BOTI FALLS- A GIFT FROM MOTHER NATURE TO GHANA
The Boti Falls is found in the Easter region of Ghana, specifically at a town called Boti in the Manya krobo district. It is found at the heart of the forest reserve at huhunya, It is a twin fall with one being a male and the other a female.
This fall gained a lot of attention in Ghana when President Kwame Nkrumah visited it himself and declared it as a special tourist site in Ghana in the 1960s, as a result it has its own pride as a place of attraction in Ghana
If you choose to use a guide at Boti, you will see three sites at the park – the umbrella rock, the three-headed palm tree and of course the falls themselves.
In order to get to umbrella rock, you will to hike up a mountain. People usually refer to this mountain as the Stubborn Mountain. At first, I didn’t really understand why, but after we reached the second portion of the hike, I felt like the “stubborn” description was an understatement.
The mountain is entirely rough rock, covered in dirt which makes the climb a slippery one. At some points, you feel like you are looking straight up at the rock you are about to climb and you rely on the trees along the pathway to help you up,
Along the way, we stopped at a cave that was thousands of years old. This cave acted as a means of shelter for cavemen thousands of years ago. The rock is extremely hard and for this reason, has barely eroded over time.
After hiking up the mountain, you finally reach the umbrella rock. The sweaty walk was worth it. Umbrella rock is literally a giant natural rock that overlooks the hills and is shaped like an umbrella as well as serving the purpose of an umbrella
The shape of the rock provides plenty of shade while hikers grab a sip of water and rest. After you catch your breath from the hike, it is simply taken away again by the view. The only way to describe the view is as the famous scene from The Lion King – this must have been what Simba was staring out onto. Tourists often sit under this umbrella rock and take pictures as well as enjoy the breeze.
There are people who live at the top of the mountain as well. They live on lands around the umbrella rock and also make a small living from the tourists who want to climb the ladders on top of the rock or climb the three-headed palm tree. They sell water sachets and goodies along the way for tired travelers.
Amazingly, there is a three headed palm tree, this tree, like umbrella rock and Boti Falls, has important meaning to the indigenous people in the area. The sacred stump under the palm tree serves a special purpose – it is believed that women who sit on the stump will have twins when they give birth.
Boti Falls is a natural wonder. I find Niagara Falls in Canada beautiful but there is something that is taken away by the commercialization of the attraction. The lights behind the falls and Clifton Hill are unique, but the simplicity and serenity of Boti Falls was a whole new experience.
After climbing 250 steps down to the falls, you find two streams of water flowed over the 33-meter cliff of the falls. The indigenous people see the falls as a sacred place – the left fall is female and the right is male.
When the rains are heavy, the falls flow much faster. If the falls flow calmly then you able to swim, which will be much fun after the sweaty walk up Stubborn Mountain?
My adventure to Boti Falls was great but, based on my experience, I put together a six point list of things travelers should know about the falls before visiting.
- Wear good hiking shoes.
Stubborn Mountain would be nearly impossible to climb in flip flops or anything that doesn’t cover your entire foot. Wear a sturdy hiking or running shoe that will also prevent ants from nipping at your feet and lower legs.
- Bring water – lots of it.
It’s nice to have it during the hike and the breaks you take along the way.
- Wear long pants.
Don’t wear shorts on this trip – the mosquitoes, flies and ants will eat you alive (looool). Although pants are not the most appropriate clothing for 35-degree weather, they will help protect your legs from the insects.
- Bring your camera Boti Falls and the Stubborn Mountain provide great photo opportunities; lovely scene and locations can give you the best image taking pleasure which will be one of your best memories to keep.
- Make sure all of your fellow travelers are physically fit.
If you go to Boti Falls to just see this falls, this tip doesn’t apply to you. However, if you plan on making your way to umbrella rock and the three-headed palm tree, make sure all of your travelers have the stamina to withstand the challenging hike.
- Have fun!
Boti Falls is incredible and an experience you will not regret.
Extract of this article is credited to Michelle Zilio
(Journalist, recent Carleton University journalism graduate)