ARTS & CULTURE OF GHANA - JANUARY 10 - 24, 2013
This is a great trip for people who QUILT and SEW, and everyone else who likes ART, fabrics, crafts, creativity and culture!!
Ghana is sometimes called "Africa for beginners" because of the ease of travel, the friendly people and the relative level of modernity compared to other West African nations. Yet the people have retained many cultural traditions such as the patterned strip 'kente' weaving and adinkra cloth--and have created some others.
Along the way, we'll visit many kente cloth weavers and will see their weaving demonstrations, and be able to buy their work directly from them. Fabric enthusiasts, bring an empty suitcase to hold all the amazing printed fabrics you'll discover in the overflowing markets!
One part of the art and culture scene is the fairly recent mode of fantasy coffins! Wealthy Ghanaians can request burial in a carved wooden version of their favorite automobile, or airplane; agriculturalists can order cocoa pods or chile peppers to be buried in, for the journey to the next life. Some men choose a beer bottle or an oversized Coca Cola bottle, such as shown below. Popular women's coffins include huge chickens, with smaller wooden "chicks" at her feet, one representing each of the lady's children. We will visit some coffin carver friends to see which of the latest styles are the most popular.
Many parts of the country are quite undeveloped with unspoiled wilderness and oceanside areas where birdlife abounds. We will walk high over the forest canopy in Kakum Park, shown below. On this wonderful adventure, we will cover as much as possible of the fascinating southern part of the country, spending several days in specific areas such as Kumasi, so that we get a good feeling for Ghanaian life. We'll try traditional dishes such as delicious red-red and the great seafood dishes served along the coast.
We'll try our hand at traditional crafts in several workshops--stamping and dyeing our batik yardage [workshop at right, and my blue dress above], stamping cloth with hand-carved adinkra motifs made from sections of dried gourd, and also we'll make some colorful striped glass beads from recycled glass. We will go on a special market tour in Kumasi, then once you get your bearings, you can explore it alone--great fun!
Behind the Scenes has a project to help local schools where we travel; ask about donating school supplies during our school visits--a heart-warming experience!! Arrive on the 10th and depart Accra on the 25th-- 15 nights hotel and 15 days.
Price: $4295 for 9-12 travelers (maximum is 12 in group)
Includes 15 nights accommodation in comfortable local hotels (double rooms), all meals, soft drinks and water with meals, except one lunch on last [free] day in Accra; bottled water on the road; transportation by private van, airport transportation on group arrival days, all entrances to historical sites and museums on itinerary, professional guide at Cape Castle and Elmina, local guide for Kumasi market tour, all workshops: glass-bead making class, adinkra, and batik yardage printing workshops.
Single supplement: $500 Scroll down for more details.
International airfare to the capital, Accra; visa for Ghana, and items of personal nature such as the cloth to print or batik on, between meal snacks, internet fees, laundry, tips to guides, over-weight luggage fees, and porter tips for carrying your bag if necessarys.
If you arrive on a different day [earlier or later] than the designated group arrival date, you will need to pay the taxi from airport to hotel, and of course pay for any additional nights of hotel. We will try to come to the airport to meet you if we ourselves have arrived in Ghana. Otherwise, we will arrange for the hotel to send a car for you. The Ghana airport is enclosed and fairly un-chaotic!
It is impossible to plan attendance at traditional musical or dance events or even holidays and festivals, from afar. We love these events and we’re happy to be flexible and spontaneously attend traditional performances in villages along the way, if the chance should arise.
Soon after you have paid the $500 deposit, we will send you the form to fill out for your visa to Ghana, and an information packet with lists of what to bring, cultural info, maps, recommended reading, etc.