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Itinerary: 8 day Ghana's Cultural Heritage Celebration

8 day Ghana's Cultural Heritage Celebration

Formally the Gold Coast, Ghana prides itself on being the first sub Saharan country to gain its independence in 1957. Relive the history and retrace the steps enslaved Africans were forced to endure

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8 day Ghana's Cultural Heritage Celebration
8 day Ghana's Cultural Heritage Celebration
8 day Ghana's Cultural Heritage Celebration

Day 1
You arrive on the motherland at Kotoka International Airport Accra, the capital city, Accra is situated on the Gold Coast in the Greater Accra Region of Ghana. It stretches over 4540 square kilometres, and has a coastline spanning 220 kilometres from Kokrobite in the west to Ada in the east. After passing through immigration, you proceed to the conveyor to collect your baggage before heading to customs. We will meet you on the other side, just look out for the our sign as you come out of the terminal building. Please make yourself known to us, and we will take care of you from here and for the duration of your stay. We board our air conditioned vehicle, your mode of transport whilst you are on the motherland and set off for your hotel, which is a short drive from the Airport. Our expert guide, who will accompany you for the duration of the tour will check you in and offer you Akwaaba (Welcome), before briefing you on all aspects of the pilgrimage.
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Day 2
After breakfast we set off for our tour of Accra passing through the economic and administrative districts on our way to the Du Bois centre. This is the final burial place and former home of the prominent American Pan-Africanist Dr. William W Burghardt Du Bois, who lead the Pan-African congress between 1919 and 1927 he was a vocal Anti-Segregationist and prolific speaker and writer. The center now serves as a library and research institute for students of Pan-Africanism.
Lunch will be taken at a local restaurant serving a selection of West African and continental dishes.

In the afternoon we pass by independence square and view the enclosed flame of African liberation, which was lit by Kwame Nkrumah himself in 1961.We continue the short distance to the Kwame Nkrumah memorial Park, final resting place of Ghana’s founder. Set in attractive gardens, there is an adjoining museum, which contains photos, artifacts and an insight into this incredible man’s life. Adjoining the park is the National cultural center, which is actually Ghana’s largest outdoor arts and crafts market selling traditional crafts from all over West Africa. After testing your bargaining skills we return to our hotel for our evening meal and to relax.

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Day 3
After breakfast we depart Accra, 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. As we head out of this bustling city we stop at TK beads experts in making beautiful beads the traditional way. Your guides will talk you through the skilled process of making the beads, beads are a symbol of wealth and beauty here in Ghana and are still used during traditional durbars and festivals. After the demonstration we have the opportunity to admire and buy a wide selection of beads that have been made here.

Our journey continues and as we get to the top of the range we find the Aburi botanical gardens, set in a beautiful location and founded by the British in 1890. The gardens are home to a wide variety of indigenous and exotic flora, offering outstanding views to Accra on a clear day. As we walk around the gardens our guide will identify the many trees and plants found here, some with medicinal properties and explain how they benefit the locals. A short distance from the gardens 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 enjoy our lunch in Koforidua, capital of the Eastern region of Ghana before setting off on the final leg of our journey to Kumasi. On our arrival we check into our hotel and eat our evening meal around the pool, the rest of the evening is for leisure.
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Day 4
We start the day visiting some traditional villages but first we take a visit to the traditional home of Nana Yaa Asantewaa a great female warrior who led the Ashantis in the 1901 war against the British, she was also the Queen Mother of Ejisu Besease, we shall visit her Spiritual Shrine where she fortified herself during the war. Kumasi is widely regarded as cultural center of Ghana, with its many ancient craft villages within touching distance of the city. Today is dedicated to visiting these traditional villages, our next stop is Bonwire famous as the birth place of Kente. Bonwire produces some of Ghana’s finest Kente cloths, many designs of cloth are woven here and some are exclusive only to this region. We will interact 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 Bonwire, we have the opportunity to buy excellent quality cloth at very reasonable prices before setting off for the village of Ntunso.

The ancient village of Ntunso, is where adinkra originates. Adinkra are traditional symbols with meanings, carved from calabash shells, and printed onto traditional cloth using natural dyes made from the bark of certain local trees. Adinkra cloth has been adorned 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. After lunch we visit Manhyia Palace, home of the Asantehene, King of the Ashanti’s for a fascinating excursion through the history of this powerful tribe. The palace museum is extremely informative on Ashanti history and culture. Our tour gives us a firsthand insight into the legacies of the Ashanti’s and enables us to have an understanding of their culture during our time in this region. We continue to visit the National Cultural Centre, the cultural center 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.

A short distance from the Cultural centre is Kejetia market which is the largest outdoor market in the whole of Western Africa. Visiting here gives us a wonderful opportunity to experience everyday life for the people in this great city and pick up a few bargain souvenirs. The market is a labyrinth of stalls nestled closely together, and a hive of activity. Some stall holders sleep here in the evenings as trade rarely stops. After wonderful day, we return to our hotel for our evening meal.

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Day 5
This morning we take a leisurely breakfast before setting off for Elmina in the central region of Ghana. The town of Elmina was given its name by the Portuguese due to the abundance of Gold found in Ghana, translated Elmina means The Mine. Gold is of such importance to Ghana today and historically.

We will stop at Assin Manso, an important town along the enslaved African trade routes. The town surrounds the Ndonkor Nsuo (Enslaved African River). This river is where enslaved Africans were checked for fitness and bathed before being transported to Cape Coast for shipment to the Americas. After our tour we continue to Elmina, lunch will be taken en-route, we check into our beautiful beach front hotel upon arrival for relaxation and dinner.

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Day 6
After breakfast we visit the castle of St. George in Elmina. This is the oldest extant colonial building in sub Saharan Africa dating from 1482. This castle is steeped in history and played a prominent part during the tragic transatlantic enslaved African trade era. There is an informative museum inside which concentrates on local history and it is designated a world heritage site by UNESCO. Lunch will be taken at a local restaurant overlooking the ocean before we continue to visit the Cape Coast castle also designated as a world heritage site by UNESCO. The castle is a thought provoking monument to a harrowing period in the region’s history. We will spend the afternoon on an emotional journey touring this castle which held more enslaved Africans captive than any other in West Africa, viewing the dungeons and the infamous “Door of no return”. There is a historical museum inside, which explains the whole history of the castle and Cape Coast itself, as well as a souvenir shop which sells literature on all of Ghana’s forts and castles, as well as the cultural history and traditions of Ghana. Our evening will be spent relaxing at our beautiful beach front hotel.
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Day 7
After a leisurely breakfast, we dedicate the entire day on walking tours of the ancient towns of Cape Coast and Elmina. Our first point of call is Cape Coast, the former capital of Ghana and the cradle of education here. Walking through the principal streets of Cape Coast seeing old colonial buildings and everyday life for the locals. The crab is the symbol of Cape Coast and we also walk over London Bridge in the town center. Fort William is on our visit list, built by the British in 1785 as a lookout post for the protection of Cape Coast Castle against local attacks, it also gives us outstanding views of Cape Coast. Lunch will be taken in Cape Coast prior to setting off for Elmina.

During our time in Elmina town we can 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. After spending the afternoon in Elmina we return to our hotel to relax and enjoy our evening on the beautiful gold coast of Western Africa. In the evening we will enjoy traditional drumming and dance at a location close to our hotel.

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Day 8
Sadly your final day with us in Ghana, after a leisurely breakfast we check out of our hotel and set off for Accra. Before we leave for Accra, we will visit Kakum National Park one of Africa’s famous rainforest canopy walkways. This is a truly beautiful, tropical guinea rainforest and the canopy walkway is sure to be a highlight of your time in Ghana. The 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. You will marvel at the outstanding views that stretch for miles across this breathtaking rainforest, as you rest on the tree platforms between the bridges. 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. We stop for lunch at Han’s cottage Botel near Kakum, Han’s 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 enjoy lunch before setting off for Accra.

International flights not included

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8 day Ghana's Cultural Heritage Celebration

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