12 funny moments/curiosities for 12 days on the road | Project Ghana

 It’s been a year, so I thought I’d better write about it before I forget the details. J

So, one day later than the usual Monday, here it is—


Our first time in West Africa started and ended in the north of Italy. We took advantage of our first stop in Bergamo and walked around Città Alta (funicolare, one-way: EUR 1.30/pp.), shopped, and ate [highly recommended: GROM for gelato; La Piadella for vegetarians]. We then took a bus (two buses, actually) to Roncola [one-way, EUR 3.2/pp.] and in the end arrived in the rain to charming Cà Baetti B&B L’Antica Corte [EUR 50/double room with a balcony, breakfast included]. Marcel was so funny scolding me all the way down to our accommodation: ‘Of course, you didn’t look at the elevation difference’; ‘We will have to climb all of this at 5am’; ‘It’s raining’ [and he doesn’t like carrying bags]. :P  


1. Spicy food?

It was very late when we arrived in Accra, so the nice guys that hosted us [the accommodation was, however, not nice; I will only tell you that our double room cost GHS 154] helped us buy some noodles (GHS 6) and the famous Ghanaian chocolate (3 for GHS 24). The noodles were delicious and I felt so bad that I couldn’t eat them because they were so… spicy (and I didn’t know anything about Ghanaian food being spicy prior to tasting it :P). We were lucky to also have the chocolate in our bags.


2. Rain, out of nowhere

We woke up with great dreams: I had found a place for us to have breakfast on Labadi Beach, but out of the sudden, the rain started and we went straight to the airport; the Uber ride cost us (GHS 20; from Kpeshie area), but we were running on an empty stomach. Luckily, we had our prepaid cards on us (2x GHS 25; do buy from 2 different providers – Vodafone doesn’t work too well in the north of Ghana).

Driving around Accra, Ghana

Leaving Accra, Ghana

We flew to Tamale in no time and were picked up at the airport and taken to Mole Motel (GHS 350/transfer).

From Tamale to Mole National Park, Ghana

We could finally relax in nature, close to animals, inside Mole National Park!   


3. Choose your trousers well when you go on a safari

While you can read all the details about the days spent in Mole here, I left an important piece of advice out – it’s humid especially during the wet season, the safari jeeps are high, so it’s better to go with leggings – they allow you to stretch. I learned that after I tore a pair of cotton shalwars during a morning safari drive.    

Mole National Park, Ghana

Mole National Park, Ghana

Mole National Park, Ghana

Breakfast @ Mole Motel, Mole National Park, Ghana

Another breakfast, Mole National Park, Ghana

4. Changing course

Can you continue to be wowed even after seeing many elephants? You can.

We caught sight of one bathing. When he was done, he crossed the road and changed course. Of course, as it happened in Sri Lanka’s Yala National Park, animals make the rules.

Elephant selfie, Mole National Park, Ghana

Elephant bathing, Mole National Park, Ghana

5. ‘Respect the ground’

We stayed at Mole Motel (GHS 560 + GHS 40 –payment by card surcharge-/2 nights, breakfast included); it wasn’t the greatest accommodation, but it allowed us to stay inside the park and be surrounded by wildlife. J

We saw many animals in front of our room. Warthogs were some of the cute faces around. I was told that the common position of the warthogs while grazing (knees bent) happens because they 'respect the ground'.

Warthog in front of our room, Mole National Park, Ghana

6. Gnocchi with a Ghanaian sauce

The story goes like this: I bought some gnocchi in Roncola, but I couldn't cook them. I took them in my backpack all the way to Ghana and I asked the staff at Mole Motel to cook them. They did a wonderful job - with a Ghanaian twist -, didn't charge me a penny, and we shared the meal.

(If staying here, remember to pay your restaurant and bar bills separately.)

Gnocchi at Mole Motel, Mole National Park, Ghana

7. What to do when your plane is caught in a storm?

(or waiting for it to pass)

We were in Tamale (EUR 85/Tamale-Accra return ticket by Africa World Airlines/pp.). We split our time between watching our driver play Damas, shopping in the stores inside the small airport, and then watching videos from the European Football Championship qualifiers.

Tamale, Ghana

Larabanga Mosque and the baobab, Larabanga, Ghana

Upon landing in Accra, our next stop and an Uber ride away (GHS 50) was Kokrobite. We stayed at Dizzy Lizzie’s (GHS 90/ensuite double room), where we loved the food, the friendliness, and the beach – it became my favourite from all the beaches that I’ve seen in Ghana (and the beaches in Ghana are stunning!)! –.

Kokrobite Beach, Kokrobite, Ghana

After taking a taxi to Kasoa (GHS 30), a very hot ride to Cape Coast followed (GHS 18/pp.). Our drumming and head wrapping classes booked with Global Mamas cost us GHS 138; we did enjoy them but had a hard time getting to Ko-Sa Beach Resort from Cape Coast. In the end, our hosts arranged us a much cheaper ride (GHS 60) compared to what the local taxi owners were asking.     

Head wrapping workshop in Cape Coast, Ghana

Drumming and dancing workshop, Ghana


8. When I sometimes throw my boogers in the beans [=Romanian saying i.e. ‘screw up’] & the pineapple juice

One of the few mornings when we could relax was the one spent at Ko-Sa Beach Resort (USD 50/double room with shared bathroom/2 nights). At one point, Marcel left the beach (and took the room key with him), the sand became too hot to bear, and I couldn’t find him anywhere, so I got mad. In the end, I realised that he had lost the notion of time because he wanted to surprise me and returned with a pair of gorgeous earrings made of Ghanaian beads. I cherish them so much!

While the food at the resort was not the best, it served the best pineapple juice we’ve had in Ghana. I believe that we even drank 4 glasses a day! Each.

In the afternoon, we took a taxi to Elmina (GHS 100, return ride) and visited the castle (GHS 40/pp., entrance fee), which impressed and saddened us both.

Inside Elmina Castle, Elmina, Ghana

Our last part of the journey through Ghana took us west, to the Volta Region.

While you can read a bit more about our adventures here and about how much I ended up loving the Volta, I’ll write down some practicalities—

The taxi from Ko-Sa to Kakum National Park (GHS 65/pp., entrance fee; worth every cent!) and then to Cape Coast cost us GHS 300. We then boarded an A/C trotro to Accra (GHS 30/pp.) and a regular trotro to Ada Foah (GHS 17/pp.). The mojo moment of the trip was the boat ride (GHS 125) from Ada to Dzita. All in all, we loved our stay, the food, and the vibe of Meet Me There EcoLodge and we paid GHS 670 for 2 nights (breakfast included), 2 dinners, and 1 lunch. We wrapped things up with a kayaking tour of the mangroves along Volta River, which cost GHS 80/pp. 

Kakum National Park, Ghana

Dzita and the Atlantic, Ghana
Kayaking the Volta, Ghana

9. ‘I will always love you’ ♫

Returning from Ada Foah by trotro (GHS 25/pp.), we saw the clouds gather… but I didn’t expect the storm to be that huge (especially as the locals were telling us that the wet season should have already ended)! Marcel and I took refuge in a gas station and I ended up watching the water enter the building alongside a Ghanaian lady who was asking me about my time in Ghana. We paid GHS 200 for our accommodation that night in Osu (which didn’t impress us, so I’ll not mention its name), but the area is both quiet and safe, with many things to do there. The Uber driver who took us to Osu was listening to some very nice music; as it poured hardest, I could hear Whitney Houston hit the high notes of ‘I Will Always Love You’.

Huge storm in Accra, Ghana

10. A Christmassy visit to the supermarket

Following no. 9 ↑, we went shopping. ‘Which cheeses would you recommend?’ asked a lady shopping with her daughter. [So, I do look European and we are known to be cheese experts. Well, many of us. J] It was so bizarre to see a Christmas Tree decorated, to look at tinsel all around the store as early as October, and to wow at the price tags. Very-very expensive items on the shelves, which I didn’t understand… In the end, we managed to buy ourselves some food and drinks for dinner and breakfast.

Supermarket shopping in Accra, Ghana

11. I set off as a bull and returned as a cow [=another Romanian saying i.e. I didn’t understand anything]

We had been waiting to visit Artists Alliance Gallery in Accra (GHS 10 for the Uber ride from Osu) for ages. Sadly, there are hundreds of art pieces dying there, simply because of neglect or because nobody would pay such high prices for them. The place has potential – with better display and maintenance! Also, the personnel could be nicer!


12. The tiger nut goodbye

Marcel and I had become addicted to tiger nuts in northern Ghana, so we couldn’t quite leave without buying some. It happened on the way to the airport (GHS 12 for the Uber ride from Osu)… we even planted some this spring and they did well on our terrace.


‘No hurry in life’ – that had been the general vibe around Ghana, so we decided to apply it in Italy, too. Especially because it was raining when we got back. We told ourselves another occasion to see Lago Maggiore would arise. As we can see with the current global situation, one cannot always count on that. :D

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