Swimsuits and Umbrellas

Being well and truly in the wet season has not stopped us getting away to see more of the country at weekends. One fine Saturday we decided to go to Aburi, a hilltop town to the north of Accra. On the way up the steep winding road (quite unusual for Ghana) we had some good views back towards the coast, but of course the tro-tro didn’t stop for us to take photos!

At Aburi

The Botanical Gardens at Aburi are quite pleasant, if not terribly exciting (mainly trees). Our chief complaint was the price you have to pay to use a camcorder there – 35 cedis (about £14). While wandering through the woods we came across some derelict buildings, rather like a film set for Lost, which we’ve been watching (for the second time) on Ghana TV. This was highlighted when we came across a wrecked helicopter in one part of the gardens – why?

Avenue of palm trees at Aburi Botanical Gardens

Flower and insect at Aburi

Surely a scene from ‘Lost’?

In Aburi we also visited the Hillburi Hotel, reputed to have great views and an infinity swimming pool open to the public. The views were certainly good (though we had to pay to get in to see them) but the pool was filled with green slime and not in use.

View from Hillburi Hotel

Shopping on the move

One thing we’ve discovered is that in Ghana you can do a lot of your shopping while travelling around.  Whenever vehicles stop (for traffic lights, or traffic jams) hawkers immediately start walking down the lines of traffic, with goods to sell (usually carried on their heads).  These can include food, toiletry items, toys and household goods – we saw TV aerials being touted recently.

The so-called ‘lorry parks’, where tro-tros start their journeys, are a cross between a bus station and a marketplace: think lots of stalls with decrepit minibuses squeezed into the small gaps between them.  There too you find many wandering sellers.  While sitting in a tro-tro, waiting to leave for Aburi, we saw a guy wandering past with a display case of watches on his head. As Ian’s watch had gone phut, we called him over and very soon Ian was sporting a smart new watch for a reasonable price. We calculate that if you sat in a tro-tro long enough, you could get not only your weekly shopping but probably all your Christmas presents as well.

Traders at a tro-tro stop


 Last weekend we were away overnight, travelling along the coast road to the Anamabo Beach Resort. We packed our swimwear and took umbrellas – a strange combination perhaps, but a wise precaution in light of the unpredictable weather.

We had heard good things about the resort, but were rather disappointed – no problems, but it was not particularly special, despite being pricier than other beach resorts we have visited.  We were lucky with the weather, however, and on Saturday afternoon we managed an hour on the beach in the sun.

Anomabo Beach Resort

We also walked into the town and saw some of the local posuban shrines, including a colourful one in the shape of a ship. Others were less well-kept, and mainly used for drying washing.

An elaborate posuban shrine at Anomabo

On Sunday it rained in the morning, so we stayed in the hotel and went to Cape Coast once the rain eased. We had lunch there and caught a bus back home.


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