GHANA

The republic of Ghana, formally known as the Gold Coast was one of the first African Colonies to come under British rule. In 1957 it became the first country south of the Sahara desert to gain independence. The 540km coastline of Ghana is dotted with colonial slave forts and castles. This is an unpleasant but unforgettable reminder to its dark history. Ghana’s population of 26 million is extremely diverse. There are at least 68 ethnic compositions within the 6 main ethnic groups, Ewe, Akan, Guan, Ga, Adangbe and Gonja with most hailing from the Northern tribes. These groups are also a combination of different tribes. With such a wide range of different people, it is no wonder that Ghana has at least 75 different dialects and languages. All these tribes and ethnic groups have unique cultural and traditional practices that are centuries old. These and the mode of celebrations and traditional beliefs serve to distinguish them from each other. Sea, Sand and Sunshine, the stunning coconut lined deserted white sand beaches, the wild multi – faceted Southern Tropical Rain Forest with a myriad of birds and flora, moving steadily northwards to the Sahelian Savannah plains with its game and wildlife, Ghana’s landscape is difficult to beat or equal. The enormous cultural diversity and unique traditional practices make travelling in and around Ghana a pleasurable adventure to undertake and behold.

Operated by:

Ashanti Africa Tours

Nature:

Ghana is a nature lover’s delight. It’s sunny equatorial climate and fertile well-watered soils sustain an enchanting selection of wildlife, ranging from elephants to monkeys and marine turtles to crocodiles, as well as hundreds of colorful bird and butterfly species. More than 5% of the country’s surface area has been accorded official protection across 16 national parks or lower-profile conservation areas, of which the most popular tourist destinations are the vast Mole National Park in the northern savannah and the forested Kakum National Park near the coast.
Over recent years, Ghana has emerged as a pioneer in the field of community-based ecotourism, which aims to create a mutually beneficial three-way relationship between conservationists, tourists and local communities. The Boabeng-Fiema Monkey Sanctuary, home to sacred troops of mona and black-and-white colobus monkeys, led the way in 1995, and it remains the flagship for more than two dozen other community-based tourism projects countrywide. These range from the award winning Wechiau Hippo Sanctuary in the Upper West and Amansuri Wetland Sanctuary in the Western Region to cultural sites such as the Domana Rock Shrine, set in the forests near Kakum National Park, and the painted houses and pottery of Sirigu in the Upper East.
Volta Region, the most topographically varied part of Ghana, also hosts the country’s largest concentration of community-based ecotourism sites, and offers outdoor enthusiasts some superb opportunities for hiking, rambling and mountain biking. Popular attractions include the sacred monkeys of Tafi Atome, a plethora of magnificent forests and waterfalls around Amedzofe, the country’s highest peak on Mount Afadjato and the impressive forest-fringed Wli Falls, the tallest cascade in West Africa.
Ghana is highly alluring to birdwatchers, with 755 species recorded in an area comparable to Great Britain. For casual visitors, it is colourful savannah birds such as Gonoleks, Rollers, Parrots, Bee-eaters and Weavers that tend to catch the eye, as well as the Eagles and other raptors that inhabit the drier north. Serious birdwatchers, however, are likely to want to seek out the more elusive residents of the shadowy rainforests interiors of Kakum, Bui and Ankasa, as well as the exceptional variety and volume of marine species that congregate on coastal lagoons such as Keta, Songor and Muni-Pomadze.

Climate:

The climate of Ghana due to its geographical location , between long 4°c and 11°c N and about 1°c E and 3°cW it is just north of the equator, is a typical Tropical Climate. Ghana is crossed by the Greenwich meridian at Tema. Daytime temperatures average around 30°c. However in detail there is some variation. Temperature in the mid portion to the south of the country ranges between 21°c – 32°c and 24 °c- 40°c in the north depending on time of the year. The warmest months are February and March and the coolest are August to early September. Seasonal changes are different from those of the North America and Europe due to its proximity to the Equator. Given a few isolated instances Ghana’s Temperature is reasonably consistent. The rainy season is from May to October. Most of the southern sector has two regimes of rainfalls, a major one from mid-May to mid-July and a minor one from September to mid-October. The northern sector has only one mid-May – August. From December to mid-January, the Harmmatan winds blow from the Sahara Desert causing very dry and hazy conditions in the north. This will have little or no effect on visitors.

Hotel Accommodation:

The vast majority of our standard set departure tours we use mid-range hotels ranging from 2 to 3 star where available, all having private washroom facilities, air-conditioning, swimming pools and international restaurants. During our birding and nature tours we use the best standard accommodation close to the area of interest as most locations are quite remote. It is possible to upgrade accommodation at an additional cost when staying in Accra and Kumasi as at all other locations we use the best hotels available. Please be aware we can design bespoke tours for luxury and budget travelers depending on how much you would like to spend on your holiday.

Guest Houses and Homestays:

Some of our Eco, Wildlife, Voluntary, Educational and Cultural tours in the more remote areas, local guesthouses are used and in some unique cases homestays though these are more basic than hotels in larger communities, they are comfortable and clean. Staying in these types of accommodations brings us into a closer and more intimate contact with the locals, their ways of life and more interestingly their unison.

Immunizations and Vaccinations:

You need to consult your doctor six to eight weeks prior to departure. You may visit – www.traveldoctor.co.uk – for extensive information on foreign travel to exotic locations.
Below is a guideline only:

  • Polio
  • Tetanus
  • Typhoid
  • Anti-malaria tablets (consult your chemist)
  • Hepatitis A
  • Meningitis
  • Yellow fever (you must carry this certificate)

You’re Insurance:

You must ensure that you have adequate personal insurance cover for your trip. It is a compulsory requirement for all our trips in Ghana and other African destinations and it is your responsibility to take out a suitable policy. You will not officially join our tours until evidence of your insurance has been provided to our office. This must include personal accident, medical expenses and repatriation to your country of origin. We also recommend that your policy covers cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects. Please note that free insurance cover offered by some credit cards does not cover repatriation expenses.

Visas:

All nationalities, except Ghanaians and members of the ECOWAS community need a visa for entry into Ghana. British citizens can download a visa form from www.ghana.com.co.uk. You will need four passport size quality photos and can send your passport via recorded delivery. This takes approximately two weeks to process. Alternatively, you can go directly to the Ghana High Commission, 104 Highgate Hill, London N6 5HE nearest tube Archway Station. All tour participants will need a single entry visa which is valid for 3 months from day of issue. We advise you to apply for your visa at least four weeks prior to departure. The current fee is £50 (subject to change without notice) for citizens of other countries please see below:
Direct Visa Applications and Information from Embassies and High Commissions
www.ghanahighcommissionuk.com (United Kingdom you can download application form)
www.ghanaembassy.org (United States of America)
www.ghanaembassy.nl (Netherlands)
www.consulate-ghana.com.au (Australia)
For all other embassies search on – www.embassyworld.org
For visa agents that charge a fee – www.travcour.com

Capital: Accra
Currency: Ghanaian Cedi
Population: 29 million
Official languages: English

Operated by:

Ashanti Africa Tours
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