Discovering Ghana in 7 days: The Heritage Caravan Tour (Part 2)
As we conclude the report on the Heritage Caravan Tour, we take a look at some of the fascinating tourist destinations as well as experiences that some tourists had. In all, it was a very enjoyable trip for all who participated and an important learning process for the organizers and stakeholders. Below, we look at day 4 to 7 of the Heritage Caravan Tour which was organized by Citi FM and sponsored by Jovago.com : Africa’s #1 Hotel Booking Portal, Sasso, Top Oil, Ghana Commercial bank and Colgate.
Buabeng Fiema Monkey Sanctuary - Brong Ahafo Region
From the Northern Region, the Caravan made its way downwards toward the Brong Ahafo Region. It was a rather enjoyable journey as participants talked and sang all through the trip. The Caravan made a stop at Techiman to have lunch before finally making it to the Buabeng Fiema Monkey Sanctuary after a hard time on the road due to the bad nature of the feeder roads leading to this great tourist destination. At the sanctuary, the participants were taken round to see various species of monkeys. Some fed them with bananas while others took beautiful pictures of these extraordinary creatures. A very strange but interesting facet of the tour that left participants in awe was when the tour guide told stories about how the monkeys converge and mourn for a day or two prior to the death of an important person in the community or the death of a monkey. The Caravan then made its way to the Eusbett Hotel in Sunyani, where some took dips in the pool while others just relaxed at the lounge before retiring to bed. What a great day it was.
From Sunyani to Takoradi
Probably the most uneventful day of the entire tour. It was a very long journey from Sunyani to Takoradi in the Western Region. By now, one would expect a bit of tiredness and stress creeping in after long hours of travel on the road and lots of activities. However, the energy level was just about reaching Crescendo. Participants were so charged and ready for more great experiences that even though the entire day was spent in the bus traveling, the fun and excitement was just great. The atmosphere was electric with continuous singing, dancing, jokes and talks all through. Famous tourist and writer Kofi Akpabli was on the Caravan to educate the participants every step of the way as to the various locations, towns, cities, history and importance of certain monuments. The Caravan arrived in Takoradi very late and had to rest immediately for a busy day 6 ahead.
Nzulezo(The Village on Stilts) - Beyin,Western Region
The Caravan set off very early on the penultimate day of the 7 day tour. The destination was Nzulezo . Call it one of the many mind-boggling phenomena in Ghana , Nzulezo stands out as being a very unique yet illustrious tourist destination. It is located in Beyin, a town in the Western region of Ghana . The trip to the village on stilts was about 30-40 minutes by canoes. Here too there was much fun as the tourists sang many old songs as they journeyed to witness for themselves a very great and unique tourist site. The tourists were taken through a brief history session and a tour round the rather small village. It was amazing to see life in a different way. To see life on water. Participants took pictures and bought souvenirs from the local people as a token of remembrance. From Nzulezo , the Caravan returned to Takoradi where participants had dinner as well as a party at the famous vienna beach. There was great entertainment right there as a few tourists, although very tired, had time to exhibit some dance moves here and there. It had been a fun-filled day for everyone and so the Caravan retired to bed in anticipation of what the last day had for them.
Elmina Castle - Central Region
It is usually said that ‘’Everything that has a beginning, definitely has an end’’ and finally after a good week of fun, excitement, learning, heritage, culture, tradition and entertainment, the Caravan tour had to come to an end. However there was a final destination to be visited. The Caravan moved from Takoradi to Elmina in the Central Region where it made a stop at the Elmina Castle. This rather very popular castle has great history and participants had a good time learning about slave trade, colonial rule, the reasons behind some names and other interesting historical myths and stories. They were taken round the castle which is no more inhabited but purely used for tourism purposes. They took pictures and bought souvenirs for friends and family back home. From the castle, the caravan moved to cape coast which is the regional capital of the central region where lunch was served and it was time for final exchange of contacts and pleasantries. New friends also took selfies and pictures with each other as it was time for the final lap. After this, the Caravan moved straight on the road to Accra . Alas! The 2016 edition of the Heritage Caravan Tour had ended.
Speaking on his general view on the Heritage Caravan Tour, the Public Relations Manager of Jovago Ghana (One of the sponsors of the tour), Mr. Bennet Otoo said‘’ It is amazing how many of these tourist destinations are underutilized or untapped. I believe it is time for all stakeholders in the tourism industry to come on board and support these tourist sites to make them better and more attractive to the outside world. We owe our country the responsibility to project its rich natural resources and heritage. This tour should be organized regularly to promote tourism in Ghana ’’.
All in all, it was a very fun and entertaining tour with lots of great lessons learnt. It was also eye-opening for participants and first timers to many of these great tourist destinations. In the end, there was a popular request by all on the Caravan and the many more who followed the caravan from home to have more of these tours. Everyone is looking forward to the next edition which promises to be bigger, better and more entertaining.