Larabanga Things to Do

  • in the village
    in the village
    by iaint
  • dancing
    dancing
    by iaint
  • the drummers
    the drummers
    by iaint

Most Recent Things to Do in Larabanga

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    Mognori

    by iaint Written Nov 1, 2015

    A visit to the eco-village at Mognori is worth the wee detour. The village is inside the national park. A few years ago their crops were destroyed by elephants.

    The response was to help them diversify away from subsistence farming. They now offer canoe trips on the nearby Mole River (a seasonal tributary of the White Volta) and perform their traditional dances. They produce shea butter for sale, and honey.

    The dancing is what I enjoyed most. It takes place right in the village.

    Some of us bought some shea butter. HM Revenue & Customs confiscated mine at Edinburgh Airport. Plant products can’t be imported into the EU unless properly packaged and labelled.

    Address: Mognori, near Larabanga

    Directions: A few kilometres east of the park entrance.

    in the village dancing the drummers canoeing easy does it...
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    • Eco-Tourism
    • National/State Park
    • Kayaking

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    Game hike

    by iaint Written Oct 19, 2015

    We were booked onto a 2 hour early morning hike through the bush, looking for wildlife.
    Sounded good to me.

    I don’t know how much it cost because we were on a “package” arranged by the group leader. The wildlife outings were included along with the hotel charges.

    A 7 am start with an armed park ranger leading it.

    We did see warthogs, baboons, monkeys and antelope.

    The sun was strong by the time we finished, so don’t forget the sun screen and water.

    As with the game drive the time of year was against us when it came to seeing elephant in particular.

    Address: Mole National Park, Damongo.

    Directions: It started from the park HQ.

    Phone: +233 24 4316777

    Website: http://www.molemotelgh.com/park.php

    adventurers grooming time
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    • Safari
    • Eco-Tourism
    • National/State Park

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    Game drive

    by iaint Written Oct 17, 2015

    Pretty much compulsory to have this on the itinerary. I don’t know how much it cost because we were on a “package” arranged by the group leader. The wildlife outings were included along with the hotel charges.

    It was a 2 hour drive. Armed park rangers join your party.

    We saw warthogs & baboons, but they are everywhere. We saw kob - an antelope species. We saw a couple of elephants, but they were on the move so it was only a brief sighting.

    Mohammed the guide (the area is more Moslem than Christian) was very knowledgable and his English was excellent.

    Tse tse flies were a nuisance, so put on your insect repellent. They can bite through a t-shirt so wear something heavier or use the spray all over.

    The sun was strong by the time we finished, so don’t forget the sun screen. We were inside the vehicle which had a canvas roof (and no sides) so the sun wasn’t constant. Most vehicles have seats on the roof, so if you’re on one of them then you’ll get full sun for 2 hours.

    We were there in mid October, which may be the worst time for seeing the wildlife. The wet season has just finished, so the vegetation is green and high. It hides the animals. In addition, there are waterholes all over the place for the animals to use. As they dry up, the animals are forced to use the few all year ones and then it’s easier to find them.

    One thing you may do which might come as a surprise is that the guides will get you off the 4X4 for a closer look if something is spotted. In Tanzania that was a no-no.

    Address: Mole National Park, Damongo.

    Directions: Starts at the park HQ.

    Phone: +233 24 4316777

    Website: http://www.molemotelgh.com/park.php

    mind your head looks painful
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    • National/State Park
    • Safari

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    Visit the Imam of the Mosque

    by atufft Updated Mar 25, 2007

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    The Imam's son invited us to walk to his father's house to meet him. The old man was comfortably seated, but blind. The son actually spoke good English, but his father knew only a couple greetings, but we were flattered by his efforts to show good hospitality. During the walk back, we passed a prisoner shackled for some crime. Later, I asked my Ghana friends more about this strange judicial practice. It was universally agreed that any sort of serious crime--theft, murder, etc--would not be treated in such a manner as the judicial system reaches even Larabanga. However, it was suggested that perhaps the encarcerated person was psychotic or a pedophile--some kind of local anti-social behavior.

    Town Prisoner in Larabanga Imam of the Larabanga Mosque
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    More Mud Mosque Images

    by atufft Updated Mar 25, 2007

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    The Larabanga Mud Mosque does indeed merit more than just 5 photos, so enjoy these others. Note that the timbers emerging from the mud are both part of the structural building, and scaffolding for replastering the mosque, which probably needs to be done annually.

    Larabanga Mud Mosque Larbanga Mud Mosque Larabanga Mud Mosque at Dawn Imam's son, center, and friends
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    The Great Mud Mosque

    by atufft Updated Mar 25, 2007

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    The Sudanese style mud mosque is quite common in West Africa, but this one claims to be very old. Guidebooks debate the age, some arguing the building dates back to the 14th century. The huge tree adjacent to the building is obviously younger than the building, since it has infringed upon the mosque foundations, but other than that its difficult to argue age in a mud building such as this. The building requires considerable maintenance of it's stuccoed exterior, and unless the supporting timbers are scientifically tested, nobody knows for sure how old the building is. However, since I have also seen other such mosques, such as the largest in Djenne, I would guess that this one is perhaps a couple of centuries. Bear in mind that making a claim as the oldest building in Ghana isn't too difficult, since the tropic climate regularly destroys the wood and thatch buldings further south. British Colonial buildings aren't very old, as they date mostly to the late 19th and early 20th century. We were able to examine this mosque both outside and in. Many mosques are not open to non-Muslims. Ask for a tour of from one of the youth, if they don't offer first.

    Entrance to the Mud Mosque of Larabanga Larabanga Mud Mosque and Tree Larabanga Mud Mosque at Dawn Main Entrance to Larabanga Mud Mosque Women's Entrance to Mud Mosque
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    The restoration

    by grets Updated Feb 7, 2007

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    Every two years the mosque needs restoration. Being of adobe construction, the rains cause untold damage to the mud bricks. Hence the little wooden poles sticking out of the walls. A large group of local people help in the restoration project, using mud and cow dung to rebuild the walls, then whitewash them. This project was taking place while we were there, and although we have seen several adobe mosques before and heard about this bi-annual reconstruction, this is the first time we have actually seen it for ourselves, and we found it very interesting.

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    • Arts and Culture
    • Historical Travel

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    Larabanga Mosque

    by grets Written Feb 7, 2007

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    The mosque at Larabanga is reputed to be the oldest mosque in Ghana, and one of the oldest in West Africa. It is assumed to date from 1421, but there appears to be some disputes over the origin of the mosque – when it was built and who built it.

    Legend tells how an Islamic trader called Ayuba was travelling through the area when he discovered the mystic stone on the outskirts of Larabanga. For some inexplicable reason, he deided to throw his spear while standing next to the stone, and sleep wherever it landed. That night, sleeping in the designated place, he had a strange dream about building a mosque, and when he awoke in the morning, the foundations for this mosque had mysteriously appeared during the night. He saw this as a sign from Allah and completed the construction of the mosque and settled in Larabanga. His remains are buried under the baobab tree next to the mosque.

    The mosque at Larabanga is one of several such mud-and-stick build Sudanese style mosques along an ancient well-established trade route through northern Ghana. There are four entrances to the mosque, one each for the chief, men, women and the muezzin. Non-Muslims are not allowed to enter. There is an illuminated copy of the Koran belonging to Imam Bramah, dating from around 1650 still preserved inside the mosque. 100% of the community here at Larabanga are said to be Muslim, which is quite unusual in Ghana.

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    Magic Stone

    by Pieter11 Written Nov 17, 2006

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    The magic stone from the Larabanga myth is a standard part of a tour through the village. The stone however, has nothing special what so ever, excpet for its vague history. Read more about this myth in my general tip "History of Larabanga".

    Address: Larabanga, NR, Ghana

    The Magic Stone of Larabanga
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    Walk through the village

    by Pieter11 Written Nov 17, 2006

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    It is possible to have a guided walk through the village. It's of course also possible to do so without a guide, but then you will not be able to see the special places, and it is easier to take pictures of the locals when there is a guide accompaning you.

    Larabanga is typically Northern Ghana with only mud houses with flat roofs. During the walk you can enter those houses and climb the roofs, to have a nice view all over the city. You will see the women preparing fufu, the men hanging around in the scarse shade and the children playing outside in the narrow streets.

    At the end you are asked to pay a tip for the guide, and if you liked it like I did, a tip of about 10.000 cedis (1 dollar) would be a very good amount of money.

    Address: Larabanga, NR, Ghana

    Okro to dry on the rooftops of Larabanga Little boy and his toy in Larabanga Streetscene in Larabanga Goat in the shade in Larabanga Little girl seen from a rooftop in Larabanga
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    The Ancient Mosque

    by Pieter11 Written Nov 17, 2006

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    The main attraction in the village of Larabanga is the old and famous mosque. It is said that the mosque was built here in the beginning of the 15th century, and therefore it eould be the oldest mosque in Ghana.

    The building is very typical for Northern Ghana with its mud and sticks architecture. To make sure that you won't be disappointed when you visit it: it is small, much smaller then I expected it to be with only 8 by 8 metres approx. And you are not allowed to enter it.

    The mosque has four entries: one at each side, all with its own purpose. Every year after the raining season the villagers have to repair the building, because the mud partly gets washed off by the rain. Next to the building is a sacred boabab tree that is told to be just as old as the mosque itself.

    The viewing fee for the mosque officially is 10.000 cedis, 1 dollar. But there are people that try to fool you by asking much more then that!

    Larabanga Mosque Larabanga Mosque Larabanga Mosque
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    • Historical Travel

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    Wander Among The Homes and Animals

    by atufft Updated Mar 25, 2007

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    The path to the mosque involved passing through the private residential area of town. There were a number of interesting homes and among them, goats and other animals.

    Larabanga Animals Still Asleep Morning in Larabanga Residential Neighborhood Larabanga Home Larabanga Homes Walking Along Main Street Larabanga
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    • Farm Stay
    • Architecture

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