Ghana in December, for non Ghanaians.

This December 2019, will be my third festive season spent in Ghana, and my fifth visit to the country as a whole. And for those wondering, I am not Ghanaian or of Ghanaian heritage; I’m Nigerian, but most definitely a Pan African.

Throughout this year declared to be the Year Of Return, I’ve seen countless tweets, blog posts, and conversations regarding the huge influx of visitors in Ghana throughout this year, and pen-ultimately this December.

I myself am quite apprehensive and overwhelmed leading up to what will potentially be the busiest December for Ghana yet.

Below I’ve included some important tips, especially from my own experience, of what to be aware of when visiting Ghana, especially in December, as a non Ghanaian. Again, my experiences and opinions may reflect differently from others. I’ve received so many questions from other non-Ghanaians, so thought it would be of help to condense some of them below:

  • English is everywhere. So that is a big help. Some parts of Ghana I’ve actually been mistaken for Ghanaian, which works well in my favour so I don’t get ripped off when buying certain things, or haggling for a taxi. I don’t think putting on an accent gets you any further either. Regardless, in most places, you only need to be looked at for 10 seconds to immediately be noticed as a foreigner. And there will be tonnes of others like you, so no wahala!
  • Don’t just eat anywhere. Street food is a no, NO from me. Go by recommendations from locals, Instagram pages, and word of mouth. I wouldn’t run straight to Time Out reviews, as newer restaurants, especially in Accra, are opening up by the second. So trust your gut (literally) by asking around first. And no worries on whereabouts as you are spoiled for choice!

  • Uber and Yango are your go-to’s. Yango is quite new and the cost of fares are cheaper than Uber. However, TRAFFIC. Traffic is really something else this December. Whew. My tip: order your taxi 30 minutes before you need it. I’m not kidding. AND USE CASH to pay for them. Taxis don’t like or take pre paid card payments.
  • Malaria is real. Don’t be silly. Don’t risk it. Either get the daily ones or the weekly ones. Doxycycline (daily) or Lariam (weekly) are the ones I usually use. Worth checking with your GP or doctors. Also, you can get these in selected chemists in Ghana too. Just ask around.
  • It’s a big party destination around this time of the year, but it’s still a country with strong cultural values and codes. You are in Africa. You say hello, you say thank you. Drop any strong Western expectations at the door and you should be more than fine.
View this post on Instagram

Ghana Ghana🇬🇭✨I didn’t expect you to be so WILD and WONDERFUL! From losing my phone to it being returned to me, to most nights out ending at 7am. It’s been so memorable and fun – but I left you with a nasty flu that I’m currently trying to heal in Lagos😓. Now, let me drop some promised travel tips for when visiting this gem! ________ Accommodation🏨: stayed with family! Major advisable tip as you get more of a real feel of the country. Hotels are cool too, just expensive! ________ Food🍴: yummy! I noticed that this time around when visiting Accra that food takes so much longer because it’s SO busy in December – lots of tourists on vacation. I recommend trying #Shito #Kenke #Talapia and DEFINITELY drinking #Alvaro. _________ Exploration📸: from other recent visits as well as this one, I highly recommend: #HansCottage #Kakum #ElminaSlaveCastle (tourism and history) #BojoBeach #Kempinski and #MovenpickAccra for relaxation, and #Starbites or #SkyBar for good food as well as local street food. ________ Nightlife🕺🏽: mental! Ghanaians know how to turn up! #Bosphorus is a good spot in Accra, #Sandbox and #Twist are also guaranteed for enjoyment. For more chilled vibes, +233 jazz bar and grill is THE spot! ________ Transport🚕: ubers in Ghana are good. However as I said earlier, December is a very busy time to go now, so surges and long waits were normal. Tip: don’t choose the ‘pay with cash’ option in uber in order to save your spending money! #TroTro is also an adventurous and the cheapest way to get around too. _________ Weather☀️: hot hot hot hot! 31 degrees minimum most of year even with #harmattan.

A post shared by Ajala Travels 📍London, 🇬🇧 (@ajalatravels) on

It’s incredibly warming to see the number of non-Ghanaian tourists, holidaymakers, bloggers, wanderers, and Pan Africans like me visiting another country, and feeling at home. I can honestly say it’s the feeling Ghana gives me every time I go back.

I think December will give all of us a very loud view and different lense of Ghana, which I would say is also well enjoyed in other months of the year too.

Either way, this is such a great thing for the culture. I hope this spreads across other countries in the continent too.

Thank you for reading!

View this post on Instagram

We go chop life, we go make happy!

A post shared by Hannah Ajala (@hannah_ajala) on

P.S. I’m moving to West Africa for six months!

Stay tuned..

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s