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The Fantasy Coffins of Ghana

For the Ga tribe in coastal Ghana, funerals are a time of mourning, but also of celebration. The Ga people believe that when their loved ones die, they move on into another life -- and the Ga make sure they do so in style. They honor their dead with brightly colored coffins that celebrate the way they lived.

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The coffins are designed to represent an aspect of the dead person's life -- such as a car if they were a driver, a fish if their livelihood was the sea -- or a sewing machine for a seamstress. They might also symbolize a vice -- such as a bottle of beer or a cigarette. On the hot and crowded streets of Accra, the capital of Ghana, one can find numerous coffin vendors. Coffins crafted as hammers, fish, cars, mobile phones, hens, roosters, leopards, lions, canoes, cocoa beans and elephants. It's a huge industry in Accra — and expensive. A coffin can cost $400 dollars, which is equivalent to one year's salary.



Ghana’s relatively new tradition of Fantasy Coffin has now become a tourist attraction for the country.

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[via Ghana Web]