Remember those black little insects called soldier ants?
Akan people called them Nkran and decided to name an entire city after them. The city was filled with a large number of anthills which the people saw as sacred and built fences around them.
They saw these little houses as representations of their own community and a place where they thought the dead could commune with the living. Later on, the British gave them the current name, Accra – an anglicized version of Nkran.
Accra became the new capital of the former Gold Coast between 1877 and 1957, replacing the former Cape Coast. Today, Accra is a modern metropolis, with most of its history still embedded in the diverse architecture. Accra currently has a population of over 4 million amazing individuals.
No matter what your taste is and who you are travelling with, Accra remains a fun destination for everyone.
If you got little ones, here is a list of amazing kids-friendly spots to visit in Accra:
- AVATARZ PLAYGROUND AT LEGON BOTANICAL GARDENS
Want to have an amazing time with the kids? Then Avatarz is your go-to place. The playground is located at Agbogba Junction, Atomic Haatso Main Road, Accra. From rope climbing courses, canopy walking, canoeing, to bird watching, you are definitely guaranteed the best experience with your family.
2. KIDZ COTTAGE
Are you the type that loves watching your kids play or you are just looking for somewhere to drop off the kids and not worry for a second? At Kidz Cottage, Accra, your kids are in safe hands. With so many activities to keep them busy throughout the day, and a grooming salon to keep them looking their best and on top, a playground with lots of toys and painting and art activities, here is one place kids never get tired of visiting.
3. HAPPY MINDS
You will find this amazing kids centre just behind the Netherlands Embassy in Accra. Happy Minds allows every child to experience fun in the most magical way possible. Each child can play mental games, puzzles, read books from the library, learn sewing and embroidery and knitting.
4. MARVELS MINI GOLF
This place offers a one of a kind entertainment right in the heart of Accra with an 18-hole golf course and a sitting area. There is a restaurant on the property for food, snacks and drinks.
5. CI GUSTA
The international Ci Gusta franchise which specialises in frozen yoghurt, ice cream, smoothies, coffee and pizza is live in Accra. It’s a lovely little air-conditioned, top-tier cafe in Accra, Ghana serving gourmet food. If you are looking for somewhere to satisfy your sweet-tooth cravings, this is the place for you. Everything is on the menu! Gelato, waffles, pancakes, toast and every other thing you can imagine!
For adults travelling alone or in a small group, here are the best places in Accra, Ghana, for you:
- LABADI BEACH
The Labadi Beach is otherwise known as La Pleasure Beach, It is the busiest beach on Ghana’s coast. Labadi remains an ideal location for beach lovers. You can experience fun in so many ways here: you can get immersed in the seaside view, dine on proper Ghanian dishes from spots scattered around or go partying with the best Dj’s in town. If you love arts and culture, there are several stores to buy traditional jewellery and cultural materials too. The best part of visiting this beach is the availability of the locally brewed Akpeteshi.
Akpeteshi is a locally brewed alcoholic spirit in Ghana made by distilling palm wine (some use sugar cane).
2. ALLIANCE FRANCAISE
Alliance Francaise d’Accra is not the regular Alliance Francaise in other countries. The Accra branch is a mixture of learning with fun. With regular cultural performances in dance, drama and songs, art shows and storytelling, the French Language is taught here in a fun and welcoming atmosphere.
3. NATIONAL MUSEUM, ACCRA
If you decide to learn about Ghana and its cultural heritage, the National Museum in Accra should be your destination. The museum is the oldest in Ghana and the richest in material collections from the pre-colonial era. Traditional items from the olden days can be found here, such as regalia’s from past chiefs and artefacts and sculptures collected from neighbouring countries and tribes.
4. GO CHOCOLATE TASTING
With Ghana being the largest producer of Cocoa in the world, it definitely should not come as a surprise that chocolate tasting is a thing here. 57 Chocolate, a Ghanian chocolate brand gives regular tours to groups of people showing them how their favourite snack is made. Tourists also get to taste the original cocoa fruit before it becomes chocolate.
5. OSU CASTLE
The Osu Castle was once famously known as Fort Christiansborg, or simply ‘The Castle’ by some till today. The Castle is located in Osu, Accra, Ghana, on the coast of the Atlantic Ocean’s Gulf of Guinea. It served as a slave trade centre and fortress in the past and was the seat of Government in Ghana until 2012.
6. THE KWAME NKRUMAH MEMORIAL PARK (MAUSOLEUM AND MUSEUM)
This park was established in 1992 on the old British polo ground. This ground holds a deep Ghanaian history. Ghana announced its independence on this ground and the name it formally became Ghana, renamed from Gold Coast. The Mausoleum is the burial ground of the late Kwame and Fathia Nkrumah and houses their personal belongings to date. The building is meant to represent an upside-down sword, which in Akan culture stands as a symbol of peace. The mausoleum is covered from top to bottom in Italian marble, with a black star at the top to symbolize unity. The interior has marble flooring and a marble grave marker, surrounded by river-washed rocks. A skylight at the top of the mausoleum illuminates the grave. The mausoleum is surrounded by water, representing life.
What if you are most interested in the food? For food lovers coming to Accra, the places to visit are:
SkyBar is one of the best food places in Accra. A trip to SkyBar is sightseeing, entertainment and fun all packed into one. SkyBar is located in the Villagio Complex, a set of 3 buildings all painted in the design of the famous Kente textile.
It is on the rooftop of the tallest building in West Africa, Alto Towers and it offers a spectacular view of the entire city of Accra. This rooftop terrace has a pool, restaurant and bar. There is sometimes a Karaoke night too.
2. BISTRO 22
Bistro 22 has won best restaurant in Accra and Ghana several times. This is no surprise because of the variety of dishes it offers, from local dishes to intercontinental dishes, wine, beer and locally brewed gin.
3. FIREFLY LOUNGE
If you love music, dance and food then Firefly Lounge is the place for you. The lounge offers indoor and outdoor setting with amazing food and an up-to-standard toilet for its visitors. The best time to visit is during the weekend when you can catch unrestricted fun.
4. CHAMPS SPORTS BAR AND GRILLS
This is definitely not your regular bar or restaurant. Champs Sports Bar seeks to ensure that you don’t miss out on your favourite games while taking your partner out on a date. From the large screens to the mini screens, every important or big game is brought to you while eating or relaxing. You can do all the things you love without leaving the bar. Asides the game show, the bar is also one of the best places in Accra to get good food. There are other side attractions like Karaoke and quiz nights.
5. REPUBLIC BAR AND GRILLS
This is hands down the best cocktail and Mojito spot in the whole of Accra. Despite its prowess at cocktail making, Republic Bar ensures that the most important thing on their menu is Akpeteshi. It offers both art and cultural vibe alongside great music, food and amazing snacks. If you are feeling too tipsy to drive after an amazing time at Republic Bar, you can get reliable cab services on the property too.