After six days of hard work at ITTU, we packed up into an AC tro-tro for a long ride to visit the slave castles at Cape Coast and Elmina. We first stopped at Elmina to look at the bay and harbor.
Fishing bay at Elmina
Fishing harbor at ElminaThen we headed to Cape Coast castle for a tour. We first toured the museum for 20 mins to learn about the history of the triangle slave trade and Ghanaian Culture. Then, our local tour guide led us into the underground dungeon where thousands of male slaves were kept for months in the space of a 3 bed room apartment. The only light that comes to the basement space is through two tiny windows high up. Food was thrown in from the window, and sick slaves were left to die lying on top of each other. Many were kept for up to 6 months before going through the tunnel to the gate of no return, onto ships for America.
Entrance to underground slave dungeon
The English church right on top of the male slave dungeonUnbelievably, many English people go to a church right on top of the slave dungeon every Sunday. The governor's spacious house is also located on top, his single person taking up more space than a thousands slaves. Besides, he had the privilege to pick any female slave for the night.
View from the governor's home on top of the slave dungeon/ Harbor where the slaves were shipped fromThis was a heart breaking and unforgettable experience. The cruelty against humanity reminds and nudges us to be compassionate and kind human beings.
After the visit, we rode to Accra to have dinner at a Cote d'ivoire restaurant with some friends. For the night we stayed at Ben's friend house. The next day we went to the cultural arts market and bought some beautiful African paintings, bags, hats and earrings. Then, we packed up and headed to the airport. We also bought lots of Ghanian chocolate both at a grocery stand and at the airport (pro-tip: at the airport they have a Ghanian store that sells many flavors of Golden Tree Chocolate (entirely Ghanian). So don't spend all the money at Duty Free). Ghanian chocolate tastes very original and delicious!
We have learnt a lot in Ghana and everyone of us is thankful for the experience. We are moved by Ghanaian's open and friendly nature and made lots of good friends that we will stay in touch with at ITTU. There had been some hard times that required us to be flexible, But that also contributed to giving us more perspective for the future.
Jun 3rd, 2017