Instinctively, we gravitate towards the shores of the ocean when entering a tropical environment. It is usually the therapy that washes off the remnants of distant lands left behind. Ghana sits in the middle of West Africa with an extensive coast line featuring several beaches from which to choose.
One should beware of our beaches. They are very seductive, but quite rough and they often take people out, never to return. The best swimmers should take heed to this warning. Also beware of the trolls that patrol the beach, with their sticky fingers, snatching and attaching to your possessions.
Labadi Beach- Is a trendy place to be seen and see, not really to swim. Loaded with tourists and traders and everything typical at such a beach.
Coco Beach- Much nicer, but not really picturesque, as it is sometimes un-kept, though a much nicer vibe with plenty of friendly brethren.
Kokrobite Beach- Within Accra, but a good hour from the city, not long after the barrier leaving Accra, heading to Cape Coast. A decent beach with a nice back-drop. The water is rough, but most of our beaches are rough. It is located in a sea-side village which stretches for about 2 miles with many different beaches going along. They all have their own vibe and you are sure to find your preference.
Bojo Beach- Just before Krokrobite beach, on the same road to Cape Coast. Pretty much the same. They both offer unpopulated sections in which you can enjoy with your family or friend.
Cape Coast Beaches
Anomabo Beach Resort- About 20 minutes before reaching Cape Coast you will pass a village called Anomabo, there you will find another beautiful beach, equipped a restaurant (continental) and lodging (camping and nice cabins). Yet and still, it is owned and frequented by mostly Europeans.
One Africa Beach Resort- Not a swimming beach, really it is a quaint resort on a beach with plenty rocks, but a most meditative atmosphere. Owned and operated by African American repatriates (15 years in the land), who also have a wonderful mini museum in their house. Located within Cape Coast, about 5 miles past town.
Kasoa Beach- Just 20 minutes from One Africa, there is a lovely swimable beach, with a natural enclave, surrounded by rocks, that makes it impossible to get very hard waves, which is great for pleasant swimming.
Busia Beach Resort- By far, the best beach I have been to in Ghana. The picture above was taken one early rise at this beach. The water here is actually sedate and most inviting. The beach stretches for miles and isn't littered with trash or excess people, partly because it is quite far. You have to make the effort to go there, but it's worth it. There are many more beaches in the general area which are also very nice, but this is my preference.
For some reason the beaches within the city of Takoradi are very, very rough. Don't get discouraged, trod out to the outskirts and find the real beaches.
After Takoradi is Ivory Coast, with many towns and villages in between, with their own beaches all along the way, but before Accra, on the coast, coming from Togo there are also many quaint villages which are part of the Volta.
Keta Beaches- Keta is a coastal city which reminds me of Venice beach, California. It is a very different atmosphere from anywhere else in Ghana, with pretty nice beaches.
Ada Beach- This beach meets the Volta River and makes for a wonderful sight. There is also a resort with jet skies and a yacht community.
Wli Water Falls
My favorite region in the whole of Ghana is the Volta. The Volta is good for so many things starting with the magnificent falls that you see in the above picture. Wli Water Falls is located 45 minutes from Ho Hoe town, in the Volta. Once you arrive to the place to disembark, you must prepare for a 45 minute walk, through an awesome rain forest on a beaten path. What you see when you get there will certainly make you think of the Creator.
The Volta River is also the largest river in West Africa and offers much opportunity for cool fun. The river runs from the northern part of Ghana straight down to almost the most southern part, emptying out in the sea. It is the river that feeds the Akosombo Damn, which generates all of Ghana's power. Akosombo is just 1 hour from Tema and worth the drive for the sake of viewing the Damn or this river from that bridge:.
The Volta also has a wonderful landscape, with rivers, falls and mountains all with a very green backdrop. Another one of the highlights of this region is the tallest mountain in West Africa, Mount Afedzeto. It is a challenge worth taking, not for the weak at heart. This is what you may look like when you reach the top and this is what you will see once you recuperate:
There is also the Tafi Monkey Sanctuary, but it isn't worth the journey, 2-3 miles off the main road. The monkeys are rarely visible, but for some very awkward hours and there's nothing else to do there.
The great Ashanti Region, made most popular by a woman, Yaa Asantewa, for her warrioress spirit. It is truly the center of Ghana with the best of all worlds. About four hours drive from Accra, it is in the interior of Ghana, a bit away from the coast. The interlands are rich and the trees massive, reflecting a beauty and a bounty that is quickly being depleted. Kumasi has a bustling city, with little real attractions in my opinion, but on the outskirts of the city there is this beautiful oasis called Lake Bosumtwi:
Mole National Park
Finally, you get to see some animals. Yes Ghana has a safari, however you must plan well before you will fit this journey into your schedule. It really requires a reliable 4x4 to make this journey, as it is more than 8 hours from Accra and the roads can often be rough. The distance makes it very hard for most tourist to get to this place, but if the time allows, it is worth it. Indeed you will see many beautiful animals in their natural habitat. Lions have been sighted, but not very often.
Another breath-taking feature about your journey to the North will be the various differences in the landscapes and appearances of villages. It is primarily in this part of the country where you will truly see rural living and experience Ghanaian hospitality. The weather, though, is arid extra dry between the months of December and March.
Located just 45 minutes outside of Accra central, Aburi mountains offers the kind of sanctuary that a person craves if he or she is required to stay near the city. It is where I live and where I would suggest any one stay while in Accra. The air is 10x cleaner, the mosquitoes are 10x less, and the nights are 10x cooler. What more could you ask for? Well there is also the botanical gardens, Rita Marley's recording studio and the best wood carver's market in Africa.
Marley Center, Aburi
As fore mentioned, one of the best things about Takoradi is Busia Beach, but to be fair, there are a few more, almost as nice, in the area. There is also a crocodile sanctuary on the coast, near Axim, a village that is built on stilts, in the water, and a wonderful forest reserve just before the border of Ivory Coast.
Last, but not least, the most common of them all, the dungeons where those who traded in human beings did their commerce. It is probably the biggest tourist draw to Ghana, however I say it should be burned to the ground. There is nothing pleasant about witnessing the horrid conditions that we once suffered as we were ushered through the "Door of No Return", and to ad insult to injury, those of us who have returned are merely treated like the tourist dollar we represent and ushered back in and around, in a slightly more polite manner than we were ushered out.