Kakum National Park Records Drastic Reduction in Patronage
Statistics made available to the Ghana News Agency by the Ghana Heritage Conservation Trust, managers of the Kakum National Park indicate that patronage of the site has significantly reduced over the past years.
In 2014, a total of 439,323 tourists visited the Park, but the figures reduced significantly to 270,779 in 2016 and subsequently reduced drastically to 141,053 in 2016.
Patronage saw a further drastic reduction in 2017 as a total of 113,830 tourists visited the park as against the 141,053 recorded in the previous year.
Mr Martin Alfa, the Executive Director of the Ghana Heritage Conservation Trust, said of the number that visited in the year under review, 102,723 used the canopy walkway, while the rest only visited the National Park.
He said 38,801 Ghanaian children visited the Park last year as against 58,190 in 2016, whiles 1,632 non-Ghanaian children were also at the facility as against 1,939 in the previous year.
He said 12,209 Ghanaian adults visited the Park as compared to 12,601in the previous year, with 9,919 non-Ghanaian adults visiting last year as against 10,582 in 2016.
Officials at the Park have attributed the consistent significant reduction of patronage to the poor nature of the road leading to the site.
The deteriorating nature of the 30 kilometre -road from Cape Coast leading to the site could extend the driving time to over an hour instead of about 30 minutes.
The Kakum National Park, which has a canopy walkway, located at Abrafo in the Twifo Hemang District of the Central Region is one of the leading tourists’ sites in the country.
The canopy walkway had been the major site of attraction at the Park for the past two decades with some Ghanaians asserting that the lack of other attractions than the canopy walkway was another factor serving as a disincentive for people to visit.
Ghanaian adults were charged GHC 25.00, foreign adults paid Gh¢50.00 and non-Ghanaian SHS students paid Gh¢40.00 and Ghanaian tertiary students paid Gh¢30.00 when they visit the park.
The Kakum National Park covers 375 square-kilometres. It is jointly managed by the Ghana Heritage Conservation Trust and the Wild Life Division of the Forestry Commission.
The Park serves as a home to elephants and more than 800 rare species of birds, butterflies, reptiles, amphibians and monkeys, such as the endangered Diana Monkey, and the exclusive Bongo Antelopes.