Explore

5 Reasons to Visit Accra

By O F E I B E A

Share

Located in West Africa’s lush forest region, Ghana’s capital, Accra, is a vibrant yet easygoing hub worth adding to your  list. This heaving metropolis was the backdrop for the birth of African independence in 1957 and continues to capture the hearts and affections of many today. Here are a just a few of the city’s delights.

Fashion

Ghana’s fashion industry is growing rapidly, and the expanding pool of talented designers is something to admire. Traditionally, Ghana is famed for its kente but has also favoured two piece suits (kabba and slit for women) made from batik wax work textiles, and almost every street has a seamstress kiosk with walls plastered with images of the latest cloth styles and designs. Tailor-made outfits can usually be turned around within a week. At the other end of the spectrum, young Ghanaian designers such as Duaba Serwaa, Poqua Poqu and Christie Brown are gaining international acclaim. Their designs are not just remakes of western couture but are unique, creative and intrinsically African.

Food

Street food in Accra is plentiful, and for me, no long car journey is complete without stopping off for Kelewele (spiced and chopped fried plantain). Visitors shouldn’t eat street food from any and everywhere; however, trying out a ‘chop bar’ (local Ghanaian eatery) is a must to get an authentic taste of Ghana.  Buka restaurant in Osu is a local favorite and offers hearty portions of Ghanaian and west African food. As a cosmopolitan city, Accra offers a great wealth of options when it comes to international cuisine, but be warned, they often come with a Ghanaian twist!

 

Ghanaian Grilled Tilapia

Photo Credit: Tante Marie Restaurant


Music and Entertainment

From passing cars to clubs and bars, there is never a shortage of music in Accra. The soundscape is Afrobeat, highlife, reggae as well as western popular music. Live music, in particular, draws distinct crowds across Accra throughout the week.  Most evenings, the city’s main hotels feature house bands for relaxing poolside listening. Plus 233 is a renown spot for live jazz and African music. It also plays host to various international acts, including U2’s Bono. The Republic bar and grill in Osu is another, more casual spot that  boasts new and emerging acts and serves up amazing cocktails and eats. Accra’s nightlife evolves constantly; many clubs fall in and out of favor in quick succession. Your best bet? Ask an informed local and be prepared to go to two to three places a night. With the sun setting around 6 or 7 p.m., the night is always young.

Arts  & Tourism

Ghana is rich in arts and culture, and Accra is just one slice of what the country has to offer. As the capital, though, it has a visual vibrancy that permeates both formal and informal settings. From hand painted advertisements to traditional paintings and carvings, there is much for the eye and mind to feast on. The Arts Centre is a great one-stop shop to pick up gifts and crafts. It houses vendors as opposed to producers, so it’s best to survey all stalls before haggling for the best price. Accra is also home to must-see historical sites such as the Kwame Nkrumah mausoleum, Ghana National Museum and Independence Square.

 

Kwame Nkrumah Tomb

Photo Credit: Wikipedia

People

Ghanaians are known to be amongst the most friendly of their African counterparts. It’s customary to be offered something to drink (and often eat) when visiting a Ghanian home, historically to quench one’s thirst after a long journey. Though the capital itself is home to the Ga people, Accra is also home to people from across the country alongside long established international communities from places such as England, Lebanon, and India. You will hear the greeting “akwaaba” (welcome) as you meet new people, and as friendly as they are, taxi drivers and traders will adjust their prices for even the most cleverly disguised tourists. Your best bet? Arm yourself with a few Twi words and prepare for a haggle.

Share
Travel Noire

O F E I B E A

Ofeibea is a Londoner born and raised / proudly Ghanaian / creative designer / music lover / culture enthusiast / would-be writer / unashamed foodie; slowly ticking places off an ever growing 'to-go-to' list.

Want more?

Get exclusive, unpublished tips from Travel Noire's CEO to help you get off the beaten path, into the hearts of locals and onto a better, more cultured life.

Why You Should Attend Ghana’s Chale Wote Street Art Festival

Why You Should Attend Ghana’s Chale Wote Street Art Festival

If you didn’t know, the annual CHALE WOTE Street Art Festival brings art, music, dance, and performance out of the galleries and onto the streets of James Town, Accra. This 12-day festival is a feast of creative expression and cultural celebration that should not be missed. Each year, more than 200 Ghana-based and international artists […]

Leah Freeman-Haskin

Best African Cities For Black Singles

Best African Cities For Black Singles

With 2019 marking 400 years since the ‘Year of Return,’ many Black people are making the trip to the motherland this year. If you are making your way to Africa and want to visit a city that is “singles friendly,” we’ve got you covered. Check out this list of the best African cities for Black […]

DeAnna Taylor

Best Things To Do In Accra, Ghana

Best Things To Do In Accra, Ghana

Accra is a small, bustling city where you’ll easily find a number of gems to do and see. Even if your visit will be a short one, there are endless avenues to explore. Here are a few of our favorite activities that you’ll want to check out while you are in Ghana. Chocolate Tasting Ghana […]

Travel Noire