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Updated by Joanna James on Dec 17, 2019
Headline for Top 5 attractions in Accra – Places you should include in your Accra itinerary
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Top 5 attractions in Accra – Places you should include in your Accra itinerary

Streets lined with traders selling breakfast at 5.30 am, vibrant market places, restaurants that serve Lebanese, Italian and Chinese food and brightly painted kiosks draw a right picture of Accra.

1

Jamestown

Jamestown, the local neighbourhood sitting on the edge Accra, holds the reins of the contemporary art scene in the city. You can see the prevalent poverty at every corner, but art gives the town a fresh and vibrant outlook. With a bunch of buildings that hark back to Ghana's colonial roots, Jamestown nourishes and promotes the young talent in Accra. Every inch of the town is filled with murals and hand-painted advertisements. Though art is the centre of attraction, the fishing harbour is another element of Jamestown's tourist scene. In this part of Accra, you can see corrugated shacks and clapboard houses which evince a sense of underdevelopment, but they don't tamper with the city's vibrancy, if anything, they enhance the touristy feel of the town.

2

ANO Centre for cultural research

The founder of the institution is the Ghanaian filmmaker, writer and historian Nana Oforiatta-Ayim. The name of the institution has the meaning 'grandmother' in Akan: in Ghanaian belief, 'grandmother' refers to the first woman who's the common ancestor of all human beings. The founder of ANO Centre dreamt of a permanent place that fertilises the up-and-coming artists in Ghana. The institution also has a library and a workshop. If you are planning a visit to ANO Centre, time your visit for one of the many events the institution hosts; these events provide visitors with much-needed insight into the post-independence Ghanaian art industry.

3

Marina Mall

Located not too far away from Kwarleyz Residence Accra – a name you'll come across if you are after a furnished apartment in Accra – Marina Mall can be accessed from all parts of the city, not to mention its close proximity to the airport. The mall has 45 outlets dispersed over three floors, and they sell designer fashion brands: there's also a food court and a massive supermarket. You can enjoy some of the best food at Marina Mall; Lebanese mixed-grill plates are in high demand.

4

Fantasy coffins

This is quite a peculiar idea which supposedly induces fun into funerals. The artist behind these extravagant caskets is Paa Joe, and his creations are displayed at museums all over the world. Many U.S presidents have bought his work which goes to show his prolific talent. He has created some of the most extravagant designs, and they usually find their way to Ghana exhibitions. These coffins are designed in the shapes of fish, Porsches, women, Coca Cola bottles, cameras and chilli peppers – the idea behind these coffins is to celebrate the deceased person's life: to that end, each item is handcrafted in a way that manifests the deceased's life, and the coffins are painted in vibrant colours. There's also an exhibition in Ghana that explores the origin of the trade and celebrates the popularity of these coffins in the Ghanaian community. According to the artist of fantasy coffins, people in Ghana celebrate funerals, and they don't mourn the person who's left them.

5

Independence Square

This is a huge empty expanse of concrete that pays tribute to the struggle the country went through in order to gain independence. Also known as Black Start Square, the monument commemorates Ghana finally receiving freedom from colonial rule. Located right beside Stalinesque grace, the square, for the most part of the year, remains empty. Its most eye-catching features are the Independence Arch, the Liberation Day Monument, and Black Star Gate. This also happens to be the second-largest monument in the world: second only to the Tiananmen Square in China. You cannot take pictures of the monument up close, you'll find several soldiers guarding the monument, but you are free to take pictures of the area: if you want to take close up pictures, you need to have a grant from the authorities permitting you to take pictures

  • A true believer that the pen is a mighty weapon, ventures into reaching the minds of every reader with the earnest hope of leaving an indelible stream of thought.

    A travel writer who has a passion for fashion and a deep interest in admiring new and exotic attractions around the world.

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