Robben Island

Trip Start Jan 30, 2009
1
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Trip End Aug 01, 2009


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Flag of South Africa  , Western Cape,
Sunday, February 8, 2009

During the early days of white settlement at the Cape, Robben Island, was used as prison colony. In 1961, South Africa's most notorious prison was established on Robben Island. Political prisoners of the anti-apartheid movement were kept here together with hardened criminals.

The most prominent inmate was Nelson Mandela, who later became the first President of the new democratic South Africa. Here Mandela spent 27 years of his life in a tiny cell of 5 square meters.Mandela himself describes his 27 years on Robben Island very impressively in his autobiography "Long Walk to Freedom".Robben Island is now a national memorial and a museum and "World Heritage Site". The boat trip takes about 30 minutes and the guided tour of the island about two hours. A former inmate acts as tour guide around the prison (this was very interesting to hear what he said and felt) and will show one Mandela's cell. There is a bus one can take to the lime quarry, where the prisoners had to labor in the blinding sun without protection
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