Ghana/Togo/Benin

West Africa in one of the world’s most culturally diverse and interesting regions. Being off the beaten track and more difficult to travel in, it is also potentially the most rewarding.

The cultures of West Africa are deeply religious and revolve around spirituality.

West Africa is home to thousands of languages and dialects, yet due to the influence of European colonizers, common languages spoken in the region are French, English and Portuguese.

We offer tailor made tours as well as small group tours throughout West Africa. Please inquire.

GhanaTogoBenin
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Explore the extraordinary indigenous culture, traditional lifestyles and friendly Ghanaians . Visit World Heritage Sites in the ancient towns of Elmina & Cape Coast during exploration of Ghana’s Historical Slave Trade.

The festivals in Ghana allow you to experience directly the traditions and culture of the African people. Among these, the funerals of the Ashanti people should be mentioned: a festive celebration in memory of the deceased, which constitute a distinct event after the burial. This ceremony marks the passage to the wold of ancestors and guard-spirits of the clan and revered as such.

The Ashanti chiefs, in the shade of large coloured parasols, participate in these celebrations surrounded by the whole courtyard. After the ritual greetings, expressed according to the rules of tradition, they take their seats to witness the dances, which perpetuate over time extremely refined gestures rich in an erotic and warrior symbolism.

festivals of Ghana

Accra: Founded in the 17th century by the Ga people, Accra became the capital of the British Gold Coast in 1877. Following Ghana’s independence in 1957, Accra became the capital of the newly independent state and is the site of the international airport with good direct connections to USA and Europe.

Elmina: Elmina Castle, (10 km west of Cape Coast)Built in 1482, Elmina Castle is the oldest European structure in Africa and incidentally the oldest slave fort. Elmina was a notorious slave fort used for moving slaves onto ships bound for other parts of the world. Although today it is a tourist attraction, but once was a prison used by the Ghanaian government. It is quite a sobering experience and can be emotional at times, particularly the “room of no return”, the cell for rebellious slaves and the female slave dungeons. Besides a guided tour with knowledgeable, friendly tour guides who are open to questions, there is an on site restaurant, bookstore, gift shop, and a small museum inside the renovated Portuguese church within the castle.

Elmina Castle

Cape Coast: Cape Coast Castle is one of several UNESCO World Heritage slave forts along the southern coast of Ghana.

Climate

There are two main seasons in Ghana, the wet and the dry seasons. Northern Ghana experiences its rainy season from March to November while the south, including the capital Accra, experiences the season from April to Mid-November.

Pristine beach, national parks and traditions make Togo a most wanted destination by many travellers. Togo is a charming country, but most of the charm comes from the charming people; this is a small country with a small number of small attractions. Lomé’s markets, both general and voodoo, are the most popular stop in the country along the road between Ghana and Benin. The smaller towns of Togoville on Lake Togo and Aneho on the ocean are also popular stops for the former’s voodoo shrines and historic sights and the latter’s beaches.

Climate:

The climate is generally tropical with average temperatures ranging from 27°C on the coast to about 30°C in the northernmost regions, with a dry climate and characteristics of a tropical savanna. To the south there are two seasons of rain (the first between April and July and the second between October and November).

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Benin is the spiritual homeland of Voodoo. Indigenous beliefs and traditions continue to live and thrive: numerous religious anniversaries are held there, celebrated with songs, tamtams and dances. Voodoo was born somewhere between the villages of Ouidah and Abomey, and the African inhabitants of the Caribbean, led overseas as slaves since the 16th century, have preserved the rites to this day. Voodoo temples, roadside fetishes, and fetish markets are found throughout the country, but the best known is the skull and skin-filled fetish market in the Grande Marche du Dantopka—Cotonou’s overwhelmingly busy, enormous, and hectic grand market.

With more than 60 ethnic groups, Benin means “guardian spirit” and comes from the fon language, spoken in the south of the country. The people of Benin have always been considered smart due to an innate sense of emancipation and ability in giving speech typical of women, men and children. Women enjoy a strong social emancipation, they are known for their determination, a reputation that dates back to the last century with the armies of Amazons in the service of the King of Abomey. Even today, this strong character helps them in business: you can see this especially in the markets, where they reign as undisputed patron because of their physical prowess, their innate authority and the magnificence of their clothes. This situation pushes men to want not to be outdone, so they assiduously attend schools and push their children to obtain a good cultural level.

Benin remains as an extremely poor country, suffering from poverty and corruption. Infrastructure remains in very poor in condition, and the struggling economy is recovering after decades of political unrest.

With its rich history, vibrant culture, protected wildlife, Grand Popo ocean beach, and artisan market in Se, Benin is one of the best kept tourist secrets in West Africa.

Climate

The equatorial south of Benin experiences two rainy seasons of the year, from April to mid July and from mid-September through the end of October. The rainy period in the subequatorial north runs from March until October. The best time of the year to visit the country is from November to February, when the temperature moderates, and the weather is dry with low humidity.