A Partner West Africa Testimonial
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Vlunteers can visit towns near partner west africa on the weekends
Vlunteers can visit towns near partner west africa on the weekends
Kakum National Park in Ghana, West Africa is a favourite with volunteers
Volunteering during the week and relaxing time at the weekends is the prefect balance of work and play
Find out about local culture in the central region of Ghana when visiting Cape Coast
Volunteer with Partner West Africa in Ghana

A weekend to Cape Coast

Programme Completed: Fundraising, Promotion & Journalism

Date Posted: 17/07/2018

After a week of volunteering with Partner West Africa, four of us were able to take a trip to Cape Coast for the weekend – the history of which is both interesting and mortifying.

Join Ellie, PWA Volunteer, as she and 3 others visit Cape Coast for a long weekend.

"After a week of volunteering with Partner West Africa, four of us were able to take a trip to Cape Coast for the weekend – the history of which is both interesting and mortifying; one of the largest ports for the transportation of African slaves, remnants of this history remain present in the town through the colonial architecture and the castle-turned-museum. The trip was hugely insightful, from navigating travel in Accra and Kakum National Park to the castle itself.

We set off after lunch on Friday ready to see somewhere new, and after a long but easy tro-tro ride to the centre of Accra we had a short walk along a very busy pavement full of people selling food and cloth. Unfortunately, the minibus we were looking for was not around but we got and air-conditioned bus to Cape Coast. Our hostel, Oasis Beach Resort, was directly on the beach and we had a small 4 person hut to stay in – despite the lack of mosquito nets and ladders on the bunk beds, the room was perfectly livable and the view of the beach from the hammocks outside was relaxing.

In the evening our hostel had performers doing gymnastics and drumming and on the second day there was fire-eating. Our first evening consisted of our first shot of origin (a tradition for new volunteers to try a local shot), followed by plantain and red-red as well as many gin and tonics. It was a wonderful place to relax before our busy day on Saturday.

We awoke bright and early on Saturday and set off to Kakum National Park. The tro-tro ride took about 1 hour and we walked straight into the Park and to the Canopy walk. Around 130ft in the air, we walked across small wooden rope bridges over 100ft drops (safely surrounded by rope of course) which was the perfect combination of terrifying and exciting. The views were amazing and I’m sure that watching other people freak out about the height was amusing – I didn’t have time to laugh at others as I was so busy freaking out myself!

After the canopy walk we got the option to go on a nature walk which was very interesting; our guide was very knowledgeable and enthusiastic about the different trees and animals in the Park and while humid the extra walk definitely added to the trip and made the tro-tro ride there and back worth it. Once back in the town spent some time exploring and looking through the art stalls near the beach at the amazing and unique work sold there, as well as many wooden bowls and wall decorations with enthusiastic artists ready to bargain for their art. When it came time to eat we went to Boabab House, an NGO/restaurant/hostel/shop that uses the money made to run different educational programmes with schools in Cape Coast. Back at the hostel there was music and dancing, and so after a few drinks we were up and dancing to a strange mixture of cheesy pop-world-esque songs and African pop.

On Sunday we headed straight out to the castle and went on a tour – the tour guide was vastly knowledgeable about the history of the building itself and of Cape Coast as a huge slave port in general, having been born in Cape Coast about 5 minutes away from the castle and, apart from a short time living in Accra, had remained there his whole life. The tour itself was very interesting and eye opening, and we had a moment to look over the busy fishing port full of ships and people before heading out. The afternoon was spent at the hostel watching the world cup final with Club beer, particularly enjoyable as the Ghanaians cheered intensely for every goal scored – it seemed much more about seeing the exciting goals than supporting a particular side. After a quick sunbathe on the beach we went back to the bar and tried the local drink Amarula before getting an early night for our journey back on Monday.

The journey home was seamless and we managed to stop and get a coconut cut for us on the road – they chop the top off so you can drink the water and then eat the coconut flesh inside. Overall, while the trip had a few difficulties in terms of travel and navigating a new place, we managed to explore some truly unique experiences and immerse ourselves in a different culture."

Find out more about volunteering with Partner West Africa here.

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