The Ghanaian town of Wa is an extraordinary settlement, home to some 100,000 people in the Upper West Region of the country. Although referred to as "The City of Cotton", Wa's busy agriculture industry is now more focused on products like mangoes, rice and shea nuts. The city is situated in the Sahel area of the famous Sahara Desert, and while expats living in Wa will be relieved to find that it does get some rain, it is certainly hot and dry. Between February and March is the hottest time of the year, although the climate is quite consistent all year around. As an expatriate living in Wa, you'll find that despite its small size, the town has a huge amount of culture to discover. The late September Damba Festival, a harvest festival, is a great opportunity both to be a part of this wonderful cultural scene and to get to know the town. To further help with settling in, InterNations members can find useful information on expatriation issues like expat insurance and cross-cultural communication in our online Expat Magazine. These are well worth a read as part of travel preparations.
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Although the town does in fact have a small airport, most expatriates moving to Wa will find taking an intercity bus from a local transport hub like Accra, Ghana's capital city, to be the most practical transport option. There's plenty for expats moving to Wa for the first time to explore on arrival and, having sorted out accommodation, the extraordinary Wa-Na Palace and the town's ancient mud and pole mosque are wonderful local landmarks worth an early visit. The former is constructed in the distinctive Sahelian architectural style and is one of the most striking buildings in Ghana. For expats in Wa with an interest in African wildlife, the town's Hippopotamus Sanctuary is another popular attraction and the central old kasbah district is a beautiful myriad of passages and streets well worth exploring.
Working life in this beautiful Sahel town is naturally influenced by the hot climate but, despite this, expats working in Wa will find out that the local economy is busy and vibrant. Alongside the important traditional agricultural industry in which many of the city's denizens are still employed, several highly regarded schools and a great local food culture make Wa a lively host town in which to be based. There is already a small population of expatriates working in Wa and InterNations members can again use our website to contact other global minds in the town. An easy way to do this is through our private communications function or using our forums, which new expatriates in Wa can also use to get more information on the town or organize a meet-up. One of the benefits of the city’s small size is that it shouldn't be long before you get to know not only other expats living in Wa, but the local community as well.