Travel Guide Africa Ghana Accra



markedet i accra

markedet i accra

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Sprawled along the Atlantic coast in southeast Ghana, Accra is the country's largest city and capital. Over 2 million people live in the city, which is now considered one of Africa's most developed. Accra is known for an invigorating nightlife - one of Africa's liveliest - and a range of important national monuments. Old colonial architecture, a reminder of the country's past under the British, stand alongside modern resorts, developed to welcome the growing tourist industry. Accra was established in the late 17th century by the local Ga people. It became an significant port, acting as a trading port for Portuguese ships. Accra became the capital of Ghana in 1877.



Sights and Activities

Accra has a range of historic buildings which are well worth checking out.

Osu Castle

Osu Castle, also known as Fort Christianborg, is located in the capital and the building is the current seat of government. The original fort was built by the Danes in the mid 17th century, although the fort has been reconstructed several times. It has also switched between the hands of several different powers. During British rule the fort was made into the seat of government. Sadly today the fort is not open to the public and photography is limited for reasons of national security.

Other Sights and Activities

  • National Museum of Ghana - Ghana's oldest and largest museum, opened in 1957. Features objects of archaeology, ethnography as well as fine art. Open daily from 9:00am to 5:00pm.
  • Memorial to Kwame Nkrumah - This iss one of the most beautiful memorials in all of Africa. Kwame Nkrumah was an extremely important person to the Pan-African movement and this memorial helps to reflect that. This is a great place to spend a few hours.
  • National Theatre - constructed in the 1990s and funded by the Chinese government, the National Theatre is a distinctive landmark in downtown Accra.
  • Makol Market - Get some shopping down at this great market in Accra, which has everything from power tools to traditional crafts to medicine.
  • Jamestown is the oldest part of Accra. It is still an important fishing harbor. Dubbed a shanty town[1] by some, it's a historically significant part of Accra and is well worth a visit.
  • Labadi beach is considered the city's best beach. There is an entrance fee, unless you're staying at one of the nearby hotels.
  • Ohene Djan Stadium is the city's main sports stadium, seating 40,000. It is prominently located in central Accra. It is one of the four stadiums used for the 2008 African Cup of Nations, and will be the one used for the final.
  • Aburi Botanical Gardens - Take a day trip for Accra to visit these wonderful gardens in a slightly cooler environment then compared to the coast.
  • Densu Delta- About twenty kilometres from the city on the western edge of Accra. There is a delta estuary with sand dunes, mangroves and lagoons. Special for birdwatchers. Also visit the Solo Forest Monkey Sanctuary, where you will find monkeys and butterflies.



Events and Festivals

Environmental Film Festival

Held annually in Accra, this unique event takes place in the Holy Gardens, which turn into an open-air venue for screenings. The event is attended by thousands of movie-goers in June and features documentaries and various other genres. It is aimed at entertainment and education, but themes vary each year, though they always revolve around the environment.




Accra is hot and humid year-round, with temperatures around 30 °C on most days. February to May is a bit hotter, when even nights are very warm at 26 °C on average. Although the rainy season lasts from May to October, there generally is a peak in May/June and another in October, while in between it is relatively dry. Accra is also drier and sunnier compared to places just a bit more inland.

Avg Max32.1 °C32.7 °C32.5 °C32.2 °C31.2 °C29.3 °C28.5 °C28 °C29 °C30.5 °C31.6 °C31.7 °C
Avg Min23.4 °C24.1 °C24.1 °C24.2 °C23.9 °C23.1 °C22.5 °C22.2 °C22.4 °C23.9 °C23.5 °C23.4 °C
Rainfall10.9 mm21.8 mm57.1 mm96.8 mm131.2 mm221 mm66 mm28 mm67.8 mm62.4 mm27.7 mm16.1 mm
Rain Days12561015978732



Getting There

By Plane

Kotoka International Airport (ACC) near Accra is the main gateway to Ghana. International destinations include Johannesburg, London and Lagos. KLM flies to and from Amsterdam directly. British Airways and Lufthansa fly to London and Frankfurt respectively and New York and Atlanta are served by Delta Airlines. Alitalia flies to Milan. Other airlines and cities served are mainly within the West African region, but Cairo, Washington, D.C., Istanbul, Dubai, Casablanca, Beirut and Johannesburg have flights as well, mostly with their respective national airlines. ASKY Airlines has most services, including Banjul, Lomé, Dakar, Conakry, Freetown, Ouagadougou, Monrovia, Abidjan, Cotonou and Bamako. Domestic services from Accra include Kumasi, Sunyani, Takoradi and Tamale with Antrak Air and CitYlinK.

By Train

There is a rail line connecting the cities of Accra, Takoradi and Kumasi and several intervening towns.

By Bus

STC operate between Accra and Kumasi, Takoradi, Tamale, Cape Coast and other main cities and there are fast aircon express services, as well as slower buses.



Getting Around

By Car

Accra's best attractions are scattered across a relatively wide area, so if you can afford the modest prices the best thing to do is hire a car and driver to take you around. Travel companies offer drivers who double as well-informed guides, which helps as interpretive exhibits and brochures (if you can find them) leave much to be desired.

If you need an SUV or a sedan there are plenty of affordable options because even the best drivers earn only about US$15 a day in Accra. You can book directly from Avis and local rental companies at the larger hotels, such as the Golden Tulip, La Palm, or La Badi Beach. Cars are available on short notice but if you want a van or SUV it is best to book ahead. Rates for car and driver are about US$9 (Ghana Cedis $US11.25) an hour. For a US$75 you can book a 10 hour day, but fuel is extra. Rates increase if you leave metro Accra, which is fair because poor roads add to the wear and tear on the vehicle. Toyota Land Cruisers are a popular choice and are widely available.

By Public Transport

TroTros are usually very crowded and dilapidated minivans ad minibuses that act as the city's public transit system. TroTros travel along a well known routes in the city, and stop at various points along the way (some stops have signs, others don't). As a TroTro approaches a stop, a "mate" (the driver's assistant) will usually yell out the side of the window where the TroTro is going. Many people die in trotro accidents every year, however typically those that die in trotro accidents die on highways in rural areas. Accidents causing death in Accra are relatively rare, in part due to traffic congestion.

To flag a taxi wave your arm with your finger pointed down to the ground. On a busy street you will have many taxis driving past trying to offer you their service by honking at you. There are very few Ghanaian cabs with meters. You must negotiate how much you are willing to pay before you start the trip. It is generally 3 cedis within the centre of town and 5-7 cedis to the airport or Accra Mall from the center. A rough mileage rate would be 1.5 cedis per mile. Try to ask someone local how much a trip to a certain location usually costs. Also make sure to haggle hard as most taxi drivers will often try to charge three times (or more) the going rate to foreigners. Relax, and don't show urgency. If the first taxi won't come down on his price, wait for another as they are plentiful. Do have an idea of your route, taxi drivers navigate by landmarks e.g. traffic circles, traffic lights, petrol stations - not street names - and make sure you have a local simcard in your phone so you can ring someone at your destination and pass the phone to the taxi driver.

Taxis do not have to be so private, though, and it's exceedingly rare for Ghanaians to hire one privately (although they will assume that foreigners want a private one). The rate is in theory one fourth of a private ride, but, again, foreigners taking a private ride tend to get taken for a little extra. It's more confusing, to be sure, but chances are they are going in the direction they are already headed, and you can just ask if they're going towards a major landmark, especially a market.

The problem with taxis, aside from the constant honking at foreigners, is that they don't know their way around Accra. No really, they won't have any idea where you want to go. They can't figure out maps either. The landmarks used by locals and cab drivers in no way align with those that are relevant to outsiders. Even worse, the cab drivers usually live kind of far outside the city center, and usually aren't even familiar with basic neighborhood names or the biggest attractions like Independence Square! Some useful landmarks that they will know are the major markets, Osu Castle, the Stadium, the financial center (Cedi Tower), the major traffic circles along Ring Rd, and major street names, from which you can try and direct them to where you want to go. Now, if you don't already know your way around, it's tough.

There are some taxis with meters in them. These are generally more expensive, but you can be a little more sure about how much they will cost.

By Foot

Though the city is fairly spread out, Accra is relatively safe to walk around during the day (and night, in many areas). Watch out for open sewers when walking the streets.




Eat out at one of Osu's many trendy restaurants. Osu, a suburb of Accra, is known for its nightlife and a wide variety of eateries, hotels, and several options for entertainment.

A concept lifestyle eatery, Café Dez Amis is situated close to Osu, next door to Jubilee House and the French embassy. Offering gourmet coffees, sandwiches and salads, as well as cold fresh juices, and ice cream, it has become a hotspot in town, from 7AM till 10PM. Breakfast and fresh baked breads and pastries are available all day. There is also an outside cocktail bar, serving Mojitos and other cocktails from all over the world.It also has wireless access.

Located in Labone near the Metro TV building, "Maquis Tante Marie" is a restaurant serving a variety of African cuisines in a pleasant garden setting.

Frankie's on Oxford Street in Osu is a popular oasis for tourists in Accra. Offering accommodation, a restaurant, salad bar, ice cream and a bakery/pastry shop.

Other popular eateries in Osu include Livingstone Safari Restaurant, Haveli (Indian Cuisine), Papaye (Fast Food), Asanka Locals (Traditional Ghanaian Cuisine) and Noble House Restaurant (Indian and Chinese Cuisine).




The biggest entertainment precinct in town is the Oxford Street area, in Osu. Home to over a dozen different night venues (most of them tucked up side-streets), there is no shortage of variety. Taxi drivers generally know the location of the following, but if not, just ask a young-looking person on Oxford Street.

  • Duplex: Possibly the most popular venue as of early 2012, 50:50 expats and locals. Similar music to Tantra, free entry, 5 cedi small beers.
  • Container: One of the original drinking icons, located on Oxford Street. An overgrown "spot" style bar, 90% locals. Good for a couple of drinks in the open air early in the evening, large beers about 3 cedis. Free entry. Street acrobats.
  • Epo's: Another overgrown spot, 80% locals. Located a couple of blocks off Oxford Street, it feels like a mini carnival. Try the "beer tower", a 3 or 5 litre (you choose) tapped tower of beer delivered to your table. 3 litres for 15 cedis, 5 litres for 25, free entry.
  • Ryan's Irish Pub: One of the few places in the area where you can order a pint. An option if you want a rest from Africa, but pretty uneventful otherwise.
  • La Pleasure Beach: Located at Labadi Beach (about 4 km from Osu), an outdoor reggae night happens every Wednesday on the beach from 9PM. 5 cedi entry, 4 cedi large beers. 80% locals, foreigners get hassled a little by jewellery/t-shirt sellers, but it's safe, and worth a look on a Wednesday.
  • FireFly: A nice classy cocktail lounge in Osu near Citizen Kofi. Entry is free and drinks are 4-5 cedis for a single shot and 10-15 for cocktails. Local and Expat crowd. Plays electronic and pop music here you see a lot of foreign (white) young ladies gyrating with public displaying of affection with the local Ghanaian gentlemen.
  • The Republic Bar & Grill: a retro-styled afrocentric hangouts for creatives (bloggers, photographers,fashion designers), expats and just anybody else who can't be bothered with high heels or a formal shirt. You can sit in or outside and enjoy chilled fermented flavoured sugar cane juice whilst listening to World Music or very old school Ghanaian Highlife.




  • The Postlodge-in Newtown, New town Accra, ☏ +233 21-229456, +233 21 231908. If on a very tight budget.
  • Rosa's Compound, Kokomleme/New Town, ✉ [email protected]. Nice compound for medium or long-term, rented out by room to international interns (especially Germans). Rooms range from 350-450 Cedis per month as of late 2010 when I stayed. Some have their own bathroom. Wireless internet access. Laundry facilities. Safe street off main road with easy transportation to town. Rooms well kept and some are very spacious. Housekeeper and security guard at night.
  • YMCA, Castle Road, ☏ +233 30 224700. one of the cheapest accommodations in Accra. 4-bed men-only dorm. $5.
  • Peace House Guest House and Eco-Lodge, No. 3, 3rd Nautical Close, Old Nautical Road, Nungua (Pick up from airport available.). Eco-lodge with 5 double rooms. It is designed as a series of interlinked, informal, spaces on two levels to suit individuals, families, or workshops. Wi-Fi. US$30.
  • Dot's Inn, Olooti Rd, Labone (close to Osu tourist centre and beach), ☏ +233-30-2774744, ✉ [email protected]. Small hotel, with very friendly staff. 300 cedis; 450 cedis for two people of same sex sharing a room.
  • Christianborg Hotel, Dabedu Rd, OSU (opposite Chez Lien restaurant, turn left after Koala's in Cantonments Rd, then the first on the left, 400 m on the right, a big white house), ☏ +233 302-776074.
  • Aplaku guesthouse, Aplaku/Kokrobite (8 km before Kokrobite at Aplaku-Israel junction), ☏ +233 20 0111345. Beaches are in walking distance. Airport or other transport is available with reliable drivers and cars in a good condition. €30-40.
  • Elmeiz Place Guest House, No.12 Awula Meeya Street, Dansoman, ☏ +233 21 305005. Bed & breakfast, a charming guest house operating almost entirely on solar power in the comfortable neighborhood of Dansoman. 20 min drive from Kotoka International Airport. Cosy and modern. US$45+.
  • Atomic Lodge Hotel (Agege Last Stop, Dansoman), ☏ +233 30 397 5202.
  • Kokomlemle Guesthouse, Opp. ATTC Oroko Street Kokomlemle (north from Ring Road Central, close to Nkrumah Circle), ☏ +233 30 2224581.
  • Travella Lodge, C61/21 Ablenkpe Close, Ablenkpe, ☏ +233 28 9100846.
  • Gye Nyame Hotel, Asylum Down (close to Circle, Ring Road Offices and Osu), ☏ +233 30 0222 3321. Great price, more than the basic comforts, and very reliable. Air conditioning, super comfortable bed, hot water, desk and stool, TV and fridge. Nothing broken, and quite clean. Not fancy, but excellent bang for your buck, and great staff. Quiet location is convenient for most activities in Accra - business or leisure. $55.
  • Meaglent Hotel, 1 Pantang Junction Adenta, ☏ +233 30 2942340. A/C rooms equipped with sat/cableTV, private toilet and bath, mini-bar, intercom telephone, wardrobe, instant water heater and internet. Conference room, fitness room/gym, restaurant, and swimming pool. From US$60.
  • Highgate Hotel, 70 Mango Tree Avenue, ☏ +233 302 233 315, ✉ [email protected]. Asylum Down, (2 blocks from the Ring Road, across the street from the i-Burst building a block down from FedEx).Newly-renovated boutique hotel offers old-world charm, friendly service, fine food and wine. 33 spacious rooms with internet and wall-mounted plasma digital satTV. On a quiet cul-de-sac in a mostly residential neighborhood. Restaurant has fresh seafood, grilled chicken, pasta and great club sandwiches. The cocktail menu is a real treat. From US$60.
  • Korkdam Hotel, No. 8 Korkdam Avenue, New Achimota, ☏ +233 302 400423. 55 A/C rooms with satTV, WiFi, and mini bar. Massage service, travel services, airport transfer, car rental, and complimentary parking. Restaurant and bar. From US$85.
  • Frankies, Oxford Street, Osu, ☏ +233 21 77 35 67. Staff are friendly. Rooms are clean, gushing hot water 24/7. Restaurant and bar. From US$95. edit
  • Paloma Hotel (Ring Road Central), [email protected], ☏ +233 302 228700, ✉ [email protected]. Good staff, WiFi, coffee shop, bar, grill restaurant. From US$95.
  • Le Baron Hotel, No 3 - 4 Akuetey Street, American House Area, East Legon, ☏ +233 21 520701. single, double and executive rooms, all equipped with A/C, cableTV and mini-bar. Swimming pool, children's playground, barber shop and beauty salon. From US$110.
  • Midindi Ghana Hotel, 15 First Circular Road, East Cantonments,, ☏ +233 302 770 007, ✉ [email protected]. 10 min to the Accra Airport, 20 min from town. Safe neighborhood. 24/7 WiFi. Restaurant with Ghanaian/African menu. Swimming pool has an assigned life guard. Gym available. From US$125.
  • Alisa Hotel, 21 Dr Isert St., North Ridge, ☏ +233 302 214 233. A decent hotel at the quiet section of town. Caters mainly for business travellers who usually have things to do at the Ridge (West and North), which is where some of the biggest corporate names have their head offices. From US$125.
  • La Palm Hotel, No 1 Bypass, (next door to La Badi Beach Hotel), ☏ +233 30 221 5100. Post-modern pan-African style of the wife of Ghana's decade-plus military ruler, Air Force Lt. Jerry Rawlings, who gets credit for the hotel's best feature, an authentic, Ghananian-inspired design theme. Somewhat sterile with a great location on the beach. 5 restaurants producing good food only in the hotel's flagship outdoor 'African Village' which is a charming breezy and architecturally distinctive venue. Sunday brunch is good, but dinner or drinks any night work equally well. Avoid the main dining room, room service, or Bali Hai, Equator, or other 'international' offerings. The pool is nice and there is WiFi. You'll appreciate the attentive staff, who make up for the indifferent management, awful food, and generally run-down facilities. From US$140.
  • African Regent Hotel, 237-238 Airport West, ☏ + 233 302 765180-2, ✉ [email protected]. The decor is great; hard to describe, but when you see it you'll immediately have a sense of what non-kitschy authentic African style should look like. And the hotel's dining room offers impeccable food for breakfast lunch or dinner. The sleeping rooms are clean, airy, and well-furnished, complete with in-room broadband, and flat-screen cableTV. There is a nice pool, and a first-rate health club. From US$140.
  • Golden Tulip Hotel, Liberation Road, ☏ +233 30 2213 161. Business hotel 5 min from the airport. African atmosphere, but with a buttoned-down Dutch efficiency. Downstairs lobby bar, pool-side dining, live music, and gallery of local artists. Business centre provides WiFi with Skype-capable bandwidth. The food is mostly just OK; unimaginative, but hygienically prepared. The rooms are small, a bit smelly, and very much in need of new carpets. The Chalets are the place to be if you decide to stay in this hotel, but they are generally held for those booking two weeks or more at a time. If you like to play tennis, the courts here will suit you just fine, provided you've bought your whites. €126.
  • Airport View Hotel, Dr Amilcar Cabral Road, ☏ +233 20 225 2244. Proximity to the airport, web access, A/C, European menu. From US$150.
  • PH Hotels Accra, 1st Boundary Road, East Legon, 84/86, ☏ +233 302 517452. 74 standard, deluxe, superior, and superior deluxe rooms, all of which have an LCD TV, internet, and in-room safes. Swimming pool, business center, laundry service, and room service. From US$180.
  • La Badi Beach Hotel, ☏ +233-30-277-2501. Good atmosphere, especially if you yearn for a Graham Greene-inspired fantasy British Colonial-era experience. The lobby is all dark wood, leather sofa, campaign furniture and ceiling fans. Queen Elizabeth II slept here; and UK Prime Minister Tony Blair. More recent guests include quite a few airline flight crews, and far-too many US government/military contractors who spend long hours at the bar each night boring other guests with their "thoughts" about Africa which are predictably a bit naïve, if not downright creepy. The pool and gardens are nice, the Western-style buffet is excellent, and the rooms are small but well-appointed, most with balconies. Best feature: it is on the beach at La Badi, so there is always something happening just footsteps away. It is a long drive from the centre of town or the airport. Unless you are in Ghana for a vacation, this isn't the best location. From US$180.
  • Fiesta Royale, North Dzorwulu, ☏ +233 30 274 0811. Excellent (slightly lower priced) alternative to the Golden Tulip or any of the other luxury hotels in the airport area. The rooms are very large and very comfortable, the grounds are lovely and they include a swimming pool and fitness center, and the food is also reliably good. It is located a little farther afield than other similar hotels, but it is worth the extra 5 min drive to save on the price. Accra Mall is 3 min away by car, and there is a taxi stand immediately outside the hotel. US$220.
  • Best Western Premier Accra Airport Hotel, 17 White Avenue (Near former Ghana Airways head office), ☏ +233 30 2766902. Typical 4/5 star hotel. Rooms are comfortable and quite large. Nice pool and fitness centre. Wireless internet throughout with voucher system - free for guests. From US$250.
  • Mövenpick Ambassador Hotel Accra, ☏ +233 302 611 000. Large five-star hotel located in the central business district.
  • Swiss Spirit Hotel & Suites Alisa - Accra (Swiss Spirit Hotel & Suites Accra), 21 Dr. Isert Road, North Ridge, P.O. Box 1111, Accra, ☏ +233 302 214-233, ✉ [email protected]. Check-in: 14:00, check-out: 10:00. Perfectly poised in a serene neighborhood, Swiss Spirit Hotel & Suites Alisa has 199 magnificent rooms and suites, tastefully designed and showcasing a sophisticated urban feel with plush picturesque views of the capital. Guests can also experience the distinctive meeting & conference facilities alongside its state of the art technologies, designed to accommodate from small to large events and to making your event a success. Located in the heart of Ghana’s Capital City, Accra, Swiss Spirit Hotel and Suites Alisa is easily accessible to the commercial district, Accra’s touristic attractions, and is only 15 minutes from Kotoka International Airport. From US$ 150.

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Keep Connected


You're never too far away from an internet cafe where one hour of internet access should cost GHS0.50 to GHS1.00. Many hotels also boast broadband access via wireless hotspots.


See also International Telephone Calls

Ghana's international telephone code is 233.

Ghana Telecom (now majority owned by and re-branded Vodafone) is the most widespread phone company, but is not yet entirely reliable or widespread. There are 6 mobile phone networks operating in the country. All six networks have 3G/HSPA/EVDO coverage in the regional capitals and other major cities, and there has been a corresponding boom in internet access via USB sticks (expect to pay around GHS60 for a stick with a 2GB allowance). Coverage is good in the urban areas, and is increasing in the rural areas and along major highways.


Postal services can be unreliable within Ghana itself but international post, at least to and from Accra is reasonably reliable. To send a parcel, you'd better us an international courier company like FedEx or DHL.



  1. 1 Ghana Web

Quick Facts


  • Latitude: 5.54009
  • Longitude: -0.20738

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This is version 36. Last edited at 10:50 on Aug 14, 19 by Utrecht. 21 articles link to this page.

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