Like all coastal regions, the people are in the fishing industry (fishermen, fishmongers, ice block sellers, net weavers etc.).
Ghana, formerly GOLD COAST during the colonial days, had its share of forts and castles built by their colonial masters. And Elmina Castle was one of the 3 castles built in the then GOLD COAST – erected by the Portuguese, captured by the Dutch, and came under the British.
The castle served as a home for the colonial masters, to trade in slaves and to educate. Join me as I share with you my experience. Elmina Castle was built in the year 1482 by the Portuguese, 539 years old and still standing.
As I always point out to you the times are estimated based on your mode of transportation and your set off time.
- From Madina – 3 HOURS 20 Minutes.
- From Kasoa – 2 HOURS 15 Minutes.
- From Adukrom – 4 HOURS 5
- From Takoradi – 1 hour 43 Minutes
- From Osu – 3 HOURS 00 Minutes.
- From Accra Mall – 3 HOURS 00 Minutes.
- From Dansoman – 2 HOURS 52 Minutes
- From Kintmpo – 8 HOURS 00 Minutes.
I love travelling on Saturdays but the change they say is constant. And so with that in mind, we went on this trip on a Friday morning but at dawn as always. We met at Shiashe and began our journey to the central region, I ply the road a lot, therefore, nothing was exciting to see. We just conversed throughout and took pictures on the bus. The traffic at Budumburam did not disappoint. It was in full effect even at 7 am, with the fante kenkey sellers out with their goods by the roadside, so were the fish sellers. Our plan was to visit 3 places in 1 day which meant 3 different outfits packed and a bigger budget.
The only difference was the arrival time from Central Region since we did all 3 in a day and got stuck in the evening traffic at Gomoa heading to Budumburam.
Now I had a problem because I did not see any food vendor or an eatery, aside from the several souvenir shops for people to buy from. I had the same problem at Afadjato. I would strongly suggest they put up an eatery for visitors to have good local food to enjoy as all of that adds to the beauty of the site. We were there for more than 2 hours and did not see any sign of a food vendor on the premises, rather we had to go into town for something to eat. Then again, I had snacks in my bag and that served us well till hunger set in and we left to the next place.t. Just outside the premises you will have a lot of options to pick from so we did that and had our fill.
Elmina Castle Tour Experience
I had high hopes for the tour but was disappointed in the end. The tour guide was not charismatic and that bored me as he spoke. I did well to pay attention but he lost me few times but that aside, it was good. I got to experience how the condemned cells felt for a minute, though that experience is nothing compared to what my ancestors had. Our guide a few times closed the cell gates on us and I appreciated it. Again, the cell of the military for misbehaving.
The military cell was ventilated and did not feel scary because theirs were close to the castle entrance with fresh air and vents to make the cells bearable as compared to that of the slaves, which was pitch black with no ventilation and their gates were thick. Again, with the slaves condemn cells, no one ever came out unless dead.
We also went up to their chapel and the offices; was quite a solemn experience. Then took us to the male and female dungeons where our people were overcrowded, slept, died, defecated, and for the females menstruated. Many died before the ship arrived due to starvation and inhumane conditions. On the grounds of the dungeons, you will see what they wore, the awful stench would hit your noses but what got me sad was when he got to the door of no return; a small metallic gate.
We pray colonialism never repeats. For the women who got pregnant from being raped, their children had formal education to serve as intermediaries during transactions with the locals and also introduced them to Christianity. We can agree on the ripple effect of it in education in the central region as the hub of education in Ghana. Do well to visit for an educated tour and explore the castle for the view onto the beach is breathtaking.
The sea breeze and the coconut tree-lined up, relaxed me after the solemn experience during the tour. I love the beach and the sights of the boats with the fishermen at work. It is a place to reconnect with our pasts, and you will enjoy your time there.
- GHANAIAN ADULTS – 5 CEDIS
- FOREIGN CHILDREN – 5 CEDIS
- FOREIGN CHILDREN WITH ID – 30 CEDIS
- FOREIGN ADULTS – 40 CEDIS
Like many other indigenous places, they accept cash.
To sum it up, the trip was worthwhile.