Boris Kodjoe,Idris Elba & other top Hollywood stars celebrate 2018 Christmas in Ghana
These stars, as led by American-Ghanaian actor, Boris Kodjoe include Rosario Dawson, Diggy Simmons, Anthony Anderson, Jidenna, Michael Jai White, Nicole Ari Parker, Idris Elba among others.
We guess by now you must be wondering what these stars have actually been up to during this their Christmas vacation to Ghana.
Well, have a look at the photos and videos below and check out how these Hollywood celebrities enjoyed their Ghanaian Christmas.
Boris Kodjoe who has a Ghanaian father, seems to have had the most fulfilling Christmas vacation in the homeland because he took to Instagram to express how much he loves the country and how once again he could connect to his real identity by walking on the same streets where his father grew up.
Hollywood actress, Nicole Aris Parker, is the wife of Boris Kodjoe and she didn’t stay back in the U.S but came along with her husband and their children to enjoy a Ghanaian Christmas. The family has already been in Ghana earlier last year and this was like a second coming but Nicole isn’t making look so as she’s seen taking photos and enjoying the Ghanaian environment never like before.
British-Ghanaian actor, Idris Elba whom People’s Magazine named as “2018’s Sexiest Man Alive” was also in his motherland he wasn’t left out of the fun. Idris was spotted at the Rapperholic concert among shows having a good time.
23-year-old American Rapper and actor, Diggy Simmons, who is a nephew of entertainment businessman, Russell Simmons, has also been in town and he’s never hidden how excited he has been to visit Ghana.
Comedian and “Blackish” star actor, Anthony Anderson, who has hosted the BET Awards before celebrated his Christmas in Ghana and he never had a dull moment from visiting tourist sites and attending a couple of shows.
Michael Jai White who is famous for films such as Spawn and Top Cop also visited Ghana for the first time from the pictures he’s shared so far on social media, he has no regrets of choosing to enjoy his Christmas in Ghana.
Rosario Isabel Dawson, an American actress, producer and political activist is also among the long list of Hollywood stars in Ghana where ushered into the New Year.
Apart from attending the government-backed “Full Circle Festival” event which was established to honour Ghanaian ancestry by celebrating the country’s heritage and generational legacy, these stars had more fun than just visiting home but having a memorable time which well boosts Ghana’s tourism culture.
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My love for #Ghana is part of my identity. It's in my DNA, in my soul. I come back here because I want to feel connected to that part of me. I feel whole. I feel his spirit with me as I'm walking the streets he grew up on. This was his home. Now it is mine. Happy birthday Pop. RIP. #DrEricOfuateyKodjoe #Ghana #FullCircleFestival
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Happy Newyear my darlings May all you desire come to you !! There is nothing that you cannot do or achieve 2019 !! LETS CHANGE THE NARRATIVE OF THE GREAT CONTINENT AFRICA I Pledge ✋🏾!! I Stand here with President @nakufoaddo and my mother @valeriemorriscampbell #GHANA THE MORHERLAND #TRUE PARADISE #GRATEFUL #BLESSED #NAOMIAFRICA🇬🇭♥️♥️😘😘🙏🏾
Accra’s Afrochella – Where Afropunk Meets Coachella
Ghana’s Afrochella festival in the capital Accra is a captivating experience, featuring art and fashion installations, live painting, and mouthwatering dishes, all capped off by fantastic live performances. Read on for everything you need to know, courtesy of our Q&A with the festival’s founding members.
With respect to the ingenuity and available creative services in Africa, how does the theme and realization come together?
Afrochella is a celebration of Ghana’s diverse culture and the vibrant work of Ghanaian creatives, as well as entrepreneurs. The rising appeal of African art, cuisine, Afrobeats music and business acumen to patrons outside of Africa has been trendy in the past few years. Afrochella will crystallize these exciting moving parts as Africa’s number one cultural festival.
Tell us more about the impact. To what extent did the conceptual model achieve success?
The event boasts around 3,000+ attendees from all over the world, and garnered some 30,000 tweets among 5,000 individual users within a three-month time span. The event has trended on every platform (Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat) without any paid advertising.
Social media awareness, marketing and engagement have been imperative in your production. Who were some of the artists on the bill?
The music came from artists including Ebony (may her soul rest in peace), King Promise, Kwesi Authur, B4Bonah, Darkovibes, DJ Neptizzle, Mic Smith, Vision DJ, DopeNation, Kofie Carter, City Boy, Kojo Cue & Shaker, A.I. and Magnom.
Which celebrities attended the 2017 Afrochella?
Kwame Boateng, John Dumelo, Kofi Siriboe, Efya, Sandra Lambeck, PJKev, Vanessa Vanderpuye, Joycelyn Dumas, and Vanessa Gyan. Afrochella’s rise to becoming an influential brand is remarkable. What was the international and regional reach? Afrochella has attracted an audience from all over the world. In 2017, we had attendees from United States, Canada, Europe (United Kingdom, Netherlands, France, Switzerland, Denmark, Russia and Spain), Australia as well as other neighboring African countries including Nigeria, Togo, Benin, Cote d’Ivoire, Senegal, Guinea, South Africa and Kenya.
10 Reasons Why You Should Visit Ghana At Least Once
Perched on the edge of West Africa and a diverse and bustling nation with an international community and a fast-growing economy, Ghana offers a perfect gateway to the continent. There are many reasons to visit and receive an Akwaaba (welcome) from the locals; here are some of them
Ghana was the first sub-Saharan African nation to gain independence, becoming a republic in 1957 under the guidance of pan-Africanist and first president, Kwame Nkrumah. Soon afterwards, other nations followed suit, looking to Ghana for guidance and inspiration on how to bring together nations filled with diverse tribes and varied landscapes. Visit the National Museum of Ghana in Accra to get a full picture of the historical journey as well as Independence Square. If possible, join in the myriad of celebrations that take place every year on the first long weekend of March including the annual Asa Baako Festival that takes place on the beautiful beaches of Busua, Western Ghana.
Forts and Castles
Ghana is home to more historic forts and castles than any other African nation; a throwback to its tumultuous history of colonisation and slavery. The structures left behind are incredible (and sometimes harrowing) in terms of architecture and geography and stretch all along the coastline. They range from the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Cape Coast Castle to the English country-manor style of Fort Gross Fredericksburg. The dusty battlements of Fort Metal Cross at Dixcove is situated directly in the middle of a lively and colourful-fishing hub.
Domestic animal such as chickens, pygmy goats, and herds of cows driven by Malian traders can be quaint to see. While the colourful birds of paradise and parrots that occasionally flit past, it is the wildlife that recalls an earlier, less industrialised time in Ghanaian history. Water reef herons and cormorants flock in droves on the outskirts of the city near marshlands. Out by the Shai Hills Production Reserve, cheeky baboons surround and line the quiet road to the site; and at Kakum, the monkeys delight in their preserved swath of rainforest. Whilst up in the Northern Region, marvel at the closeness of the elephant herds at Mole National Park.
With an energetic music scene, a plethora of live venues and a wide range of artists covering hi life, hip life, Afrobeat, and more, music is an important part of everyday life in Ghana. The lively pub-style outdoor stylings of Republic Bar and Grill leads the way with their live performances on Wednesdays and constant stream of events and DJ led sets. +233 Jazz and Grill as well as old-school venue The Piano Bar feature soul and jazz from veterans of the industry. Clubs such as Twist, Carbon, and Duplex pump out current hits while encouraging club goers to dance all night long and catch a full weekend of live music and dancing at the annual Asa Baako Festival held each March.
Beach / Sea
Spanning 539 km (around 335 miles), Ghana’s coastline is immense and varied, lending different vibes for different times. In the city, the bars on the beach such as Tawala and Osikan teeter on rocks while Sandbox, less about sunbathing and water sports, lends itself to nighttime-club vibes and fun. Look outside the city, and pick from the beautiful lagoon at Keta, the unspoiled beauty of Cape Three Points, and the wonderful surf of Busua. Kokrobite, on the edges of Accra, is a surfer’s hub and known for its relaxed, weekend-party atmosphere. Meanwhile, Labadi combines a raucous-beach party each Thursday with a more laid-back vibe throughout the week complete with horse riding and the latest hits pumping background.
Rivers and Lakes
The largest man-made lake in the world, the Volta’s river stretches south from the Akosombo Dam to the northernmost reaches of the country and into Burkina Faso. Along the way, it threads its tributaries throughout most of the country providing gorgeous landscapes and islands along the way. In Kumasi, Lake Bosumtwe is a natural 8-km (about 5-mile) wide lake formed of an impact crater thought to be from an asteroid during the Pleistocene Period, and it provides an idyllic atmosphere. On the Accra plains, there are the Densu, Pra, and Ankroba Rivers among many others.
5 reasons tourists won’t want to skip a trip to Ghana in 2019
2019 marks the 400th anniversary of the start of slave trade in West Africa, and as the survivors of the descendants, Ghana is calling Black people of the diaspora home.
If it felt like everyone you knew was in Ghana over the holidays, you’re not alone. Friends and celebrities alike swarmed the capital city of Accra to usher in the New Year and live their best lives at vibrant festivals like Afrochella, which was hands down the country’s event of the season.
There’s no need to get a case of FOMO though. Ghana has declared 2019 the “Year of the Return,” for Black people around the diaspora. From soul-stirring tributes to the ancestors at the Full Circle Festival to concerts and festivals, there are plenty of opportunities for you to get in on the action.
Cherae Robinson, Founder of Tastemakers Africa, a disruptive travel company that is changing the typical narrative and giving travelers a new and experiential way to see Africa, couldn’t be more excited to see the increased interest in travel to the Continent, and is doing her part to make sure people don’t miss out on the festivities next year.
“Africa is 54 nations of amazing experiences. From the culture and history of Ghana and the beaches and safaris of Kenya to the landscapes and vibes of South Africa and beyond, it is the sleeper pick for Black travel in 2019,” she told ESSENCE. “Homegrown festivals and events that rival Coachella, welcoming arms of Black and brown people, and direct flights from the U.S. mean it’s finally time to go home, again and again.”
Still not sure Ghana should be on your travel list this year? Check out Robinson’s reasons why Black people everywhere need to return home to Ghana in 2019 and beyond
Pan Africanism is real in Ghana
A little history lesson: Kwame Nkrumah, Ghana’s first president studied at Lincoln University, an HBCU just outside of Philadelphia. While president, Mr. Nkrumah was host to many African-American and diaspora leaders from around the world including Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Malcolm X, W.E.B. Du Bois, Maya Angelou, and Muhammed Ali. He is often referred to as the father of Pan-Africanism, and that vision is felt throughout the city from Black Star Square to the W.E.B. Du Bois burial site and memorial. It is the perfect place to envision a united Africa and diaspora.
Ghana is LIT!
Ghana is going through a bit of a rebirth as a destination. Last year, The New York Times Magazine named Accra the coolest city in Africa, each August thousands of creatives and artists flock there for Chale Wote, the biggest street art festival in West Africa, and this past December all your favourite celebs (Idris Elba, Naomi Campbell, and Jidenna to name a few) descended on Ghana to connect with home and turn all the way up. From afrobeat in the club to special events like The Garden Party, to one of the fastest growing festivals on the continent Afrochella, there is no shortage of things to do and vibes to find.
The people are stunning
Do you know what comes from Ghana? Shea Butter. Do you know what makes melanin pop? Shea Butter. Put these two things together and you’ve got a land of melanin chocolate drips from chiselled men (beards and all) to beautiful queens. There is a serving of Ghana Jollof to admire for everyone.
Getting to Ghana is easy
Travel to Ghana is relatively simple when compared to other African nations. There are direct flights to Accra, the nation’s capital from NYC and Washington, D.C. Their new airport is super swanky and easy to navigate, English is the main language, and a lot of the food will be similar to foods from the South (except much spicier). With only a five hour time difference from the East Coast, it’s probably the best first African country to visit for a mix of authenticity, without being too intense. If you are worried about the visa wahala (colloquial West African term for worry or struggle), Ghana is one of the easiest in that regard too – the process and payment are done online and a rush visa can be secured in as little as 48 hours.
Because we need to be surrounded by ancestors right now
2019 marks the 400th Anniversary of the start of the Transatlantic Slave Trade, and it has been declared the “Year of Return” by the President of Ghana, Nana Akufo-Addo. Given the political and economic environments facing Black people around the world, reaching back home is just the medicine we need to get inspired to turn things around for ourselves and our communities. Sankofa is a word in the Twi language of Ghana that translates to “Go back and get it.” Twi is the language of the Asante, the most storied tribe in Ghana and makers of the original Kente cloth we know so well. Given that we are outchea making New Year’s resolutions about these coins, it is a good idea to sew those seeds at the place that birthed us all.
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