Ghana’s Seaside Star

The great city of Accra is a popular destination for anyone visiting Ghana, and for excellent reasons. The country’s capital and largest of the cities in Ghana is by far the most important hot spot for local trade and business, as well as diversions and entertainment.

At just under three million residents, the Ghana capital composes a bustling and vibrant urban area – with areas such as Osu that never seem to sleep.

The city is located in the Greater Accra Region, to the country’s southeastern corner, along the coast of the Gulf of Guinea.

Like the “Ga” people who founded it, the capitol city is old and steeped in interesting points of history. Established in the early seventeenth century, the city saw an explosion of both population and importance over the course of time, as it was discovered by European explorers.

The British, Dutch, Prussian, Danish, and Swedes, as well as the French, variously fought for control of it and its neighbouring regions, hoping to secure the area’s great potential for bringing gold, slaves, and other commodities to Europe and the New World.

Building forts, markets, and other necessary structures, the European powers helped to strengthen city’s population and encouraged its growth in all sectors. It’s importance as a major West African port city also increased as rail lines were constructed to the country’s interior, allowing for swift transport of goods.

Though dependence on foreign countries and eventual colonisation by the British helped Accra achieve great size and prominence, the city deemed itself unwilling to submit to foreign rule, and in the mid-twentieth century, riots broke out among the city streets, culminating in the gaining of independence from Britain in 1957.

Today, a city map of Accra Ghana will show a panoply of diversions and functional establishments alike, bolstering the rising industry and prosperity in the country. Hotels such as the Golden Tulip and Labadi Beach are on par with world-class lodgings for visitors, and the Kotoka International Airport makes for convenient and fast travel – with flights readily available.

Restaurants range from the traditional to modern fusion dishes and local delicious specialties include favourites such as banku, fufu and kelewele.

Aside from slave forts and other remnants of the city’s distant past, the Ghana capitol offers several public parks and gardens for taking a stroll and reflecting on the local beauty. There’s also the National Museum of Ghana, the International Conference Center, the visually impressive Osu Castle (the residence of the President), and of course, plenty of sun-drenched beaches and markets to peruse.

Accra is thoroughly modern city that marks an excellent spot for entertainment, escape, and catching the highlights of the former Gold Coast.

But it’s also a testament to the commitment of Ghana’s people to their independence and well-being; through harrowing challenges both political and social, local spirits and determination have remained strong and proud to help facilitate the emergence of this golden city by the sea.

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