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Ghana Historical Sites

Elmina Castle

  • built in 1482. It was the first slave castle to be built along the west coast of Africa and also the first permanent structure south of the Sahara built by Europeans. Originally a military factory, it’s the first trading post in the Gulf of Guinea built by the Portuguese. One of Ghanaian historical sites, Elmina Fort, or ‘Fort São Jorge da Mina’ as it is also referred, was elevated to the status of castle because it was the seat of authority for the Portuguese.
  • Link 1: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elmina_Castle
  • Link 2: ghana-net.com/elmina.aspx

 Cape Coast Castle

  • is one of the most beautiful castles in existence today and also a famous Ghana’s historical places. It was a fortification in Ghana, with the first timber construction coming up on 1653 for the Swedish Africa Company and later named Carolusborg after King Charles X of Sweden. This popular historical place of Ghana was built for the trade in timber and gold and afterwards used in the trans-Atlantic slave trade. At present the Cape Coast Castle Museum is now located here.
  • Link1: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cape_Coast_Castle
  • Link2: www.capecoastcastlemuseum.com

Larabanga Mosque 

  • is one of the oldest mosques in West Africa and one of the important historical places of Ghana. This rare structure of mud is renovated every year after every heavy rain due to the damage caused to its mud walls. A cost of up to $1,000 is funded by the government to keep up the work of the mosque. While exploring Ghana one must not miss visiting this Ghanaian historical place.
  • Link1: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Larabanga_Mosque
  • Link 2: www.wmf.org/project/larabanga-mosque

Kwame Nkrumah Mausoleum 

  • holds the remains of the first President of Ghana, Dr Kwame Nkrumah. The Museum was made in his honor after which his body was exhumed from his original burial grounds at his home town-Nkroful. One of Ghana’s historical places, it’s also quite famous even between tourists
  • Link1: www.en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kwame_Nkrumah_Mausoleum
  • Link 2: www.ghana-net.com/KwameNkrumahMausoleum_MuseumandMemorialat.

Slave Market of Abonse 

  • was an important slave market in the 17th and 18th centuries. This historical place still carries traces of the original market, were slaves were traded with other countries.

Fort Prinsensten

  • Address: Keta, Ghana, GH, Africa
  • Fort Prinsensten was the work of Danish-Norwegian colonialists, who built it as a military stronghold and to make sure that other European countries couldn’t easily do trade in the region. Slaves, gold and ivory were just some of the goods exported from Ghana and exported to Danish-Norwegian islands in the West Indies. Later on, the fort was put into action as a prison. The encroaching seas resulted in a fair amount of structural damage during the 1980s
  • Link 1: www.en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fort_Prinzenstein

Fort St. Sebastian – Shama Fort St.

  • Sebastian was originally constructed and named by the Portuguese c.1520-26. However, its first appearance on a map was in the context of Di Castaldi’s Venetian map of 1564. In putting up the fort, the Portuguese hoped to stop English ships from interfering in their trade in the Shama area. According to a Portuguese chart of 1630, the Portuguese fort had a bastion, two single-storeyed buildings with pitched roofs and a two-storied tower. At the time the Dutch took over the fort it was in a state of ruin. While retaining its name, they carried out repairs in 1640-42 and added substantially to the previous structural form. It was built as a Dutch lodge in 1526. Portuguese fort built in 1590. Abandoned in 1600. Restored and altered by the Dutch c.1638, enlarged in 1640-2. Attacked by the English under Captain Robert Holme. Temporally in English hands, in 1664-65. The Dutch struck back under De Ruyter, re-occupied it the same year and rebuilt it in 1666.
  • Link 1: http://www.farelli.info/pages_colonies/africa/ghana/fort_san_sebastian.htm

Fort Orange – Sekondi

  • The coast at Sekondi became another theatre of European trade competition in the 17th and 18th centuries. The competition often degenerated into hostilities as local Hanta peoples were ranged in opposing alliances supporting the English or Dutch companies in their two separate trade posts located within gunshot of each other. For instance, in 1694, one Ahanta group captured and destroyed the Dutch fort, which then had to be rebuilt; in 1698 a second group of Ahanta captured and damaged the English fort and the English had to rebuild it only for it to be recaptured by the French in 1779.
  • Link 1: www.farelli.info/pages_colonies/africa/ghana/fort_oranje.htm

Fort St. Anthonio – Axim

  • Following the establishment of their headquarters at Elmina, the Portuguese, in an effort to maintain their monopoly and exclude foreign ships from the gold markets, built a trade post in 1503 at Axim close to the mouth of the River Ankobra. Owing to attacks launched by the local people on the lodge, the trade post was abandoned. In ISIS, a small promontory close to the Ankobra mouth was chosen and a fort built to cover the entire promontory. It was named Santo Antonio and was the second Portuguese fort on the Gold Coast. The site chosen had several little inselbergs in the ocean close to the promontory.
  • The fort was triangular in outline, in keeping with the contours of the promontory. Two major bastions were located on the northern and southern ends – the two corners of the wide end of the triangle. A curved battery linked them. The Portuguese constructed a rock-cut ditch some three metres deep to protect the landward side of the fort but this was later filled in during the 17th century. Inside the fort, a number of buildings of considerable size were raised to accommodate up to thirty officers.
  • Link 1: www.farelli.info/pages_colonies/…/fort_santo_antonio_de_axim.htm

Fort Apollonia – Beyin

  • A long sandy beach interrupted by lagoons and swamps characterizes the coastlands west of the mouth of the River Ankobra. At Beyin, however, there is a stretch of flat solid sandy ground above the beach. The Tano basin and the Ankasa forest in the hinterlands of Beyin are rich in gold and timber. Thus, even though the coastlands were unsuitable for fort building and harbours, European nations, especially the French, Dutch and English competed for a foothold in the area. The English Committee of Merchants, in response to an invitation from the Nzema Chief Amenihyia, built the last English fort above the beach at Beyin. The English employed slave labour and quarried limestone rock from a nearby site to build the fort in 1768-70.
  • The name Apollonia, chosen for the fort, was first conferred on the area by the Portuguese explorer who sighted the place on St. Apollonia’s day. Shortly after the abolition of the slave trade, gradual economic decline set in and the English abandoned the fort in 1819. In 1868, Fort Apollonian was transferred to the Dutch who renamed it after their monarch, Willem III, and held it till 1872.
  • Link 1: www.farelli.info/pages_colonies/africa/ghana/fort_apollonia.htm

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