50 things to do in Accra and Ghana

With tips on everything from Accra's best restaurants and shops to museums and sightseeing – read our ultimate guide to things to do in Accra

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On New Year's Day 1957, Ghana officially became independent after years of rule by the British, Dutch and Portuguese. In the half-century since, Ghana has become known as the Black Star of Africa – a shining example of a stable and secure post-colonial African country. And nowhere is this more evident than in its vibrant capital. Below is Time Out's celebration of the city, and the country, as we bring you the 50 best things to do in Accra and beyond...

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Bars and nightlife

1

Music at Republic

  • Critics choice

Music is the defining element at this fairly new little bar. Album covers and photos of music stars adorn the walls and Ghana’s best music plays out – live too on the terrace. One of the most happening bars in Accra right now.

See more on Republic Bar
  •  Go on an Osu bar crawl

  1. 3rd Lane, off Oxford Street
More info
2

Spirits at Firefly

  • Rated as: 4/5
  • Critics choice

Dim lighting and pumping tunes attract a preened and international crowd. The lit backbar glows with premium blends.

See more on Firefly Lounge Bar

  1. 11th Lane, Embassy Road
More info
3

DJs at Bella Roma

  • Rated as: 4/5
  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

While mainly known for its Mediterranean flavours in its restaurants, Bella Roma's loungey bar area is also where you'll hear some of the best DJs in town of an evening.

See more on Bella Roma

  1. Off Cantonments Road, (Oxford Street), behind Frankie’s
More info
4

Lounging at Rhapsody’s

There are two halves to the interior – an informal lounge, complete with panel-lit horseshoe bar and football on TVs, and a restaurant. Things crank up a notch on Fridays and Saturdays when DJs spin tunes: expect sizeable crowds.

See more on Rhapsody's

  1. Shops 66-68, Accra Mall, Spintex Road
More info
5

Dancing at Twist

Twist has been extended to include a dancefloor and DJ booth inside. The bar caters to an upmarket set, who congregate in the large garden before heading in for a dance. In the past year or so a nightclub dancefloor has opened.

See more on Twist  •  Accra's best terrace bars

  1. Alisa Hotel, Number 8, 5th Circular Road, opposite Alisa Hotel
More info
6

Hiplife nightlife at Rockstone’s Office

This bar is owned by ‘Godfather of Hiplife’ Reggie Rockstone, who has created a kind of hip hop casual environment. There’s a relaxed outside terrace and often live music on Wednesdays. At weekends booming hiplife carrying the crowd through to 6am.

See more on Rockstone's Office
  •  Accra's best terrace bars



  1. Near Police HQ, behind Japanese Embassy
More info
More bars, pubs and clubs

Live music

8

Reggae at Labadi Beach

  • Critics choice

Every Wednesday evening, locals, backpackers and tourist pack the beach to hear some of West Africa’s finest reggae musicians.

See more on Labadi Beach

  1. Beach Road
More info
9

Highlife at the +233 club

  • Critics choice

The party ethos is strong at this club. It’s a cleverly designed venue with an inside stage that you can see and hear from the outdoor patio. Most importantly is the exceptional roster of live music. Grab a Star beer, hear some of Ghana’s best music and join the party.

See more on the +233 Jazz Bar & Grill
  •  Guide to Ghanaian highlife

  1. North Ridge
More info
10

A good mix at Alliance Française

  • Critics choice

The Accra-based arm of the French cultural centre particularly excels in live music events. It offers probably the most vibrant cultural calendar in town, with two excellent stages.

See more on Alliance Française

  1. Liberation Link, Airport Residential Area behind Opeibia House
More info
11

Eclectic sounds at the Goethe-Institut

The Goethe-Institut has an impressive array of events and art exhibitions. Music-wise there's often something out of the ordinary happening at the German cultural centre.

See more on the Goethe-Institut

  1. 30 Kakramadu Road, PMB 52, Cantonments
More info
12

Dancing at Chez Afrique

  • Rated as: 3/5
  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

The place to hear traditional highlife and get some tasty Ghanaian food. There’s dancing into the night.

See more on Chez Afrique

  1. Off Lagos Avenue, East Legon
More info
More live music

Restaurants and cafés

13

World-class Japanese food at Santoku

  • Rated as: 5/5
  • Price band: 3/4
  • Critics choice

Santoku is the best restaurant in Ghana right now. The team from Nobu London helped devise the menu, and the results are excellent. Try Japanese chef Daisuke Yoshizaki’s signature dish of pan fried scallops with foie gras and orange tobiko.

See more on Santoku Restaurant & Bar  •  More fine dining in Accra

  1. Ground Floor, Azure, Villagio Vista, Tetteh Quarshie Interchange, Near African Regent
More info
14

West African specialties at Buka

  • Rated as: 4/5
  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

Buka is one of the best lunch spots in the city, with lively music adding to the ambience. The food hinges on Ghanaian and Nigerian specialties – dishes include okra stew and eba (a dough ball eaten with stews).

See more on Buka  •  More places serving Ghanaian cuisine

  1. 10th Lane, near the old American Embassy
More info
15

Pizza perfection at Nicolino

  • Rated as: 4/5
  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

The wood burning pizza oven at Nicolino and a super tasty crust make a Nicolino's pizza the best pizza in town. The head chef previously served under two Michelin-starred chef Douglas Santi in Rome. Hungry? try the Nicolino burger – a beef patty enveloped in pizza crust.

See more on Nicolino  •  Accra's best pizza restaurants

  1. Alliance Francaise, Liberation Link, Airport Residential Area, behind Opeibia House
More info
16

Indian dosas at Heritage Indian Restaurant

  • Rated as: 3/5
  • Price band: 2/4

Heritage often gets pointed to as one of the best curry houses in the capital. We recommend one of their dosas – savoury pancakes with crispy edges and spongy centres filled with the likes of paneer cheese and fresh onion.

 

  1. Off Salem Road, near Papaye
More info
17

Classic Italian at Il Cavaliere Pazzo

  • Rated as: 4/5
  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

Il Cavaliere Pazzo occupies a prestigious spot. It’s also one of the most impressive buildings in Accra. The menu, meanwhile, is unswervingly Italian, with authentic risottos, gnocchi and ravioli with spinach and ricotta.

See more on Il Cavaliere Pazzo  •  More international dining in Accra

  1. Accra Polo Club, Liberation Road, Airport
More info
More restaurants and cafés

Art and exhibitions

18

Colourful caskets at a fantasty coffin workshop

'Fantasy' coffin making emerged in Accra in the '50s, and the Kane Kwei Carpentery Workshop, in the city's Teshie suburb, was one of the pioneers of the original style. They, or any of the other workshops dotted around the area, offer an insight into what's become the iconic Ghanaian art-form.

See more on the Kane Kwei coffin workshop

20

Rising stars at Loom

  • Critics choice

Run by veteran gallerist Frances Ademola, the Loom continues to inform taste in Accra.

See more on the Loom gallery
  •  Interview with owner Frances Ademola

  1. Samlotte House, 119 Kwame Nkrumah Avenue, south of Nkrumah Circle, Adabraka
More info
21

Sculpture for sale at Joe’s Perspective

  • Critics choice

Now in the new Mövenpick Hotel, has some of the city’s most beautifully crafted pieces.

See more on Joe's Perspective Art Boutique

  1. Mövenpick Ambassador Hotel, Independence Avenue, Ridge
More info
22

Local art at the Nubuke Foundation

  • Critics choice

One of the most interesting art galleries in the city, set up to provide an artistic space for Ghanaian artists. Its vibrant cultural offering includes poetry evenings, Saturday workshops, art walks, film and music.

See more on the Nubuke Foundation

  1. 7 Adamafio Close, East Legon, near Mensvic Grand Hotel
More info
More art and exhibitions

Heritage and history

23

Crafts on show at the Arts Centre

  • Free

Although described as an Arts Centre, this is in fact a sprawling market selling all manner of crafts, textiles, musical instruments, antiques and pretty much anything else you can imagine. It’s an intense experience.

See more on the Centre for National Culture

  1. 28th February Road, near Kwame Nkrumah Monument
More info
24

The story of Ghana at the National Museum

  • Critics choice

Despite being a little tired around the edges, the content of the National Museum is impressive. It’s a good idea to hit this place first to provide some context to the remarkable, and often brutal, history that has made Ghana the Black Star of Africa today.

See more on the National Museum of Ghana
  •  Ghana's history in pictures

  1. Barnes Road, Adabraka
More info
25

Hero worship at Kwame Nkrumah Memorial Park

  • Critics choice

See how national heroes are built at the mausoleum of Kwame Nkrumah, Ghana’s first president and one of its founding fathers. Across the five acres of land are a museum, statues, manicured gardens and, of course,  the mausoleum itself.

See more on Kwame Nkrumah Memorial Park and Mausoleum

  1. Kwame Nkrumah Memorial Park & Mausoleum, High Street
More info
26

More hero worship at the WEB Du Bois Centre

William Edward Burghardt Du Bois, the African-American civil rights activist and 'Father of Pan-Africanism' became a citizen of Ghana in the 1960s. The centre, where he and his wife once lived and are now buried, tells his story.

See more on the WEB Du Bois Memorial Centre

  1. Off 2nd Circular Road, Cantonments
More info
27

History and hustle in Jamestown

Jamestown is undoubtedly one of Accra’s most atmospheric regions, and despite the poverty it is largely safe and very friendly. It is the oldest area in Accra and steeped in both colonial history and local life.

See more on the Jamestown Lighthouse
  •  Area guide to Jamestown and Usher Town

More sights and attractions

Shopping and markets

28

Couture at Christie Brown

  • Critics choice

This high-design store is a sophisticated shopping venue where those with an eye for style can browse premium clothing and accessories. Christie Brown specialises in incorporating African prints into wearable high-street trends.

See more on Christie Brown

  1. Ist Lane, Osu
More info
29

Custom T-shirts at Renée Q

  • Critics choice

Renée Q Boateng has expanded from the back of her car to a new boutique, specialising in bespoke T-shirts. The shop also sells her jewellery accessories – freshwater pearls, crystals, contemporary or traditional beads and custom-made couture pieces.

See more on Renée Q

  1. Trade Fair Road, opp Kpogas Furniture
More info
30

Jewellery at Tebazile

  • Critics choice

Elizabeth Dankoro specialises in beautiful statement jewellery pieces, no matter your budget. The Tebi brand is funky, chunky and colourful, but there are also more refined ranges available.

See more on Tebazile

  1. Ally’s Plaza, Dzorwulu, 6th Street, off Oxford Street, Osu
More info
31

Interiors at La Maison

  • Critics choice

A charmingly edited selection of furnishings, art and decorative items with chunky sofas, gilded mirrors, reclaimed leather chairs, eye-catching artwork and some fabulous African-themed ornaments.

See more on La Mainson

  1. Annexe, 6th Street, Osu
More info
32

Haggling at Makola Market

  • Free

Makola Market is a colourful open-air department store spread over several blocks. Hot, noisy and insistent, it’s a bewildering sprawl of kitchenware, jewellery, textiles, shoes and anything else your cedi might conceivably buy.

See more on Makola Market
  •  Guide to haggling in Accra

  1. Kojo Thompson Road and Independence Avenue.
More info
33

Recycled accessories at Trashy Bags

  • Critics choice

Trashy bags sell just that - products made from recycled plastic bags stitched together. They tend to be extremely colourful, and the range includes everything from shoulder bags and backpacks to rain macs and briefcases. Ingenious.

See more on Trashy Bags

  1. C 8 Dzorwulu Road, Dzorwulu
More info
34

Fair trade fashion at Global Mamas

  • Critics choice

Everthing here is fairly traded and made in Ghana, mostly by women. There are tote bags made from old flour sacks, home decoration items, even body butter and soaps made from shea.

See more on Global Mamas

  1. 14th Lane, off Cantonments Road (Oxford Street), behind Koala Supermarket, Osu
More info
More shops and markets

Sport and well-being

35

Luxury at the Labadi Beach Hotel

Labadi Beach is a high-end resort that retains its colonial cool. It boasts a sizeable, turquoise swimming pool, with a smaller children’s pool and fountain. Sporty types will be more than satisfied with the gym, floodlit tennis courts, volleyball court and table tennis equipment; sauna and massage services are also available.

See more on the Labadi Beach resort

  1. Labadi Beach
36

Lazing at La Palm Royal Beach

This is one the best pool complexes in Ghana, an ideal way to spend a lazy Sunday. New is the La Palm Kids Theme Park, a pleasant and safe enclosed park right by the pool. All pool facilities are open to non-residents.

See more on La Palm Royal Beach

  1. By Labadi Beach
37

Pampering at the Mövenpick

The Movenpick is designed for relaxation, and its spa area, we're confident in saying, is the best in Accra. It offers a sauna, small gym with personal trainers on hand and world-class massages.

See more on the Mövenpick

  1. Independence Avenue, Ridge
38

Ringside for boxing

Ghana's boxing heritage is remarkable – in terms of international boxing heroes the country punches well above its weight. To see some boxing head to the district of Bukom (with someone who knows the area) – where there are 20 boxing schools. Also try the Greater Accra Amateur Boxing Association (+233 302 760 892).

See a blow-by-blow fight report

39

Chanting at a football match

Seeing a football match in Accra is one of the highlights of any visit. Two teams dominate the Ghanaian support: Hearts of Oak from Accra and Asante Kotoko from Kumasi. The games are largely safe and rarely sold out unless Hearts of Oak and Kotoko meet.

See information on Ohene Djan Stadium

  1. In front of Independence Square
More places for sport and relaxation

Family activities

41

Tees and teas at Marvel’s Minigolf

This is an impressive new minigolf course. The 18-hole golf course has the usual challenges and tricks, and the clubhouse serves snacks and refreshments. There’s also football and regular movie nights.

See more on Marvel's Minigolf

  1. Forest Avenue, Abelenkpe traffic lights, Dzorwulu
More info
42

Play and shop at Accra Mall

This popular little play area – full of things to ride, bounce on and play with is a shady respite when shopping gets a little boring. It's well-equipped, safe and worth a trip in itself.

See more on Accra Mall

  1. Off Burma Camp Road
More info
43

Playtime paradise at Kidz Cottage

A great place for children under 12, with a large safety- conscious play area and a pretend beauty parlour. There are also video games, books and toys.

See more on Kidz Cottage

  1. No 133 Noi Fetrika Street, Airport Residential
More info
44

Fun and food at Churcheese

This restaurant and play-space is ideal for families. For the children there is a bouncy castle and games room, while the parents can hide in the pleasant restaurant that serves Ghanaian dishes.

See more on Churcheese

  1. 27 Orphan Crescent, North Labone
More info
45

Running it off at Matthew’s Fun House

Kids will love this air-conditioned play area equipped with climbing gym and ball pen. There are also computers and Nintendo games for older children.

See more on Matthew's Fun House

  1. North Dzorwulu
More info
More places to entertain the kids

Breaks and adventures

46

Elephant-spotting at Mole National Park

Mole National Park, which covers an area of 4,480 square kilometres, is Ghana’s largest wildlife refuge. It is home to a stunning terrain of grassland savannah veined with streams and rivers. Elephants are the unofficial symbol of the park, which also contains lions, leopards, buffalo and 3,000 bird species.

See more on exploring Ghana’s wilderness and wildlife reserves

47

Spectacular Elmina

Elmina must be one of the most colourful places in the world. Most of the town comes out twice a day, to wish its fishermen a safe trip and greet them again as they return. Brightly painted boats, everyone wearing football shirts, the flip-flopping catch being sold on the dockside: it’s an overwhelming site...

See the Elmina spectacle in pictures

48

Kicks on Kokrobite Beach

This small beach town has become a destination for sun seekers and pleasure seekers. The long-established Big Milly’s has become somewhat of a backpackers classic – a laid back hostel with an open bar. But the beach is the main attraction – the finest near Accra.

See more on Kokrobite
  •  See more on Big Milly's Backyard

  1. Kokrobite Beach
More info
49

Canopy views of Kakum National Park

Kakum National Park is a hugely popular day trip from Accra. Leave the visitors’ centre and you start walking on a series of vertiginous walkways suspended high in the canopy. It offers a fabulous view of the park, and a bit of an adrenalin rush to boot.

See more on Kakum National Park

50

Surf's up at Bojo Beach

Thatched umbrellas stud the shoreline, looking out over the area’s characteristically crashing waves. Rustic to say the least, Bojo is a delightfully simplistic set up of sand, water and seating. Bojo is well-maintained, clean, and the urban hubbub seems eons away.

See more on Bojo Beach

  1. Bojo Beach
More info
More trips out of town

Users say

3 comments
JayBaba
JayBaba

Awesome, thanks for the list.

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