Wildlife Tourism: Tafi Atome Monkey Sanctuary in Focus
When it comes to Wildlife tourism, Ghana does not rank among the very top destinations in the world. Nevertheless the country boasts of some great wildlife tourism sites that receive millions of visitors annually from all walks of lives. The Tafi Atome Monkey Sanctuary located in Tafi Atome in the Volta region of Ghana is one such sites.
In Tafi Atome, the townsfolk coexist with the rare monkey species; the Mona and Patas monkeys. The presence of the monkeys in the forests of the village was not by a mere coincidence or work of nature as some would like to put it. It was an intentionally-carried out project in 1993 under the guidance of the Peace Corps in a bid to promote multi-faceted community-based ecotourism as well as protect the rare monkey species. Prior to the project, the monkeys lived in the tropical forest around the village and were very far from the town, having no connection with humans.
The monkeys who live in a relatively small forest just at the outskirt of the town are harmless and friendly to humans, occasionally seen playing on the trees of the forests and on the side of the road leading to the town.
Over the past two decades, it has become one of the busiest tourism destinations in the Volta Region, with thousands of tourists making the trip to the town to see these rare monkeys who happily live near humans and share bonds with them.
All a tourist needs to do to get the playful monkeys come down from their trees is to buy a banana and display it to them. At the mere site of the bananas, the monkeys rush down the trees towards the tourist with the hope of being handed the fruit.
Tafi Atome is one of the classic examples of the possibilities of community-based ecotourism. If you ever find yourself in the Volta region, The Tafi Atome Monkey Sanctuary is one places you would definitely want to visit.