons and  departure points for Africans being sent to slavery in the Americas. (Beware, a visit to the dungeon is usually an emotional experience for people of African descent and also for  non-Africans).The castle is home to the infamous “Door of No Return”. This evening  rest and reflect.

KAKUM  PARK, CANOPY WALKWAY, MILITARY SHRINES AND COLORFUL FISHING BOATS

Day 6

This morning we travel through the historic Denkyira Kingdom to Kakum National Park, one of West Africa’s surviving tropical rain forests.  Kakum is  home to over 40 large mammals and 400 bird species as well as many species of butterflies, flora and fauna. The most popular attraction is the Canopy walkway,   made up of seven bridges extending 330m, hanging 30m (100 feet) above the forest floor.
You may  between a 2 km nature walk through this forest to discover the wide variety of exotic floral species and the medicinal values they offer or take the  more challenging  walk on the canopy walkway. This afternoon you will  visit  the Posuban Military Shrine where the Asafo companies, (Fanti traditional soldiers), prepare spiritually for war. These shrines are wonderful examples of how art is used in the daily lives of Ghanaians.

This evening you may take  a guided tour through the ancient town of Elmina. At the harbor you will see the colorful fishing canoes getting ready to go to sea for another night’s task of fishing. This is a picture perfect opportunity for photographers.

ACCRA, SHOPPING FOR CRAFTS, FABRICS AND MORE

Day 7

Return to Accra arriving late  morning. You  have a choice  of activities  before you board your onward flight. You  may choose  to visit  the   Accra Shopping Mall, the first World-Class Shopping Centre in Ghana, which offers an exciting one-stop shopping. This would present a unique opportunity to experience shopping, leisure, entertainment, fashion and dining where the locals are.

Or

Visit the popular Arts and Crafts market where you can test you’re bargaining and trading skills against the vendors.

Or

Visit  Makola market, Accra’s signature open air  market  to experience a typical African Market atmosphere.

If this is your first time to West  Africa, from now on your will likely see the continent  from a vastly different but  more positive  perspective.

This Tour Includes:

• Transportation in private vehicle
• Experienced tour guide
• Admission to  listed sites
• 6 nights hotel accommodation
• Breakfast daily

This Tour Does Not Include:

• Cost of visa
• Meals not listed
• Travel Insurance
• Gratuity to driver and guide

continent tours

Tour of Ghana, Togo and Benin, 14 days Sticky

continent tours

Arrive in Accra

Day 1

On arrival in Accra, you will be met, assisted and transferred to your hotel.

The rest of the day is at leisure

Accra and Vicinity

Day 2

Today  you will experience  Ghana’s capital in  all its  bustling glory.  You will drive through the administrative and economic districts of Accra,  a  130+  year-old city which has a blend of colonial European-medieval and modern architecture that summarize her history. Visit  James Town, a part of Accra featuring colonial-era architecture including a 30 m high lighthouse and Fort James. Continue to Usher Town, where you will see Fort Usher. Continue to  Nkrumah Memorial Park,  Independence Square- Accra’s open-air ceremonial grounds  and also see Osu Castle (known as Christiansburg Castle); constructed by the Danes in the 1600s and was the seat of the Ghanaian government from  1876 AD until recent years.

This afternoon make a visit to the University of Ghana, Legon. It is Ghana’s premier centre of higher education where  distinctive buildings of Japanese architectural design are set amongst elegant tree-lined gardens.

 You may visit the great hall area of the University and have a panoramic view of the city of Accra popularly referred to by students as “Accra by night”

Meals: Breakfast

Accra Vicinity

Day 3

 You will visit  Shai hills reserve for game viewing. Here you will  have an opportunity to see various animals including antelopes, bushbucks, baboons, among others.  You will have the opportunity to learn about the various artifacts found in the reserve, which is the homeland of the Krobo ethnic group. You may also visit the caves, which are  of historic importance to the Krobos and other tribes.

This afternoon visit a  Bead-making factory  to observe the intriguing bead making process.

Return to Accra and   visit a local casket making shop to see a collection of caskets carved in the shape of different objects, depicting traditional beliefs in life after death. The “Fantasy Coffins”  been featured in many publications and can be found in museums and galleries worldwide.

Meals: Breakfast

Accra – Cape Coast

Day 4

Today you will  travel to Cape Coast, one of Ghana’s  most visited locations..

You will past through fishing villages before arriving in Cape Coast.

Before arriving in Cape Coast  you will  visit the Posuban Military Shrine where the Asafo companies, (Fanti traditional soldiers), prepare spiritually for war. These shrines are wonderful examples of how art is used in the daily lives of Ghanaians.
On arrival  in Cape Coast, we will visit the Cape Coast Castle and the Castle Museum for a guided tour. Cape Coast Castle is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and was one of the departure points for Africans being sent to slavery in the Americas.

This evening you will have a guided tour through the ancient town of Elmina. At the harbor you will see the colorful fishing canoes getting ready to go to sea for another night’s task of fishing. These are  picture perfect photo opportunities.

Meals :Breakfast

Cape Coast

Day 5

After breakfast depart for a drive through the historic Denkyira Kingdom to Kakum National Park, one of West Africa’s surviving tropical rain forests. Extending over 360sq km, Kakum is  home to over 40 large mammals and numerous  bird species as well as many species of butterflies, flora and fauna. The most popular attraction is the Canopy walkway which is made up of seven bridges extending 330m, hanging 30m (100 feet) above the forest floor.
Choose between a 2 km nature walk  to discover the wide variety of exotic floral species and the medicinal values they offer or take a walk on the challenging  canopy walkway.

This evening take a leisurely walk through the town of Elmina  or relax  at   the beach or  at  your hotel poolside.

Meals :Breakfast

Travel to Kumasi

Day 6

Today we travel to  Kumasi, the Capital of the Ashanti Kingdom.   You will pass through  the Ashanti gold mine town of  Abouasi.

After Obuasi  stop at  Abonsam Shrine located at Patakro.  Next visit  the Yaw Tano Shrine at Ejisu-Besease.

Arrive in Kumasi and  start your  visit of this  Ashanti Kingdom of Gold. Places of interest  include Ashanti craft villages starting with the village of Ntonso where artisan’s hand-stamp patterns on cotton cloth to make Adinkra textiles. Visit the village of Bonwire, where the famous Kente cloth is handmade on looms in a time-honored tradition passed down through generations. You will see the Kente weavers in process of creating Kente cloth in various styles.

Meals: Breakfast

Kumasi

Day 7

Today continue your  visit of the   seat of the Ashanti Empire to explore the legends of the famous Ashantis, whose legacies are still evident today. Visit Manhyia Palace Museum to obtain firsthand information on the Ashanti kingdom, a regal history that dates back to the 1700s and is told with relics and artifacts.

This afternoon visit the Asenemaso Shrine at Asenemaso located 15 Km from Kumasi.

End the day’s tour at the National Cultural Center which features the Prempeh II Jubilee Museum and various studios of the brass makers, potters and batik makers.  Exhibits in this museum include a replica of the famed Golden Stool, which is believed to have descended from the sky and is the spiritual symbol of unity for the Ashanti people.

Meals: Breakfast

Travel from Kumasi to Ho, Volta Region

Day 8

On the way to the Volta Region you will stop at  Abono and visit Lake Bosumtwi, one of the more  prominent  lakes in Ghana, and learn  the many stories about its formation.  Lake Bosomtwi is  a natural crater lake believed to have been created by the impact of a falling meteorite and is  surrounded by farming and fishing villages. Your next stop is Ejisu Besease where you will  visit an Ashanti ancestral shrine to explore the beliefs, history and bravery of the Ashantis. The Shrine was built around 1850 and is one of the few remaining examples of traditional Ashanti architecture. You will be captivated by the oral historic  account as it is told by an old and knowledgeable Ashanti traditional priest.

Continue to Odumasi Krobo to a visit the Beads market where you will see an extensive   variety of intricately designed beads.   Continue to your hotel in Ho.

Meals :Breakfast

Ho and Surrounding Area (Volta Region)

Day 9

Today  you will visit  Wli Waterfalls, the highest waterfall in Ghana. You may hike through a dense tropical forest and cross the meandering Agumatse River at 11 places before you arrive at the waterfall.

This afternoon visit Tafi Atome Monkey Sanctuary where the endangered but playful  Mona Monkeys are considered sacred and are therefore protected. You will walk on the well-cleared trails and view the monkeys in their natural habitat.

Late afternoon  visit Atimpoku,  a  village built entirely from termite clay.  Walk through the village,  interact with the villagers and share experiences and ideas. This evening you may enjoy a relaxing ride in a paddle boat down the Volta River.

Meals :Breakfast

Ho, Volta Region / Lome

Day 10

Early morning depart to Togo.

Cross the border and arrive in Lome late morning.

Early afternoon begin the tour of Lome and vicinity. Sites include Independence Square, the national Museum, Lome craftsmen village, the Central market- realm of the famous Nana Benz, where pearls, crafts, pottery and other products including “sacred” items are on display.  This evening you may visit the fishing harbor and the fetish market – the traditional drugstore for many Togolese.

Meals :Breakfast

Lome – Grand Popo – Ouida-Allada – Abomey

Day 11

This morning complete the tour of Lome then continue to Abomey.

Stop at Grand Popo, formerly an important seaside town during the slave trade. Grand Popo is now a quiet town with an abandoned old Dutch warehouse, a few Voodoo temples by the river and very friendly   people. After Grand Popo, continue to Ouidah, the center of Voodoo Religion in Benin. It is best known for its central role in the slave trade during the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries.  Ouida is   now known for its wide avenues lined with lawns and gardens that create a delightfully relaxed and calm atmosphere and its spectacular yearly Voodoo Festival heal here   every 10th of January. Visit the Portuguese Fort, which now houses the Museum of History. The exhibits focus on the slave trade and Benin’s links with Brazil, the Caribbean and New Orleans.  Not far away are the Notre Dame Christian Cathedral, and the famous Temple of Sacred Pythons. You may visit a famous Voodoo chief.  After Ouidah, continue to Allada to see the birthplace of Toussaint L’Ouverture, the liberator of Haiti.

Visit the town to interact with the people and there may be an opportunity to see the King at his Palace. Continue to Abomey, the former capital of the kingdom of Dahomey, where you will overnight.

Meals :Breakfast

Abomey-Porto Novo – Cotonou

Day 12

This morning, start the day with visits to the Royal Palace Museum.  Most of the building originally built in the mid-1600s was destroyed by fire in 1892, but the remaining structure is still spectacular. The museum features voodoo skulls, Portuguese artifacts and traditional housing. Photographs are strictly forbidden.

Visit the Arts Centre, where craftsmen create works in iron, copper, bronze, and other metals. Then drive to Porto Novo, officially the capital of Benin.  Porto Novo is Benin’s second largest city and the country’s administrative and shipping center, with approximately 180,000 residents it remains an important and historical place.  Porto Novo’s close proximity to the Nigerian border gives it an artificially bigger appearance than it really is. There are several places of interest including the Grand Marché d’Adjara where you can buy drums, clothing, crafts and fabulous pottery.  You may visit the   Musée Éthnographique de Porto Novo which has a great collection of Yoruba artifacts, and the 300 year-old Palace of King Toffa.  Early evening continue to Cotonou.

Meals :Breakfast

Cotonou – Ganvie – Cotonou

Day 13

One of the highlights of any trip to Benin is a visit to Ganvie, a 500-year old village on water generally called the “The Venice of Africa”. Over 12,000 people live in houses on stilts over Lake Nokoue.  The village was built as protection against aggression from the Fon and Dahomey kingdoms because religious customs forbade those warriors from venturing into water. Now, houses, restaurants, shops and other businesses are built (6ft) above the water. (Local customs   object to up-close photography, so be sensitive to their wishes). It is worth the view to take a canoe around the houses, whose occupants will extend a noisy and friendly greeting. It is also worth getting a peek inside of one of the houses whose interiors are quite comfortable, and women may be seen smoking and drying fish on enormous ovens built on the bamboo floors.

After the visit to Ganvie, return to Cotonou and visit the administrative district, the market zone including the international Dantokpa market with its exuberant traders and the handicraft center.

This evening visit the fishers’ street and the Francophonie Ville.

Meals :Breakfast

Cotonou – Depart

Day 14

Today is at leisure for individual activities. You may spend time at the beach, your hotel pool or at the  Arts and Crafts market before you are transferred to the airport for the onward flight.

Meals: Breakfast

This tour includes:

  • Meeting and assistance upon arrival
  • Roundtrip airport to hotel transfers
  • 13 night’s hotel      accommodation.
  • Transportation in private vehicle
  • Experienced  tour guide
  • Meals indicated  (13 breakfasts)
  • Admission to sites listed

This tour does  not include:

  • International flight to Africa
  • Travel insurance
  • Cost of Visas
  • Meals  not listed
  • Gratuities for driver and guide
  • Personal Items such as phone and laundry

continent tours

Tour of Slave Castles and Kakum National Park, 2 days Sticky

Cape Coast Castle & Elmina Castle

Day 1

In the  morning depart to  Cape Coast in the Central Region, passing through some of the principal streets of Accra. Sightseeing of the western part of the capital, Kaneshie, Odorkor, and Kasua, where there is a large market.

Continue to Mankesem, a famous settlement of one of Ghana’s Akan tribes. Next is Sultpond, the home of Ghana’s political history, and Anomabo the home of the famous Jazz musician, Louis Armstrong.

Arrive at Cape Coast Castle, which was the seat of the British Colonial administration until 1877 when the capital was moved to Accra. The Castle is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Next stop is  Elmina Castle, also  referred to as Saint Georges Castle was built in 1482  and is said to be the oldest European built structure outside of Europe. The castle was used during the Anglo Dutch War of 1664-1666 by Admiral de Ruyter, commander of the Dutch fleet.  You will see in the harbor next to Elmina Castle  numerous pirogues preparing to go to sea, this  offers one of West Africa’s greatest photo opportunities. Elmina Castle is also a UNESCO World Heritage site.  This evening you can  enjoy a leisurely  drive through the township of Elmina where you may visit  the European cemetery. Check into your hotel for dinner and over night stay.

KAKUM NATIONAL PARK AND CANOPY  WALKWAY

Day 2

Check-out after breakfast and drive to Kakum National Park, an undisturbed virgin forest situated about 30 km north of Cape Coast. Arrive at Kakum National Park, which is one of West Africa’s surviving tropical rainforests. This provides an unforgettable “Jungle” experience amidst the tropical vegetation and wildlife. The forest provides the opportunity to see some of  Ghana’s indigenous plant life, rare butterflies, flora and fauna. The most popular attraction is the Canopy Walkway, which is made up of seven bridges extending 330 meters and hanging 30 meters above the forest floor. Early afternoon  depart  for  lunch.

After lunch we return to Accra stopping at selected villages before arriving in Accra late afternoon.

Meal(s) Included: Breakfast

This Tour Includes:
• Transportation in private vehicle
• Experienced tour guide
• Admission to  listed sites
• One night hotel accommodation with breakfast

This Tour Does Not Include:
• Cost of visa
• Meals not listed
• Travel Insurance
• Gratuity to driver and guide

 

Tour of Accra, The Capital of Ghana, 1 day Sticky

In the  morning  depart from your hotel for a sightseeing tour of Accra, the nation’s capital. Learn the culture and history of the indigenous people of the capital.

The first stops will be the Black Star Square, Accra’s ceremonial grounds, the Independence square, and the Freedom and Justice Arch.

Continue our drive through Castle Road for a view of Ghana’s Parliament House and the only International Conference Center in the country. The tour continues through Independence Avenue to see landmark buildings, including the President’s house, the British settlements and the  Later Day Saints  Church.

Arrive at the DuBois Center for Pan African Studies into history, arts and culture. The grave site of Dr. DuBois and his wife Shirley can be seen on the property.

Depart Du Bois Center and return to hotel.

This tour includes:

  • Transportation in a private vehicle
  • An experienced tour guide
  • Admissions  into listed sites

This tour does not include:

  • Cost of a visa
  • Meals
  • Travel insurance
  • Gratuity to the driver and guide

Historic Akwasidae Festival In Kumasi Sticky

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Akwasidae Festival

The Akwasidae Festival is celebrated by the Chiefs and the Ashanti people in Kumasi the capital of the Ashanti Region in Ghana, and throughout the Ashanti Diaspora. The festival is meant to pay respects to the ancestors who have gone on. Akwasidae which is of high importance to the Ashanti people has maintained its format for   centuries.

The festival is celebrated on Sunday, once every six weeks or once every 42 days.

Unlike many celebrations in Ghana and West Africa that have been somewhat commercialized  for non-native consumption, Akwasidae has maintained its authenticity and that might have contributed to its increasing popularity among many non-natives who want to experienced an authentic Ghanaian celebration.

On the day of the celebration, the Asantehene (King of Ashanti) meets his subjects and sub-chiefs in the courtyard of the Manhyia Palace. The Golden Stool or Throne (which is said to have descended from the sky at the formation of the Ashanti Empire) is displayed at the palace grounds in the presence of the king, and people visit in large numbers, singing and dancing.

The king is paraded on his palanquin which is decorated with elaborate gold jewelry. Before he is taken around on his palanquin, the king observes the colorful parade from his position at Manhyia Palace. The parade includes drummers, dancers, horn blowers and many others together with the numerous participants, observers and   in recent years, many visitors and tourists.

As part of paying respects to ancestors, the Asantehene visits the Bantama Mausoleum (the final resting place for Ashanti royalty) and offers worship to his ancestors’ thrones and to their remains.

You may time your visit to Ghana to coincide with the  celebration of the Akwasidae festival in Kumasi. You can join in the festivities but as the festival presents one of Ghana’s most picture perfect opportunities, take enough films.