Type: Sight-seeing, Historical interest, museum, boat ride
Time needed: 3.5 Hour(s) to 4 Hour(s)
Opening TimesFerries depart at 9am, 11am, 1pm and 3pm, weather permitting, from Nelson Mandela Gateway, at the V&A Waterfront in Cape Town.
Booking DetailsBookings can be made prior to arrival or at the booking office on the day.
Located 12 kilometres from Cape Town's shores, Robben Island has served as a hospital station, a leper colony and a training station during World War II, but it was as a prison during the apartheid era that the island became most well-known. It is here that former South African president Nelson Mandela, as well as scores of other black political freedom fighters, was imprisoned and spent many years. Today the island is a World Heritage Site, the former prison a museum and many of the guides were once prisoners themselves. Trips to the island depart from the V&A Waterfront and include a ferry trip to the island, a guided bus tour of the island taking in the animal life, birdlife and spectacular views across the harbour towards Table Mountain, as well as a visit to the infamous maximum security prison. Here many of the tour guides are former political prisoners themselves and visitors will be exposed to stories of great resilience and triumph of the human spirit.