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Itinerary: Eco and Historical tour of Ghana

Eco and Historical tour of Ghana

Immerse yourself in culture as we explore the real Ghana, visiting sustainable wildlife conservation and community development projects in some of the remotest communities in Ghana.

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Eco and Historical tour of Ghana
Eco and Historical tour of Ghana
Eco and Historical tour of Ghana

Day 1
Our expert cultural tour guides will meet with you on your arrival at the Kotoka International Airport Accra, which is situated on the beautiful gold coast of Western Africa. Look out for our sign board when you leave the main terminal building after passing through customs. Make yourself known to your guides who will be accompanying you for the duration of your time in Ghana and they will take care of you from here.

After boarding our air conditioned vehicle, which will be your mode of transport for the duration of your tour, we transfer you to your hotel which is situated in Accra. Once we have checked you in, our experienced guides will offer you Akwaaba (welcome) and brief you on all aspects of your trip. You can enjoy your evening meal at the hotel restaurant whilst acclimatising yourself to Africa.

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Day 2
Your first full day in Ghana, after breakfast we load up our vehicle and depart Accra, Ghana’s busy capital city. Our destination is Kumasi capital of the Ashanti region and home to the Asantehene, king of the powerful Ashanti Empire and its people. Our journey takes us through the beautiful Akwapim range, which offers outstanding panoramic views of Tema and Accra in the distance.

At the top of the range we find the relaxed and friendly Aburi craft village, where traditional African drums and crafts have been carved for generations. As we watch the skilled craftsmen at work it is worth noting that prices here are amongst the lowest in Ghana, making Aburi an ideal place to pick up some souvenirs. We make the short detour to the picturesque Boti waterfall (seasonal), a great place to kick off our shoes for a refreshing paddle. Boti is in the eastern region of Ghana which is famous for producing traditional glass beads. We stop at a nearby village to visit Comfort and her family, experts in making beautiful beads the traditional way. Your guides will talk you through the skilled process of making the beads as we enjoy a demonstration from Comforts husband. After the demonstration we have the opportunity to buy a wide selection of beads that have been made here.

We pass through Koforidua, capital of the Eastern region of Ghana before setting off on the final leg of our journey to Kumasi. Upon our arrival we check into our hotel and enjoy our evening meal, the rest of the evening is free time for you to relax.

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Day 3
After a good night’s rest and an early breakfast we dedicate the whole morning to exploring Kejetia market and Adum, Kumasi’s town centre Adum is the commercial centre of this great city and is boarderd by Kejetia Market on its northern side. Found in the heart of the city, Kejetia is the largest outdoor market in the whole of West Africa. This is a wonderful opportunity to experience everyday life for the people in Ghana’s second largest city. The market is a labyrinth of stalls nestled closely together, and a hive of activity, some stallholders sleep here in the evenings as trade rarely stops. The afternoon will be focused on Ashanti culture, we travel a short distance outside of Kumasi to the village of Ntunso, the birthplace of adinkra. Adinkra are ancient symbols with meanings that are carved from calabash shells, and printed onto traditional cloth using natural dyes made from the bark of certain local trees. Adinkra cloth has been worn by the Ashanti’s for more than 4 centuries and pre dates kente cloth. Even today most Ashanti’s will wear adinkra cloth for funerals, festivals and other important occasions.

During our time here we have the opportunity to make our own strip of adinkra cloth using symbols with personal significance. Kente cloth is also woven in Ntunso and the Ashanti Region is famous for producing some of Ghana’s finest Kente cloths. Many designs of cloth are woven here and some are exclusive only to this region. We mix with the community, learning about the history behind the many designs. As we walk through the village, we see highly skilled locals weaving outside their homes. The machines that the weavers use have not changed in design for centuries. During our time at Ntunso, we have the opportunity to buy excellent quality cloth at very reasonable prices. We enjoy our evening meal at a local restaurant before returning to your hotel. The rest of the evening is free leisure time.

Day 4
Kumasi is widely regarded as cultural center of Ghana, the Ashanti’s are extremely proud people ensuring their traditional values and beliefs are passed down to new generations. This region is renowned for its quality brass casting of a wide variation of items ranging from beads and jewellery to traditional statues. After breakfast we visit the nearby village of Sokoban Krofrom, which has been producing high quality traditional brass works for centuries. The methods used to produce these wonderful brass works has not changed and during our time here we see a demonstration of the skilled process. After visiting some of the stores selling a wonderful selection in the village we set off on our journey northwards, first stop Techiman.

On arrival we check into our hotel before setting off for Boebeng and Fiema which are found in the Brong-Ahafo region of Ghana. These villages which are nestled closely together, have set up a sanctuary to protect the vulnerable Geoffrey’s pied colobus and Mona monkeys that live in the surrounding forests. The locals perceive monkeys to be sacred and offer them traditional burials, like humans. We spend the afternoon in the villages, mixing with the locals, and walking trails into the forest, viewing these beautiful monkeys and learning about the history behind their protection. During the walks, our guides will identify the many species of medicinal plants and explain how they benefit the locals. Our hotel is at Techiman, where we shall enjoy our evening meal and reflect on a wonderful day.

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Day 5
The day starts with a buzz as we load up our vehicle after breakfast and set off northwards, our destination is Wechiau and the community hippo sanctuary. The landscape changes from the broad leaved woodlands of the Ashanti Region to the sahelian savannah plains and woodlands of the North. We will stop off en route at a traditional Sudanese style mud and stick mosque which is approximately 150 years old. We have an excellent relationship with the locals in this remote village and during our time here we have a unique opportunity to explore the inside of the mosque. The Imam explains the history of the mosque to us, afterwards we can enjoy a walk through the village mixing with the locals. We continue our journey towards Wechiau stopping for refreshments at one of the local spots (bars) before reaching our destination. As we near Wechiau, we will notice the change in design of the traditional homesteads of the Lobi tribal communities of the Upper West Region. On our arrival, we pick up a local guide at Wechiau town before proceeding to our accommodation for the evening. The Talowana lodge is a clean, basic and comfortable accommodation built in the design of a typical Lobi homestead. Wechiau is a fantastic project protecting vulnerable hippos on the beautiful Black Volta River. It was voted the 3rd best conservation destination by the Independent Newspaper, UK in 2000.

After settling into our lodge, we visit a nearby Lobi village and compound meeting with the locals and learning about their fascinating traditional practices and ways of life. In the evening, we sit under the beautiful African night sky listening to traditional xylophone music around our bonfire. This is a perfect time to experience pito, the local brew before retiring for the night. We have a choice of accommodation this evening we can settle down in our traditional homestead or sleep on the roof as the locals do, gazing up at the beautiful African nights sky. The stars are amazingly vibrant with the Milky Way visible from here on a clear night, as most are.

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Day 6
After an early breakfast we walk down to the river for an early morning river safari in a traditional dug out canoe. The Black Volta is stunning and the canoe ride is a memorable experience. You will be dazzled by the beauty of the woodlands either side of us as we travel up the river to one of the hippo pools. To our left is Ghana and to our right is Burkina Faso. The bird viewing as we travel along this boarder is excellent with over 250 species recorded. Encountering the hippos is obviously the highlight of the safari. The feeling you experience is enhanced all the more as these beautiful mammals are endangered in Ghana. We can enjoy the breathtaking views as we return down river, we should meet some of the community fishermen which gives us the opportunity to observe their traditional fishing methods which have not changed for centuries. After lunch we visit the town of Wechiau, where we mix with the locals and experience everyday life within this community. The main ethnic groups in Wechiau are the Lobi, Biri and Wala’s, some Lobi and Biri elders can still be seen wearing traditional lip plugs. A visit to the centuries old mud and stick Palace is a must while in Wechiau and there may be an opportunity to meet the local Yaa Na chief.

After our evening meal, you have the option of sleeping at the hippo hide built on the banks of the Black Volta River. It is a wooden platform built on the canopy of a large tree above vegetation known to be an evening hotspot for grazing hippos. It is an amazing feeling lying under the beautiful African night sky listening to hippos feeding beneath. Alternatively you can stay at the Talowana lodge or sleep on the roof as the locals do, gazing up at the vibrant stars. On a clear night as most are it’s almost as if you can touch the stars, the Milky Way is also visible in this area of Ghana. The evening is sure to be an unforgettable experience which will live with you for ever.

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Day 7
After a leisurely breakfast we bid farewell to our new found friends at Wechiau and set off for Sirigu which is found close to the Burkina Faso boarder in the Upper East region of Ghana. During our journey we pass through the city of Wa, capital of the Upper West. We arrive at Sirigu, in the early evening, as we approach this remarkable village, the beautifully painted traditional homesteads stand out; it is a local tradition that spans centuries and one we will learn more about during our time with the community. Our accommodation is in traditional style, there is no mains power in this remote community our light and bedroom fans are generated by solar power. The locals are wonderfully welcoming and really look after us during our time here.

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Day 8
A highlight of our time at Sirigu is a visit to the chief’s palace and local market. This offers a perfect opportunity to meet and mix with the locals whilst enjoying a calabash of pito the local brew at one of the many spots (bars). As we walk back to our accommodation we visit a local orphanage to say hello to the children, they are here because their mothers died during child birth. After our morning with the locals we set off to the Tongo hills to meet the Talensi tribe.

Tongo Hills is a mysterious place where there are numerous pinnacles formed by enormous rocks. The local people consider these vestiges as the ancient domiciles of the Gods, in a deep fissure on the side of the highest mountain the cave of the Oracle can be found. The Talensi’s live in fortified homes that accommodate up to 60 people; they have only one entrance and are a labyrinth of walls, stairways and narrow passages. During our time here we visit the chief’s traditional home that houses over 300 people, 17 of them his wives. This family compound is believed to be the largest in Ghana. We return to Sirigu in the evening and reflect on a wonderful day under the vibrant stars of an African night’s sky.

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Day 9
After breakfast, we bid farewell to our new found friends at Sirigu and set off for Mole National Park, en route we will visit Larabanga and the 14th century mud and stick mosque. This wonderfully preserved traditional Sudanese style mosque dates from around 1421 and reportedly houses one of the original copies of the Koran. We tour Larabanga learning about the history of the mosque and the traditions of the villagers. A short distance from Larabanga is an ancient spiritual stone, which is definitely worth a visit and the history behind it is fascinating.

On our arrival at Mole we check into the Mole Hotel, which is the only accommodation in the area. Situated on a 250 meter high escarpment overlooking this 4840km² park, it offers simply breathtaking views. It is an amazing feeling to be sitting around the pool, on the hotel terrace, watching African Savannah elephants bathing in the two nearby watering holes inhabited by crocodiles. After our evening meal, we shall watch the beautiful sun setting over the Savannah woodlands and gallery forest, which surrounds the hotel. This is a perfect ending to a wonderful day!

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Day 10
The day starts with excitement as we set off early in the morning with our armed guide tracking the worlds largest land mammal, African Elephants on foot. We will dedicate the entire morning to tracking and getting as close as possible to these amazing mammals. Hopefully the elephants would be making their way to the watering holes to bathe and drink. This would be an ideal opportunity for a morning foot safari around the watering holes. Many of our guests who have travelled extensively around Africa are amazed at how close we get to the world’s largest land mammal on foot. There are over 93 mammals recorded in Mole. As we walk through the savannah and bush we are likely to see troops of olive baboons and patas monkeys and get extremely close to these beautiful primates. Kob, bushbuck and hartebeest regularly come to the watering hole to drink whilst being cautious of the crocodiles lurking in the muddy water. Deeper in the park lions, leopards, hyenas and African buffalo can be found. As we return to the hotel, we may encounter a family of giant warthogs or a crocodile sunning itself on the waters edge.

The rest of the day is free leisure time, we enjoy our evening meal and the atmosphere of being so close to nature on our final evening at Mole.

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Day 11
This morning we take a leisurely breakfast before retracing our steps back to Kumasi, via Damongo. En route to Kumasi, we will stop at the beautiful Kintampo waterfall to relax. Some of our more adventurous guests use this opportunity to experience the best shower in Ghana, an invigorating experience and a great way to cool off during our journey. After our refreshing stop we will set off on our final leg to Kumasi, on our arrival we check into our hotel and enjoy our evening meal.

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Day 12
After breakfast, we continue our tour of the Ashanti region with a trip to the cultural centre which is found in one of the oldest suburbs of Kumasi. There is a wonderful craft market here and during our leisurely tour we have the opportunity to visit the Prempeh II Jubilee museum which offers an excellent overview of Ashanti history. We then start our journey towards Cape Coast, in the central region of Ghana visiting Cape Coast Castle on our arrival. This wonderfully preserved castle was once the headquarters of the Trans Atlantic enslaved African trade. Now recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage site, the castle offers a unique insight into Ghana’s recent and tragic enslaved African trade era. More enslaved Africans passed through Ghana’s Cape Coast Castle than any other in Western Africa. After our tour we transfer to Hans Cottage Botel, This will be our accommodation for the next 2 evenings. Hans is built over a lake containing Nile crocodiles and set in a beautiful location surrounded by tropical guinea rainforest. It is an original and comfortable establishment, which is teeming with bird life and an excellent place to stay during our time here.

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Day 13
During our breakfast, in the restaurant on the lake, we can enjoy the sights and sounds of the many beautiful birds found in the surrounding vegetation and catch a glimpse of Nile crocodiles which inhabit the lake. Afterwards we set off for Kakum National Park, Africa’s only rainforest canopy walkway. This is a truly beautiful, tropical guinea rainforest and the canopy walkway is sure to be a highlight of your time in Ghana. The canopy walkway consists of a series of 7 bridges, attached to 7 emerging trees, 40 metres above the rainforest floor. Prepare to take a deep breath as you walk the suspended bridges. As you rest on the tree platforms between the bridges, you will marvel at the outstanding views that stretch for miles across this breathtaking rainforest. We are sure you would agree that this is an exciting excursion never to be forgotten. We return to the park headquarters where we find an excellent information centre that offers a very informative overview of the parks flora and fauna. Over 40 different mammal species have been recorded within the park, which includes forest elephants, leopards and 6 primate species to mention just a few. After a wonderful morning we set off for an afternoon of relaxation at one of Ghana’s most beautiful beaches, before our arrival we pass through the fishing town of Elmina. We enjoy the sights of the many colourful fishing boats bringing their daily catch into the harbour and take this opportunity to mix with the locals at the nearby market. A short distance from the market we visit the boat builders, still building colourful fishing boats using traditional tools and methods spanning centuries. We arrive at Brenu beach for a well deserved afternoon of relaxation, our surroundings are perfect, golden sands with coconut trees for as far as the eye can see. There is a traditional fishing village well worth a visit nearby before we settle down for our early evening meal at a local restaurant on the beach. We enjoy our meal and reflect on a wonderful tour whilst watching the sun set over the beautiful gold coast of Western Africa. This is a wonderful way to spend your final evening with us before we return to Hans Cottage.

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Day 14
Sadly your final day with us in Ghana, after a leisurely breakfast we set off for Accra, if time permits on our arrival in Accra we can visit the National Museum. Almost all the displays here are ethnographic in nature and you get a chance to view and purchase some wonderful examples of traditional crafts. Then we have the opportunity to pick up some last minute souvenirs at the cultural centre which is actually Ghana’s largest arts and crafts market. We enjoy an early evening meal before your transfer to the airport and departure after an unforgettable 14 day tour.

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