The pomp and pageantry of the Ashanti Kingdom is most vividly brought to life during beautiful Adae festivals, which are held at the palace once every six weeks. These are occasions when the king, riding in a palanquin and adored with all his gold ornaments, comes out to receive the homage of his sub-chiefs and people.
On A Paparazzi Ride Aroung the Garden City
Night life in Kumasi begins with the setting of the sun, streets that were otherwise quiet during the day time slowly come to life with the blasting of music and busy wayside food providers setting up for business. Then gradually the whole atmosphere gets busy with a lot of merry making in Bantama, Amakom, Asafo, Kejetia, Adum and Asokwa, among other suburbs of the city.
Kumasi has a vibrant night life that stands out in its own way. The drinking spots are easily the centre of attraction for most of the patrons who prefer to sit, have a drink; either samples the various type’s kebabs on offer (guinea fowl khebabs included) or have a bowl of Aponkye Nkrakra ( goat meat soup) listen to some deafeningly loud music and get updated on the latest gossip.
Brotherman Spot and Paparazzi on opposite sides of Main Street in Patasi are good examples. They are highly recommended. The closeness of the two spots notwithstanding, there is no perceived rivalry between them except for the blaring of recorded popular highlife music which may appear trying to outdo each other.
The thing about the selection of songs is simple: every song on the album is played in succession with repetitions of certain songs at the request of patrons. In the end one might have to listen to one cassette over and over before another cassette is slotted in without much notice being paid by patrons who seem to have much of a good time to bother with music.
Other hangouts on a typical Saturday night in Kumasi are the Souls Bar in Bantama, Old Timers at Kingsway, Adum and Care Masarati at Asokwa. These three joints provide just about the same amount of fun but Old Timers has a rather interesting approach to the whole entertainment business.
Their unnaturally high loud speakers has the capacity of awakening the dead, you would think that this would discourage the youth but no, nothing would deter the numerous young people who troop there to enjoy a collection of some of the really old highlife songs many of which may have been long forgotten.
The dress code everywhere is smart casual as well as traditional. One interesting realization is the fact that many spots are patronized by people wearing funeral clothes. Saturdays are funeral days in Kumasi and many people do not see the need to change into other outfits for the night out. Perhaps the only obstacle that the traditional “ntama” may present is when it comes to dancing.
The fast food joint provides all manner of dishes ranging from the local kenkey and fish to Chinese cuisine but the guys who sell fried rice popularly called “check-check” are the owners of the night market. They set up business at all sorts of corners on the popular streets and many times compete with the bigger and more established fast food restaurants.
The usually one-person enterprise is dominated by young men who go about the business of dishing out and serving customers with their orders with enough expertise to put some of their female counterparts out of the job.
The list of popular hang outs in the Garden City is uncountable but not so when it comes to night clubs. It appears the numerous outdoor drinking spots are preferred to purpose built night clubs.
Kiravi, located at Nhyiaeso and Fox Trap located near the Prempeh Assembly Hall are the hottest clubs in town. They have what is needed to keep a club going with some excellent DJ’s who blast away all night long.
After a wonderful night on the town, visitors would be better off climaxing the night with a drive through Bantama High Street which is the Oseikrom version of Osu Oxford Street in Accra, though Kumasi lacks the glamour.