“Every Country is so uniquely different…” Akosua Shirley, Ghanaian Food and Travel Blogger.

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Jumia Travel caught up with a food and travel enthusiast in the person of Akosua Shirley also fondly known as Chef in Skinny Jeans and we spoke to her about Tourism in Ghana as she shared some experience of her travels and safety tips for Solo Travelers.

Shirley Akosua with a surfbord

You traveled solo around Ghana in 32 days, what was the experience like for you?

I have a whole new perspective on Ghana, people life and me. I feel much more capable of starting the things that I want to with or without support. The experience made me want to show off Ghana even more especially to Ghanaians.

Shirley horse riding

What was the most challenging thing about the trip?

The planning stage was difficult because it hadn’t really been done before exactly so I would get little to no information from people and the internet but once I was on the road everything was great.

I spent a lot of time on the road. Some of the roads and cars shouldn’t be in use. I truly understood the term “bone shaker”.

What do you enjoy doing more, Restaurant or Hotel reviews?

Hotel reviews. Ghanaian restaurants keep breaking my heart. Consistency is such a big problem in the food industry.

If a foreigner were to visit Ghana and had just 48 hours to spend, which places would you recommend they visit?

A motorbike tour of the Independence Square, Art Center and Osu Castle since its close to each other.

A walking tour of Jamestown community and light house. I love it there.

A day trip to Ada or Kokrobite, its beautiful, quite and there are activities fun activities like canoe rides and surfing.

Spend a day at Legon Botanical Garden, they have a lot to do there and its beautiful.

Shirley in Jamestown Castle

You’ve visited 11 countries, which countries are these, and which are you planning to visit next?

I have been to Budapest in Hungary, Istanbul in Turkey, Prague in Czech Republic, Vienna in Austria, Bremen in Germany, London in the UK, Abidjan in cote d’Ivoire, Nairobi in Kenya, Zanzibar in Tanzania, Lagos in Nigeria, Lomé in Togo and I’m planning a west African tour for next year.

National Zoo Abidjan

What similarities do you find between Ghana and the other African countries you have visited?

I expected it to be super easy to spot the similarities between Ghana and other countries but its not. Every country is so uniquely different. Trotros I found in Nairobi and Abidjan and Lagos but with different names of course but still the same system, I was so excited by that. Selling on the streets I saw here and there.

The Chale Wote Festival is getting more popular with every edition and attracting lots of interest from other parts of Africa and beyond, what other Festivals do you think deserve more attention?

The masquerade festival that happens every 1st and 2nd January in Winneba.

Do you really think Ghana Jollof is better than Naija Jollof? What do you think are the individual strong suites of both meals?

Ghana jollof is definitely better. I tried the Nigerian jollof in Nigeria and it was a no for me.

What does Tourism in Ghana need to move up a notch to the next level?

Better roads and public transport. Updated information on websites of tourist attractions.

More information online. The internet is power and social media is the biggest influencer. We need more content online to get people interested.

independence square accra

What safety measures can you share with Solo Travelers?

Trust your instincts. Pepper spray always ready. Do a DIY one if you can’t find one, it’s easy, just powdered pepper and gin mix in a spray bottle is perfect. Always keep your bag where you can see it, preferably in front of you. Use Google maps. Learn to take note of landmarks. Also, make real or fake phone calls giving them information to let the people around you know that people know where you are. Set up find my phone and share the password with family or friends and always share your location. It’s a life saver.

Shirley air diving

 

Follow Shirley Akosua on:

Twitter – @akosuashirly
Instagram – @akosuashirley

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