Earlier this month, President Barack Obama made his first trip to the African continent as president, visiting Ghana, the first country in sub-Saharan Africa to gain its independence from Europe. The nation of about 20 million remains a democracy and has not been a victim of civil unrest, making it a peaceful destination for tourists. It also offers a range of attractions from beaches to game reserves to old European forts and castles.
Explore the National Museum: . Located in Accra, the nation's capital, it is the oldest museum that celebrates the rich culture of the region, offering art and historical objects, exhibits and films.
Visit Cape Coast Castle. : The Obama family visited this fortress, which was once a trading place between the natives and Europeans in search of goods and gold. This also is where many Africans were placed in dungeons before their journey to the Caribbean and the Americas in the slave trade.
See the W.E.B. Dubois Centre: . It is the resting place for the African-American scholar and also has his personal library and museum. The Marcus Garvey Guest House doubles as a restaurant and as the headquarters for the African American Association of Ghana and the Diaspora African Forum. Throughout the year, it is the host for several lectures and events.
View the Big Tree. : Thought to be one of the largest trees in West Africa, the Big Tree is in the Esen Epan Forest Reserve in Oda Oda, and is one of the most popular attractions in Ghana.
Tour the Larabanga Mosque. : It is among the oldest mosques in West Africa - possibly dating to the 13th century - and the oldest in Ghana.
* Information: touringghana.com
- Clarissa Higgins, The Baltimore Sun