Tourism in Ghana is not really a thing yet. Not in ever corner of the country people are used to foreigners, roads to tourist attractions are often bad, hotels and tourism offices are not always looking attractive. The good news is this means there is no over tourism, but you might want to book a guided tour.
On a regular work day you will probably be one of a few (if there is no school class) at a tourist landmark. This gives you a much better feeling then when you have to wait hours to take a picture at the viewing point. You will definitely meet other travellers, but it is also possible you won’t see a tourist for some days.
Because Ghana isn’t so focussed on tourism yet (note: it is changing, take a look at The Year of Return for example) it can also take some time to get used to this country, to the people and how things work. If you have only a short period of time to discover Ghana, or you would like to get some help before you are going to travel on your own, you might want to book a guided tour. This means a tour guide will travel with you to the highlights you would like to visit.
Easy to communicate with different languages
Even the main language in Ghana is English, it is very helpful to have someone with you who speaks the local language. Actually: local languages, but if you guide speaks at least English and Twi at most places you are good to go.
When you are travelling with someone who knows the language communication will go much faster. And also when you don’t travel alone as a foreigner “service people” like taxi drivers and landmarks guides won’t (or will less) try to take advantage of you. A guided tour makes your communication during a trip easier.
A tour guide is already very familiar with the area you travel in. Especially the public transportation, but also the direction to hotels or attractions, are not easy to understand. Eventually you will understand, but if you are in Ghana for just a few weeks you don’t want to stay in Accra for a week because you don’t get how to leave the city.
Also most public transportation don’t have real leaving time (often you will depart later than the time as said), but there is a schedule. Sometimes a bus for a long trip goes only once a day, or trotros stop driving to a certain place after sunset. Those are things you barely can find on the internet, so it is super helpful (and a time saver!) to have someone with you who knows about all this.
You might also feel safer when you are travelling with a guide. Ghana is absolutely a safe country, but in the dark you will feel more comfortable with someone around you.
Always staying at a good accommodation
When you are touring with a tour guide this person has been to a lot of accommodation in Ghana. So obviously (s)he knows where to find the good places. There is no need to stress yourself trying to find good places on the internet or Instagram. You can trust you guide that the place you will go to is safe, clean and looks cosy.
Travelling with The Ghana Traveller means you are always staying at an accommodation runt by Ghanaians and/or local community supportive. We wrote an ebook with 40+ of our favourite spots (including the accommodation) and discount codes.
Learn more about culture
You might think you will have more adventures when travelling alone, then with a tour guide. Might be true, but also realize a tour guide can give you a lot more side information then when you are travelling on your own.
The tour guide can introduce you to new food, tell you about traditional events like a wedding or funeral, can explain things you see during a trotro trip and teach you some words in the local language. And it’s all including the tour price!
Supporting another person
When you travel (doesn’t matter where), you always support the local economy. When you travel with a tour guide, you directly support the tour guide too. You are giving him/her a job. Beside that, you both learn about other cultures and other people in general. See it more like an exchange then that the guide is working for you.
We don’t believe it is necessary to go to Ghana and work at a school for a period to make a social impact. We believe you just have to fly to Ghana, and spend you money locally.