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Ghana - The Gold Coast of Africa

World  (tags: Africa, Ghana, people, places, travel )

- 1926 days ago -
The Republic of Ghana is located on the West Coast of Africa. It was formerly known as the Gold Coast [....]


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Kit B (276)
Tuesday January 14, 2014, 8:46 am
Map Credit: info

Short video of Ghana at site.

The Republic of Ghana is located on the West Coast of Africa. It was formerly known as the Gold Coast and was the first country in sub-Saharan Africa to gain independence from the United Kingdom's colonial rule in 1957. Ghana is bordered on its southern side by the Gulf of Guinea; prime coastal location and rich resources have made Ghana one of the worlds leading exporters of cocoa and other commodities. This strong democracy has become one of Africa's most economically progressive countries. Here are some interesting facts about Ghana's culture and history you might care to know.

5 Facts You Might Not Know

1) Ghana's castles and forts date back to the 15th century. They were built by Europeans and include huge warehouses to store natural resources for exporting. These resources included gold, ivory and African slaves. The castles and forts of Ghana have been designated as World Heritage Monuments.

2) 'Anansi the spider, a popular children's folktale, originated from the Ashanti Kingdom in Ghana. The Ashanti tribe developed into a powerful empire; dominating West Africa from the 1700's to the 1900's. They were finally defeated by the British in the early 1900's and the Gold Coast colony was established.

3) With a population estimated to be near 22 million, Ghanaians speak over 70 different languages and dialects; there are over 100 different ethnic groups throughout the country. Twi is the most dominant dialect spoken among the natives; however, English is taught in the schools, as it is the country's official language, a by-product of its colonial heritage.

4) In 2007, discovery of oil in the Gulf of Guinea has Ghana on the brink of becoming an important producer and exporter of oil. Oil production in Ghana officially began in the 4th quarter of 2010.

5) A native son, Kofi Atta Annan, has been Secretary General of The United Nations since December of 1996. He is the recipient of the 2001 Nobel Peace Prize.


Ghana, formerly the British colony of the Gold Coast, assumes a special prominence as the first African country to acquire independence from European rule. Ghanaian politicians marked this important transition by replacing the territory's colonial label with the name of a great indigenous civilization of the past. While somewhat mythical, these evocations of noble origins, in combination with a rich cultural heritage and a militant nationalist movement, have provided this ethnically diverse country with unifying symbols and a sense of common identity and destiny. Over forty years of political and economic setbacks since independence have tempered national pride and optimism. Yet, the Ghanaian people have maintained a society free from serious internal conflict and continue to develop their considerable natural, human, and cultural resources.

Location and Geography.

Ghana is located on the west coast of Africa, approximately midway between Senegal and Cameroon. It is bordered by Côte d'Ivoire (Ivory Coast), Burkina Faso, Togo, and the Atlantic Ocean.


The population in 2000 was approximately 20 million and was growing at a rate of 3 percent per year. Approximately two-thirds of the people live in the rural regions and are involved in agriculture. Settlement is concentrated within the "golden triangle," defined by the major southern cities of Accra (the capital), Kumasi, and Sekondi-Takoradi.

Food in Daily Life.

The basic diet consists of a starchy staple eaten with a soup or stew. Forest crops, such as plantain, cassava, cocoyam (taro), and tropical yams, predominate in the south. Corn is significant, especially among the Ga, and rice is also popular. The main dish is fufu, pounded plantain or tubers in combination with cassava. Soup ingredients include common vegetables and some animal protein, usually fish, and invariably, hot peppers. Palm nut and peanut soups are special favorites. The main cooking oil is locally produced red palm oil. The northern staple is millet, which is processed into a paste and eaten with a soup as well. Indigenous diets are eaten at all social levels, even by the Westernized elite. Bread is the only major European introduction and is often eaten at breakfast. Restaurants are not common outside of urban business districts, but most local "chop bars" offer a range of indigenous dishes to workers and bachelors. People frequently snack on goods offered for sale by street hawkers.

Food Customs at Ceremonial Occasions.

Most households raise chickens and dwarf goats, which are reserved for special occasions, such as christenings, weddings, traditional festivals, and Christmas. Among the Akan, the main indigenous celebration is odwira, a harvest rite, in which new yams are presented to the chief and eaten in public and domestic feasts. The Ga celebrate homowo, another harvest festival, which is marked by eating kpekpele, made from mashed corn and palm oil. Popular drinks include palm wine, made from the fermented sap of the oil palm, and home-brewed millet beer. Bottled European-style beer is widely consumed. Imported schnapps and whiskey have important ceremonial uses as libations for royal and family ancestors.

Basic Economy.

Ghana's position in the international economy reflects a heavy dependence on primary product exports, especially cocoa, gold, and timber. International trade accounts for one-third of gross domestic product (GDP), and 70 percent of export income is still derived from the three major commodities. The domestic economy is primarily agricultural with a substantial service and trading sector. Industrial production comprises only 10 percent of national output, and consumers are heavily dependent upon imported manufactures as well as petroleum imports.
Read more:

Ben Oscarsito (135)
Tuesday January 14, 2014, 9:33 am
Here's some absolutely wortless info: Many years ago, when I was a seaman, I made a short visit in Tema. I also spent 5 days in Takoradi...

Ben Oscarsito (135)
Tuesday January 14, 2014, 9:36 am
A country profile from BBC:

JL A (281)
Tuesday January 14, 2014, 9:37 am
The University there has been a partner in an awful lot of important scientific research projects, too. Thanks Kit.

Kit B (276)
Tuesday January 14, 2014, 10:33 am

Thanks Ben for the article and J L for the additional information about Ghana.

Nicole W (646)
Tuesday January 14, 2014, 10:34 am
love traveling with you dear Kit

Barbara K (61)
Tuesday January 14, 2014, 10:54 am
Aaaahhhhhh, such a beautiful place. Thanks for the quick vacation via computer again, my friend.

. (0)
Tuesday January 14, 2014, 4:49 pm
Great travel video, Kit. Thanks for sharing.

Robert O (12)
Wednesday January 15, 2014, 12:14 am
Thanks Kit.

John De Avalon (36)
Wednesday January 15, 2014, 2:08 am
Fascinating. Thank you for posting.

Jonathan Harper (0)
Wednesday January 15, 2014, 4:11 am

Michael A (28)
Wednesday January 15, 2014, 10:48 am

Birgit W (160)
Wednesday January 15, 2014, 12:48 pm
Thanks for sharing Kit.

Colleen L (3)
Wednesday January 15, 2014, 2:25 pm
Would love to visit the castles that were built in the 15th century. Bet they are beautiful. Plus to walk on their beautiful golden sand. Thanks Kit

marie C (163)
Wednesday January 15, 2014, 5:34 pm
Oh Kit what a treat really enjoyed I do so love Africa
Thank you so much I wait eagerly for your beautifully laid out excursions

Lloyd H (46)
Wednesday January 15, 2014, 8:49 pm
Thank you Kit for promoting tourism in one of the most HOMOPHOBIC NATIONS IN AFRICA. Ghana has so much to offer like 5-25 year prison terms for males having sex and no protection from discrimination based on sexual preference and no adoptions. And just three years ago, July 21, 2011, Paul Evans Aidoo a Catholic and Western Regional Minister ordered the round-up and arrest of all Gays. He is still in office and has not changed his "opposition" to gays. Ghana tourism should be boycotted not promoted.

Alexandra G (250)
Thursday January 16, 2014, 4:57 am
noted, thanks

Past Member (0)
Friday January 17, 2014, 8:20 am
Perhaps one day i'll visit...thx Kit 4 another fabulous tour!

Pat B (356)
Wednesday January 22, 2014, 8:48 am
Thank you, Kit for our tour to Ghana, I missed the flight, but got to see it on the computer. ;-)

Melvin Dwight (0)
Wednesday January 29, 2014, 8:53 pm
Ms.Kit B. thanks for the info here. I love it that a lot still spread the facts about Ghana because it is indeed a great country that is very interesting to explore. There is so much treasure in that place from nature and people above all.
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