Tongo Rocks and Tengzug Shrine: Where Rocks Whistle
Tongo Rocks and Tengzug Shrine are not among the most popular tourist destinations in Ghana but very popular in the Upper East region.
Tongo is the capital of the Talensi-Nandam District in the Upper East region, located some 20km from the regional capital Bolgatanga. The town isn’t quite well known for its attraction of visitors or tourists but within the town lies the two wonderful tourist sites in the name of Tongo Rocks and Tengzug shrine.
The Tongo rocks are found in the small village of Tengzug, a distance walk from the main town of Tongo. The Rocks are famous for their unusual and strange arrangement where one rock comfortably sits on one another in quite a fascinating form. The rocks are also known for making strange whistling sounds in Novembers and Decembers when the harmattan (dry) season kicks off. This has given the rocks the nickname the Whispering Rocks. Tourists can also view the entire landscape of Tongo and the whole region once they successfully scale the rocks and get to the summit of it.
Another bonus for scaling the rocks is the opportunity to visit the ancient Tengzug shrine found at the top of the rocks. The shrine which now serves as the traditional religious home of Tongo was a secret hideout used by captured slaves who managed to escape during the invasion of the Europeans and trans-Atlantic slave trade era.
Once at the shrine, tourists are obligated to go topless by removing their shirts. After this, the tourists get to witness the performance of a sacrifice to the gods of the land. The sacrifice involves the slaughtering of fowls and birds by the priest of the shrine. Inside the shrine, tourists can also see remnants of sacrificed animals, bones and some traditional ornaments like beads and cowries.
The people of Tongo are Talensis and the best time to visit is in March when the people are celebrating the Golob festival. Tourists can also visit in October during the celebration of the famous Bo’araam festival which focuses on slaughtering animals and drinking beers.