TIME magazine has named Accra as the best place to visit in Africa…The best is yet to come

TIME magazine has named Accra as the best place to visit in Africa

TIME magazine has named Accra as the best place to visit in Africa. This comes at a time tourism globally is in a rebounding stage. This could be positive news for the country as it may encourage many more international visits. There may be others who may view this news as inaccurate considering the traffic situation in Accra these days and the increasing security threats unleased by Okada riders in the city. The earlier they are dealt with the better. The recognition places the city ahead of Benguerra Island of Mozambique and Egypt’s Cairo who followed respectively. A quick analysis of the criteria used may confirm the report.

According to TIME’s 2021 World’s Greatest Places, Accra is now easier to access with the many flights that come into the country daily.  This is perfectly true. Ghana’s Kotoka International Airport has been adjudged the best airport in West Africa and the fourth best in the World by the Airport Council International (ACI) Africa. The country moved from 6th the previous year to 4th last year in the West African ranking. The airport has been recognized as the “Best Airport in Africa” (2-5 Million pax per annum) for both 2019 and 2020 by Airports Council International Currently 38 airlines are operating in Ghana and they connect directly to 30 different destinations around the world.

What are the criteria used in determining the best airports? It includes airport access, check-in, security screening, restrooms, stores, restaurants, additionally capturing passenger comments of their best and worst experience at the airport.

Secondly, the report mentioned that tourists will have many things to see in the capital including museums, beaches and arts. Yes, indeed Accra has great museums and art galleries. Teshie is a place tourist can discover art, culture and creativity. Coffins are made in many shapes and the rich GA culture is there to be unraveled. The centre for National Culture, Kwame Nkrumah Museum, the Christianborg Museum and Castle, the Art Centre, the Mokola markets are places tourists will love to learn about culture. Other places to learn about history are the independence square, the National museum, James town lighthouse, W.E.B Dubois Centre, the National Theatre are some places to visit. When it comes to beaches, The La Pleasure Beach, Kokobrite Beach, Coco Beach are some beaches visitors could spend their time relaxing.

Thirdly, it also added that Accra is a key destination for visitors interested in connecting with Africa’s history and its people’s heritage. Indeed, the people of Accra have a rich and strong heritage that makes the city the most ideal place to visit.  The Accra nightlife, as well as good food, were not left out of things visitors should look out for. Osu (Oxford street) is the place to be when it comes to good food and night life. With the completion of the Marine Drive Project, it’s expected that Accra will see a much bigger facelift. The best is yet to come.

Prior to compiling the World’s Greatest Places list, TIME solicited nominations of places including countries, regions, cities and towns—from our international network of correspondents and with an eye toward those offering new and exciting experiences.

According to TIME, its third annual list highlights one hundred extraordinary travel destinations around the world. The publication stated that the third annual list of the World’s Greatest Places “is a tribute to the people and businesses at the forefront of those industries who, amid extraordinary circumstances, found ways to adapt, build and innovate. It shines a light on ingenuity, creativity, revitalization and reopening in destinations across the world.”

Resident of Accra must welcome the initiative of the Regional Minster, Mr Quartey. He is very passionate to see Accra work again. TIME magazine ranking has come at the right time. One big challenge Accra faces is the sanitation situation and ‘Operation Clean Your Frontage’ which has begun will help keep the city clean. I heard on the news that the train was in Chorkor and some chops were closed. The owners were made to clean their surroundings. The government’s clarion call on all citizens to appreciate that keeping their environment clean and green is one of the prerequisites for leading a healthy and happy life.

We all need to support this initiative. Calgary situated in Canada is the cleanest city in the world. Residents of Calgary, play a very important role in maintaining their city’s cleanliness. Even though most parts of this city are solely based on production, higher authorities have beautifully organized the entire city to be environmentally friendly. A first-time tourist who happens to walk through the roads of Calgary, will know why this city is been called the cleanest. Here is how this city has achieved 100% cleanliness despite having the high amount of material wastage and pollution.

Calgary is the center of oil and gas industry for the whole nation of Canada. The city of Calgary has actively promoted lot of sanitation and eco-friendly programs over the years. This is how they have achieved the sparking aqua rivers and clean environment. In 2007, Alberta state government initiated the program called “Too good to waste” with an aim of decreasing the amount of waste that is passed on to the landfills and it is ongoing. This program also promotes increasing number of ways to recycle the materials which are expelled from Calgary’s housing boom which includes drywall, concrete, asphalt and grits.

By the year 2020, they intend to hive off 80% of the city’s waste from landfills.   Another recycling program that helps in making the city clean is known as Blue cart system. The city administration provides a large blue cart recyclable material to each and every single interested family with an expectation of throwing every recyclable material to a blue bin. They include metal foil and food cans, paper and cart board, bottles, jugs and plastic food containers, glass jars and bottles. Every resident has to put this blue bin with the recyclable materials on their scheduled collection day. Finally, the collected recycle materials will be processed at the city’s own plants. This program is just one part of the commitment Calgary follows on a regular basis to keep their city as clean as possible.

Indeed, the starting point is with us and we can make Accra clean if we all make a conscious effort to clean our frontage. It’s part of our Ghanaian heritage to keep our environment clean and I believe if we sustain and succeed in this initiative, the best will indeed come. Shops must not be closed before we keep our frontage clean. If everyone does that, then every frontage becomes clean and everywhere also becomes clean.

Philip Gebu is a Tourism Lecturer/Trainer. He is the C.E.O of FoReal Destinations Ltd, a Tourism Destinations Management and Marketing Company based in Ghana and with partners in many other countries. Please contact Philip with your comments and suggestions. Write to [email protected] / [email protected]. Visit our website at www.forealdestinations.com or call or WhatsApp +233(0)244295901/0264295901.Visist our social media sites Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: FoReal Destinations


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