Fun Facts About Ghana

April 12, 2023

Paul Kay

Is it time to plan a vacation? How about Africa? We have fun facts about Ghana in this post. Ghana was the first country in sub-Saharan Africa to gain independence from colonial rule in 1957. It was also the home of the ancient Kingdom of Ghana, which flourished between the 6th and 13th centuries. Ghana is known for its rich culture, including music, dance, and art. Traditional Ghanaian music often features complex rhythms and percussion instruments like the djembe and kpanlogo drums. The country is also famous for its kente cloth, a colorful and intricately woven fabric. Is Ghana a destination for your vacation? As a traveler, here are some fun facts to consider about Ghana.

As you can see from the map, Ghana is tucked into West Africa with its coast on the sea. It is bordered by Togo, Burkina Faso and the Ivory Coast. It is sometimes overlooked because of the size of Nigeria but it has lots to offer.

When I was going to college at a liberal arts university, one of my friends, also a math major, was Augustin Fosu. He was from Ghana. I never had met anyone from Ghana. His English language skills were the same as mine. I knew he was smart, and he was very conscious that his parents spent a lot of money to pay for his education in the USA. He was such a friendly and gentle guy to be around. The two of us graduated at the top of math honors. He went on to become quite famous in Ghana and probably all over the world. You can check out his resume here: We’ve stayed in contact with each other, so this review is dedicated to my friend Augie.

Ghana has a rich and complex history that spans thousands of years. The area that is now Ghana has been inhabited by various groups of people for millennia, including the Ashanti, Fante, and Akan peoples. The Ashanti Empire, which was founded in the 17th century, was one of the most powerful states in West Africa and played an important role in the region's history.

During the pre-colonial period, the Ashanti Empire controlled a large portion of present-day Ghana and was known for its advanced political and social systems, as well as its wealth and military power. The Ashanti Empire was ruled by a powerful king, or Asantehene, and was organized into a complex system of states and provinces. In the early 19th century, the Ashanti Empire came into contact with European traders and colonizers, and it was soon embroiled in a series of conflicts with the British. The Ashanti were defeated in the Ashanti-British War of 1896, and the Ashanti Kingdom was officially declared a British protectorate in 1901.

During the colonial period, Ghana was known as the Gold Coast and was controlled by the British as a colony.  The British established a system of direct rule, and they introduced a system of forced labor, which had a significant impact on the local population. The British also developed the country's infrastructure and economy, focusing primarily on the extraction of resources such as gold and timber. The colonial period also saw the rise of educated elites, who began to demand greater rights and autonomy for Ghana. These educated elites were mostly trained in schools established by European Christian Missionaries which later helped them to form political parties and advocate for independence.

Monument to Kwame Nkrumah in Accra Ghana

In the 1940s and 1950s, the movement for independence in Ghana gained momentum. The leader of the independence movement, Kwame Nkrumah, and his Convention People's Party (CPP) emerged as the most powerful political force in the country. In 1951, Nkrumah was appointed Prime Minister and in 1957, Ghana officially became the first colony in sub-Saharan Africa to gain independence. The colonial period in Ghana was marked by a number of significant social, economic and political changes. The experience of colonialism had a profound impact on the country and its people. It continues to shape Ghana's history and politics today.

After World War II, the movement for independence in Ghana gained momentum, and in 1957, Ghana became the first colony in sub-Saharan Africa to gain independence. The leader of the independence movement, Kwame Nkrumah, became the country's first prime minister and later its first president. He is considered the father of modern Ghana and one of the most important figures in African history.

During his tenure as President, Nkrumah implemented a number of ambitious economic and social programs, including the development of infrastructure and industry, the expansion of education and health care, and the promotion of Pan-Africanism. He also played a key role in the establishment of the Organization of African Unity, the precursor to the African Union. Nkrumah's government was overthrown in a coup in 1966 and he was exiled to Guinea. Despite his overthrow, Nkrumah's legacy continued to be an inspiration for many across Africa and he remains one of the most important figures in Ghana's history.

During the post-colonial period, Ghana has undergone significant political and economic changes. The country has had a number of leaders and has experienced periods of stability and turmoil. In recent years, Ghana has become a model of democracy and economic development in Africa, with a growing economy and a relatively stable political environment. Despite facing some challenges such as poverty, corruption and political instability, Ghana has made progress in areas of human development, education, healthcare, and infrastructure.

Ghana has one of the fastest-growing economies in Africa and it is considered a model for economic development on the continent. The country has a diverse economy that includes industries such as mining, oil and gas, and agriculture. Ghana is considered one of the most politically stable countries in Africa and it has a long history of peaceful transitions of power. The country is also a beacon of democracy on the continent and has held competitive and peaceful elections regularly.

The country is known for its natural beauty, including its beaches, national parks, and wildlife. It is home to a number of endangered species, including elephants, gorillas, and chimpanzees. Ghana is well-known for its friendly and welcoming people. Ghanaians are known for their warmth and hospitality, and visitors to the country are often struck by how friendly and helpful the local people are.

Ghana Black Stars Football Soccer Team

Turning to sports, Ghana is known for its love of football (soccer), and the country has a long history of success on the international stage. The national team, the Black Stars, has competed in multiple World Cups and has won several continental tournaments. Ghana has a strong education system and is known for producing well-educated citizens. The country has many universities and colleges, which are known for their high-quality education and research. If you are lucky enough to get my friend Augustin as your teacher, you are in for a treat.

As for tourism, Ghana may not be on everyone’s bucket list because it is not well known. However, there are many reasons to visit this beautiful country. Some popular tourist destinations in Ghana include:

Overhead view of Accra Ghana

The capital city of Ghana, Accra, is known for its vibrant nightlife, bustling markets, and historical sites, such as the Kwame Nkrumah Memorial Park and Independence Square.

Manya Palace Museum, Kumasi, Ghana

The Ashanti Region: This region is known for its rich cultural heritage and is the home of the Ashanti Kingdom. Visitors can explore the Ashanti capital, Kumasi, and visit the Manhyia Palace Museum, which is dedicated to the Ashanti monarchy.

Exterior view to Elmina castle and fortress in Ghana

The Cape Coast and Elmina are towns are located on the coast of Ghana and were major trading posts for enslaved people during the colonial era. Visitors can tour the Cape Coast and Elmina Castles, which were used as holding areas for enslaved people before they were shipped to the Americas.

Akosombo Hydroelectric Power Station on the Volta River, which supplies electricity to Ghana and nearby countries. Akosombo, Ghana, West Africa

The Volta Region is known for its natural beauty and is home to the Akosombo Dam, which generates hydroelectric power for Ghana.

Wli waterfalls with water falling 1600 feet down near Hohoe in Ghana

Visitors can also explore the Volta Region's many waterfalls, such as the Wli Waterfalls.

African elephant in Mole National Park, Ghana

The Mole National Park is Ghana's largest national park and is home to a variety of wildlife, including elephants, antelopes, and warthogs. Visitors can go on safari and see the animals in their natural habitat.

Rope walkway in Kakum National Park, Ghana

The Kakum National Park is home to one of the longest canopy walks in the world, and visitors can walk through the rainforest canopy and see a variety of plants and animals.

Ghana's tourism industry has been growing in recent years and the government has been working to promote the country as a tourist destination. As a result, the number of tourists visiting Ghana has been increasing, and it is expected to continue to grow in the future. Both Madeline and I want to visit Ghana and we will be sure to find my friend Augustin. We hope that that Ghana is somewhere you might want to visit in the future.

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