Ghana becomes a place of vivid colors, pulsating beats, and holiday cheer as the year comes to a conclusion.
The month of December in Ghana is unlike any other time of the year, as the country comes to life with a number of exciting events, cultural festivals, and a contagious sense of camaraderie.
This comprehensive guide will walk you through the enchanted encounters Ghana has in store for you in December 2023.
Facts About December in Ghana
December is an interesting and festive month in Ghana, marked by various cultural, religious, and social activities. Here are some facts about December in Ghana:
Christmas is a major holiday in Ghana, and December is a time of vibrant celebrations. Many Ghanaians attend church services, exchange gifts, and enjoy special meals with family and friends. It’s a time when the spirit of giving and sharing is especially prominent.
December falls during the harmattan season in Ghana, which is characterized by dry, dusty winds blowing in from the Sahara Desert. The harmattan can bring cooler temperatures and hazy skies to the country.
December marks the beginning of the long school holiday season in Ghana, as schools typically close for the Christmas break. This allows students and teachers to enjoy a well-deserved break and participate in holiday festivities.
Various towns and communities in Ghana organize street festivals and parades during December. These events often feature traditional music, dance performances, and colorful displays of cultural heritage.
December is a popular time for end-of-year parties, both in urban and rural areas. People gather to celebrate the year’s achievements and socialize with loved ones.
Travel and Tourism
Many Ghanaians who live in urban areas take the opportunity to visit their hometowns or ancestral villages during December. This leads to increased travel within the country, and transportation can get busy during this time.
Business and Commerce
December is a busy month for businesses, especially those in the retail sector, as people shop for Christmas gifts and decorations. Markets and shopping districts are often bustling with activity.
New Year’s Eve Celebrations
Like many places around the world, Ghanaians celebrate the arrival of the new year on December 31st with fireworks, parties, and countdown events in major cities like Accra and Kumasi.
December also sees an influx of Ghanaian diaspora returning to the country to celebrate the holiday season with their families. This leads to a lively exchange of ideas, experiences, and traditions.
December in Ghana Budget Guide
Creating a budget for December in Ghana can help you manage your finances wisely during the holiday season. Here’s a simple guide to help you plan your December budget in Ghana:
List Your Income
Start by listing all the sources of income you expect to receive in December. This could include your salary, any bonuses, or extra income from side gigs or businesses.
Identify Fixed Expenses
List the fixed monthly expenses that you can’t avoid, such as rent or mortgage payments, utilities, transportation, and insurance premiums. Be sure to account for any bills that might be due in December.
Allocate a portion of your budget for holiday-related expenses. This can include gifts, decorations, travel expenses if you plan to visit family or go on a vacation, and special holiday meals.
Food and Groceries
Plan your grocery budget for December, considering the extra food you’ll need for holiday gatherings and special meals. Don’t forget to include everyday groceries as well.
Entertainment and Activities
If you plan to attend events or engage in recreational activities during December, allocate funds for tickets, outings, and entertainment.
Decide how much you want to spend on gifts for family and friends. Make a list of people you want to buy gifts for and set a reasonable spending limit for each person.
If you’ll be traveling during the holidays, budget for transportation expenses such as fuel, public transport fares, or flight tickets. Also, consider any additional costs like parking fees or tolls.
Set aside a small portion of your budget as an emergency fund. This can help cover unexpected expenses that may arise during the month.
If you have outstanding debts, make sure to budget for minimum payments or more if possible.
Don’t forget to save a portion of your income. It’s important to continue saving even during the holiday season. You can allocate a specific amount or a percentage of your income to savings.
Track Your Spending
As the month progresses, keep track of your expenses to ensure you’re staying within your budget. There are various budgeting apps available that can help you with this.
Adjust as Needed
If you overspend in one category, try to make up for it by cutting back in another. Flexibility is key to staying on track.
Reflect and Plan Ahead
After December, take some time to reflect on your spending and financial goals. Use what you learn to create a budget for the coming year.
What To Know Before Planning Your December Trip to Ghana
In Ghana, Akan is the most widely spoken language, with English coming in second. Even though the majority of the locals may not speak English well, they should be able to understand anything basic you ask. You can navigate using English in the capital city of Accra and other major cities like Kumasi, Takoradi, Cape Coast, and more.
It is also best to master the fundamentals of Akan so that you can greet people and return the favor. Locals will be more eager to show you around as a result. You can use Google for assistance or establish a few acquaintances from Ghanaians on social media before your trip.
The majority of the population here in Ghana are wonderfully kind, diligent, patient, and helpful people. When strangers see you as a tourist, they usually volunteer to translate bus announcements, give you directions, take you out for drinks, or show you around.
Ghana’s Weather in December
Ghana’s weather in December can vary depending on the region within the country, but generally, December falls within the dry season in Ghana. Here’s what you can expect in different parts of Ghana during December:
Coastal Regions (Accra, Takoradi, Cape Coast)
Temperature: Coastal regions have relatively stable temperatures throughout the year. In December, you can expect daytime temperatures to range from 26°C to 32°C (79°F to 89°F).
Rainfall: December is considered a dry month in coastal areas, with very little rainfall. You can expect mostly dry and sunny weather.
Northern Regions (Tamale, Bolgatanga)
Temperature: The northern regions of Ghana experience a more pronounced dry season. Daytime temperatures can reach between 30°C and 36°C (86°F to 97°F) in December.
Rainfall: December is a dry month in the northern regions, with minimal to no rainfall.
Central Ghana (Kumasi)
Temperature: In Kumasi and the central part of the country, temperatures in December can range from 26°C to 32°C (79°F to 89°F).
Rainfall: December is generally dry in central Ghana, with occasional brief showers.
It’s important to note that while December is part of the dry season, weather patterns can vary from year to year. Additionally, Harmattan winds from the Sahara Desert can bring dry and dusty conditions to the northern regions and sometimes even affect central and coastal areas. It’s advisable to check the local weather forecast closer to your travel date for the most accurate and up-to-date information.
Is Ghana Expensive During December?
Everyone travels in different ways, so it’s hard to say exactly how much you could spend to visit Ghana. Compared to other visitors, your travel budget in Ghana may be higher or lower. However, I can’t predict how much you would spend each day if you were in Ghana.
Depending on where you want to stay while traveling to Ghana, it may be more affordable than usual. Although getting around in Accra or Kumasi can be a touch pricey, it won’t spoil your travel plan as your currency rate can help especially if you are coming from Europe.
If you travel on a budget, you can survive on around USD 20 per day or even less, depending on what you will be doing during the day or where you will eat.
Cedi is the alternate currency used in Ghana. Since some people might not accept or even understand the dollar, you should exchange or convert your money into cedis. It is essential to seek someone you know for the best converting offer in town even though every bank or forex can convert it for you. As a result of the reduced conversion rate, I advise you to change your currency to Cedi.
Where to Stay in Ghana in December
Ghana welcomes visitors at any time and provides every kind of lodging imaginable. From the finest Airbnb apartments, treehouses, five-star hotels, and resorts. The cost of lodging in Ghana may differ depending on whether you stay in Accra or Kumasi or anywhere else. Others are less expensive but their prices might also increase during the peak season and significant holidays, like this Christmas. You don’t have to spend a fortune on lodging in Ghana, though.
Most tourists are familiar with how to find affordable lodging wherever. Here are some examples to aid your planning if you are new to finding accommodations within your means.
Couchsurfing.com is another best option if you are a budget traveler. Make sure you read some reviews before selecting a host. You can also make some new friends online and ask if they will let you stay at their place when you visit. If you can get a friend, don’t forget to tip them when leaving.
Eating Ghanaian Food in December
Eating Ghanaian food can be a delightful culinary experience. Ghanaian cuisine is known for its rich flavors, diverse ingredients, and a variety of traditional dishes. Here are some popular Ghanaian dishes and tips on how to enjoy them:
Jollof Rice: Jollof rice is a one-pot dish made with rice, tomatoes, onions, and a blend of spices. It’s a staple at many Ghanaian gatherings. Enjoy it with fried or grilled chicken, fish, or beef.
Banku and Tilapia: Banku is a fermented corn and cassava dough served with grilled tilapia fish and a spicy pepper sauce. It’s a popular dish along the coast of Ghana.
Fufu and Light Soup: Fufu is made from cassava and plantain, pounded into a dough-like consistency. It’s often served with light soup, which can contain meat, fish, or vegetables. To eat it, tear off a small piece of fufu, shape it with your fingers, and dip it into the soup.
Waakye: Waakye is a beloved Ghanaian dish made from rice and beans, cooked with millet leaves, and served with various accompaniments such as fried plantains, spaghetti, and a spicy pepper sauce.
Kelewele: Kelewele is a popular street food made from spicy fried plantains. It’s a flavorful and often spicy snack or side dish.
Groundnut Soup with Fufu or Rice: Groundnut soup is a peanut-based soup with vegetables and your choice of protein, such as chicken or fish. It’s commonly served with fufu or rice.
Chinchinga (Kebabs): Ghanaian kebabs are grilled skewers of marinated meat, typically beef or chicken, served with spicy pepper sauce and onions.
Red Red: Red Red is a hearty stew made with black-eyed peas, palm oil, and fried plantains. It’s a flavorful and filling dish.
Ghanaian Snacks: Don’t forget to try some Ghanaian snacks like fried plantain chips, roasted maize (corn on the cob), and “bofrot” (a type of fried doughnut).
Beverages: Ghana offers a range of beverages, including palm wine, Sobolo (hibiscus tea), and refreshing fruit juices like pineapple and mango.
When eating Ghanaian food, it’s common to eat with your right hand, as it is considered the clean hand. Also, be prepared for some spiciness, as many Ghanaian dishes use hot peppers and spices. If you’re not accustomed to spicy food, you can ask for milder versions.
Lastly, exploring local food markets and street vendors can be a great way to experience authentic Ghanaian cuisine. Don’t hesitate to ask locals for recommendations and enjoy the vibrant and diverse flavors of Ghana.
How to Spend on Meals
Some of these luxury restaurants don’t even sell expensive food, you can get a meal for just USD 15 at a luxury restaurant. You can easily be full after eating one plate, so restaurant food here in Ghana doesn’t cost much.
If you are bored with some international cuisines, you can try some of our local cuisines like fufu, Ampasi, waakye, or even Gari and more. You can ask the seller what they are made of, and they will be very happy to explain everything to you.
However, if you are looking to try some local cuisines, you can pay $2 or $3 more to have the seller deliver your food with a drink to the table.
Transportation System in Ghana
Ghana offers many forms of transportation, from low-cost airlines to buses, public minibusses (Trotro), taxis, online taxis (Uber and Bolt), and rental cars. Traveling around Ghana is generally very easy and cheap.
Flying around Ghana can be a little expensive for locals, but not expensive for tourists. Most domestic flights are often more comfortable than some long-distance buses. But flights can’t go everywhere in Ghana, it is only the big cities, Accra, Kumasi, Cape Coast, Takoradi, Ho, Tamale, and Sunyani. You can get a flight starting around USD 35 by booking a budget airline in advance. The price can go high a little depending on the season (December).
Car Rentals in Ghana
Wop3car.com searches all the big car rental companies and finds the best price. This is probably the easiest way to rent a car in Ghana. Pre-booking a car online will cost you about $50 a day, and many of Ghana’s roads are a little bad, so be extra careful when driving.
Online Taxis (Uber, Bolt, and Yango)
Online taxis don’t work everywhere; they are active in the big cities, Accra, Kumasi, Takoradi, and Cape Coast. It is also affordable and very easy to get around with online taxis. You just have to select a location, and the driver will take you to your destination. Online taxis charge according to the distance.
If you’re on a tight budget, you might want to use a Trotro to get around. These shared minibusses/vans connect different towns, and you ride along with others, tell the driver where you want to get out and pay once you reach your destination. They normally take the fares before or after it starts to move. Other riders will also love to help you get to your destination. The price varies based on distance, so don’t forget to ask for the price or take your change from the driver’s conductor (locals call them ”Mate”)
Buses in Ghana
When traveling long distances between cities, a comfortable option is to use Ghana’s fantastic VIP Transport System (trusted brand). Buses have AC, reclining seats, and Akan language movies. They are faster & more comfortable than Trotro for long distances. Some of these Minibusses also travel a long distance, but it is best to use these big buses as a tourist for your safety.
Taxi drivers in Ghana generally don’t have meters, so ask the price before you get in and also ask the driver if he can take you to where you’re going. Some drivers don’t know everywhere.
What to Wear During December in Ghana
December in Ghana is generally warm and dry, making it a great time to visit. However, the weather can vary slightly depending on the region you are in, as Ghana has a tropical climate. Here are some clothing recommendations for December in Ghana:
Ghana is typically warm in December, so lightweight and breathable clothing is essential. Consider packing items like cotton t-shirts, linen shirts, and shorts for comfort during the day.
Since it can get quite sunny during the day, bring sunglasses, a wide-brimmed hat, and sunscreen to protect yourself from the sun’s rays.
If you plan to visit coastal areas or enjoy beach activities, don’t forget to pack your swimwear.
While it’s warm during the day, evenings can be slightly cooler, especially in the northern regions. Bring a light sweater or a long-sleeve shirt for the evenings and early mornings.
December is generally a dry month in Ghana, but there can still be occasional showers. It’s a good idea to pack a small umbrella or a rain jacket just in case.
Bring comfortable and breathable footwear for walking and exploring, such as sandals or lightweight sneakers.
Ghana is a conservative country, and it’s important to respect the local culture. When visiting towns and cities, it’s a good idea to wear modest clothing, such as knee-length skirts or shorts and T-shirts with sleeves, to show respect for local customs and traditions.
In some areas, especially near bodies of water, mosquitoes can be a nuisance. Pack insect repellent to protect yourself from bug bites.
Remember that specific clothing needs may vary based on your activities and the region you plan to visit in Ghana. Be sure to check the weather forecast for the specific locations you’ll be traveling to in order to pack accordingly. Additionally, it’s a good idea to consult with locals or your accommodation for any region-specific clothing recommendations.
What to Do in December in Ghana
During your visit to Ghana in December, there is a lot to see and do. Ghana is always bursting with enjoyable events, from music to cultural festivals. A chance to view some of Ghana’s historical sites is provided by traveling in December. This is the ultimate list of things to do in December in Ghana.
All Black Party
Get ready to experience the party of the year as the All-Black Party returns with a bang! This December, mark your calendar for an unforgettable night filled with the hottest beats, including Hip Hop, R&B, Amapiano, and Afrobeats. Whether you’re a music aficionado or just looking to dance the night away, this event promises to deliver an electrifying atmosphere that will keep you on your feet from dusk to dawn.
As if that’s not exciting enough, here’s the cherry on top: VISA cardholders are in for a treat with a 10% discount on ticket prices. It’s the perfect opportunity to gather your friends and make lasting memories at this spectacular event. From the moment you step through the doors, you’ll be immersed in a world of music, lights, and pure entertainment.
Join us at the All-Black Party and let loose on the dancefloor, surrounded by fellow partygoers who share your passion for music and celebration. This December, the party scene will never be the same again!
In its fourth year, Afrowave is back and bigger than ever, ready to set the stage ablaze with the infectious beats of Amapiano and Afrobeats. This highly anticipated event is a testament to the thriving African music industry, showcasing the incredible talent and creativity that has taken the world by storm.
Prepare to hit the dancefloor and let the rhythm move you as some of the top Deejays and hypemen from the UK, Ghana, and Nigeria spin the hottest tracks of the year. With their electrifying mixes and contagious energy, they’ll keep you grooving all night long.
Afrowave 2023 is set to take place at The Pitch Lounge, nestled along Airport Road in Accra. This venue promises an unforgettable night of music, dance, and celebration, making it a must-attend event for music enthusiasts and partygoers alike. Don’t miss out on this opportunity to immerse yourself in the pulsating heart of the African music scene. Get ready to dance, connect, and experience the magic of Afrowave!
AfroNation is a music festival series that was launched in 2019. It focuses on celebrating the vibrant and diverse music and culture of the African continent and the African diaspora. The festival typically features a star-studded lineup of artists from various genres, making it a prominent event on the global music calendar.
AfroNation has gained popularity for its energetic performances, beachfront locations, and the opportunity it provides for music lovers to immerse themselves in the rich sounds of African and diaspora music. It has also contributed to the growth and recognition of Afrobeats and other African music genres on the international stage.
Enjoy Welcome2Ghana @ Garage Lounge And Bar
Celebrate the holiday season in style at the music extravaganza hosted at the enchanting GARAGE LOUNGE AND BAR, nestled along Boundary Road in the heart of Accra. This festive event promises a delightful escape into the holiday spirit, with soulful melodies and lively rhythms that will warm your heart.
From the moment you step into the venue, you’ll be greeted by an ambiance filled with holiday cheer. Gather with friends and family, sip on festive cocktails, and let the music carry you away. It’s the perfect way to kick off the holiday season in Accra, creating cherished memories that will last a lifetime.
Rock The Boat Ghana Event
Prepare for an unforgettable maritime experience at the exclusive all-white attire boat cruise, a coveted ticket-only event that has consistently sold out in recent years. Set against the breathtaking backdrop of Ghana’s coastal beauty, this soiree promises to be a glamorous affair.
As you board the luxurious vessel, anticipate mingling with the country’s elite socialites. Decked out in your finest all-white ensemble, you’ll become part of a high-society gathering like no other. The sea breeze, rhythmic waves, and vibrant atmosphere will make this cruise a memorable highlight of your social calendar. Secure your ticket for a chance to sail in style.
What to See in Ghana in December
Explore Kwame Nkrumah Memorial Park and Mausoleum
The Kwame Nkrumah Memorial Park, which is both a park and a museum, is named for Dr. Kwame Nkrumah, the first president of Ghana and one of the greatest Africanists and humanists in history. The first president of Ghana and his wife Fathia Nkrumah are buried in the mausoleum, which was constructed by Ghanaian architect Don Arthur. It is fashioned to resemble a sword buried in the ground, a symbol of the Akan people, a native ethnic group of Ghana.
The late president’s grave is properly lit thanks to the marble mausoleum floors, which reflect the light from the strategically placed skylight. The edifice itself is a monument to Nkrumah, who even in death continues to inspire and lead the people and the land via the beauty of nature and the sea around the Park.
Visit the Labadi Beach
Who says you have to travel outside of the city to access the beach? Labadi Beach, often called La Pleasure Beach, is located in Accra’s neighborhood of Labadi. It is without a doubt Ghana’s most visited beach, although it is always kept impeccably clean. A wonderfully gorgeous scene is created by the coconut palms scattered along the clean white shore.
The beach is lined with bars and street food sellers selling a range of regional specialties such as kebabs, tilapia, Jollof, and locally produced alcohol. Admission is free if you are staying at one of the seaside hotels; otherwise, it costs 2.30 USD per person.
Visit Cape Castle
Visiting Cape Coast Castle in December is undoubtedly one of the most enriching and culturally significant experiences you can have in Ghana. This historic fortress, perched on the shores of the Gulf of Guinea, serves as a poignant reminder of Ghana’s complex history and its role in the transatlantic slave trade. December offers ideal weather conditions for exploring this UNESCO World Heritage Site, with warm temperatures and a pleasant coastal breeze.
During your visit, you can immerse yourself in the harrowing history of the castle by touring its dungeons, chambers, and the infamous “Door of No Return.” It’s a profoundly moving experience that provides valuable insights into the horrors of the past and the resilience of the human spirit.
In addition to its historical significance, Cape Coast Castle also offers breathtaking views of the ocean, making it an ideal spot for reflection and contemplation. December provides a quieter atmosphere compared to the peak tourist season, allowing for a more intimate and contemplative experience. Don’t miss the opportunity to explore this emblematic site and pay your respects to the countless lives affected by the transatlantic slave trade while enjoying the pleasant December weather in Ghana.
Explore The Nzulezu Village
True or false: Nzulezu village is the most beautiful village in Ghana. Surprise – the answer is false (lol). But it’s the most visited village in Ghana. The country’s most visited village is a village built on water. Located some 90km West of Takoradi and is a strong town that cannot be called an island or a community on the land. The village is found right on the water called Lake Tadane
It was nominated as a UNESCO Heritage site and has grown over the decades in terms of popularity and has become one of the most visited destinations in Ghana and Africa. Exploring the Nzulezu Village is one of the best places to visit in Ghana