So it’s been a long time since I wrote this post about Ghana. In the time after I got back, I fell ill and work became super intense. I really wanted to blog it all fresh off the press, but you know what they say, better late than never.
Ghana was an absolute dream, but the trip there? Not so much. I made a few mistakes and hopefully if you’re ever considering road travel within West Africa you can learn from me.
When I was planning this trip, I was initially concerned for my safety, even though I didn’t end up going alone, I can say the trip is safe. We had no issues and there were several young women travelling on their own.
Alright, I’m going to get right into it.
I had my heart set on a road trip; for many reasons, I had my heart set on the experience and the cost difference was crazy, a flight (return) was about 10times the cost of the road trip (one way). I knew it would be a long ride, but I was armed, books, music etc.
Little did I know… Full disclosure, part of it was my fault, I was supposed to have booked tickets a week before but my card didn’t work on the website so I shelved it till later- by the time I was ready all the seats were gone (This was for ABC sprinter). So we were stuck with Chisco- worst.
Immediately we got to the terminal I think we knew we had made a mistake. It was disorganised and there were huge bags everywhere. We soon learnt that other than Remi (who I was travelling with) and I, everyone else was a trader of some sort. We were supposed to leave at 6:00am but didn’t leave till past 8.
Unfortunately for us, leaving late was the least of our worries. We got delayed at every border because of the sheer amount of luggage on the bus and spent 3 hours at the Nigeria-Benin Republic border alone. Once we eventually left Nigeria, we had to physically come out of the bus at every border and checkpoint- This was horrendous based on how tigthly packed with the bus was.
There were some highlights though, like Emeka, the business man who regaled us with his life story and made us FaceTime with his friends abroad- don’t ask.
Eating baby coconuts (who says baby coconut?) at the Togo border, taking lifestyle shots at the Nigeria- Benin border till a customs officer yelled at me and Emeka bribed him with Hennessy. Yeah Emeka was fully loaded for the trip, several packs of beer and bottles of liquor. I kept hoping the alcohol would knock him out but my guy talked for a good 80% of the trip. *facepalm*
I had all these grand plans of all the pictures I’d take of various places but by the time we arrived at later stops it was well into the night and we were too tired… so much for that
Drifting in and out of sleep, we trudged along, border after border, stop after stop. I contorted my body into various shapes in order to be comfortable and tried to keep it positive.
We arrived in Accra at about 2:30am the next day. I couldn’t even scream in excitement, I was way too tired. We waited another 30ish minutes for the bus to be off loaded and for us to collect our luggage. Got in a taxi and arrived at our Airbnb (which was too beautiful and cute) around 3:30.
Our trip back was much better, We left Accra at about past 7 and got into Lagos a bit after 5. We booked ABC this time and the bus was much more comfortable and we didn’t have to make so many stops because we weren’t carrying trader goods.
As we settled in on that first night, of course we couldn’t sleep, we slept so much on the ride there.
Somehow I was still in great spirits, albeit tired. I danced across the hardwood floors of our Airbnb and looked forward to the next day.
More Ghana posts coming up!