The deep hypnotism of Fulla Waterfalls…by PaJohn Dadson

The deep hypnotism of Fulla Waterfalls…by PaJohn Dadson

Photo credit: Solomon Tetteh Jnr

Chances are, you have visited the favoured Kintampo waterfalls, but I bet you haven’t been to the more picturesque Fulla Falls, which is in the same vicinity.

You have never seen anything more quaint and charming. The water cascades in short falls and at the base of it is a pool, collected under the canopy of a thicket of forest trees that shades the place from the sun. Near a clearing on the grounds are purposefully set up concrete stone-built seating with flat table surfaces. Visiting revellers sit here and observe the cascading waterfalls whose shape, to me, is somewhat reminiscent of a grand piano.

Located in the Kintampo-North Municipality, Fulla Falls is near a town called Yabraso, 7 km west of Kintampo, the district capital of the Bono East Region of Ghana. It is quite a distance off the beaten path, as compared to the more popular Kintampo Falls, whose entrance is literally along the road leading from Kumasi to Tamale crossing through Kintampo. So, most of the time, people stop there as they drive along that corridor. And being a few kilometres away from the town centre, it gets quite an assault from revellers on every occasion.

Estimated to be some 173 meters above sea level, Fulla’s drops are gentle and flow magnetically along over a series of cascading rocks on the Oyoko River, a tributary of the Black Volta at Yabraso. And the shade from the trees causes a serenity that creates a haunting, yet dazzling atmosphere.

At first sight, you will be mesmerised, like I always get upon seeing it. Nature’s manifestations. As you walk along the path that leads to the clearing by the pool where people often settle for recreation, you hear the sound of the rippling water, which only goes to heighten your anxiety to see the full view of its breath-taking beauty. Nature’s marvel. It is quite fascinating!

Photo credit: Mawuli Adjabeng

The narrative goes that it was discovered in 1988 by a certain Filipino missionary called Rev. Fr. Joseph Panabang. As if the townsfolk had never seen it before! Predominantly by farmers who tend the nearby land within a generous circumference of their settlement, it is more than likely that they would have been along it and even settled for recreation at its base to enjoy its wonder for years before Panabang was even born.

In 1988, coming across it, Panabang and his people merely began using the place as a prayer ground and gave it the name “Our Lady of Kintampo”, until 1998 when he departed from the town. So, their actions there popularised the falls, and certainly not that he “discovered” it, as the story goes. And it is a shame that the history of the falls begins from when a foreigner comes across it as if it means nothing that the inhabitants of the neighbourhood have been interacting with it for centuries.

Fulla Falls is one of the significant stops on excursion providers WangoWango’s Savannah Safari itinerary. En route to the Mole National Park for the safari experience and other immersions, the stop at Fulla breaks that long and tiring road trip and offers the opportunity for a welcome break.

Here, the WangoWango team, comprised of cooks and guide escorts, deploy some of their premium activities, putting on the spectacle of their culinary skills, and spread a mouth-watering BBQ grill lunch, set against the backdrop of the cascading waterfalls!

There’s nothing more delightful than seeing them crank up the fire to sauté fresh colourful veggies they have just diced before your eyes, and toss in a sizzle of coconut oil spiked with some herbs and locally sourced spices. They’d already have prepped some jollof, or have gravy in which they’ll toss some gari to add with the veggies, and accompany it with fried plantains they would have just done. What can be better than sharing a meal, with the rippling sounds of falling water in the background, over a fresh glass of juice too. It’s incredibly refreshing.

When no one else is there, which is often, the place can have an eerie silence but for the sound of the rippling gush of water. There are times too when some of the locals come around to swim. Mostly school children, who jump from varying heights into the water, adding an exciting and enticing spectacle to enjoy.

One of the tourist hubs of Ghana, the Kintampo area is noted for measuring as the geographical epi-centre of Ghana. Then there’s the famous Kintampo Waterfalls, whose more popular visitors have included in the 1950s, Osagyefo Dr Kwame Nkrumah, the nation’s first President.

Predominantly farmers, the population in the area till the vast arable lands into cashew and mango plantations, making them one of the leading cultivators of these crops. Yam, cassava, maize, beans and a variety of vegetables are also cultivated here as cash crops and sent down to the capital Accra, and other coastal towns.

The waterfalls, within minutes’ drive of each other, definitely make it worthwhile to visit this vicinity for something more than just recreation.