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Thursday, March 1, 2012

Ghana: Kakum National Park & Elmina Castle

February 2012

This was my first time in Ghana. We landed after a 5h25m flight from Lisboa to Accra. Hot and humid - yes, I was again in Africa!

View from my room @ Accra

Breakfast at the hotel

After spending the first night in Accra, we explored the Ghanaian coast searching for paradisiacal beaches/resorts where to stay for the next 3 days. We were also seeking to pay a visit to Kakum National Park.

The first resort we saw was in Anomabo beach.



We liked it but we wanted to keep exploring.

-o0o-
Kakum National Park

Next stop was Kakum National Park, located in the Central Region of Ghana, where we had lunch. I chose a traditional dish called Chicken "Red Red", a bean stew served with fried bananas.


Although the chicken was tasty, I didn't like the beans that much.

Kakum National Park's main attraction is the "Canopy Walkway", a series of seven rope bridges suspended between trees at the forest canopy level. Their maximum height above the ground is 40 m. Really impressive!











"YOU SURVIVED THE WALK WAY"

If you aren't afraid of heights it is worth a try! Students with ISIC card get 50% discount. Kakum Park is about 3h30m away of Accra if you go by car.

Finally, after seeing 3 or 4 resorts, we decided to stay at Coconut Grove Beach Resort in Elmina, near Cape Coast.

Elmina - short after sunset

Beside the beach, we also had a nice pool.

-o0o-
Elmina Town

Next day we explored Elmina town which was built around São Jorge da Mina Castle - a Portuguese castle built in 1482 with the main purpose of being a trading post. Elmina name derived from the portuguese words "A Mina", in english "The Mine". In fact, gold extraction was one of the main activities here. Elmina was also used by the Portuguese in the Atlantic slave trade.


Fort St. Jago in the background

"God is my strenght"

The Ghanaian People seemed to be very religious and they expressed their love to God in boats, cars, buildings, everywhere!

Today, Elmina's main industry is fishing



Ice blocks to keep the fish cool, melting fast under 30º C 

Is faith for sale? :)

Fort St. Jago - built by the Dutch to fight the Portuguese 

-o0o-
Elmina Castle

Time to see the marks left by our ancestors in this part of the globe! Again students get a nice discount. A guide will help you during the visit explaining every little detail and castle rooms and sections.


Entrance with a drawbridge

Skull motif over the cell for those condemned to death 

Stinky bats in a dark dungeon
I hope they didn't mind the use of the flash... :)


Portuguese Church protected by the walls


Compass rose

Fort St. Jago built in a higher position. Shrewd guys the Dutch... 


Old canon in bad condition...

Elmina town

 On the top of the walls


Building new boats!


Portuguese Church entrance - now a museum 

The Portuguese succumbed to Dutch attacks in 1637 when the castle was taken over. In 1872 it was handed over to the British Empire.

-o0o-
Coconut Grove Beach Resort

Some photos of our beach... I got a nice tan!




Club - local beer

The following day we had to return to Accra and get prepared for the flight back to Lisboa. British Airways' crew was in the same hotel we stayed (African Regent) and they had their pick-up at the same time we did.

At Kotoka Intl Airport I could see an Air Namibia A320, KLM MD-11, British Airways 777 and a South African Airways A330.

BA Boeing 777 @ Kotoka Airport - we departed first :)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Decididamente... NÃOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!

Pipa