As the year (and decade) comes to a close, more and more Black people from around the diaspora are making their way to Ghana to commemorate 400 years since the first enslaved Africans arrived in Jamestown, Virginia. Most are hoping to bring the moment full circle with end of year events celebrating their return ‘home’ to the vibrant West African nation.
One couple who recently returned from Ghana is Rondel (@kingronthedon) and Yanique (@lechicboheme) Holder. The pair set out on their trip to Ghana not knowing quite what to expect. What they experienced by the end of the journey had such a profound effect on them, that it changed their lives forever.
“Our first trip to Ghana definitely will not be our last. We spent 11 days exploring the bustling streets of Accra, the cultural hub of Kumasi – home of the powerful Ashanti Kingdom and world-renowned kente cloth, the beautiful but sobering Cape Coast where Elmina Castle and Cape Coast Castle tell the stories of our stolen ancestors, and the breathtaking Lake Volta. And though we’ve been to many African countries prior to this, Ghana has provided an experience like no other,” says the couple.
Just one look at their social media pages and you can see how much love the Holders gave and received as they walked the soil of their ancestors. Through the use of their tour agency, Awuni Tours, the pair was able to partake in once-in-a-lifetime moments such as a naming ceremony where they were adorned in authentic kente and greeted by the Chief and leaders in the Ashanti region, as well as a return ceremony, on the other side of the “Door of No Return” where a priest prayed to their ancestors and let them know that Rondel and Yanique made it back home.
Their return ‘home’ to Ghana was so emotional, that the Holders look forward to going back with family and friends so that they can share in the moment even beyond the Year of Return. “Even given this extensive trip throughout Ghana, we are eager to get back and explore other regions, re-connect with our new friends that have become extended family, and bring others along with us so they too can experience the ultimate return home,” they said.
If you’re thinking about taking your own trip back to the continent, check out a few photos from Rondel and Yanique’s journey, and be inspired to embrace the love and spirit that awaits you in Ghana.