For 91 days in Ghana

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Until We Meet Again, Ghana!

With some reason, Jürgen and I consider ourselves to be fairly “worldly”. We’ve been traveling the world almost non-stop for ten years. We’ve got this down. We know this wonderful planet better than most, and even if we aren’t experts in everything, we’re intermediate-level at worst… right? Well, not so fast. Our three months in Ghana proved how fa

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Scenes and Gifs from Ghana

Ghana is a frustrating country for photographers. Here, you’ll find some of the most spectacular photo opportunities in your entire life … but you’ll also find a people who are extremely reticent to have themselves, their families or their homes photographed. We got yelled at so many times, that we eventually adopted a policy of not bringing out th

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The E-Waste Mega Dump of Agbogbloshie

You are such a conscientious citizen of the world! You wouldn’t dump that old computer in the bin. Heaven forbid! There’s the ecological future of our glorious planet to think of, let alone your privacy! You’re happy to drive ten miles to the nearest “e-waste” point! You’ll go home, confident that you’ve done the right thing. It’s nice to stop thin

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Back in Osu - Accra - Ghana - Africa

Before flying home to Valencia, Spain, we had decided to allow ourselves one more week in Accra, without any sightseeing plans. We needed some time to process the experience of living in Ghana for 91 days, and wanted to simply live, work, relax, and reflect. Instead of returning to Adabraka, we chose to stay on the other side of the capital, in the

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The Cost of Akosombo Dam - Ghana

Our visit to Akosombo Dam was eye-opening. It’s amazing what humans can do when really determined. But it’s equally amazing how careless humans can be about their actions. Creating a massive lake is certainly a formidable achievement! And creating that massive lake without really weighing the potential consequences… well, that’s just human. Before

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A Visit to Akosombo Dam - Ghana

One of the first projects carried out by the fledgling nation of Ghana was the construction of Akosombo Dam, along the Volta River, near the town of Atimpoku. A massive undertaking, the dam required four years to construct and cost dozens of human lives in the process. As a result of this audacious enterprise, Ghana now has the largest man-made res

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Cedi’s Bead Industry - Volta Region - Ghana

One of the coolest souvenirs you can pick up in Ghana are hand-made glass beads. You can find them in villages around the country, but the center of production is Koforidua. We weren’t able to make it to this town’s apparently incredible New Juaben Bead Market, which takes place every day except Sunday, but we did find a small factory near Kpong.

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The Volta Region of Ghana

Our final trip in Ghana would be to Lake Volta, to the east of Accra. Formerly British Togoland, the Volta Region is now Ghana’s easternmost state, populated mostly by the Ewe people, who also form a majority in neighboring Togo. We wouldn’t have a chance to visit the region’s capital of Ho, or even see much of the region, as our time had grown sho

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Ghana and the Gays

Psssst… Hey Ghana, come over here, I’ve got a little secret to tell you. You know me and Jürgen, the guys you welcomed so warmly into your country for three months? To whom all of your people were so polite and friendly? The guys who had such a wonderful time visiting your villages, exploring your nature, and meeting your citizens? Yeah, us. Well,

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The Canopy Walkway of Kakum National Park

One of the most well-known adventures Ghana has to offer is a stroll over the forest canopy of the Kakum National Park, along an elevated walkway. This attraction draws hordes of both Ghanaians and foreigners, and for good reason. Even though you’re too high up to spot many animals, it’s thrilling to have a bird’s eye view — and definitely not for

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The International Stingless Bee Centre

Having seen elephants, crocodiles, warthogs and monkeys, there remained just one creature on our “Unforgettable Animals of Africa” bucket list: stingless bees, of course! How long have we dreamed of getting up close and personal with these cuddly little creatures! Alright, the truth is that, until our trip to Cape Coast, we didn’t even know that be

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The Fort William Lighthouse in Cape Coast

We approached the gates of Cape Coast Castle, one of Ghana’s few UNESCO Heritage Sites, and right before paying for entrance… changed our minds. Instead of visiting the castle, we turned around and marched over to the nearby Fort William Lighthouse, perched on a hill in the middle of town. It was a rash decision, but at the end of the day, we both

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A Week in Cape Coast

After finishing up in Elmina, we headed up the coast a few minutes, to the nearby former colonial stronghold of Cape Coast. Before the ascendence of Accra, this was the most important city in Britain’s Gold Cost colony, although today the grandeur has largely faded. There are a couple major sights within town (the castle and Fort William), but Cape

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The Ankobra Beach Resort - Ghana

It’s hard to describe the feeling when first discovering an unbelievably beautiful beach with no other tourists — just yourself, the sand, the palm trees, and the waves. It’s something like excitement, mixed with a sudden sense of feverish possession. You know what I mean, as happy as you are, you’re equally anxious that someone else is suddenly go

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Axim and Fort Saint Anthony

At around 20,000 people, Axim is the westernmost city of any size in Ghana. We took a weekend trip here, staying at the fabulous Ankobra Resort, and checking out both the town and its amazing old Portuguese/Dutch fort, Saint Anthony. Our hotel was located about a few kilometers away from Axim, along the beach, and we decided to walk into town. It

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The Coconut Grove Hotel(s) of Elmina - Ghana

Jürgen and I live by a set of unspoken mutual agreements. Number 14 states: once we’ve started debating whether to leave a place … be it a restaurant, a movie, a cafe, or a party… we should just immediately leave. And that goes for hotels, too. When we checked into our Elmina hotel, we were immediately displeased. But did we really want to put ours

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The Posuban Shrines of Elmina - Ghana

Posuban shrines are a regular feature of the Fante region of Ghana’s central coast. Any town, almost regardless of size, will possess at least a few such shrines, which are often decorated with cryptic symbols or statues. We managed to find four elaborate examples in Elmina, although there were almost certainly more hiding in the town’s back street

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Elmina Castle - Ghana - Africa

Constructed in 1482 by the Portuguese, who called it São Jorge da Mina, Elmina Castle is the oldest existent colonial structure in Sub-Saharan Africa. It’s held up beautifully throughout the centuries, but as a center for the transatlantic slave trade, much of its history is dark. We took a tour, during which we were confronted with the unthinkable

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Elmina and the Gold Coast

After being “discovered” by the European colonial powers in the late 15th century, it didn’t take long for the coastline of present-day Ghana to become highly coveted property… there’s a reason they called it the “Gold” Coast, and nobody wanted to miss out on the early plundering. The Portuguese were first on the scene, establishing Elmina Castle i

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The Boabeng-Fiema Monkey Sanctuary

It was difficult to depart from the Mole National Park after two days. But it wasn't impossible. We knew that our time with Ghana's wildlife was not yet finished. In fact, our very next excursion would bring us into even closer contact with the animals of Ghana: a visit to the Boabeng-Fiema Monkey Sanctuary, where monkeys live in absolute harmony

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The Zaina Lodge in Mole National Park

Within the confines of the Mole National Park, visitors have two options for accommodation: the Mole Motel or the Zaina Lodge. The names probably indicate where each falls on the "luxury" spectrum. But you probably wouldn't believe just how beautiful the Zaina Lodge is, until you step onto its grounds. When we were invited to stay at the Zaina f

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Mole Safari #2: In a Jeep

We woke up bright and early on our second day in the Mole National Park, Ghana's largest protected wildlife refuge, and moved from the Mole Motel to the Zaina Lodge: an upgrade of at least a few stars. We had booked a jeep safari in the very early morning; a time at which we hoped the animals of the park would be at their most active. We certainly

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A Foot Safari at the Mole National Park

Ghana is not blessed with the expansive savannahs of nations like Tanzania or South Africa, and you won't find families of gorillas hiding in its jungles, like you might in Rwanda or Uganda. But this is still a large African nation, and as such, there's plenty of amazing wildlife to be seen. The biggest and best of Ghana's numerous national parks

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The Larabanga Mud Mosque

A fascinating structure purported to be the oldest in Ghana, the famous mud mosque of Larabanga dates back to the 14th century. As it was right along our path to the Mole National Park, we couldn't avoid paying a visit. But although the mosque itself was incredible, this was one of the most irritating experiences we had in Ghana. The problem wit

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How to Get Around in Ghana

Having explored Ghana from south to north and back again, we completed dozens of long- and medium-length journeys, as well as innumerable short inter-city trips. In doing so, we've run the gamut of transportation options in Ghana. Here are our tips and advice for getting around the country. Short- and Mid-Distance Uber: We are not Uber fans. Their

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The Tengzug Hills

Just south of Bolga, the hill village of Tengzug is home to the Talensi people, and the location of a famous shrine. We visited right before the annual Golob Festival, which rendered the shrine inaccessible, but permitted us a peek into the local rituals. To arrive at Tengzug, we arranged a private driver from Bolga Station. Although it'd be p

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What Happens in the Town of Bongo? You Get One Guess!

You don't have to be an expert in Ghanaian culture to guess that the town of Bongo is known for drumming. Just outside the village, you'll find a formation of giant rocks, which are known for the bizarre, musical tones they produce when struck. We embarked on a hike to this natural orchestra pit, and found ourselves amazed by the area's beauty ev

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Paga Pia Palace

After having conquered our fears at the Crocodile Pond in Paga, we felt like a more soothing experience, so wandered over to the nearby chief's palace, which has been set up as a touristic primer to the housing style of the Kassena people, a tribe of about 160,000 people, found along the border between Ghana and Burkina Faso. We were met at the g

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Double Post - Sorry .. Not sure why Steempress is doing this :(

"Maybe it's a trap," I thought to myself, while watching our guide swing a squawking fowl about, luring a massive crocodile onto the shore. "It could be a trap." Then he was calling me over, asking me to crouch down next to this monster, and every rational synapse in brain was in agreement, screaming, "It's a trap!" But I took a deep breath, and a

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Wulugu Mud House

On our way north from Tamale to Bolga, we made a pit stop in Wulugu, a tiny and unremarkable town which is concealing one fascinating site: a bizarre, ancient house made of mud. From our Ghana Travel Blog! After hopping out of the trotro, we stopped for a lunch of Tuo Zaafi at a roadside stand, and then asked the 14-year-old girl who had served

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Bolgatanga

About an hour north of Tamale, the last town of any size before hitting the border with Burkino Faso is Bolgatanga -- referred to almost exclusively as "Bolga". (The full name is so rarely used, you might be met with confusion when saying it.) We spent four days in Bolga, using it mainly as a base for exploring the surrounding area. On the day we

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Spinning Cotton and Making Butter: A Crafty Excursion from Tamale

Sometimes, I just feel stupid. Sure, I completed high school and graduated from college. I was even a Cub Scout! But my practical knowledge pales in comparison to the people of northern Ghana, all of whom seem to know how to create things which are immediately useful... with their hands! I might be able to write code, giving your website a blue as

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Kukuo: Part 2

Having taken a long taxi ride to reach the wrong Kukuo a couple days prior, we were irritated to realize that the right Kukuo was right down the street from our hotel in Tamale. Well, irritated but also relieved that it was so close. Unless there was a third Kukuo in the area (which wouldn't actually have surprised us), this was surely going to be

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The New Dakpema

We had just finished our tour of the leather workshop in Zongo, when we heard the sound of drumming, quickly coming closer. And was that a gun shot? Hafiz, our de-facto guide for the day, ran over excitedly to us... "Let's hurry! We can see the new Dakpema!" We followed him out to the main street, and ran smack dab into the most insane parade we'v

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The Leather Crafts of Tamale-Zongo

If some dude in the USA says, "Oh yeah, some friends and I get together to cure leather in my back yard", your instant and one-hundred-percent-accurate reaction is going to be: "Whatever, hipster". In Ghana, though, there's nothing hipster about it. We visited the Tamale neighborhood of Zongo, whose DIY leather "factories" would be the dream of so

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