Until 1670, there was no fort west of the River Ankobra in Beyin (now in the Western Region of Ghana), except for the temporary French fort at Assini. All goods – gold and slaves – were brought to the coast, where captains of all nationalities haggled fervently for it.
To ward off Dutch colonial ambitions which had led to intermittent warfare in the Nzema country (Apollonia), and to facilitate trade, the Nzema Chief Amenihyia granted the English Committee of Merchants permission to build a fort at Beyin on an elevated platform known as Cape Apollonia. In 1766, the quest for building materials began; construction ensued two years later on the last fort in the Gold Coast to be built by the English. The name of the fort was first bestowed on the area by a Portuguese explorer who first caught sight of the place on St. Apollonia’s Day.
The abolition of the slave trade diminished the economic importance of the fort, and hence it was abandoned in 1819. It was transferred to the Dutch in 1868 as part of the 1867 exchange of forts agreement between the British and the Dutch. The Dutch renamed it in honour of their monarch Willem III and held it until 1872, when it reverted to the British.
The fort was bombarded by a British gunboat in 1873, during a British attack on Beyin on account of its coalition with the Asante Kingdom. The fort fell to ruins. It was rehabilitated in the 1960s by the Ghana Museums and Monuments Board and was used as a rest house.
Fort Apollonia houses the Museum of Nzema Culture and History, which was opened in 2010.
The fort’s opening hours are 9:00am to 4:30pm.
Entrance fees are as follows:
|Visitor Category||Entrance Fee*|
|Pupils from Primary to JHS 3||GH¢ 0.50|
|SHS Students||GH¢ 1.00|
|Tertiary Students with ID||GH¢ 2.00|
|Ghanaian Adults||GH¢ 5.00|
|Foreign Children||USD 2.00 or its equivalent in Ghana cedis|
|Foreign Students with ID||USD 7.00 or its equivalent in Ghana cedis|
|Adult Foreigners||USD 10.00 or its equivalent in Ghana cedis|
*Entrance fees were reviewed in February 2013
Fort Apollonia is in the town of Beyin, which is part of the Amansuri wetland. Beyin is 90 km west of Takoradi.
Central and Western Regions
Cape Coast Castle
Tel +233-3321 32529