Accra is known to be a very busy commercial centre with many activities taking place, but in the heart of it also lies a rare sight of ecological beauty called the Legon Botanical Gardens.
The 49.89-hectare garden is gradually becoming a hot destination for tourism in Accra due to the numerous fun and educational activities it offers.
Mr. Charles Amoako Asare, Manager of the Gardens, said various academic institutions visit the garden to collect samples of their plants, and soil, among other natural resources for research purposes.
“Lots of institutions, including the Atomic Research Institute and some departments of the University of Ghana, come here and pick samples from the dam and environment for research purposes.
“We do have an alliance with BirdLife Ghana of the Ghana Wildlife Society where they bring groups to do bird watching at the gardens,” he said.
Mr. Asare further stated that the garden provides several recreational activities for the public and there were plans in place to add new ones.
“There are social and recreational activities which people can explore, including canopy walks, bird watching, canoeing, ziplining, and an event woodland where people can host their events in the woods.
“A pleasant surprise awaits visitors to the gardens as they would be thrilled with the kind of social and educational aspects the garden provides,” Mr. Asare said.
He added that children who often visit the gardens are taught how important it is to keep their environment clean and also inculcate this in them.
He was optimistic that the gardens had a huge potential to boost domestic tourism as they currently attract over 12,000 locals every month.
In an interview with the Ghana News Agency, Mr Kofi Boakye, the Chief Executive Officer of the Legon Botanical Gardens, talked about how the gardens had been redeveloped, as it was once a huge rubbish dump yard back in the 90s.
“I am certainly overwhelmed with the transformation of the gardens, something I didn’t dream of at the start.
“It was a huge site for the refuse dump, and many people thought it would be impossible to redevelop this place, but with the help of some people, the gardens has been redeveloped into a place where people can come and have fun, and it also employs more than 50 people,” he said.
The Legon Botanical Gardens provide lots of thrills, including an opportunity to walk on the widest canopy walkway in Ghana, which is 13m high and 138m long.
A ride on the canoe provides an amazing cruising experience for visitors on the dam, who would often see some lizard species, and squirrels, among others.