Chenku Waterfall – the only Waterfall in the Greater Accra Region of Ghana
Chenku Waterfall – the only Waterfall in the Greater Accra Region of Ghana.
Chenku waterfall is the only waterfall in the Greater Accra Region of Ghana. The waterfall is located in a suburb of the capital city of Ghana called Dodowa. It is a 34.4 Kilometers (55 minutes) drive from the city of Accra and about a 25 to 30 minutes walk from the Dodowa Township.
Dodowa is a historical town which is known for its involvement in the Katamanso war of 1826, an Anglo-Ashanti war. A war that ended in the mystical Dodowa forest, hence making the town popular in Ghana and its neighbouring countries.
This war brought a popular adage among locals which states that ‘One does not know what is in the Dodowa forest’. Old paths around the waterfall are perceived to be war routes for soldiers who fought alongside the British army to defeat the Ashanti people, though some of these paths were purposely made for hunting and travelling. The town is also known for its major role in the slave trade during the major transatlantic slave season.
In the heart of the historical rainforest reserves of Dodowa is a beautiful waterfall which is named ‘Chenku’. ‘Chenku’ literally means togetherness, a phrase which is popularly known among the Akans of the Eastern part of Ghana. The waterfall flows on an igneous rock which is about 100 plus feet tall and surrounded by that same type of rock. (1√)
The rocks around the waterfall come in different shapes and sizes. Some of these rocks are in form of caves and serves as a home for available wildlife. These rocks do not provide shelter for only wildlife but some local birds as well. The water flows on a tall rock and settles down the rock before flowing to other parts of the town. It joins other streams at a point before entering the sea finally. Water from the Chenku stream is used for domestic and farming activities. Some dwellers drink, cook, and wash with the stream.
The environment is made up of different kinds of trees which come in different sizes. The trees form a canopy that provides shade at the waterfall and on the paths leading to the place. Aside from these canopy trees, the waterfall is surrounded by a rainforest full of wildlife. Animals such as monkeys, colourful birds, lizards, different types of ants, and snakes, among others are often seen. Monkeys might only come to the stream to drink water when the environment is very quiet. There are beautiful white domestic fowls that dwell at the borders of the forest and sleep in the stone caves.
These local fowls feed on worms at the banks of the stream. People sometimes feed them with the leftovers of their food whenever they pay a visit. It is very interesting when one visits the Chenku Waterfall early in the morning. The melodies of the birds and the sound of the water flowing or the rocks make the moment special.
Routes leading to the waterfall are made of farmlands. Farmers around the area grow plantain, banana, pawpaw, cassava, maize and, cocoa. The larger part of the land is rocky and so cocoa is grown at the banks of the stream and in the valleys where there are only a few or no rocks. Other fruits like mango and pear are also grown on the land. It is very green during the rainy season. The little rocks painted white on the path make the journey more interesting.
The Chenku waterfall flows on different types of rocks from Tutu in the Eastern Region of Ghana. It passes through the ‘Adom waterfall’ (The Twin Fall) at Obosomase, a great traditional town in the eastern part of the country. The water possesses minerals and healing abilities. It is safe for drinking and rejuvenates the body after a bath.
Locally, the stream is used for baptism and other religious affairs. Some people visit the place to pray to their God when the place is very silent. Religious activities usually happen early in the morning, sometimes before opening time. This is to give room to visitors who come for other purposes.
The waterfall is referred to as one of the deities of the Obosomase people. It used to be a sacred ground for the practice of their customs and traditions. Divine performances were shifted to another part of the stream when the place was official opened as a tourist site. Even till now, locals respect and obey traditional laws of the water. It is well known across the town that the water forbids blood.
Due to this, it is considered taboo to enter into the water with fresh cuts on your body. Women in their period are not allowed to go into the water. These rules have been there for more than a century and it still works till today. It is believed that any woman who enters the water during her period contaminates the entire stream and one might face spiritual consequences.
Currently, the waterfall is operated by a private body but regulated by the guidelines of the Ghana tourist board. Chenku waterfall operates all day. It opens for visitors at 10:00 am and closes at 5:30 pm GMT. There is an entrance where visitors pay before having access to the place.
Foreign visitors pay GH¢10 for adults and GH¢5.00 for children while Ghanaians pay GH¢5.00 for adults and GH¢2.00 for children. A foreigner in possession of a personal camera pays GH¢30.00 in addition to entrance charges before going in. A Ghanaian citizen with a personal camera pays GH¢25.00 in addition to the entrance charges.
The price of anyone in possession of a professional camera for business purposes has different charges. Terms and conditions regarding payments will be explained in detail at the entrance.
After making required payments every visitor is allowed the right to tour the environment freely without any interference. Tour guides are available to assist anyone who needs any form of help regarding the dos and don’ts of the place and other things.
Visitors get the chance to listen to interesting historical events of the place and many more. Settlers of Dodowa warmly welcome any visitor and treats them with care. We hope to see you there one day!
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Kindly leave a comment with your email if you have to do further inquiries or get in touch with operators of the Chenku Waterfall.