Surfing in Ghana: where beats meet beach breaks

A surfer shreds along a wave at Busua beach -Photograph: Julia Overas/Black Star Surf Shop -
A surfer shreds along a wave at Busua beach -Photograph: Julia Overas/Black Star Surf Shop –

The village of Busua in south-west Ghana is home to almost every one of the country’s surfers. Will Coldwell takes to the waves with the locals … once he’s finished partying with them.

“It’s DJ Shocker!” someone shouts, pointing towards the stage, where a young man is standing behind a rented 1990s desktop computer flanked by two gigantic palm trees. “You gotta listen to this guy,” I’m told. “He’s a local electrician.”

It’s Saturday night in Busua, Ghana, and I’m dancing in the jungle to the high-octane shuffle of west African dancehall. It’s the first evening of my surfing holiday in the small coastal village but with the Easter celebrations in full flow, it’s impossible not to get sucked into what I can only describe as Ghanaian Spring Break. Besides, with most of the village – surfers included – fully preoccupied with the party, it was always going to be a case of dance first, surf later.

No surprise, then, that the surfing competition due to take place the following morning starts a little – well, a lot – later than planned. Making my way down to the beach, head still fuzzy from tropical punch and “atomic bombs” (an energy drink mixed with a brand of whisky called K20 that comes in plastic sachets and numbs the mouth on contact), I pitch up on the sand outside the Black Star Surf Shop and wait for its owners to drag themselves out of bed.

Read more at: The Guardian