Amateur Pilots Fill The Skies In Ghanaian Paragliding Fest

unnamedFrom Good Friday to Easter Monday, an annual ritual takes place in Ghana quite unlike the egg rolling contests found in the U.S.

People from around the world come to launch themselves into the air from Ghana’s second highest mountain. The annual paragliding festival is organized by Ghana’s Tourism Board and this year celebrates its 10th anniversary.

The starting point for a tandem flight is a 600 meter (1,969 feet) high ridge. Pilot and passenger face into the wind and slowly run until the glider fills with air and forms a sail above them.

Previously unknown in Africa, the sport began as an event to boost domestic tourism in 2005. It has now gained fame far beyond Ghana’s borders and has become an international festival.

Some 7,000 visitors make the trip to Kwehu including Nigerians, Togolese, Ivorians and Burkinables.

A second paragliding festival has been launched in the Volta region where the Likpe mountains serve as a border between Ghana and Togo. The Lipke mountains and the Likpe Ancestral caves are an eco-tourism site filled with waterfalls, forests, beaches, caves and a monkey sanctuary.

It was also the home of the Marabou and Muslim teacher Alhaji Oumarou Titibrika who set up one of the oldest Islamic universities in West Africa and was a famed Oracle. The old town Kete Krachi was buried under the Volta Lake during the construction of the Akosombo Dam and the town was re-located.

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