Ghana trip report

 

Ghana



Plundered by the British for centuries for slaves and gold, Ghana is the first African nation to become independent.
During check-in for my outbound flight to Ghana, I was told the plane is always delayed "because passengers always have way more luggage than is allowed". Indeed, many people were trying to pass off huge suitcases as hand luggage, only to be told otherwise - resulting in a delay of almost 2 hours.

 

Accra

Accra is the bustling and frenetic capital. Finding your way there is a challenge since properties often don't have a house number and street signs are rarely visible, so local landmarks like bars, banks or even trees are used to help people find their way. So when asking for directions you'll hear things like "it's after the blue kiosk, besides the mango tree". Ghanaians are very friendly people and very laid back. Sometimes too laid back. Almost everyone has a special name for the day on which they were born. Kofi/Afi = Friday, Kwame/Ama = Saturday, Kwesi/Esi - Sunday, etc. Pidgin English is the most common language. In Pidgin English, people refer to each other as 'Chaley' - a derivative of Charlie/Charles (a relic of British colonisation).


 

Ghana is famous for customised coffins. Just outside Accra, there's workshops where they make coffins shaped like lions, pineapples, tanks, Coca-Cola bottles, etc. There was even an airplane one, from Air Canada, though you get more leg room in the Air Canada coffin than on actual Air Canada flights.


 

Jamestown

Jamestown is Accra's oldest district. It's a place to learn about Ghanaian history, society and the colonial past.


 

Labadi beach

One of the most popular beaches in Accra is Labadi beach, except no one goes for there to swim. It's more a spot for drinking, dancing, shisha, loud music, and horse riding. The beach was packed and I was one of only 10 people actually swimming. Expect to fend off countless black plastic bags when going for a swim.


 

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