Accra, capital of Ghana which is a West African nation, is a pleasant coastal city. From a suave suburb of 1800’s to a modern metropolis of today, its buildings reflect its transition. A bustling modern city, Accra is a melting pot of various cultures and a great place for tourism. It has great architecture and some beautiful beaches, people love to relax at.
Location and Climate of Accra:
Accra is located on the Atlantic Coast and its northern part stretches into the interior of the West African country, Ghana. It is located just a few degrees north of the equator. Earlier, it was developed as a port and was flourishing commercial center of Ghana. You can find here 19th century colonial buildings to high-tech multi-storey buildings. Accra is administrative and economic center of the country.
Ghana is a warm country but Accra usually has pleasant weather. Accra has tropical climate; it is warm and humid with cool breeze blowing from the Atlantic Ocean. Range of annual mean temperature is between 26 and 29 °C. Accra is generally humid throughout the year.
Accra: Vibrant Mix of Cultures
Accra is the most populous city of Ghana. Accra is the pride of Ghana and its culture reflects the commotion of a big city. Culture is a mix of various Ghanaians and other foreign cultures. This city is a passion with everyone who thinks it as his or her home. Since 1877, Accra has been Ghana’s capital. You can find any kind of luxury here; great hotels, great food, great locations, nightclubs and all you want. Accra is a blend of rich heritage and modern values. It reflects the great African friendliness and ease. Accra has all; colonial architecture, modern skyscrapers, fascinating museums, busy markets, modern business areas and neat residential suburbs. Art and crafts, dance and music are the cultural veins of the Accra.
Tourist Attractions OF Accra:
Accra is thronged by tourists, year around for its great and interesting tourist attractions. Accra has interesting colonial monuments with French architecture, modern era building, other historical monument, absorbing museum which has a great collection, reflecting the great heritage and traditions of Ghana which range from prehistoric times to today’s Ghana. Accra is the home of the National Theatre building, Centre for National Cultural Centre, the Kwame Nkrumah Mausoleum, Independence Square and the fishing port at James Town. And do not miss the trendy Makola Market in the heart of the city. It is worth visiting University of Ghana, located at just 14 km from north of Accra, for its beautiful buildings, based on Japanese Architecture and well manicured gardens.
While in Accra, you can start your sightseeing tour from Revolution Square.
The revolution square has the Perpetual Flame burning At the Cenotaph. Then visit National Museum and crafts market, which is located next to the museum. Other city sites are Liberation Square, tropical gardens, the Art Centre, grave of the first Ghanaian president, Kwame Nkrumah, Christianborg Castle, built in the 17th century by the Danes and WEB DuBois Memorial.
Grave of the first president of Ghana is referred as Nkrumah Mausoleum after his name. It is placed at the center of a nice and quiet park which also has a small museum having collections about his life. Art Centre is located next to it. Art Centre is the main site for cultural events and shopping in Accra.
Independence or Liberation Square is the memorial of three Ghanaians who were shot during the revolution against colonial reign. Ceremonies are held here on special days like May Day and Independence Day.
Beaches of Accra:
Accra is home to some great beaches. Labadi and Kokrobite are the most crowded beaches and you will have to pay an entrance fee for these beaches. Lots of activities and entertainment keeps you busy here. For the people who love to stroll on quiet beach, Coco beach in Teshie should be your desired place. It is very rocky and not as developed as other beaches. At the mouth of the Volta River, Misty and Ada beaches are the other quiet beaches. On all the beaches, you can find some kind of water activities also.
Eating and Shopping In Accra:
Osu in Accra has good number of accommodations and restaurants. You can get African cuisines and international food also at restaurants in Accra.
You can shop at the Makola Market which has streets full of fabric shops. You can pick from there, wax-print, beaded, embroidered cotton and tulle cloths as African special.
You can find anything from food to household items, to jewelry to shoes, fabrics on Kaneshie Market, which is spread on three floors.
The National Cultural Centre near Black Star Square is the best place for curio shopping. For imported and western products as well as native products, you can visit the Palace Shopping Mall but be sure to pay more there.
Transport in Accra:
Transportation in Accra is not a case for worrying. Public transport in Accra is well-developed and is quite efficient. There is the largest fleet of privately owned minibuses, running on a regular route. These minibuses are called to-trios by the natives there. These minibuses are inexpensive but often poorly maintained and overcrowded; it is impossible for a visitor to ride them.
Private taxis are also available here at a price if you want to have safe and comfortable touring of the city. Privately owned taxis are not metered and you will have to negotiate for them. You can rent a car or SUV from various car rental agencies in Accra. If you are planning to visit cities around Accra, you will have to pay extra charges. Accra is well-connected to nearby cities by road, rail and air.
Airport in Accra:
Kotoka International Airport is located in Accra. People can approach Accra from all the directions, from North America, Middle East, other countries of Africa and Europe. It is a very busy airport. Ghana International Airlines is the premier airlines which run various flights to several cities across the globe. Other cities of Ghana are connected to Accra by domestic airlines.