As December arrives, Ghana welcomes visitors with open arms, offering a captivating blend of culture, history, and festivities. This West African nation comes alive during the last month of the year, inviting travelers to partake in a diverse array of experiences that reflect its vibrant heritage. From the lively rhythms of the Afrochella Festival in Accra to the solemn contemplation of Cape Coast and Elmina Castles, Ghana’s December itinerary is as diverse as it is enchanting.
Ghanaian Christmases are steeped in tradition, making it a perfect time to immerse oneself in the nation’s deeply rooted customs. The streets are adorned with festive decorations, churches resonate with joyous hymns, and the aroma of traditional dishes fills the air. Whether you’re looking for a cultural awakening, a taste of history, or a tranquil beachside retreat, Ghana in December offers something for every traveler.
Join mrpocu.com as we embark on a journey through the top activities and destinations that make December in Ghana a magical and unforgettable experience.
Attend the Afrochella Festival
In December, Accra comes alive with the vibrant Afrochella Festival. This cultural extravaganza celebrates the best of African music, art, fashion, and culture. It’s a must-visit event for those looking to immerse themselves in the rich and diverse African heritage. Attendees can enjoy live music performances from both local and international artists, view stunning art exhibitions, witness fashion shows featuring African designs, and indulge in a wide array of delicious African cuisine.
Afrochella is more than just a festival; it’s a celebration of unity and creativity that highlights Africa’s cultural renaissance. It provides a unique opportunity to connect with people from all over the world who share a passion for African culture.
Ghana is a fantastic place to experience the joy and spirit of Christmas in December. The country comes alive with festive decorations, Christmas lights, and beautifully adorned trees. Ghanaians attend church services on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, offering a chance for visitors to witness the deeply religious and cultural aspects of the holiday. Traditional Ghanaian Christmas dishes like fufu and light soup are a must-try.
You can also enjoy street parties, carol singing, and parades, especially in major cities like Accra and Kumasi. The warm hospitality and friendly atmosphere make celebrating Christmas in Ghana a memorable experience that showcases the country’s rich traditions and strong sense of community.
Visit Cape Coast and Elmina Castles
Cape Coast and Elmina Castles are powerful reminders of Ghana’s historical significance during the transatlantic slave trade. Visiting these castles in December allows you to explore their haunting history and gain a deeper understanding of the impact of slavery on the African continent. The guided tours of the castles take you through the dungeons where enslaved Africans were held before being shipped to the Americas and Europe.
The history is both heartbreaking and enlightening, offering a chance for reflection and remembrance. The castles are also located along Ghana’s picturesque coastline, providing opportunities for stunning ocean views and serene moments of contemplation. A visit to Cape Coast and Elmina Castles is a sobering yet essential experience that connects visitors with Ghana’s past and underscores the importance of acknowledging and learning from history.
Kwame Nkrumah Mausoleum
The Kwame Nkrumah Mausoleum in Accra is a significant historical and cultural landmark in Ghana. It serves as a tribute to Kwame Nkrumah, the country’s first president and a key figure in Ghana’s struggle for independence. Visiting the mausoleum in December offers a chance to pay your respects to this iconic leader and learn about his life and contributions to Ghana and the African continent.
The mausoleum is an architectural marvel, with a striking silhouette and beautifully landscaped grounds. Inside, you’ll find a museum showcasing Nkrumah’s personal effects, photographs, and historical artifacts. The peaceful atmosphere invites reflection on Nkrumah’s vision of a united and prosperous Africa. It’s a place of historical significance and a symbol of Ghana’s enduring commitment to freedom and unity.
Experience the Kakum National Park
December is an excellent time to visit Kakum National Park in Ghana’s Central Region. One of the park’s most thrilling attractions is the canopy walkway, which allows visitors to traverse the rainforest treetops with breathtaking views of the lush vegetation below. The canopy walk is an exhilarating experience and a unique way to connect with Ghana’s natural beauty.
The park also offers opportunities for guided jungle walks, birdwatching, and wildlife spotting. It’s a haven for nature enthusiasts and those seeking adventure. The rainforest is teeming with diverse flora and fauna, making it a paradise for eco-tourism. Whether you’re looking for an adrenaline rush on the canopy walk or a peaceful hike through the forest, Kakum National Park offers an unforgettable natural experience.
Attend Hogbetsotso Festival
If you find yourself in the Volta Region of Ghana in December, don’t miss the chance to participate in the Hogbetsotso Festival. Celebrated by the Anlo Ewes, this colorful cultural event is a captivating display of traditional music, dance, and parades. The festival marks the migration of the Anlo Ewe people to their current homeland, and it’s a time for communities to come together in joyous celebration.
Visitors can witness mesmerizing drumming performances, intricate dances, and the donning of vibrant traditional attire. The festival typically includes a grand durbar, where chiefs and dignitaries gather to offer blessings and share cultural insights. It’s a unique opportunity to immerse yourself in the rich cultural heritage of the Anlo Ewes and witness the traditions that have been passed down through generations.
Relax on Ghana’s Beaches
Ghana’s coastline boasts some of the most beautiful beaches in West Africa, making it an ideal destination for beach lovers in December. Places like Busua Beach, Kokrobite Beach, and Ada Foah offer miles of sandy shores, clear blue waters, and a relaxed atmosphere.
Whether you’re looking to swim, sunbathe, or simply enjoy a leisurely stroll along the beach, Ghana’s coastal destinations have something for everyone. You can also find beachfront resorts and restaurants where you can savor fresh seafood and local delicacies while taking in breathtaking ocean views. The laid-back vibe and warm hospitality of the coastal communities make for a perfect beach getaway.
Kumasi, the capital of the Ashanti Region, is a city steeped in history and culture. December, it’s an excellent time to explore this vibrant metropolis and discover the rich Ashanti heritage. One of the must-visit attractions is the Manhyia Palace Museum, which offers insight into the Ashanti kingdom’s history, traditions, and royal artifacts. The Kejetia Market is a bustling hub where you can shop for souvenirs, textiles, and crafts while immersing yourself in the local market culture.
For a deeper cultural experience, consider visiting the Adanwomase Kente Weaving Village, where you can witness the intricate art of kente weaving. Kumasi also has a lively arts and crafts scene, and you can find unique handmade goods that reflect the region’s artistic flair. Exploring Kumasi in December is a journey into the heart of Ashanti culture and a chance to appreciate the city’s historical significance.
Trek in the Tafi Atome Monkey Sanctuary
For a unique eco-tourism experience, head to the Tafi Atome Monkey Sanctuary in the Volta Region. This community-based conservation area is home to several species of monkeys, including the endangered Mona monkey. Guided tours of the sanctuary allow you to observe these playful and fascinating creatures up close in their natural habitat. The knowledgeable guides provide insights into the monkeys’ behavior and the efforts to protect their habitat.
It’s an educational and unforgettable experience that promotes responsible tourism and wildlife conservation. The trek through the sanctuary also offers opportunities to enjoy the lush tropical forest and its diverse flora and fauna. Visiting Tafi Atome in December provides pleasant weather for outdoor exploration and the chance to support a valuable conservation initiative.
Try Ghanaian Cuisine
Exploring Ghana’s culinary scene is a delightful journey for food enthusiasts. In December, you can savor the rich flavors of traditional Ghanaian dishes. Jollof rice, a flavorful one-pot rice dish cooked with tomatoes and spices, is a staple at festive gatherings. Banku and tilapia, a popular dish of fermented corn and cassava dough served with grilled fish, is a must-try for seafood lovers.
Waakye, a hearty meal made from rice and beans, often served with stew, is a comforting choice. Don’t forget to sample kelewele, spicy fried plantains that make for a tasty snack or side dish. Ghanaian cuisine is known for its bold and vibrant flavors, and trying these dishes in local eateries or street food stalls is a delicious way to immerse yourself in the country’s culture.
Shop for Souvenirs
Exploring local markets and craft shops in Ghana is a fantastic way to find unique souvenirs and support local artisans. In December, many markets are brimming with handcrafted goods, textiles, jewelry, and artwork. The Kejetia Market in Kumasi is one of the largest markets in West Africa, offering a vast array of products to choose from. Accra’s Makola Market is another bustling hub where you can discover a wide range of items.
When shopping for souvenirs, keep an eye out for traditional kente cloth, Adinkra symbols, wooden carvings, and beadwork. These items not only make for memorable keepsakes but also showcase the artistic talents and cultural diversity of Ghana.
Explore Mole National Park
In the Northern Region of Ghana, Mole National Park beckons wildlife enthusiasts and nature lovers. December is an excellent time to visit this expansive park, known for its diverse ecosystem and the opportunity to spot a variety of wildlife, including elephants, antelopes, baboons, and numerous bird species. Guided safaris take you through the park’s savannahs, grasslands, and forests, offering a chance to observe animals in their natural habitat.
The park also features a watering hole where animals gather, making it an ideal spot for wildlife viewing. Additionally, the park’s serene surroundings provide an excellent setting for hiking and nature walks. Exploring Mole National Park is a thrilling adventure that connects you with Ghana’s natural heritage and the majesty of its wildlife.
New Year’s Eve Celebrations
Ghana knows how to ring in the New Year with style and enthusiasm. December 31st brings a lively atmosphere to cities like Accra, Kumasi, and Takoradi, with fireworks displays, street parties, and music events. Joining the New Year’s Eve celebrations in Ghana is a fantastic way to usher in the new year while experiencing the country’s vibrant culture and nightlife. Dance the night away to Afrobeat and highlife music, sample delicious street food, and enjoy the camaraderie of fellow revelers.
Many hotels, restaurants, and clubs host special New Year’s Eve parties, providing a variety of entertainment options to suit your preferences. As the clock strikes midnight, the sky lights up with fireworks, and the celebrations continue well into the early hours of the morning. It’s a festive and joyous way to conclude your December visit to Ghana.