ST GEORGE’S CASTLE
Elmina Castle is a designated World Heritage site and popular among visitors, especially those interested in learning more about the trans-Atlantic slave trade. Elmina castle, also known as St George’s castle is slightly older than the Cape Coast Castle further west, it was built by the Portuguese in 1482. This makes it one of the oldest European buildings on the continent still in one piece today. The Castle stands white and proud with the shores of the rather wild Atlantic Ocean on one side, and the more placid Benya Lagoon on the other.
The castle acted as a depot where slaves were bought in bartering fashion from local African chiefs and kings. The slaves, often captured in the African interior by the slave-catchers of coastal tribes, were sold to Portuguese traders in exchange for goods such as textiles and horses. The slaves were held captive in the castle before exiting through the castle’s infamous “Door of No Return” to be transported and resold in newly colonized Brazil and other Portuguese colonies.