AIA Tours: land

Ghana & Benin: Exploring West Africa

Tour Dates: August 3-19, 2021 in the planning stages (17 days)

Tour Leader(s): Trevor Marchand ,

This tour is currently in the planning stages for the 2021 departure. To be notified first when it is complete, please call 800-748-6262 or email

Join AIA Tours and professor Trevor Marchand as we learn about the effects of the former Atlantic slave trade on West Africa and the resilience of the people, towns, and cultures forever changed by it. Explore the dramatic landscapes that helped shape the different tribes and kingdoms of West Africa, from the rugged coastline of Ghana and Benin to the southern forests of Ghana. Discover the architecture of towns, monuments, and mosques in Sahelian, traditional Sudanese mud-brick, and Portuguese Baroque styles. Ghana and Benin are rich in culture and history, and their people are warm and enthusiastic about sharing their histories, cultures, and traditions.


  • Visit the UNESCO World Heritage sites of Cape Coast Castle, one of about 40 “slave castles” built on the Gold Coast of West Africa by European traders; and the Royal Palaces of Abomey, the palaces of 11 of the 12 kings who ruled the Kingdom of Abomey.
  • See neighborhoods, towns, and monuments that played an important role during the former Atlantic slave trade; Jamestown quarter in Accra, whose colonial history can still be seen; Elmina, a fishing port town known for its role in the slave trade; and Gwollu, where a mud defensive wall was built to defend against slave raiders.
  • Experience the Akwasidae Festival, held every 42 days by the Ashanti King; as well as Vodun ceremonies in both Grand Popo and Ouidah, Benin.
  • Explore the best game park in Ghana, Mole National Park, by participating in two game drives with the opportunity to encounter elephants and other wildlife up close.
  • See mosques built in Sahelian style mud with protruding timber armature; and Portuguese Baroque style, which travelled back to West Africa with freed former slaves from Brazil.
  • In addition to your knowledgeable and congenial AIA study leader, an anthropologist and architectural historian, you will be accompanied by excellent local guides and an expert trip manager who will handle all of the logistics so you can relax, enjoy, and learn. 


This tour is currently in the planning stages for the 2021 departure. To be notified first when it is complete before others, please call 800-748-6262 or email

For reservations or questions, please email us at (and include your full name) or call us toll-free at (800) 748-6262 (toll: 603-756-2884).

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