Tamale Off The Beaten Path Tips by Pieter11
Tamale Off The Beaten Path: 2 reviews and 8 photos
Singing and dancing in church
If you are in Ghana, or basically anywhere in West-Africa, you should at least once go to a church on a Sunday to see the service, or better: the celebration. When I was in Tamale I visited the church with the great name "Maranatha Charismatic Centre", in the east of the city.
The visit started around 10:00 with an hour of bible study. I never go to church, but still I was expected to join the lessons and talk along with the rest of the group. And after that, around 11:30, the real celebration starts. All the visitors are dressed up beautifully, with all the women wearing great, colourful dresses.
And after the mass started it is 2,5 hours of singing, dancing and listening to a prayer every once in a while. But especially the way the people are absorbed in the songs is great to see. They close their eyes, raise their hands to the air, and sing out loud, forgetting everything around them.
Be prepared that the first time you visit a new church you will be expected to come forward and introduce yourself to the rest of the church. And as long as you are white there is no way oof hiding, because you will probably be the only white person in.
The Chief of Fou
In Ghana they have a very different system of local government. They don't know a system with mayors or anything. Instead they have local Chiefs. A chief is someone who is chosen as a leader of a particular community, mostly coming from one family for generations in a row. The national government has to communicate with this Chief when they want to decide something on a local level.
In the centre of Tamale you will find a "Chief's Palace" that doesn't look very spectacular, and that is almost impossible to visit. But if you still are interested in visiting a Chief, you can try your luck in the other communities around Tamale, who all have their own Chief. I visited the local Chief of the community of Fou, just outside Tamale at the eastside of the city.
Just outside the centre at the leftside of the road you will see a small group of clay huts, with always a lot of people around it. This is the local "Chief's Palace". When I stopped there to take a picture, I was immediately invited to have a look around and to meet the Chief himself. He showed me his house, and the houses of his wifes, and of course all of his children.
It was very nice to have a look around in the REAL Ghanaian houses and of course to meet an important person like this. As a "thank you" I developed some of the pictures I took there and gave them to him. And I don't think there is a way to make him more happy then by giving him pictures of him and his family.
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